MLB Game Day Recap Day 33: Oh Fours

May 4, 2021

It’s the MLB Game Day Recap Day 33 which means it’s time to talk about oh fours. These games can happen to anyone. Mike Trout entered the seventh without a hit [he of course ended with a hit]. Same with Fernando Tatis Jr. and Manny Machado. Sal Perez went the full game without a hit in four trips. Hitless games happen every single day, and oh fours are a commonplace result. Zero hits. Four at-bats. In a sample of one, fantasy managers ignore them. In a sample of five, they are extremely worrisome. That is the difference in baseball. Four games are all it takes to turn something from being non-threatening to something to have an elevated concern about. Four games? Oh fours? Four pitches for a walk? I should have written this tomorrow, on May fourth.

Climbing Up

Jed Lowrie was 0 for his past 19, but in the past two games, he remedied that cold streak by going 7 for 8. Only one run and three RBIs for this type of hot streak, so that’s a bit disappointing. Still, Jed Lowrie looks just like the Jed Lowrie we knew the last time he was in Oakland. He hits doubles, scores runs, and hits for average. Managers may have dumped Lowrie recently with his cold streak, but he should absolutely get added again after this two-game streak. Invest early so you can enjoy the short-term spike. It’s a dead horse that I will keep beating all year, but 2B is not deep. Play the hot hand, add Lowrie wherever he is available.

Letdown

Austin Meadows could not take advantage of Jose Quintana, something seemingly every offense gets to do. Austin started the game 0 for 3 with a walk and ended it with one more failed at-bat. This section is typically reserved for failed pitching performances, but one could at it that way was Jose Quintana definitely provides failed pitching performances. Meadows is now hitting .208 and looks like everything the Pirates thought he was when they traded him for Chris Archer. Someone ranked very low in my rankings, I don’t see the upside here. Sure he can hit for power, but so can a bunch of players. When they don’t do anything else, I’m not interested. The sell window is probably over for Meadows, but if it reopens, shop him.

Who’s Hot

Alex Kirilloff his major league career 0 for 14. Since that streak ended, and similar to Jed Lowrie, Alex got hot after his first hit and is now 10 for 28 and the owner a seven-game hitting streak. The oft-hyped prospect has come into his own after being perplexed by Pittsburgh pitching to start his career. The expectation that Kirilloff will end up as everything Max Kepler should be is not a faulty one. The man entered the season as my number 25 dynasty outfielder without a regular-season at-bat. He needs that caveat since he started and debuted in the bloated and expanded playoffs of 2020. Regardless, this man can hit. He should already be on a roster but if someone cut him after his poor start, spend your FA budget on getting him.

Who’s Not

Francisco Lindor is now 0 for his past 20. Unlikely Alex Kiriloff, there is no secondary streak that makes us quickly forget this fact. He went 0 for 4 today and dropped his already ugly .171/.289/.220 triple slash and 48 OPS+. Since he was last discussed, Lindor has not gotten a hit. You cannot advocate for cutting Lindor at this point, but if he’s in your lineup you are playing this game wrong. He belongs on the bench and the bench alone until there is a sustained hot streak. Frankly, the fact that it has to be mentioned that he does not need to be cut is horrifying. Things are awful for the man who does not want to be called Frankie in New York. He has a decade-long contract and it’s already looking Cabrer-ian, let’s hope it doesn’t look Davis-ian anytime soon.

The Emilio Bonifacio Award

It’s pretty cheap, but I’m going to keep the oh four theme going and give this award to Amed Rosario. He went 0 for 5 but scored two runs. No one who qualified at multiple positions scored more than two runs, hit more than a homer, drove in more than two runs, or stole more than a base. It’s cheap, but also so is Rosario! He’s scored five runs across his past four games and might be getting into a rhythm now that he’s not manning centerfield. Saddled with unfair expectations in New York, Cleveland might be just the place for Amed to rehab his value. He’s not an add by any means, but he is someone to watch if this hot streak continues.

The James Shields Award

The only pitcher to go 6.0 innings plus tonight was Tyler Anderson. He entered the seventh having made the entire Padres lineup go oh four as he had a no-hitter. Unfortunately he matched Kip Wells in 2003 as the last Pirates starter to go into the seventh with a no hitter but ultimately taking the loss as both took the 2-0 loss. Anderson is the classic lefty who could be a top tier starter if he could figure it out. He has these moments of looking like he has it figured out, then his next start he gives up five walks and five runs. There will be many fantasy managers who add Anderson as he’s now had four straight good starts. However, the trap is set. The impending blowup is coming. Don’t say I didn’t tell you to watch out.

The Brad Lidge Award

The closer role in Minnesota must have some sort of disease. The previously unhittable and yet to allow a run Taylor Rogers served up two to the Rangers today. Unlike his predecessor Alex Colome, Taylor was able to still pick up the save in the 6-5 win. Every bit the top reliever arm he was last year, this is hopefully the final reminder of Minnesota’s early-season ninth-inning woes. Anyone looking to take advantage of a panicking owner on small-sample-size-results-as-the-close-only would be mindful of sending their local Rogers owner a lowball offer. Unlikely to slip into Colome territory, Rogers still gets a strong endorsement from this writer.

Conclusion

The MLB Game Day Recap is all about baseball. Oh fours are all about baseball. Many times oh fours are nothing to worry about, but not all the time. Baseball is beautiful like that, things are nothing to be concerned about until it is time to be concerned. The sample size is a small sample size until it isn’t. Baseball does this. It takes something small and makes it big. One game in April isn’t big until the end of the season when a team misses the playoffs by one loss. Oh fours are a small and a big deal. Every baseball game is a small and big deal. Baseball is awesome like that. After all, it’s baseball.

Goodnight.