Friday, July 22, 2011
By Jeff Flinn - Contributor

Thumbs Up

* Weaver continues to roll, pitching 7 shutout innings and allowing 7 hits, with a 6/2 Ks/BBs ratio.    He struck out Moreland with 2 outs and the bases loaded in the 6th inning. Weaver is now 13-4 with a still AL leading 1.81 ERA.

* Downs and Walden did their usual thing on Wednesday and Thursday, shutting out the Rangers over 5 innings and allowing just 2 hits with a 3/0 Ks/BBs ratio. Downs has a 1.32 ERA and 0.79 WHIP. Walden has pitched 6.2 scoreless innings, allowing just 4 hits, ZERO BBs, and struck out 5. Thompson pitched 2.2 innings of solid ball, a given when the game isn't tight and late.

* Trumbo didn't have a big fly, but went 4-11 with 2 doubles and an rbi. Callaspo went 3-10 with 2 BBs, and is hitting to all fields like he does when hitting well. Kendrick finally broke through from his recent slump with 3 hits and 4 rbis. Aybar was 3-11 with an rbis and a BB, and continues to play consistent baseball.  He's only made some 6-7 errors so far. Hunter finally had his first hit since the ASB, a solo HR in the win on Wednesday night. Trout beat out a GB to Andrus that kept Wednesday night's 6th inning rally going and drove in a run. Andrus' look after that was priceless (huh?). His adjusted swing now looks similar to Bourjos', and he hit a couple of balls hard against Wilson. The RISP hitting had a nice game in the midst of the Wednesday night rally, going 7-15. The team stole 2 bases in 2 attempts in the 3 games.
*Trout made a great diving catch in RCF and another running catch near the RCF wall on Thursday to help out Weaver.

*This was a crucial series for the Halos, and it was great to see them take 2 out of 3 games.   These head-to-head games mean 2 games difference in the standings between winning and losing.  If the Halos don't win Wednesday night, who knows how far in back of Texas they would be by now.  

Thumbs Down
* Chatwood couldn't get beyond 5 innings of work, but as he normally does kept the team reasonably close by allowing just 3 runs despite allowing 7 hits and 4 BBs. Haren had his 2nd straight mediocre outing, only working 4.1 innings and allowing 7 runs on 9 hits with a 3/1 Ks/BBs ratio.   This is hopefully just a little slump like he went through earlier in May, and not a re-occurrence of his past 2nd half slumps.

* Kohn is clearly not ready yet, as he gave up 3 HRs on Tuesday night to blow open a game that was just 3-0 with 2 outs in the top of the 8th inning. The Halos clearly need a 2nd reliable righty to go with Walden in the pen, to balance between them and on fire lefty Downs and solid lefty Takahashi. Rodney returns from the DL, but is still a question mark due to never putting together even just 2 consistent months in a row since arriving here in 2010.

* Izturis was just 1-8 to drop his BA to just .268, and is just 5-45 so far in July (.111 BA).   He's had 306 at bats already, and his MLB career high (in 2010) is just 383.   He may be tiring.  Hunter did go just 1-10 with 5 Ks and 1 BB, and is just 1-25 since the ASB., his BA down to .235. The Ks continue to maybe show that his bat has slowed, whether due to the muscle gain in the off-season or slowing down with age. Abreu was just 1-8, and is just 6 for his past 41.   Even though his type of hitting (.384 OBP) and SB ability would play well in the leadoff spot, this slumping wouldn't. Wells went just 1-11, although not striking out very much.   Mathis was 0-5 with 3 Ks, and is hitting just .188.
Love to hear what you think!

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