MLB Who’s Hot, Who’s Not: Pair of Rangers pitchers run the gamut

(Clockwise from top left) Texas' Yu Darvish, San Diego's Andrew Cashner, Philadelphia's Chase Utley and Minnesota's Chris Colabello are this week's hottest pitchers and hitters.

Some have slumped, while others have simmered. Here’s our weekly review of who’s running hot and cold around major-league baseball.

Stats through April 17

HOT PITCHERS

AL — Yu Darvish, Texas Rangers

Darvish allowed two runs and eight hits in 15 innings in no decisions against the Houston Astros on April 11 and Seattle Mariners on April 16. The right-hander leads the AL with a 0.82 ERA in 22 innings, and he has 23 strikeouts. He allowed one hit and struck out nine in the victory over the Astros.

NL — Andrew Cashner, San Diego Padres

Cashner posted a 0.55 ERA in victories over the Detroit Tigers on April 11 and Colorado Rockies on April 16. He allowed one earned run and 10 hits, while striking out 16 in those appearances. The right-hander is 2-1 with a 1.27 ERA and 27 strikeouts. His ERA ranks third in the National League behind the Atlanta Braves’ Aaron Harang (0.96) and Cincinnati Reds’ Alfredo Simon (1.20).

HOT HITTERS

AROUND THE HORN

AL — Chris Colabello, Minnesota Twins

Colabello hit .500 in 20 at-bats in six games from April 11-17. He had five doubles and eight RBI in the span. He has hit .357 for the season with one home run and 19 RBI. He hit safely in four of the games from April 11-17, and he produced at least two hits in each of those contests.  

NL — Chase Utley, Philadelphia Phillies

Utley hit .458 (11 for 24) in six games from April 11-17. He leads the majors with a .462 batting average and has three home runs and 10 RBI. He has hit safely in all but one game this year.

HOT TEAMS

AL — New York Yankees

The Yankees won five consecutive games from April 12-17. They outscored opponents 25-8 in the span. The stretch included two shutouts with victories of 3-0 and 2-0 over the Chicago Cubs in an April 16 doubleheader. They have lost consecutive games just twice this season (April 1-2 against the Houston Astros and April 8-9 against the Baltimore Orioles).

NL — Atlanta Braves

The Braves went 5-1 from April 11-17. At 10-5, they lead the National League East. Their five-game winning streak from April 11-16 topped their four-game undefeated run from April 1-5. Their 2.44 staff ERA leads the majors.

(Clockwise from top left) Texas’ Tanner Scheppers, Washington’s Taylor Jordan, Milwaukee’s Mark Reynolds and Houston’s Dexter Fowler are this week’s featured cold pitchers and hitters.

COLD PITCHERS

AL — Tanner Scheppers, Texas Rangers

Scheppers allowed 11 runs and 10 hits in no decisions against the Houston Astros on April 12 and Seattle Mariners on April 17. The right-hander is 0-1 with a 9.82 ERA for the season. He has lasted past five innings once, when he went seven against the Astros on April 12. He was placed on the 15-day DL on Friday because of inflammation in his right elbow.

NL — Taylor Jordan, Washington Nationals

Jordan allowed 10 earned runs and 17 hits in 10 1/3 innings in losses to the Atlanta Braves on April 12 and St. Louis Cardinals on April 17. Both times, he struggled early. He allowed four runs in the first inning against the Braves and three in the first against the Cardinals. The right-hander is 0-2 with a 5.94 ERA.  

COLD HITTERS

AL — Dexter Fowler, Houston Astros

Fowler hit .037 (1 for 27) in six games from April 11-17. He struck out nine times and walked once in the span. He has hit .188 for the season with one home run and two RBI. He has struck out 15 times.

NL — Mark Reynolds, Milwaukee Brewers

Reynolds hit .059 ( 1 for 17) in six games from April 11-17. His lone hit in the stretch was a solo home run during a victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on April 11. He has hit .171 with three home runs, six RBI and 18 strikeouts this season.

COLD TEAMS

AL — Houston Astros

The Astros lost five of six games from April 11-17. At 5-11, they own the American League’s worst record. They haven’t won consecutive games since beating the New York Yankees twice from April 1-2 to begin the season. They own the majors’ worst batting average (.188), and their 45 runs are tied for fewest in the majors with the San Diego Padres.  

NL — Arizona Diamondbacks

The Diamondbacks lost six consecutive games from April 11-16. They were shut out twice in the span, with a 6-0 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers on April 11 and a 9-0 loss to the New York Mets on April 15. At 4-14, they own the worst record in the majors. Their 6.02 staff ERA also ranks last.  

TWEET OF THE WEEK

Each year, we remember. Jackie Robinson’s impact was celebrated throughout the major leagues April 15 (and April 16 because of rainouts and an offday for two clubs). All uniformed personnel wore Robinson’s retired No. 42, an appropriate nod to all that he gave the game with his bravery and resilience. Our society has come far since he broke baseball’s color barrier on April 15, 1947. Still, our tribute can never last too long.

You can follow Andrew Astleford on Twitter @aastleford or email him at aastleford@gmail.com.