Welcome to another edition of ‘Marty's Musings', my weekly column of numbers summarizing the past week in Major League Baseball. I am your guide for taking an analytic look at the prior week and the upcoming matchups to watch, identifying numbers that are generally not found in a standard box score.
It's the first week of the offseason, and although there weren't any games in the last week, baseball offered us plenty of stories. Royals fans showed up to the victory parade in droves, qualifying offers were given to a number of players (and the first ever may be accepted this year), a classic Twin retired, and one big trade went down between the Mariners and Rays. It's all in this week's Musings.
Numerical 2015 Recap
21 - Teams have reached the postseason (at least to the wild card game) since 2013. Fans of nine teams have been left out in the cold, with their last three seasons ending on the final day of the regular season. Since 2010, the number jumps to 25 (sorry Mariners, Padres, White Sox, Rockies, and Marlins fans).
3.8 - Francisco Cervelli's fWAR. Cervelli served as a key cog in the Pirates wild card fun. Surprisingly, Cevelli out-war'ed all catchers other than Buster Posey. The Yankees let Cervelli walk replacing him with Brian McCann in 2014 but he trailed Cervelli in fWAR this year (he posted a 2.9 fWAR in 2015).
27 - Players with multiple games of four or more strikeouts. Putting it into perspective, Tony Gwynn never struck out four times in a game and he had three just once in his career. Going back further, in 1941 Joe Dimaggio had a 32 game hit streak in which he didn't K once. My how the game has changed!
15.9 - Strikeout percentage for the Royals who posted the lowest K-rate of any team. The next closest were the Athletics with 18.1 percent.
12.85 - Million dollar high bid on the rights to negotiate a big league contract with Byung-ho Park. The Minnesota Twins won the bidding and now have a 30-day window to nail down a contract with an intriguing international free agent. Last season, Minnesota first baseman totaled a -0.4 fWAR. This past year, the 29 year old first baseman put up a slash line of .343/.436/.714 with 53 home runs in the offense-happy Korean league. He hit 52 homers in 2014 and 30-plus home runs every year since becoming a full-time player in 2012.
2 - Players who played a majority of their games in center field and have both more home runs and stolen bases than Torii Hunter: Carlos Beltran and Willie Mays. Hunter popped 353 homers and stole 195 bases.
6 - A six player deal kicked off the trade season with the Mariners sending Brad Miller, Logan Morrison, and Danny Farquhar to Tampa for Nathan Karns, C.J. Reifenhauser, and Boog Powell. Seattle possessed one too many shortstops and the Rays collect more arms in their farm system than a National Guard facility. The Ms received much needed arms and the Rays filled a hole left in the infield ever since they traded away Yunel Escobar.
15.8 - Million dollars as part of the qualifying offer. Twenty free agents received qualifying offers and there is some talk the Blue Jays Marco Estrada or the Dodgers Brett Anderson may end up being the first players to accept his QO. Only a dozen players received the offers last year and it's probable the system is changed in the next collective bargaining agreement.
4/4 - Opening day for the Royals and Mets who face off the Monday opening day of the 2016 season.