Thursday, April 30, 2009

Struggling With Runners In Scoring Position in April

As I was watching the Mets painful debacle yesterday, I couldn't help but notice just how bad this team is with runners in scoring position. I have yet to find a statistic that reflects just how bad this team is in scoring position, especially late in games. ESPN states that the Mets as a team hit .252 with runners in scoring position, but I'm sure late in games, that number goes way down. Trust me folks, it's ugly.

The one guy on the Mets that stuck out to me in particular was David Wright. Here was Wright, the face of the franchise, up yesterday with runners on first and second and no one out and I had absolutely no confidence that Wright could get a hit with a runner in scoring position. Wright has let me down far too many times this season, and hell, it's not even May.

But what surprised me is that Wright has not been nearly as bad as I thought with runners in scoring position this season. According to ESPN, Wright is hitting .226 in 31 ABs with runners in scoring position, which is not nearly as bad as I thought. Perhaps my mind was deceived by the number of times Wright failed to come through when the Mets ABSOLUTELY needed him too. Either way, the stats are pretty interesting.

And what I found most amazing is that there are tons of high profile players, who are struggling even more than Wright, hitting with runners in scoring position. Here is a list of some of the "names" and their batting average with runners in scoring position in April:
Cameron Maybin (18 ABs) .000
Felix Pie (12 ABs) .000
Chris Snyder (11 ABs) .000

Geovany Soto (14 ABs) .071
Miguel Olivo (14 ABs) .071
JJ Hardy (22 ABs) .091
Felipe Lopez (11 ABs) .091

Torii Hunter (20 ABs) .100
JD Drew (28 ABs) .107
Jermanine Dye (18 ABs) .111
Michael Young (17 ABs) .118
Jhonny Peralta (25 ABs) .120
Alfonso Soriano (16 ABs) . 125
Mike Fontenot (16 ABs) .125

Lance Berkman (22 ABs) .136
Jim Thome (14 ABs) .143
Brandon Phillips (19 ABs) .158
Chris Young (19 ABs) .158

Alexei Casilla (25 ABs) .160
Hunter Pence (18 ABs) .167
Travis Hafner (18 ABs) .167
Adam Dunn (18 ABs) .167
Ryan Church (18 ABs) .167
Want to know why the Cubs and Diamondbacks offenses are struggling this season? Look no further than this list, which shows that each team has three regulars hitting under .158 with runners in scoring position. The Cubs are only batting .241 with runners in scoring position this season while the Diamondbacks are hitting an anemic .208. Yikes.

And it is interest to note that there are guys on this list who are off to great starts at the dish: Adam Dunn, Michael Young, Torii Hunter, etc. I'll be honest, I did not expect to see any of those names on this list (well maybe Dunn given his terrible history hitting with runners in scoring position).

Note: How is there only one Met on this list?

So take these numbers for what they're worth because I'm sure these numbers are bound to go up. Keep in mind that statistics do not tell the whole story.

Perhaps it's just some strange solace for me knowing that yes, there are actually players worse with runners in scoring position than David Wright; and it's very true that my Mets fandom is cynical and ridiculous.

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