Results tagged ‘ San Diego Padres ’
Alex Cobb will not blow you away with his fastball, but the Padres will let you know that he does have strikeout stuff. The fourth place NL West Padres did get three runs off of Tampa Bay starter Alex Cobb, but in the 4.2 innings that Cobb threw, he would pile up the pitch count while striking out thirteen, and would even strike out four in the third inning and would allow a run as well.
Curveball at 81
Splitter at 86
Split at 85
Split at 86
Curveball at 81
Will Venable gets on and begins his distracting of Cobb… split in the dirt away at 86
Venable would successfully steal second on this K.. and would steal third
Carlos Quentin couldn’t check his swing on this 58 foot splitty
Notice Cobb gets set, then brings his arms down before he steps off the rubber. Correct call by the home plate ump.
Another split at 86
Split at 87
Another splitter at 86
Really likes that splitter — 87
His last pitch? Aaaaanother splitter at 86.
This certainly was an odd outing to watch, as it always seemed like every at bat took at least seven pitches and this outing would have been really interesting had Cobb not had a pitch limit on him. How many would he have struck out if he had stayed in the game longer? Anybody’s guess, but the Padres did not seem to enjoy the split that Cobb was throwing last night.
Last night was a nightmare for Andres Torres and his fans after he whiffed on a soft line drive to him in the 4th inning, Barry Zito couldn’t get back on track, and the Padres were leading the Giants 6-5, putting up that many runs in that fourth inning. Painful, so very painful, and that doesn’t even include the grounder to Marco Scutaro that you’d expect would have started a 4-6-3 sending the game to the 13th inning. This leaves us wondering why Gregor Blanco never played last night, how long Torres stays with the big club, and some calling for Casper Wells to be had by the Giants after he was DFA’d by the Athletics. Thank goodness Jean Machi was able to throw 3 innings last night to save Sergio Romo or Jose Mijares from doing more work than they needed to, but certainly Ryan Vogelsong will probably be given a little bit longer of a rope today, even though the bullpen is still relatively well rested.
The lineup for the visitors:
Sunday’s #SFGiants lineup: Pagan CF, Scutaro 2B, Sandoval 3B, Posey C, Pence RF, Belt 1B, Blanco LF, Crawford SS, Vogelsong RHP
— Alex Pavlovic (@AlexPavlovic) April 28, 2013
Giants fans everywhere relieved to see Gregor Blanco in the lineup even though it’s a righty on the mound and he should be in the lineup.
How it lines up for the home team looking to sweep:
#Padres lineup: SS Cabrera, RF Venable, 3B Headley, 1B Alonso, LF Blanks, 2B Gyorko, CF Amarista, C Hundley, P Marquis.
— Andrew Baggarly (@CSNBaggs) April 28, 2013
You will probably hear a bit about how pitcher Jason Marquis has a 2.94 career ERA against the Giants that goes all the way back to 2001. He had a 2.03 ERA against them last year in 13.1 IP, so you might hear the word “ownage” tossed around on the broadcast. Neither Ryan Vogelsong or Padres starter Jason Marquis have faced the Giants this year, although Vogelsong got to see the Padres four times last year and in 22.0 IP he sported a 2.05 ERA, 21 K’s, 6 BB, but we’re still kind of wondering what Vogey we’re getting this year after some inconsistencies and bad luck hurt his box score. Vogelsong has lasted seven innings in each of his last two starts. I’m sure the Giants would be more than happy with that, especially as they get ready to go to Phoenix to play the Diamondbacks on Monday for a three-game set there.
Looking at the four game losing streak, people are going to have questions for certain stats that are pretty telling for why a team lost a game. The stats for each game of the stretch:
Errors: 3 (Crawford, Sandoval, Belt), 1 (Scutaro), 0, 2 (Torres, Scutaro)
Team LOB: 7, 10, 6, 5
RISP: 2-for-9, 0-for-10, 0-for-5, 3-for-7
The Giants have also scored first in three straight games, but haven’t been able to hold on, so like Scutaro was saying yesterday, the team is having trouble getting the offense, defense, and pitching in sync right now, and I’d say that’s a fair analysis, although plenty of positive signs with the bats yesterday. Hopefully that continues today against Marquis and the Padres.
Game time is 1:10PM PST, MLB.tv is having a free preview day, so as long as you’re not in the respective team’s markets, you should be able to catch the game for free today.
13-9 through their first twenty-two games, the Giants have left the comforts of home and will play weekend baseball in one of the more comfortable cities to do it in San Diego. The Padres will throw out Andrew Cashner once again, and he faced fourteen hitters over four innings, walking one, giving up one homer, and striking out five in his Saturday outing. The last time Tim Lincecum saw Cashner and the Pads was also the last time the Friars were at AT&T and had his longest outing of the year, just short of seven innings (6.2), two walks, and eight strikeouts, and Buster Posey was catching him! A day for much rejoicing indeed, as it was another win of the three-game sweep of the Padres. The only team from the NL West that the Padres have not been swept by are those Los Angeles Dodgers, whom the Pads are 4-2 against. They have lost all six games against the Rockies, and haven’t played the Diamondbacks yet. They’ll look to not get swept by San Francisco again this weekend, and they’ll have Carlos Quentin back to help them out.
Tonight’s lineup for the Giants:
Tonight’s #SFGiants lineup: Pagan CF, Scutaro 2B, Sandoval 3B, Posey C, Pence RF, Belt 1B, Crawford SS, Blanco LF, Lincecum P
— San Francisco Giants (@SFGiants) April 26, 2013
Posey catching Lincecum, Brandon Belt‘s back in the lineup (I know it’s a RHP on the mound for San Diego), all feels the way it should.
And the home team Padres:
— Andy Masur (@PadsCast) April 26, 2013
Chase Headley came back during the series against the Giants, and the Giants were none to happy to see him homering and hitting off of them.
As for Lincecum’s pitch usage this year, I’m sure it comes as no surprise that the change/split is not being used that much to open the plate appearance or when the batter’s ahead, but primarily when he’s ahead or has two strikes on a hitter. That has really been his money pitch, and I know I say this all the time, but if he can command the fastball, his outings should be fun to watch and make that split (and his slider) that much more effective.
I thought Cashner’s pitch usage stats might still be evening out since his spot starting began the last time he took the mound, but looking at his pitch distribution from his last start, the fastball distribution seems true, although he was pretty even with the changeup and slider.
Cashner threw forty-four fastballs (five sinkers), ten changeups, and eleven sliders in his sixty-five pitches to the Giants last Saturday. Will be interesting to see what kind of pitch count will be on him and how long manager Bud Black lets him go tonight if he stays out of trouble.
Game time is at 7:10PM PST at PetCo Park.
Barry Zito delivered seven shutout innings to bring his home shutout streak to twenty-one consecutive innings to begin the regular season. The game began with a couple disputable plays thanks to instant replay, and these calls would go against the Giants. First, Marco Scutaro‘s tag on Chase Headley that was not ruled correctly, though a very difficult call.
Lucky for the Giants, the bottom of the order began to rally, with Andres Torres and Brandon Crawford getting on base, and then Angel Pagan delivered a double to RCF on a 3-0 pitch. The broadcast pointed out that he cheked the dugout after the 2-0 pitch to maybe see if he had the green light. If so, maybe Angel Pagan was acknowledging that trust.
Pablo Sandoval capped the three-run rally with a bad ball seeing-eye single up the middle on a pitch a little less than a foot off the ground.
Buster Posey would get his first homer of the season, a two-run shot that put the Giants up 5-0.
If you’re wondering how pitchers can keep their ERA down, a good defense behind you can really do the trick.
We just hope he’s OK.
We also hope that there will be more dance lessons outside, because why not.
Today’s jump wasn’t all that awe-inspiring, but we’ll take the sweep.
Arizona comes in to begin a three-game series with the Giants tomorrow night.
A series after the Giants got swept, San Francisco looks for its second consecutive sweep at home. Barry Zito takes the hill for the Giants, looking to continue his home magic, while his opposite number in Eric Stults looks to eat up some innings since teammate Andrew Cashner had to make an emergency spot start yesterday. The lineups for today’s game have been posted and this is what Bud Black has given us:
— Corey Brock (@FollowThePadres) April 21, 2013
And Bruce Bochy hath dishes out this:
Today’s (4/21) #SFGiants lineup: Pagan cf, Scutaro 2b, Sandoval 3b, Posey c, Pence rf, Arias 1b, Torres lf, Crawford ss, Zito p
— San Francisco Giants (@SFGiants) April 21, 2013
Joaquin Arias hasn’t had a start since April 10th, but has played in five games since his last start, so Brandon Belt gets the bench duties against the lefty today. Andres Torres, your platoon bat, also sees a start, and Brandon Crawford moves back down to the eight spot, all moves you can bet are due to Stults being a southpaw.
A different chart to take a look at from Brooks Baseball, as you see Stults’ velocity has gone down with his pitches, while he’s used the cutter and the four-seamer earlier on. Kind of interesting there’s a space underneath the 0% on that chart on the left.
Zito meanwhile, has had his cutter featured on MLB Network when they talk about him, but his slider and fastball that have seen the increased usage so far this year. Encouraging to see the velocity holding pretty steady so far, and you see he spreads out the use of his pitches, and with the velocity he has, you can’t blame him for not relying on a 82-84 MPH fastball.
In two games, these teams have only combined for seven runs thus far, which of course is a credit to their pitchers and their bullpen, so if it’s another low scoring game, go ahead and keep that shocked face of yours stored away for another day, although after Zito got lit up in Milwaukee, there may be people just waiting for that to happen again. We’ll see, none of the Giants starting pitchers really did well there, and maybe there’s something different about home for Zito.
Game starts at 1:05PM PST. The Padres have a night game against the Brewers in San Diego tomorrow, while the Giants will open up a series against the Diamondbacks at AT&T.
Hopefully, after a night where it took a while for fans to get into the park, prospective attendees have brought themselves to the park earlier so as to get through security so they may see the first pitch tonight. Clayton Richard was originally scheduled to go against the Giants today in Game 2 of their weekend series, but due to flu-like symptoms, he’ll miss tonight’s start and hope he can make his turn in the rotation again on Tuesday. Known high-velocity thrower Andrew Cashner makes his first start of the season. He made five starts last year in thirty-three appearances, but none of them came against the Giants. Only one of those starts went longer than 5.0 IP, against Houston, and the Giants will hope to take him out early as well. The lineups for the visitors:
— Corey Brock (@FollowThePadres) April 20, 2013
and the root, root root for the home team:
Padres changed pitchers. So, new lineup: Pagan CF, Scutaro 2B, Sandoval 3B, Posey C, Pence RF, Crawford SS, Belt 1B, Blanco LF, Lincecum RHP
— Alex Pavlovic (@AlexPavlovic) April 20, 2013
Cashner hasn’t gone longer than 2.2 IP this year in his relief appearances, so if he gets into the 4th or 5th inning, his control and command will be something everybody makes a closer look towards. Since Cashner has only had to deal with his opposition in short spurts and they’ve really only see him one time in a game, the strategy will be a little bit different than that of his starting tonight, and the velocity may be dialed down a bit. This is Cashner’s pitch distribution for the season thus far in the few pitches he’s made so far.
If you have a good fastball-changeup combination, that can do you wonders as a pitcher (see: Tim Lincecum, even though his changeup is a split), and Cashner may have to utilize those other breaking ball pitches a little more if the changeup isn’t hitting the strike zone tonight. I feel like that’s the key for him tonight — to get that changeup in there, to make pitches other than the fastball get into the mind of Giants hitters. For Timmy:
As Cashner’s key is the changeup and the strike zone, so is Timmy’s fastball and the strike zone. If the hitters see Timmy is hitting the strike zone, I’d be under the impression they are less likely to just spit on the slider and the split when he gets to throwing them. I’m still pretty surprised that he’s gone at least five innings in each of his starts this season, and his walks in a game going from 7 to 4 to 1, so that means he’s walking -2 hitters tonight (put money down on that).
As of right now, the Giants are 6-1 against their NL West brothers while the Padres are 4-9. The home team hope to make that 4-10 tonight. Game time is 6:05PM PST.
Just-back-from-the-DL Chase Headley and his Padres are fresh off of a day off and a sweep of the other SoCal team that has blue in their logo and will be guests at AT&T Park this weekend. First, a public service announcement from the San Francisco Giants in case you are going to any of this weekend’s games.
Fans can expect increased security at AT&T Park that is similar to what has previously been seen at marquee events.
— San Francisco Giants (@SFGiants) April 19, 2013
In addition, mandatory bag inspections and wanding will be enforced at all gates. The #SFGianst urge fans to arrive early…
— San Francisco Giants (@SFGiants) April 19, 2013
..and appreciate the cooperation and understanding of our fans as we work together to ensure a safe and secure ballpark experience. — San Francisco Giants (@SFGiants) April 19, 2013
So get there early, and be ready to show off the insides of those bags you’re carrying. Onto the lineups for the visiting Padres:
— Corey Brock (@FollowThePadres) April 19, 2013
Remember, Carlos Quentin is still serving his eight-game suspension, so he will miss this series with the Giants.
and the orange-topped Giants:
Tonight’s (4/19) #SFGiants lineup – Pagan CF, Scutaro 2B, Sandoval 3B, Posey C, Pence RF, Crawford SS, Belt 1B, Blanco LF and Bumgarner LHP
— San Francisco Giants (@SFGiants) April 19, 2013
Nothing out of the ordinary there.
Edinson Volquez, tonight’s pitcher for the Padres, has faced the Giants six times in his career, four times at AT&T. You’ll be (not) surprised to hear that in those four starts, he hasn’t allowed a HR to the Giants! Since the Giants and Padres both average less than a homer a game, don’t be surprised to see that streak continue. Here’s a scouting report on how Volquez has pitched to batters this year (warning: smaller sample size than usual for both pitchers considering they’ve only pitched a low number of games):
Looks like a pretty well-spread diverse set of offerings from Volquez, though there is definitely a lower chance of him using a fastball when he’s ahead or in a strikeout situation, and a higher chance of him using that fastball when the batter is ahead. Look for the Giants to sit on that when they get those hitter’s counts every hitter loves. That 51% for curveballs to RHH when he’s ahead is also interesting, but we need to keep in mind also how few pitches he’s thrown thus far.
If there’s any pitcher that’s right for the job of shutting an opposition down right now, it is Madison Bumgarner, who even when not sharp has been able to keep the opposition down. It’s unfortunate that there is some sort of concern with every other pitcher’s performance, but it is also still early in the season. The chart for Bumgarner goes like this:
Unlike Volquez who hasn’t featured his fastball much when he’s ahead, Bumgarner hasn’t been afraid to use it. So far into the season, we’re seeing he’s mainly a fastball-slider-occasional curveball guy to LHH and then he’ll use the changeup more to RHH.
Game time for tonight’s match is 7:15PM PST.
I made a GIF post of the fight last night, but I’m not going to pretend that watching the whole video of it wouldn’t be better, so
You know the story about Zack Greinke and Carlos Quentin, and now there’s an added bit to hearing Matt Kemp and Quentin met in the hallways towards the player parking lot on their way out and got face to face. @ProductiveOuts was able to make some pretty funny commentary out of peacemaker Clayton Richard and Matt Kemp getting up in one another’s space
Matt Kemp and Clayton Richard perform a stunning a cappella cover of “Here And Now” by Luther Vandross. yfrog.com/nx41qdp
— Productive Outs (@ProductiveOuts) April 12, 2013
Then, before everybody went to sleep, and actually before the hallway meeting, the Dodgers official account tweeted this
See you on Monday in Los Angeles: twitter.com/Dodgers/status…
— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) April 12, 2013
Were there San Diego fans, and maybe a player or two backing Quentin last night? Absolutely. Quentin does say Greinke says something to him, so until we know what that is, it’s hard to deliver a clear judgment on the rush that led to Greinke’s broken collarbone. However, my opinion is that the Dodgers account stepped over the line in not helping relations with San Diego. Do they care? Probably not. Should they care? Absolutely. I’m not saying they should have said, “Good game, Padres, see you next time! xoxo” but giving just the official recap and notes from the press conference would have been enough. I’m not sure why it was necessary to create more bad blood between teams and fanbases, because you know San Diego fans probably didn’t enjoy seeing that.
To make my stance clear, I agree with Don Mattingly that Quentin shouldn’t play before Greinke does, but I realize that’s probably not going to happen. This is MLB’s chance to take a stand on the matter, but I don’t expect them to start now. The MLB might also want to have anger management classes for all of its athletes before the season, because maybe it might prevent another broken collarbone, or any other injury. All in all, this is not a good thing for baseball, and I’m just hoping Quentin gets his suspension, Greinke recovers quickly, and the fans from different teams don’t start hurting each other.
Couple of fan fights breaking out down LF line at Petco #fightnight
— David Vassegh (@THEREAL_DV) April 12, 2013
The season series resumes on Monday at Dodger Stadium.
Maybe it didn’t all start with a Jason Marquis pitch to Matt Kemp in the first inning. Maybe this goes further back. There was a game recap from 2009 (credit to Bill Shaikin for reminding the people) where Carlos Quentin and Zack Greinke met when they were with the Chicago White Sox and Kansas City Royals, respectively:
An instance between Carlos Quentin and Greinke with one out in the fourth stood out as the game’s only real fireworks, and even this uprising didn’t amount to much. Quentin was hit squarely in the back by a Greinke pitch and immediately took a couple of steps toward the mound.
Home-plate umpire Bill Hohn stepped in front of Quentin and catcher Miguel Olivo quickly restrained the slugger. Television broadcasts showed Quentin telling Olivo that he was all right, and Quentin moved down to first base.
By Greinke’s estimation, it was a first-inning pitch that got away and almost hit Quentin in the head causing the residual anger three innings later.
“He had a reason for [being upset],” said Greinke of Quentin. “Any time you throw it that high, it’s justified. You’ve got to be better than that and not pitch like that. You’re going to make mistakes, but the last thing you want to do is hit someone where it could seriously hurt them. As soon as I let go of it, I was scared for him.”
So there is history that goes back as far as that. On to the GIFs:
The delivery from Greinke
You’ll notice AJ Ellis yelling “HEY” to Quentin because really, nobody wants to risk injury or suspension of anybody else
Another view, complete with Greinke glove drop and taking the hit
The pile that ensued
From the home plate camera now
The bullpen getting their exercise
Matt Kemp was very angry, and was protected by multiple Dodgers to not get any further involved. As of this moment, it’s unclear if by this point he was already ejected.
The bullpen comes back out to get their jogging in
Greinke would leave with the team trainer, and his departure was called an injury, but we will not know the extent of it until after the game.
Matt Kemp, what do you think of this whole thing?
It’s “mother father bull kit?” I’m not sure I understand. It’s ok, no need to clarify.
Suspensions are likely for Kemp (allegedly for touching an umpire), Hairston, and Quentin. Not sure about Greinke, but that’s also possible. This could be trouble for the Dodgers if Greinke’s actually hurt, but we’ll wait to talk about all that until news is released post-game.
The regular season begins this Sunday at 5:05PM PST when the Texas Rangers play the Houston Astros in that famous AL West rivalry, which means this week is all about previews, bold predictions, and message board put downs. I will say I am not good at predicting things, so let’s get that straight. Like everybody else though, I have an opinion on the matter of how events will play out. As I preview these divisions, I’ll tell you a little of what sport betting sites see, what computer simulations see, and what I see. The teams will be previewed in the reverse order I expect them to finish. Let us preview the NL West, where my predictions mean I have no respect for managers that have transformed Eric Gagne‘s career (“Trace, you’re crazy!”), the intangibles, and recent success.
5. Colorado Rockies
Bovada’s odds to win the division, pennant, and World Series: 25/1, 60/1, 150/1
Stuart sees: a team that if healthy, could hit their way to third place in the division. Really! It’s just that I don’t know how healthy they can be, and their starting pitching is mostly what I would call “not good.” Jeff Francis and Jon Garland bring up the back of the rotation, and I’m not sure how long that’s going to work, especially Francis. Maybe he’ll wind up with the Marlins some time this season. The bullpen is whatevers with Rafael Betancourt handling the save opportunities, and the bench not being horrible for a bench. That lineup led by Dexter Fowler, Carlos Gonzalez, and Troy Tulowitzki should be respected, and yea, Michael Cuddyer and Todd Helton are older, but if they’re in the lineup, you respect that, too. With this team, I’m just waiting for the wheels to come off in terms of health and then watch the pitching suffer. I’m glad they tried that four-man rotation last year to try and innovate, and hope they try something else this year. Maybe less sacrifice bunting by position players?
4. San Diego Padres
Bovada’s odds to win the division, pennant, and World Series: 14/1, 40/1, 75/1
Stuart sees: a farm system that’s good, but just saw Casey Kelly and Rymer Liriano go down for a significant amount of time, so the Padres won’t have a starter and a worthy OF reinforcement to help them out in the middle of the season. They’ll probably get some assistance elsewhere from within, but knowing your back-up plan isn’t as readily available as you hoped it’d be isn’t quite the start to the season you were hoping for. Back to the major league club, I’m curious how Jedd Gyorko will do as he springs onto the scene at 2B, and I’m sure he won’t mind that Petco brought its fences in. 2012 second-half erupter Chase Headley will miss a month with a thumb injury, and Yasmani Grandal decided to be stupid so he’s missing fifty games, so if the Padres start slow, don’t be all too surprised. The bullpen should be good (again), with the rotation holding their own, promising to be that annoying team that doesn’t just let you trample them in September when you need those wins. I say the ceiling for this team is third, the floor being last. Yea, yea, I can hear you, I know that’s not a super-bold prediction.
3. Arizona Diamondbacks
Bovada’s odds to win the division, pennant, and World Series: 13/2, 25/1, 60/1
Stuart sees: a front office that went out of its way to make its squad worse because Justin Upton wasn’t good enough for them, and their bullpen didn’t have enough 9th-inning experience so they decided they would be happy to pay for Heath Bell, and why not ship off Chris Young, and get Cliff Pennington, too… as your starting shortstop. Sure, Didi Gregorious will be diddling about in the minors, but if the moves the DBacks made this off-season didn’t make your eyes roll, what will? Trevor Bauer was given up on, and I’m just hoping they trade top prospect Tyler Skaggs to the Giants for someone “gritty” because intangibles, that’s why. Each part of this Diamondbacks roster should be able to pull its own weight at the major league level, which makes them sound remarkably average, and that’s where I think they are, but maybe a few games above that. This team can win the division, and they might have a couple guys that can provide some help in the home stretch if they so desire to bring them up in Matt Davidson, Didi, and Skaggs.
2. San Francisco Giants
Bovada’s odds to win the division, pennant, and World Series: 8/5, 13/2, 12/1
Stuart sees: loyal Giants fans getting ticked at me putting them here just because I predicted they would win just about every three-game or playoff series against their opponent last season which means I should place them first here, too. Some Giants fans after 2010, and now after both 2010 and 2012 get extremely butthurt when you don’t put the team they support in first, as if that’s disrespecting their team. It’s not at all disrespecting their team as it is respecting what the team ahead of them has put together by throwing around money to bring in talent. Changes to this team include: the bench of Nick Noonan, Andres Torres, and Cole Gillespie, and long-reliever Chad Gaudin in the bullpen. Outside of that, not too much different. The Giants must have someone in the crowd of Hunter Pence, Tim Lincecum, and Barry Zito to step up their game to both compensate the regressions that will happen with Gregor Blanco, and help them make up for the difference in talent on paper between them and the Dodgers. This team can definitely win the division, but I don’t see them finishing any worse than third. I am hoping they do not part with any of their top pitching prospects again to bring in someone this year, but I am worried it will happen.
1. Los Angeles Dodgers
From a Spring Training game vs. the Giants, but take note:
— Stuart Jones (@HeHitsItDeeeeep) February 26, 2013
Bovada’s odds to win the division, pennant, and World Series: 5/6, 4/1, 9/1
Stuart sees: a new land of evil, sure it’s a new kind of blue, or whatever the slogan is, and it’s funny how we associate large amounts of spending with being bad, but the contracts the Dodgers handed out to the likes of Zack Greinke and Matt Kemp weren’t all that obnoxious at all. Swallowing up Carl Crawford‘s, taking a risk on Hyun-Jin Ryu, though, are just going to anoint you king of the moneys by people observing the game. A rotation led by Kershaw and Greinke (though the latter might be a little slow out of the gates) followed by some decent guys in Chad Billingsley, Josh Beckett, and the question mark Ryu, we’re just wondering who can stay healthy, and who Ryu really is: is he a starter? Or an expensive reliever? The spring of Yasiel Puig came to a halt when the Dodgers wisely optioned him to the minors to get an extended look at him there to see if he can develop some plate discipline, but I’ve heard a lot of positive reports on him even without said discpline. Their bullpen is good, so anything that lineup that includes Kemp, Gonzalez, and the platoonable Andre Ethier can put together in the form of a lead, I expect them to hold it down. Injuries are really the only thing that I can see bringing these guys down (hello, Hanley Ramirez‘s thumb), or Don Mattingly bunting them all over the place. The floor is third, but it is an unlikely floor at that.