MLB: Early-Season Statistical Mixups?

Andrew KneelandSenior Writer IApril 12, 2008

Does anybody know what is going on with spring baseball stats? They seem to be all mixed up.

All-Star Alfonso Soriano is batting .170, David Ortiz is hitting .077, and Jim Thome is only batting .135. What's going on here?

This may happen every year, but this is the first time I've specifically noticed it. Baseball analysts and broadcasters everywhere seem to be scratching their head in unison.

Take a look at pitcher C.C. Sabathia. Last year he went 19-7 with a 3.21 ERA. Now? He's got a 0-2 record and is sporting a 11.57 ERA.

April is a deceptive month, and it works the opposite way too.

Jason Kendall is leading the league in batting average with .483 and five doubles. Last year he batted .270 with ten doubles during the whole season.

Anybody remember Tuffy Rhodes? Karl Derrick Rhodes hit three home runs in the Opening Day ballgame with the Chicago Cubs in 1994, and was predicted to be a legend. He finished the season with five more long-balls, and a .234 average. He played 23 games the next year before disappearing from American baseball.

Or how about Danny Walton? He had a league-leading seven home runs in the first twenty days of the 1970 baseball season. He, too, was thought to be a superstar.

He finished his career never hitting more than the 17 home runs he hit in 1970. In fact, the closest he got was in 1973, when he slammed four long balls.

Let's not forget the great Bob Gibson. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame 1981, after an extreme roller-coaster career. The obvious high point of his 17 years was in 1968 when he finished the season 22-9 with an outstanding 1.12 ERA.

He had many other great years, and many other bad years. The low point in his career would be in 1975 when he went 3-10 with a 5.04 ERA.

My, how things change.

Then there are this years Detroit Tigers. They have just extended their record to 2-9 after being predicted to go as far as the World Series! 

Yes, I hear you. I'm taking a small slice of the season and magnifying it until it is out of context.

Who cares?

Let's just enjoy these crazy numbers while we can!