MLB Nine to Know, May 22, 2011

1. From 1960-69, nobody hit more homers than the 393 hit by Harmon Killebrew. Nobody includes Hank Aaron (375), Willie Mays (350), Frank Robinson (316), and Willie McCovey (300). (as seen in Nick Cafardo‘s Baseball Notes, Boston Globe, May 22)

2. So far this month, Cliff Lee has had games in which he set a career high with 16 strikeouts (5/6 against Atlanta) and a career high with six walks (5/16 against St. Louis)

3. Since 2005, no one has been walked intentionally more than Albert Pujols:

Rk Player IBB
1 Albert Pujols 194
2 Miguel Cabrera 124
3 Ryan Howard 119
4 Vladimir Guerrero 104
5 Adrian Gonzalez 99
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 5/22/2011.

This season, Prince Albert has been intentionally passed once.

4. Tiger Woods is about to drop out of the top 10 in the PGA rankings for the first time since April 6, 1997. Since then, the Pirates are 982-1,320 — which, by our calculations, leaves them a lot more over par than Tiger. (as seen in Jayson Stark‘s Rumblings and Grumblings, ESPN.com, May 20)
5. In 2001, Rick Ankiel threw 24 innings, averaging 9.4 walks per 9 innings pitched with a 2.083 WHIP and a 7.13 ERA. This season, the Reds’ Aroldis Chapman, the Cuban Missile (in crisis), has thrown 13 innings, averaging 13.8 walks per 9 innings pitched with a 2.000 WHIP and a 6.92 ERA. (Check out Chapman’s heat charts on BaseballAnalytics.org)
6. The AL is hitting .286 with the bases loaded with the Indians hitting an amazing .528.
7. With all the talk about Derek Jeter and Jorge Posada, don’t forget the third member of the Yankee aging Big Three, Mariano Rivera who has three blown saves this season and eight in his last 82 appearances since the start of the 201 season. He had seven blown saves from 2007-09 covering 197 appearances and 120 save opportunities. (as seen in Nick Cafardo’s Baseball Notes, Boston Globe, May 22).
8. In John Danks’ first nine starts this season, he has six Quality Starts but the White Sox hurler overall has an 0-6 record.
9. Carl Crawford now has three walkoff hits this month and on the season for the Red Sox, giving him nine in his career. In his career, Crawford has three walkoff homers, two walkoff doubles, and four walkoff singles. Of his nine walkoffs, nine teams have been his victims including once against  his current team, the Red Sox.

He did have one other game-ending hit against the Sox, but it wasn’t a walkoff:

On May 28, 2006, the Devil Rays were visiting Fenway Park and Boston was up 5-0 heading into the 9th. Tim Wakefield had pitched a beautiful game holding the D-Rays to no runs and just four hits. But, Rudy Seanez came on to start the 9th and while he got two outs, he walked the bases full.

In came, Julian Tavarez to face, and strikeout, Greg Norton. Unfortunately, Doug Mirabelli, who caught Wake flawlessly all game, couldn’t hold on to the third strike and Norton reached first and the Rays scored to make it 4-1.

With visions of Mickey Owens floating in Tampa’s heads, Joey Gathright walked and forced in a run and now it was 5-2. Up next, Julio Lugo, and he too walked and now it was 5-3.

To the plate steps Carl Crawford, who on a 2-2 pitch lashed a single to left, Norton scored to make it 5-4 and on his heels was Gathright, the fastest of the D-Rays. But Sox left fielder Willie Harris’ (Manny B. Manny had right knee tendonitis, at least he thought it was his right knee) throw nailed Gathright at the plate and Sox escaped with a 5-4 win despite Crawford’s game-ending hit.