The Royals rest today as one of the hottest teams in baseball, riding an impressive two-game winning streak all the way towards a renewed spirit in Kansas City. Shall we proceed then to random news and notes?
-According to the invaluble Playoff Odds Report put out by Baseball Prospectus, the Royals are now headed to a 70-92 record given a) their current record and b) they run differential. Thanks to the back-to-back wins, now, after simulating the rest of the season a million times, theres roughly a 3% chance the Royals make the playoffs.
-The Royals most productive hitter through 17 games? Raise your hand if you had Esteban German as your answer. Thanks to .429/.529/.500 line in 17 plate appearances, German's VORP (Value Over Replacement Player) stands at 3.3. (By way of comparison, Albert Pujols sports a current VORP of 17.8.)
[VORP is defined as "The number of runs contributed beyond what a replacement-level player at the same position would contribute if given the same percentage of team plate appearances. VORP scores do not consider the quality of a player's defense."]
-Royal lightening rod Mike Sweeney's VORP? -5.0.
-Doug Mientkiewicz has gobbled up 9.5% of the Royal plate appearances. Persona Non Grata Matt Stairs has been granted only 1.6% of the team's PAs, lowest on the team.
- Scott Elarton has racked up the highest pitching VORP (5.7) followed by Burgos (3.2). Given that Burgos has pitched only 7.1 innings, its not a good sign that he's been the second most valuable pitcher on the team. Moreover, despite his recent hot streak, Jeremy Affeldt has still been below replacement-level in 2006 (-2.3).
-The Royals 11 game losing streak is the longest streak thus achieved in 2006. Second place goes to Washington with a pathetic 6 game loser. The longest streak of 2005 of course was the Royals 19 gamer, followed by a 10 gamer by the D-Rays. In fact, the Royals 11-game-loser was the longest streak (beyond their own 19 gamer) since the Diamondbacks lost 14 straight in 2004.
-Reggie Sanders and Shane Costa lead the Royals with 3 homers. No Royal has two homers, but 4 players have one.
-Paul Bako leads the team in pitches-seen-per-PA at 4.67, albeit in limited action. The most hacktastic Royal? Shane Costa at 3.22 per. Good approach from a guy batting leadoff or 2nd most of the time, eh???
-Not to be undone, Angel's P/PA is at 3.39, which is good for last on many other teams. Sometimes we have to find consolation in facts like that, Angel.
-Attention Scott Elarton's agent: he's made two mythical Quality Starts, leading the team. Although might not want to mention the pathetically low K-rate the tall Scott has managed, 3.33 K's per 9 isn't acceptable, and is frankly a very, very bad sign. Gotta miss more bats than that.
-Andy Sisco has allowed 8 ER in 2006. He only allowed 26 ER in 75.1 innings in 2005.
-Finally, Buddy Bell's career record as a manager is now 392-543. Which will come first, win #400 or loss #600? Only God knows the answer. -