Oh noes, the perfect season is over! Ah well; with the Toronto loss this afternoon, the O's are still guaranteed the AL East crown if they go 161-1. At the moment, I'd settle for a series win though.
That's six lefties in the line-up, which I think would have been wiser to emply versus Bergesen than Tillman (two-seamer and slider have larger platoon splits than change-up and ovre-hand curve) - not that it really made a difference yesterday. Avila raised his OPS something like 600 points in that game.
Brad Penny (2011):
Penny had a nice 2010 based on good control and a high groundball rate. He only had one of those things working in his first start, and it got ugly.
The hard fastball (though not quite in Verlander territory) and hard change-up both have a fair bit of tailing action, while the slower curve is closer to being of the 12-6 variety. Perhaps looking to take the heater the other way or up the middle would put O's batters in a good position to turn on the change, since the velocity disparity isn't that great.
The O's have fewer extra-base hits (11) than Carlos Quentin + Alex Gordon do (13), and only as many walks (8) as Logan Morrison.
Chris Tillman (2011):
Tillman kept the Rays hitless in his first start of the season, and it was nice to see that he struck out a few batters. The control needs to improve though. If he ended his season right new, he'd set a new career high in fWAR.
High riding fastball around 90 mph, that he likes to use up in the zone, and some good off-speed stuff. If only he still threw 95...
Thanks very much to Cal Abadin for helping put the PitchFX graphs together. He's one of a few people who expressed interest in contributing to these game previews, and we're in the process of transition the whole post over. Much credit to Cal for having a very apropos name and for actually figuring out how my spreadsheet works.
Stats: UZR, WAR, ERA, FIP, xFIP, K/9 & BB/9, GB%, PitchFX