I can’t believe this is even necessary for Teixeira’s slow start, but the rumblings about his slow start are starting to drive me crazy. I’m a little surprised that not everyone knows this, but here’s a little tidbit: pssst… HE DOES THIS EVERY YEAR!!! I thought it was common knowledge, but as I was leaving my apartment this morning, I heard Brandon Tierny of ESPN radio beginning a segment on Tex’s slow start, so I guess not everyone knows this yet. Maybe it’s because his name you can’t look him up in baseball reference is so darn hard to spell. I’ll lay out the stats on Tex as well as for Mariano, if any of you forgot about his history of dead arms. It’s important to know what you should be worried about and what you shouldn’t.
Tex is the easy one: every year it’s the same, #$R@ing thing. Last year, he actually wasn’t quite as bad, with a .273 average and a .797 OPS in March/April (compared to .308, .962 overall), but look at some of these other years.:
2007: .231, .686
2006: he steadily got worse and worse before finally picking it up in July! (June avg of .250, OPS of .728)
2005: .262, .807
2004 (May – he missed most of April/March): .212, .735
2003: .188, .631
This March/April, he went .200, .738 – right in line with his career averages in early months. He just turned 29, he does this every year. He’s a stud who will carry us in July-October: bank on it.
Historical fact #2: Mariano Rivera usually goes through a dead arm period either in the beginning of the season or in the middle of the season (usually in July). The way he’s pitching so far this year are EXACTLY in keeping with his traditional numbers. Here are the stats:
2008: no dead arm period
2007: April/March ERA: 10.57
2006: April/March ERA: 3.72
2005: No real Dead arm period
2004: July ERA: 3.52
2003: April/March ERA: 9.00; August ERA: 3.38 (with a 1.625 WHIP!)
2002: July ERA: 9.45
Hey, with all these injuries and A.J. Burnett acting like… well, A.J. Burnett, we certainly have lots of legitimate things to be concerned about. Don’t worry about these two guys. They’ve done it all before.
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