One week has gone by since baseball returned to bring joy to the world. After about six games for each team, there are some interesting stats to get excited about or become worried about, which ever reaction you deem necessary for your team.
* Zack Cozart is 2nd in MLB in Total Bases.
Cozart’s current .455/.520/.864 is very impressive and he was already a Rookie of the Year candidate before opening eyes this week. He should continue to hit with a solid lineup and a nice home park…the fact that he is hitting 2nd in the Reds lineup already is an excellent sign for his production, with some guy named Votto behind him.
* Omar Infante is tied for the league lead in homeruns.
He is tied with Carlos Beltran, Jay Bruce, Miguel Cabrera, Yoenis Cespedes, David Freese, and Corey Hart with 3. Infante had 7 HR in 2011 in 640 plate appearances. It is pretty shocking to see him at the top of the list, even if it is early. Remember that Infante did hit 16 HR way back in 2004, when he was 22-years-old and playing second, short, third, and some center field for the Tigers.
* Starlin Castro is leading the league in steals.
Castro stole 22 bases last year for the Cubs, but he never really seemed like a burner coming up through the Cubs system. He topped out at 28 stolen bases in 2009 between two levels in the minors. He probably needs to keep stealing bases if the Cubs are going to score any runs with the “help” he has around him.
* Aroldis Chapman is 6th in the league in strikeouts.
Chapman has been lights out in 5 innings, posting a 10/0 K/BB. It doesn’t look like he is trying to hit triple digits anymore and that he is pitching now. Chapman could be moved to the rotation at some point this season, especially if he continues to be such a force in the pen; though, you could argue that he is more valuable protecting the lead in 70 games than making 25 starts over the rest of the season.
* Johan Santana’s shoulder hasn’t ripped off yet!
In fact, sitting around 88 mph with his fastball, he has posted an impressive 0.90 ERA over 10 innings with a 13/5 K/BB. If he stays healthy, he probably won’t win many games, but you have to be satisfied with the early results.
* How’s that Jed Lowrie to Houston trade looking?
Well, Lowrie is hurt, but Mark Melancon…ugh. A 36.00 ERA in 2 appearances, covering just 1 inning, with a .714 batting average allowed and a 5.00 WHIP. Not. Good.
* J.P. Arencibia and Yoenis Cespedes are striking out…a ton.
Arencibia has 11 K’s in 22 at bats. Cespedes has 10 K’s in 18 at bats. At this pace, Arencibia could strike out over 250 times in 500 at bats and Cespedes would reach 277 in 500 at bats. Arencibia wouldn’t get the chance to reach 500 at bats, though, and if he keeps missing this frequently, Travis D’Arnaud could take his job sooner than we all thought. We’ll see if the A’s put up with the strikeouts due to the monetary investment and power potential of Cespedes.
* Juan Francisco can’t field.
When the Braves traded for Juan Francisco and plugged him into the lineup while Chipper Jones was out, fans should have been excited to see their potential third baseman of the future, as Larry is retiring after the 2012 season. However…the move may not prove to be very effective. Francisco posted an impressive .400….FIELDING PERCENTAGE for the Braves. That’s right. 13 innings. 5 chances. 3 errors. Francisco is young and has always been a powerful, free swinging prospect; however, the Braves aren’t the National League team moving to the AL in 2013, and Francisco needs to figure it out if he is ever going to get a gig.