The Jays have turned things around since May 9th, the day many thought would be the end of their playoff chances. But behind the MLB’s best pitching staff (leads the league in ERA), the Jays have crawled back to within 3 Games of the AL East leading Rays and currently stand at 31-26. This marks the first time the Jays have been 5 games over .500 since 1997*. So whats driving the resurgence of the Blue Birds besides the consistently sublime pitching? I say the Catcher Quandry. Though I hadn’t even considered the catching platoon to be an issue, after looking at some numbers, it appears as if Gregg Zaun enjoys spearheading Losses. In Games the recently calmed Zaunn has appeared in (significant playing time, no pinch hitting, sub bullshit), the Jays have gone 16-21. He was also involved in an anemic April stretch that saw the Jays lose 11 of 12 in which he played. The other side of the coin reveals the brilliance of Ontario’s finest, Mr. Rod Barajas. In games the Barajas plays in, the Jays have gone 17-10. The post-Mitchell era has been cruel to Mr. Zaun.
Otherness, to Mr. McGowan for extending the Cycle of Litsch streak to an unprecedented four games. When will people see the invigorating properties of Litsch?
Shannon Stewart has a 224 point difference between his batting average in Jays’ wins compared with his batting average in Jays’ losses. Catalyst? Just maybe. All this despite being endowed with the names Harold and Shannon. Amazing.
Though he’s my favorite Jay, arguments concerning his prominence in the lineup are continuing to look bleaker everyday. The Rios is hitting 18 points better in Jays losses. The Jays have won despite him this year. However, I do take comfort in the company he keeps atop the GIDP leaderboard. Some future HOFs right there.
Matty Stairs has some seriously fucked splits. He is currently hitting .071 against LHP and .300 v RHP. The Canadian boy has also proved my longtime suspicion that he hates Canada by hitting .206 at the Rogers Centre and .333 on the Road.
Props to Baseball Reference for refusing to abandon the Skydome. Strange how the insanely updated site still refers to buildings by their 20th century names. Seriously Awesome.
Among MLB pitchers with more than 60 IP, Jesse Litsch is 17th in Run Support. Dustin McGowan, not so lucky (though that will change after the explosion last nite) He is currently 85th of 86 pitchers with 2.78 Runs/Start.
The Jays are currently rocking two pitchers in the WHIP Top 3!! Marcum is #1 with the Doc coming in at #3.
Marcum is also leading the league by quite some margin in Opponent’s batting average. He has made the AL his collective bitch, allowing them to hit only .160 thus far. Or, for awesomeness context, 20 points less than the next best pitcher!!
Litsch has the fewest BBs among pitchers with 60 IP with 9. Doc has the 3rd fewest with 11.
Though these figures will probably never be topped in the history of man, one number suggests they could be even better. According to the Jays ERC percentage, the pitching staff has been UNLUCKY so far this season. If the figure is less than 100, than it is assumed they have been unlucky. The Jays number: 94!!! Look for a 1-2-3-4-5 showing in the Cy Young voting come October. For a more detailed explanation check this out: http://www.baseball-stats-online.com/bbso/glossary/pglossary.html
*No actual evidence to support