Taking a step back and talking about the status of each club. Today: Memphis Redbirds.
As of Sunday the 26th*, the Redbirds were in second place in their division with a 10-7 record. Their 2 games back of the division leader the Iowa Cubs.
Bryan Anderson, David Freese, Jess Todd, Allen Craig, Jon Jay, Clayton Mortensen, Adam Ottavino, Fernando Salas (DL)
Sweet Relief – The confusion over the move of Jess Todd to the pen may still be warranted but Todd’s firing bullets. He leads the team in K’s with 14 in 10.1 innings. He’s allowed 8 baserunners (3 BBs, 5 hits) in that same span.
Eckstein in the Outfield – Shane Robinson leads the team with a .375 batting average. He’s flashed occasional power with 5 doubles in 48 at bats. You’d anticipate him doing better than expected since he’s an overacheiver and all. Can you smell the grit?
Wild Things – With less than 20 innings pitched, Clayton Mortensen, Blake Hawksworth and Adam Ottavino have all racked up double digit walk rates.
Walkin’ in Memphis – Tyler Greene trails only Nick Stavinoha in walks with 10 and 11, respectively.
Power Outage – Memphis is 3rd from last in the PCL for HRs. They have 9 longballs compared to league leading 25 for the Iowa Cubs.
Glass Half Full – With around 12% of 2008′s innings thrown, the Redbirds have an ERA half a run lower than last year, good for 3rd in the PCL.
Freesing Cold – After getting the cold shoulder in St. Louis thanks to hot starts by Brian Barden and Joe Thurston, David Freese is flailing in Memphis. He has a .292 OPS in 24 ABs.
What’s the Mather – Joe Mather joins the group of struggling hitters with a sub .400 OPS. Top prospects Jon Jay and Bryan Anderson are hovering around the .500 mark.
Slashing Prices – The Redbirds rank last in every slash category (AVG/OBP/SLG) in the PCL. They have half of the RBIs of league leader Omaha.
The Redbirds are surviving on pitching right now but their pitching, while solid, isn’t spectacular. Bats like Jay, Anderson and Mather have to wake up if the Redbirds are to have any hope of staying in contention. As STL continues to poach pitching prospects (Walters, Boggs, Perez) for castoffs (Kinney, Thompson) with issues, Memphis is going to be strained to keep runs off the board. Tyler Greene is the unsung hero so far for the offense and Allen Craig continues to hit regardless of his position.
*Stats from MiLB leader board as of the 27th. Blame them not me for errors.