Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Covered dish

Ryan Howard, who is supposedly standing nearer the plate this year, is batting .359/.400/.692 so far. He is using the entire field, having pulled the ball 10 times, hit the ball up the middle 16 times and gone the opposite way 7 times (according to data). Last year, which was Howard's worst in the bigs, he pulled the ball 122 times, went up the middle 211 times and went the other way 47 times.

By percentages, that's pulling the ball 30.3% in 2011 compared to 32.1% in 2010, going up the middle 48.5% to 55.5% and going the other way 21.2% to 12.4%. So maybe standing nearing the plate is giving him better coverage on the outside pitches and he's driving them to the opposite field.

Howard's BB% had dipped slightly this year, but his K% his a historically low 17.8 (down from 25.3 last season and 27.4 average). Perhaps another sign of better plate coverage.

One other note of interest, Howard has 2 sac flies this year compared to only 3 all of last season.

This is all based on a very small sample and Howard can be a streaky hitter, but if these results are because of his new approach, it is encouraging for Phillies fans.

No comments: