1). Of all regular players in MLB, Jimmy Rollins has the lowest on-base percentage when leading off an inning (.242).
Yes, that is on-base percentage, not even batting average (which still would have been bad). This is especially bad considering Rollins is a LEADOFF HITTER! Oh, and to make matters even worse, Ryan Howard (the Phillies’ #4 hitter) has the second worst when leading off an inning, which means that the Phillies are likely to start each of the first two innings with 1 out and nobody on. Ugh.
2). The Mets have the best run-differential in the league for innings 1-3 and the worst run-differential in innings 7-9.
Though it makes sense at first glance, both of these statistics surprise me. Yes, the Mets have a great offense, but their starting pitching is not that good, so I am surprised that they have the best run-differential through the first three innings. And I am even more surprised by the second statistic. Yes, their bullpen is in shambles, but what happens to their offense in late innings? And, is their bullpen really that much worse than the Pirates or the Astros or the Mariners–all of whom have much worse offenses?
3). If the Tampa Bay Rays hold on and finish the season with the best record in baseball, they will be the first team since the 19th century – in ANY major sport – to go from the worst team in a sport to the best in one year.
Yes, there have been teams that have gone worst-to-first, but that was always talking about a division. It, apparently, has never happened – in any sport – over the entirety of the sport. Come to think of it, the Celtics were pretty close, but they had the second worst record in the league in ’06-’07.
4). Rich Harden has pitched 49 innings for the Cubs since being traded from Oakland, and he has 70 strikeouts…yes, SEVENTY!
That is unbelievable. I think it is tapered a bit because he rarely pitches more than 6 innings, but that is a ridiculous amount of strikeouts from a starting pitcher.
5). Coming into tonight’s game, Jamie Moyer has 14 consecutive starts in which he has given up 3 or fewer runs.
[DISCLAIMER: I am watching the game right now, and this streak may be about to end, considering the start the Mets have a 3-0 lead in the second inning.] This stat is incredible considering Moyer is 45 years old and I can throw harder than him. The depressing aspect of this great streak is that he is only 5-4, with 5 no-decisions through this stretch.