Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Hitting and Pitching Comes Alive

Game 66, June 13, Coca-Cola Field, Buffalo, New York
Durham Bulls (Tampa Bay): 5
Buffalo Bisons (Toronto): 0
Season: 30–36; Trip: 2–2
Wrap, Box, The Buffalo News

Game Score: Wilk 82; Season Avg 55
Tm OPS: Game .987; Season .653
Tm wOBA: Game .406; Season .295

Adam Wilk had a terrific game, leading the Bulls to their sixth shutout of the year.

The score does not quite reflect the terrific day the Bulls had at bat, though. As the stats above show, as a team they were well above their season totals: 4 doubles, 2 triples (Johnny Field and Jake Hager), and a home run by J.P. Arencibia (his second in two days) led to 23 total bases. A great day for the Bulls as they took advantage of a bit of turmoil in the Bison’s pitching rotation.

In general, the Bulls’ offense has not been kind to Mr. Wilk this year. Several decent efforts were not been rewarded. Last night they were. Plus, he was at his most efficient. He only needed 77 pitches to get through a full 8 innings. That’s just a little over 3 pitches per out. To put that in context, the typical Bulls pitcher this year averages over 5 pitches per out. Over 75 innings this year, Wilk's only allowed 9 walks. In other words, if you’re a batter you might as well swing, because the ball is going to be over the plate.

Outside the game —
  • Nick Franklin is back. Unless I’m reading the stats wrong, he essentially had a “Moonlight Graham” visit. He had a grand total of three plate appearances in three games, drew two walks, and had one inning in left field. In his one recorded AB he pinch-hit for pitcher Matt Moore in an interleague game and flew out to center field. His sacrifice fly in last night's first inning scored what turned out to be the winning run. His ground out in the 5th to deep short brought in another run. Franklin has 25 RBIs on the year and I’m happier that he’s here rather than sitting on a bench in St. Petersburg, even though I’m sure he isn’t.
  • Juniel Querecuto was sent to Montgomery to make room for Franklin.
  • No one has been named to fill the hole that Blake Snell will leave behind.
  • Note that the Bulls just played a series against the Iron Pigs in Coca-Cola Park and now they are playing a series against the Bisons in Coca-Cola Field. Seems like Atlanta’s favorite beverage has made a lot of folks rich up in the North, rich enough to want to name a ballpark after their business.
  • Keep an eye out for a pitcher named Jonny Venters, who is working his way up through the system. He is coming back from his third Tommy John surgery. Stories at MLB Trade Rumors and Rays.mlb sites.

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