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I Can Do the Frug: May in Review

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Anyone seen the movie Desert Blue? If not, the title of the post probably doesn't make sense. But by now y'all must be used to that. Anyway, it's a quirky little movie with great music by Rilo Kiley, a band I love.

Anyway, May was a tough month for the Jays - it started with a 9-game losing streak and the second week of the month was almost over before they won their first game. All told, some good play at home toward the end of the month kept it from being too terrible, and, at present, they sit only 5 games back of the wild card.

May at a glance
Record: 12-16
Home: 8-5
Road: 4-11
That road record is just plain ugly. Unfun fact: the Jays did not win on Sunday in May.

The Season so far
W/L: 25-28 (3rd Place, AL East)
Runs Scored: 239 (4.5/Game)
Runs Against 245 (4.6/Game)
Pythagorean Record: 26-27
Home: 15-12; Road: 10-16

In the world of pythagorus, the Jays are only 4 games out of the wildcard.

Team Stats:
Batting:
AVG: .254 (11th in AL)
OBP: .326 (11th in AL)
SLG: .430 (4th in AL)

Pitching:
ERA: 4.37 (6th in AL, Team ERA+ of 104)
K: 351 (5th)
BB: 169 (6th)

An interesting story that tells you how bad the hitting has been in May. April saw Jays batters post a .277/.347/.450, good for 1/t-2/1 in the AL. They have really plumeted, to the point where their hitting is no longer better than league average (98 OPS+).

On the other hand, May saw many new Jays in the starting rotation, with mixed but promising results. Victor Zambrano decidedly did not work out (41 ERA+), while Shaun Marcum looks like a more-than-competent mid/back rotation starter (43/15 K/BB, 123 ERA+ and even better as starter). Jesse Litsch showed some promise but needs more work, while Dustin McGowan frustrated thrice before delighting in his last start, against the Yankees. The new starters were necessary because of the ineffectiveness of Tomo Ohka and Josh Towers and the injuries to Gustavo Chacin and Roy Halladay. However, as you can see, Jays pitching for the month was quite good overall, as they catapulted from middling in most pitching stats to slightly better than average.

That wasn't all due to the starting rotation, as the Jays bullpen put in some excellent work, lead by new closer Jeremy Accardo, who took over in early May when B.J. Ryan went down to ligament replacement surgery.

At the plate, struggling doesn't even begin to describe Vernon Wells' May performance (.221/.277/.298) for a .575 May OPS, while Alex Rios (.333/.400/.619) has lead the way. Lyle Overbay (.274/.342/.538) has turned it around after a dismal April. Frank Thomas continues to struggle (.193/.343/.397), while Troy Glaus, hampered by hamstring and foot injuries, has cooled down considerably (.241/.322/.481 after a blistering April). Aaron Hill has also cooled down, (.257/.336/.396), but walked more in May and is still flashing increased power as compared to last season. As for role players, Matt Stairs had a great month (.302/.403/.717, 7 HR and 17 RBI in 53 AB), while Adam Lind has not yet found his stroke (.171/.200/.281).

Okay, a tough month, but you've gotta be impressed with the way the Jays have battled through. Hopefully, June will mean more health for the players, better road play, and many more soundings of Hillenbrand's Horn. Contrary to what we saw in the first 2 weeks of May, the season's not over yet!