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8/9: Open Game Thread

First Pitch: 4:05pm PDT


Ichiro CF Roberts 2B Vidro 2B Patterson CF Guillen RF Markakis RF Ibanez Spasming Corpse Tejada SS King Awesome 3B Millar 1B Broussard 1B Huff 3B Jones LF Hernandez C Burke C Gibbons DH Betancourt SS Payton LF ---------- ----------

Ho (6-3, 6.68)              Cabrera (8-11, 4.90)

In 23 games since the All Star Break, Jose Vidro is batting .402/.465/.494, basically giving us two Ichiros at the top of the lineup (or, given Vidro's size, two and a half). Since he has a .472 BABIP over that span your first inclination is to pin it on luck with balls in play, but while that's true, he's also raised his line drive rate from 16.9% before the break to 29.3% after (while putting the ball in the air far more often). That isn't sustainable, as it would be far and away the best line drive rate in the league and the best of Vidro's career, but the fact of the matter is that he really is hitting the ball really hard right now, something we've badly needed someone in the lineup to do with regularity. So thanks, Jose, for giving me something to talk about other than how impossibly horrible our starting pitcher is today.