The losses are getting rough. I haven't shouted Trogdor in way, way too long. This feature is starting to depress me. Get with it, Astros hitters! Let me enjoy my job next week.
Pickings were pretty slim over the last week. Heck, I'm surprised I got two other names beside the winner here. But, Dominguez deserves a mention. I'll have to go back through the archives, but I'm pretty sure this is the first time this season Matty D has made this list.
That's kind of amazing, considering I wrote articles about him every other day last year. I'm not going to rehash everything we've said before. Matty D was one of the more consistent hitters for the Astros in the past six games, as he went .250/.400/.400 with zero home runs.
While he didn't go yard, he did walk quite a bit. In fact, he walked in 16 percent of his plate appearances. We're dealing with an insanely small sample, but it's encouraging. It's also encouraging because his walk rate overall has jumped four points to nine percent this season. That's the highest rate he's posted since he was in Double-A with the Marlins in 2010.
Will it stay that high? Will his BABiP stay so ridiculously low? Maybe. Just know that my opinion of Matty D will skyrocket if he can draw walks eight percent of the time over an entire season.
Credit where credit's due. I could have gone with Marwin Gonzalez here, as his wRC+ was much higher. But, Guzman had three more plate appearances. When were dealing with the very small samples we are, that matters.
That being said, Guzman did nothing really of note. He was nigh average (not Bryce Harper-average, mind you). But, in this offense, average gets you an honorable mention.
My goodness, but Villar has been on fire. In his last six games, Villar is hitting .350/.435/.750 with two home runs, two steals and a triple. All of those stats are entirely unsustainable, like his .417 batting average on balls in play during that stretch, or his ridiculous .400 isolated power average.
But, what is encouraging is Villar's walks. One of his more underrated skill sets in the minors was his batting eye. Villar never really got to show off high on-base percentages, because he never made enough contact to prop up his average.
Now, though, Villar is doing a little of both. At least, he did so during this sterling run through the Nationals, Mariners and Tigers. Only two shortstops in the American League have more WAR than Villar does right now, while he leads AL shortstops in home runs and is third in steals.