Three Up, Three Down

Each week, BA will take a look at the trends in major league baseball.


J.D. Martinez | OF | Diamondbacks.

Martinez couldn’t have picked a better time to get hot. On his way to free agency for the first time, Martinez cracked four homers Monday, just the 18th player in big league history to do so. Since his trade to Arizona, Martinez has 18 homers in just 144 at-bats and he has 34 overall. And at just 30, he’s the top bat on the market this winter—a year before Bryce Harper and Manny Machado enter the market. Martinez is a tier below those players, but don’t underestimate his talent. He’s one of eight active batters since 2014 with .250 ISO (minimum of 1,000 plate appearances).

Jose Ramirez | IF | Indians. No matter where you play him, Ramirez hits, especially in the past week. Ramirez is 15-for-29 in his past seven games with 12 extra-base hits, including five homers. Moreso, he’s a stout defender at third or second base, where’s he playing while Jason Kipnis is injured, has stolen 15 bases, is just 24 and is inexpensive, having signed a $26 million, five-year extension before the season.

Mitch Haniger | OF | Mariners. It’s been a tale of two seasons for Haniger. He started hot in April (.338/.442/.600), slumped, took a pitch to the face that resulted in a disabled list stint and then endured another slump. But the past five games portend a chance to redeem 2017. Haniger is 11-for-21 with five extra-base hits, including two homers, as the Mariners climbed back to .500 and in the AL wild-card race.


Pablo Sandoval | 3B | Giants. Looks like Boston wasn’t to blame, after all. Sandoval’s return to the Giants has not been a feel-good success story. Panda is 0-for-33, the Giants’ longest hitless streak since Johnnie LeMaster was 0-for-37 in 1984. In fairness, LeMaster’s career average was .222, so he was not known for his bat. Sandoval is hitting just .196 since he was released by the Red Sox, who had to eat the final $50 million on that ill-fated contract.

Curtis Granderson | OF | Dodgers. L.A. is learning about the Grandy Man’s streakiness first hand. After hitting three homers in his first six games for the Dodgers, Granderson is just 2-for-24 in the past week with 10 strikeouts. Granderson had an awful April, a solid May and June, and then slumped through July and August until his deal by the Mets to the West Coast.

Ian Kinsler | 2B | Tigers. Kinsler has watched all season as J.D. Martinez, Justin Wilson, Alex Avila, Justin Upton and finally Justin Verlander departed for greener pastures. Perhaps that weighed on him, or maybe it’s just the grind of the season, but the 12-year veteran is just 2-for-24 in the past six games, driving his average down to .235, which would be the worst average by far of his big league career.

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