took a peek at mulder's start and liked most of what i saw. for one thing, he was throwing hard last night -- even cracked 90 mph on a pitch or two in the 1st inning, according to fsn-arizona's gun. by the 5th he was back down to his normal range, topping out at 86 or so, but the velocity seems like a good sign vis-vis mulder's back; it couldn't have been giving him too much trouble last night. he made a lot of batters miss last night, too -- 9 swinging strikes in 6 innings, mostly on off-speed pitches. mulder's curve was very sharp, one of the notable differences between v2006 mulder and v2005; he only throws 10 of'm a game, but he's hitting the strike zone with the pitch and keeping it down, neither of which he seemed to do last season. just gives hitters one more thing to think about, keeps them off balance.
he was particularly tough on left-handers last night --tracy, gonzalez, and green went 1 for 9 against him with 4 strikeouts. i checked mulder's platoon splits, and sure enough he's been doing that all season: lefties are hitting .196 / .240 / .283 against him this year, while righties are posting a .300 / .352 / .520 line. mulder has fanned 11 of the 51 left-handed batters he's faced (22 percent) but only 17 of 164 right-handers (10 percent). he had a similar split last season (lefties hit .201 against mark, rhp .289), but prior to that mulder never had a pronounced platoon differential. don't know what to make of it, but will be keeping an eye -- particularly on that .520 slugging avg he's allowing to right-handers. that's 90 points more than what he allowed them last year, mainly attributable to all those homers he's giving up this spring (not surprisingly, 7 of his 8 dingers allowed have been to right-handers).
edmonds homered, his first of the month; the cards pulled into a 1st-place tie with the reds.
anthony reyes pitched in las vegas last night, took the loss but had a decent outing -- 7 innings, 9 hits, 3 runs, 0 walks, 5 strikeouts. he held las vegas scoreless through 5 innings but got no support (memphis was shut out in 6 hits) and was finally done in by a run-scoring double in the 6th and a solo homer in the 7th. reyes' line for the season: 1-1, 3.65 era, 44.1 innings, 43 hits, 5 walks, 40 strikeouts.
at double a, stu pomeranz pitched another good game -- 6.2 innings of shutout ball to gain his fourth win. he's now 4-0 on the year with a 3.38 era, not dominating anybody but starting to resemble a prospect again.