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Morning Mound Visit: sabermetrics news - 5/15/19

Jose Altuve’s rare slump; Tommy La Stella’s power surge; recently robbed home runs

MLB: Los Angeles Angels at Minnesota Twins Jordan Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

FanGraphs | Jay Jaffe: After a brief interruption via injury, Jose Altuve is still suffering from a setback... a rare slump. His rolling wRC+ is at an all-time low and he is whiffing on pitches in the zone, which is bizarre for him, so we’ll be watching if he can adjust his mechanics and make his way out of it. He likely will.

Baseball Prospectus | Matthew Trueblood ($): Just like the Angels writ large, Tommy La Stella has embraced the approach of patience at the plate. Now staying back on pitches instead of jumping on them like with the Cubs, he has unlocked a power surge that is maybe not permanent, but certainly reflects a new, better stage in his career.

The Ringer | Ben Lindbergh: More home runs and more strikeouts means less contact, and sometimes less excitement, but one play has risen in significance: the home run robbery. We’re now setting records in the stat due to both the rise of high fly balls but also defensive positioning, and now we’re bound to find one once a week, something thought to be unheard of even five years ago.