Player Profiles

Adam Ottavino: Succeeding in Denver

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Since transitioning into a high-leverage role, Ottavino has seen his once-filthy slider decline in effectiveness — but he's still dominant where most relievers fear to tread.

James Russell, righty killer?

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James Russell appears to have reverse platoon splits this season. Here we look for a change in his approach that may be driving this and consider how much weight should the Braves put on it when...

Signs of life in the desert

3

Despite a nearly lifeless season in Arizona, two players have unexpectedly stood out over the last two months.

Billy Hamilton: The need for speed

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As a speed guy, how often does Billy Hamilton use his speed tools? More often than you think.

Gio Gonzalez effective velocity follow up

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An analysis of Gio Gonzalez viewed through the lens of effective velocity.

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Adam Jones and the MVP award

1

There has been a lot of discussion recently about the possibility of Adam Jones winning the Most Valuable Player award. But while he's having a good season, even a top 10 finish might be a stretch.

Mike Dunn makes pitcher wins cool again

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We're long past the point of taking pitcher wins seriously as a measure of value. But as a measure of wonder, we might be witnessing the greatest season ever.

Jake McGee, predictable and dominant

5

There are no gimmicks with Jake McGee. Hitters know what's coming but McGee beats them anyway.

Odrisamer Despaigne: Eephus Master

1

Odrisamer Despaigne may never be a star pitcher, but he is unparalleled in one facet of pitching.

Brandon McCarthy has been better in NY this season

1

Did the Yankees see something in McCarthy that Arizona missed?

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Juan Lagares' defensive wizardry

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New York Mets centerfielder Juan Lagares has produced some remarkable defensive numbers in his short tenure in the Big Apple. Is he the best defensive player in baseball?

Cole Hamels and lack of run support

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Cole Hamels is quietly pitching brilliantly for the cellar-dwelling Phillies, but he isn't getting much help from teammates. Just how good has he been?

Seth Smith: Post Extension

2

Many were surprised when the San Diego extended Seth Smith's contract instead of trading him. Let's take a look at how Smith has done since the extension.

A most intriguing Phil Hughes comparison

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He's a talented righty who underwhelmed for several years before breaking out late; why does that sound so familiar?

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Three who have drastically improved their wOBA

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Dustin Ackley, along with Adam Eaton and Denard Span, have completely turned it around at the plate during the second half of the season. Let's take a closer look at their improvement.

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Alex Gordon is having an elite defensive season

2

The Royals outfielder has been an elite defender out in left field this season.

The unexpected young MVP candidate in D.C.

1

Many, including this analyst, had Bryce Harper pegged as a likely MVP this season. We were close ... geographically.

Gausman halts development, helps O's win now

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Kevin Gausman was rushed to the big leagues, but even though he is not a finished product, he is still able to make a positive impact on the Orioles' chances in 2014.

Javier Baez: It begins

6

Cubs fans have been waiting for the debut of their young talent for over two years. In Javier Baez' case, the wait is over.

Did Sandy Alderson get it right with Lucas Duda?

2

Mets observers are celebrating that Sandy Alderson made the right choice in staying with Lucas Duda over Ike Davis. But are they letting a small sample size of at-bats this season sway their belief?

Murphy, Bogaerts on the extRE(24)mes

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David Murphy and Xander Bogaerts are making the most (and least) of their hits so far this season.

Jason Heyward: Future Platoon Player?

11

Is Jason Heyward in danger of becoming a platoon outfielder?

How serious is Michael Wacha's scapular injury?

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What does Michael Wacha's pitching future hold with his injury to the scapula bone in his shoulder?

Jose Abreu's 39 of 40

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Jose Abreu's hitting streaks show that he's more than just a slugger.

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Indians swap Cabrera for Nationals' Walters

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Far from being a blockbuster deal, the trade of Asdrubal Cabrera for Zach Walters could go a long way in determining who wins the National League East.

Chirinos and Rivera shine on defense

5

More often than not, 30-year-old rookies and 30-year-old journeymen don't find success at the major league level. However, Robinson Chirinos and Rene Rivera are breaking the norm with their...

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