Monday, April 4, 2011

Sox Series Preview: April 5-6 at Kansas City

Probable Pitchers
Tuesday - Gavin Floyd (0-0, 0.00) vs. Luke Hochevar (0-1, 4.76)
Wednesday - Mark Buehrle (1-0, 6.00) vs. Jeff Francis (0-0, 1.29)

The Royals have to be happy to see Gavin Floyd making the start, considering how well their current players have hit him. Small sample size, sure, but of the current roster that has seen Floyd before, only Mitch Maier has struggled to hit Gavin hard, posting a meager .200/.182/.200 line against him. Otherwise, just about everyone else has posted strong numbers against Floyd, especially Alex Gordon (.333/.385/.667 in 13 PA) and Melky Cabrera (.333/.400/.778).

More bad omens for Gavin, he is traditionally a slow starter. He walks more (6.09 BB/9), allows more baserunners (1.63 WHIP), and more runs (5.23 FIP) in March/April than any month and way above his career norms at those splits. I don't know if weather is the problem, but Floyd struggles to keep the ball on the ground early in the season. March/April is the only month of the year his ground ball percentage is under 40% and his flyball percentage is above 40%.

Thanks to the off day Monday, Mark Buehrle makes his 2nd start of the year Wednesday on a normal 4 days of rest. Barring a rain out, the first time the Sox will need to use their 5th starter, Phil Humber will be Saturday the 9th vs. Tampa Bay. Oh great, I have tickets for that game.


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