Source: Fangraphs and Baseball-Reference. Fangraphs stats accurate as of 4:54 AM ET, May 7, 2014. Baseball-Reference stats accurate as of 7:17 PM ET, May 7, 2014.
Please note: I vote for players who I feel are currently having the best years — not just for stars. I also try to factor the portion of of the previous season that follows the All-Star game in a little.
American League: Joe Mauer
National League: Yadier Molina
American League: Chris Davis
National League: Joey Votto
American League: Robinson Cano
National League: Brandon Phillips
American League: Miguel Cabrera
National League: David Wright
American League: Jed Lowrie
National League: Troy Tulowitzki
American League: Mike Trout, Jose Bautista, Adam Jones
National League: Carlos Gonzalez, Carlos Gomez, Andrew McCutchen
American League: Edwin Encarnacion
Pitchers As Hitters (Minimum 20 PA)
Reds RHP Mike Leake leads all Major League pitchers with 2 home runs. Pirates RHP James McDonald leads all MLB pitchers scoring 8 runs.
Diamondbacks RHP Ian Kennedy has a 16.7% walk percentage. He has a .053 batting average, but a .229 on-base percentage. Kennedy only swings the bat 27.6% of the time as well.
Cubs RHP Matt Garza has struck out in 67.6% of his 2012 plate appearances.
Reds RHP Mike Leake and Nationals RHP Stephen Strasburg lead MLB pitchers with a 0.8 Fangraphs WAR at the plate. Strasburg also leads MLB pitchers with his .782 OPS. Leake has also seen the fewest percentage of fastballs, 55.3%, as a batting pitcher.
Catchers (Minimum 350 Plate Appearances)
White Sox A.J. Pierzynski has the most home runs among catchers. Yadier Molina has 11 stolen bases to lead catchers. He has never had more than 9 stolen bases in a season before.
Blue Jays Edwin Encarnacion currently has a 3.8 Fangraphs WAR. Encarnacion had a 3.1 WAR from 2009-2011. His .951 OPS in 2012 is also a great leap forward from his career .812 OPS.
Indians RHP Vinnie Pestano leads MLB relievers in holds with 32.
Reds LHP Aroldis Chapman leads the MLB averaging 16.26 K/9. Cubs RHP Carlos Marmol is averaging 8.01 BB/9, the highest rate among all relievers.
Braves RHP Craig Kimbrel is striking out almost half of all the batters he has faced at 49.1%.
*Statistics via Fangraphs and are through August 24, 2012.
Yankees SS, Derek Jeter leads the MLB with 167 hits.
White Sox DH, Adam Dunn leads the MLB with 36 home runs. Dunn is also the MLB leader at both: 33.8 K% and 16.9 BB%.
Angels OF, Mike Trout leads the MLB with 96 runs scored and 39 stolen bases. He has done this in only 99 games. His 7.4 Fangraphs WAR is also the MLB’s best.
Tigers 1B, Miguel Cabrera leads the MLB with 104 RBI.
White Sox SS, Alexi Ramirez has the lowest BB% in the MLB at 2.3%.
Pirates OF, Andrew McCuthen leads the MLB with each of his .403 BABIP, .355 BA, and .418 OBP.
Cubs OF, Alfonso Soriano has seen the lowest percentage of fastballs in the MLB at 44.8%. Twins INF, Jamey Carroll has seen the highest percentage of fastballs at 68.3%.
Angels 3B, Alberto Callaspo swings at the fewest percentage of pitches outside the zone at 20%. Rangers OF, Josh Hamilton has swings at the highest percentage of pitches outside the zone at 46.0%
Rangers OF, Josh Hamilton has the highest swing percentage of all pitches at 59.3%. Twins C, Joe Mauer however swings at the lowest percentage of pitches at 36%.
Rangers OF, Josh Hamilton has the highest swinging strike percentage in the MLB at 18.9%. Rockies/Giants INF has the lowest swinging strike percentage at 2%.
Royals RF, Jeff Francoeur has the worst Fangraphs WAR, -1.7, in the MLB.
Tigers RHP, Justin Verlander leads the MLB with 181.2 innings pitched.
Tigers RHP, Max Scherzer leads the MLB with an 11.39 K/9 (Innings Qualified). Indians/Yankees RHP Derek Lowe’s 3.33 K/9 is the lowest in the majors (Innings Qualified).
Athletics RHP, Bartolo Colon has thrown the highest percentage of fastballs in the MLB at 89.2%. Mets RHP, R.A. Dickey has thrown the lowest percentage of fastballs at 14.0%.
Nationals RHP, Stephen Strasburg has the highest average fastball velocity in the majors at 95.7 mph (Innings Qualified).
Pirates RHP, A.J. Burnett has thrown the highest percentage of curveballs in the majors at 33.3%.
Yankees LHP, CC Sabethia has batters swing at the highest percentage of pitches outside the zone at 34.9%. Indians RHP, Ubaldo Jimenez has the lowest percentage of this at 20%.
The lead for first pitch strike percentage goes to Phillies LHP, Cliff Lee at 71.2%. Padres RHP, Edinson Volquez throws the worst percentage of first pitch strikes at 50.8%.
Tigers RHP, Justin Verlander’s 5.2 FanGraphs WAR leads the MLB among pitchers. Angels RHP, Ervin Santana’s -0.5 Fangraphs WAR is the lowest.
Mike Trout made his 2012 debut on April, 28. Here are Albert Pujols splits based around Trout’s 2012 debut:
Before April 28: 20g, .225 avg, .279 obp, .313 slug, .592 ops, 0 hr, 4 rbi.
Since April 28: 99g, .289 avg, .353 obp, .571 slug, .924 ops, 28 hr, 81 rbi.
The Yankees have hit the most home runs in the MLB, 190. The Giants have hit the least, 77.
The Rangers have scored the most runs in the MLB, 612. The Cubs have scored the least, 453.
The Marlins lead the majors with 121 stolen bases. The Orioles have the fewest stolen bases, 39.
The Angels lineup sees the highest percentage of fastballs at 61.2%. The Padres see the lowest percentage of fastballs at 54.7%.
The Cubs lineup swings at the highest percentage of pitches outside the zone at 33.9%. The Indians lineup swings at lowest percentage of pitches outside the zone at 26.8%.
The Brewers pitching staff has the best strike out rate in the MLB at 8.53 K/9. The Twins have the lowest strike out rate at 5.92 K/9.
The Brewers pitching staff has thrown the most pitches in the MLB with 18,478. The Cardinals have thrown the least with 17,021.
As a pitching staff the Diamondbacks have thrown the highest percentage of fastballs in the MLB at 65.2%. The Mets pitching staff has thrown the lowest percentage of fastballs in the MLB at 50.7%.
The Nationals pitching staff has thrown the highest average fastball velocity in the MLB so far in 2012 at 93.2 mph. The Giants pitching staff has thrown the slowest average fastball velocity in 2012 at 89.9 mph.
The Cardinals pitching staff has thrown the highest percentage of first pitch strikes at 62.5%. The Rockies pitching staff has thrown the lowest amount of first pitch strikes, throwing one 56.6% of the time.
*Statistics from Baseball-Reference/Fangraphs and are through August 21. Season stats leaders are based on being qualified.
On February 19 the New York Yankees traded A.J. Burnett and cash to the Pittsburgh Pirates for minor league RHP Diego Moreno and minor league OF Exicardo Cayones. The Yankees came into the 2012 season thinking they had plenty of pitching depth, and with Burnett’s struggles over the past two seasons (21-26, 5.20 ERA) he became the odd man out.
Given he has only made five starts in his new home in 2012, Burnett has outside of one start great numbers. The following table shows his total numbers with the Yankees and his first five starts with the Pirates.
|NYY (3 yrs)||34||35||4.79||99||98||2||0||584.0||587||332||311||81||258||513||1.447||9.0||1.2||4.0||7.9||1.99|
Your numbers say what you have done. It is what you are at a certain spot in time, but when summed up it does not always tell the whole story. Burenett has not pitched a full season yet so the the full sample size can be easily effected by one outcome. Here is Burnett’s 2012 game log:
On May 2, 2012 he was not good. He allowed 12 earned runs while only getting 7 outs. Other than that start, all his other starts have been quality starts. Also when you take that one start out of the equation his season pitching line would look like this: 29ip 21h 6r 29k 6bb 1hr (1-1, 1.86 ERA). The Pirates should be happy with the 4.83 K/BB and 7.25 inning pitched per start they have gotten from him in those outings.
According to Fangraphs thus far in 2012, he is getting ground balls at a higher rate, 54.8 percent, than he ever did in New York. His average fastball velocity has remained comparable to its average the past two years so it not like his stuff has gotten all of a sudden better. It all comes down to control.
Burnett is currently sitting at an all-time low for himself at 2.0 BB/9. The biggest difference in my opinion is that he is getting ahead of hitters at an all-time personal best rate. He is throwing a first pitch strike 65.4 percent of the time. For his career has thrown a first pitch strike 57.7 percent of the time. That 7.7 percent difference could mean all the difference in the world for Burnett.
The average that batters hit off of him after a first pitch strike is .204, compare that to the .270 average after he gets behind 1-0 in the count. The OPS difference stands out even more. When Burnett throws a first pitch strike he allows a .573 OPS. When Burnett does not throw a first pitch strike he allows a .832 OPS.
In 2012, hitters are 0-19 in the 0-2 count vs Burnett. Baseball has its way of regressing people to their level over time so Burnett’s production should probably drop off, to a point. With the statistics Burnett is putting up right now it would not surprise me to see an ERA at the end of the year in the 3.80-4.30 range (Especially if he stays in the National League).
If the Pirates fall out of the playoff race and Burnett is still pitching well, you should expect to hear his name brought up before the trade deadline.