Short sample for the season so far but here are some highs and lows for the team. Right now we’re throwing stuff at a wall to see what sticks. If enough sticks there might be more motivation to make a small push in 2022 other wise we are probably looking at 2024 before anything serious happens.
Colin Moran continues to be the teams best hitter. His .964 OPS and 162 OPS+ by far is the best on the team. He leads the team in home runs with 4 and RBIs with 13. His defense has been a sore thumb but he seems to be getting a better feel for the position and making some nice picks. Some of his mistakes are also not just his doing though the plays still should have been made.
Adam Frazier continues to do what he does best, hit. He is running at a .838 OPS and two triples. As we know, triples are the hardest hit to get. He has made some blunders on defense that we haven’t seen much the past couple years. This likely will clear up as the season goes on.
Bryan Reynolds has also picked up where he left off in the 2019 season. A .880 OPS and leading the team in hits so far with 19 and runs with 11. His defense has been holding up fairly well too.
Phillip Evans has been getting the bulk of the time at third because of the injury to Ke’Bryan Hayes. He is making a statement at a .843 OPS
Off the bench Erik Gonzalez and Wilmer Difo are doing rather well subing in so far. For Erik this is pretty much what we expect. Difo seems to be over performing some in the short sample and it is fairly safe to say he will regress some as time goes on
One that is floating in between is Jacob Stallings. His stats are not all that great but he is hitting when hits are needed.
Kevin Newman has been stinking it up however a promising sign is that he isn’t striking out and he is making contact. The problem is that the defenders are able to get it. This could be a sign that the defense has made adjustments or that he is having bad luck. He relies on BABIP and it just isn’t there. If he cannot make adjustments it will be hard to keep him on the field given other middle infielders who can take his spot and get them plate appearances. Sending Newman to the training camp while calling up T. Frazier to give Moran and Hayes a break could be an option for a few weeks to see if Kevin can shake it off.
Brian Goodwin has been pretty awful as well. To be fair, there wasn’t high expectations. He did well in AAA but just hasn’t translated. I would give him another 100 Plate appearances before considering replacing him. In doing so could free up a spot to keep Evans on the field.
Anthony Alford. After a great showing in a short sample in 2020 his injury really set him back. I would also give him a few more weeks before pulling someone else to take his roster spot.
Backup catcher Michael Perez is doing nothing at the plate. But his glove last year will keep him as a back up for at least a while longer. There really is not much else in the system to replace him with.
Ke’bryan Hayes’s injury sort of a blessing in disguise. It has given Evans many more plate appearances than he would have gotten. There is no doubt Hayes will get the bulk of the starts at third when he returns.
Where it has been really bad. Starting Pitching. Brault out all season so far has hurt. Keller, Kuhl and Cahil have been horrible as a whole. Brubaker has been great and Anderson has given us about what we expected as a back of the rotation type. Of course this is all with about 15 innings each total so the sample is short and some of them had brief flashes of being better. I would expect them to be a bit better given more time.
The real question is, do you give more time to Crow and Yajure? Or even push up some of these younger players faster than you would if there was a real minor league season? I would say yes. Give Keller and Kuhl a few more starts and if there is little improvement pull up someone else.
The bull pen has been better than expected but not all that good either. That said they’ve still done pretty well given the starters have a hard time getting to the 5th.
So how do i feel about the season so far? Not so bad I guess is the answer. Pitching is the sore thumb Newman getting some better ‘luck’ with balls dropping in along with Hayes returning would be boost in the line up. While Starters need a major improvement soon.