Rays Tank: Kevin Kiermaier above the wall

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

It's good to have an off day.

It didn't win the game, but there was a nice Kevin Kiermaier sighting yesterday.

KK's heroics were not enough, though, as Price gave up a pair of homers to Albert Pujols. Jason Collette, over at The Process Report, has an analysis of Price's struggles this season. He contends that Price's focus on never walking batters is sacrificing his ability to create weak contact in pitchers' counts, and that his problem is with a high BABIP with two strikes. Collette has some nice ESPN proprietary data to back it up ("hard-hit balls"). I think he's probably right, but my only concern is with the "hard-hit ball" stat itself. As I understand it, it's collected by streamers, and therefore a hit is more likely to be called "hard-hit" than an out, leading to BABIP raising the hard-hit ball stat rather than just the other way round.

Recently, Jason Hanselman took a look at FanGraphs park effects and concluded that they were too pitcher-friendly. RhodeIslandRoxFan noticed another strange facet of the FanGraphs park effects: Rockies hitters have hit extraordinarily better at home than they have on the road, even when counting the effect. He draws two possible, interesting conditions. Either the park-effect is too low, or playing half your games at Coors makes it difficult to adjust to other parks.

Why is hard stuff inside and soft stuff away an effective approach? Matt Joyce sighting.

Jeff Sullivan tries to predict pitcher declines, and fails, because baseball analysis is hard. Nut Sullivan is always worth reading.

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