In case you were thinking of selling Miguel Cabrera: This Fangraphs study confirms what has been hindering him. It's not surprising that he's been slow to catch up in the bat-speed department following all those postseason ailments last year and his offseason surgery. The best is yet to come.
Another interesting tidbit from Fangraphs: The top five in first-strike percentage among qualified SPs: David Price (74.0 %), Phil Hughes (73.6), Jeremy Guthrie (70.6), Gerrit Cole and CC Sabathia (70.2). Sixth? Nathan Eovaldi (69.5) -- a promising showing because of his previous wildness. Zach McAllister, another emerging arm, is eighth (68.9). Any growth in this category typically bodes well for any hurler; it helps to get ahead 0-1 so the pitcher has more strength in controlling the pace of the at-bat.
Mark Teixeira's power looks like it's on the upswing; he's clubbed three homers in his last five games, and he's feeling like his old self, apparently:
He said Sunday's blast felt like a pre-surgery swing.
Ask what encouraged him most, Teixeira said, "I was not protecting it. You look at the swings last year when I was trying to play through my injury. They were long. They were loopy. (I was) coming around the ball, letting go with one hand and protecting it.
"That swing tonight was a two-handed short, quick swing on a 95 mph fastball inside. That's a good sign."
He could be pushing toward 30 HR, which is what speculators hoped for when getting him on the cheap.
Paul Konerko buys into Alexei Ramirez's swing changes:
"There's no telling what he can do this year because it always has taken him a couple of months to heat up and he already is clicking," Konerko said. "I see him pulling the ball. He always hits the ball hard when he pulls it. I see him keeping a lot of balls fair that sometimes he hooks. So there's something there with his swing that's better that's keeping those balls true and in play."
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About Tim Heaney
Tim's work has been featured by USA Today/Sports Weekly, among numerous outlets, and recognized as a finalist in the Fantasy Sports Writers Association awards. The Boston University alum, who competes in the prestigious LABR and Tout Wars, has won numerous industry leagues in both baseball and football.
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