One team has Prince Fielder OPS’ing .828, Austin Jackson coming off a .954 OPS in June, and Torii Hunter, Jhonny Peralta, and Omar Infante all hitting over .300.
And they’re all lucky just to have their name in the credits on The Miguel Cabrera Show.
The other team has had five of its regular everyday players spend time on the disabled list, not to mention its one star bench player because of the worst high five in the history of high fives, and among those who haven’t logged any DL time are the third baseman who looks to be on the verge of it with every scamper around second base, the shortstop who’s having one of the worst offensive seasons in baseball, and the left fielder who’s close, and given that the latter two have held down the number two spot in the lineup 84 percent of the time this season, it’s probably not really a coincidence that the club has had an awful time getting anything going in the first inning.
One team has a starting pitcher with a 13-0, 3.06 record and an opponent’s OPS (.581) that’s lower than the Rangers shortstop’s (.588). Another one who went 7-4-0-0-1-12 against the team with the third best record in baseball (Pittsburgh), and yet another who went 8-3-0-0-1-11 against that same team two days before that. And another who took a no-hitter to the ninth inning and ended up with a 9-1-0-0-3-12 line, which was probably less impressive since it came against the Twins than the 8-5-0-0-1-17 he threw at the Braves a few weeks earlier.
And aside from those four starters, that team has Justin Verlander.
The other team’s last five starts have come from Derek Holland, Martin Perez, Josh Lindblom, Ross Wolf, and Justin Grimm, who began the season (not in that order) as the club’s number four starter, a 21-year-old on the DL, a Round Rock starter and a Round Rock reliever, and a 30-year-old Frisco reliever.
I couldn’t fit all of that team’s currently DL’d pitchers in one tweet.
One of those two teams was down to the other by five runs before recording a second out last night and ended up losing its third game in a row (Synchronicity IX), and if you read everything above this and can explain how it is that the Texas Rangers have a better record than the Detroit Tigers, then you, sir or ma’am, are clearly a learned disciple of You Can’t Predict Ball, and I commend you.