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MASH (5/13/13)

Another few days, a few more injuries. I have three pitchers coming off the DL to examine. Also, I am going to look at a few players dealing with injuries.

Francisco Liriano‘s first start was outstanding with a 9 Ks in 5.1 innings. His velocity was consistent with previous seasons.

Even with the strikeouts, his Zone% was under 38%. Quickly teams will not be swinging at everything he throws and he will be back in the 5.0 BB/9 level of previous seasons.

Kyuji Fujikawa‘s fastball has shown a couple mph increase in the two games since returning. He seems safe play for now.

Phil Coke is throwing the same speed as he did before the DL trip. The problem is his fastball is 1.5 mph slower than last season.

He was able to throw strikes in his first post-DL appearance after struggling earlier. Monitor to see if he can keep it up.

• A little bragging. Last week I looked at 10 pitchers with low Zone%. The pitcher out of the group, Jake Westbrook, with the lowest ERA (1.62) and seemed to be effective. This week, he headed to the DL with elbow issues. Pitchers generally want to throw strikes, when they don’t something is probably wrong.

• Some talk has existed if Albert Pujols will end up going on the DL. Looking at the three indicating factors for injured hitters, only one has not down significantly this season.

Year ISO FB+HR Dist Contact %
2011 0.242 299 87%
2012 0.231 281 85%
2013 0.156 287 80%

Less power, less contact, less Sir Albert. He is hurt, everyone knows it. It may just be time for him to take a rest.

• No need to play Jon Niese right now. He says he is hurt and his results are horrible. He has admitted to dropping his arm angle. To see if he is healthy, I would look for a couple starts where his release point is closer to the 6 ft height (not less) and +1 horizontal (not greater) release points.

Players on the DL

(*) 15 Day Disabled List
(**) 60 Day Disabled List
(***) 7 Day Concussion List
Red colored entries are updates since last report.