Nationals Baseball: Every damn year

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Every damn year

Anthony Rendon was cut from the spring training roster.  BUT HE WAS HITTING SO WELL!!!

Bryce Harper is a man on fire.  HE'LL HAVE A MONSTER SEASON!!!!

Stop.  Bryce Harper might have a monster season.  Anthony Rendon might cruise through double and triple A and be in a Nats uniform by June. But it has little to do with how they performed in what amounts to two weeks of at bats.

We've gone over this before pointing out the guys that led the team in hitting before (Mark DeRosa last year!) and yet here we are again. But it's not being crazy, you say.  I'm not being influenced by Spring! Perhaps if you see what's happening elsewhere, you might take a breath.

Jackie Bradley Jr for the Red Sox is tearing it up.  He hit .270 with limited power last year in half a AA season.  Fans are clamoring for him to start the season with the team,

Jeff Baker is having a super hot spring for Texas.  The 32 yr old career part-time player with declining stats has a good shot at opening the season as the Rangers utility guy.

Shane Robinson is killing it for the Cardinals. He is a feel good story on perseverence and proving something to people.  (lucky for the Cardinals they have their OF set so he's only in line for a small promotion to 4th OF from last year)

Donovan Solano crushing it for the Marlins.  He spent his minor league career as a mediocre average, no power, no patience guy. But thanks to a strong finish in the majors and a hot spring he could hit at the top of the order for the Marlins (though to be fair he might be their best hitter left after Stanton)

Adam Lind is having a resurgent March. He's watched his ability to hit lefties slowly degrade over the past 5 years until now he's just a platoon player at best. They Blue Jays still might waste a month of the regular season seeing if he's somehow regained that ability, in part based on how he hits them in the spring.  How many at bats will that be? 30?

I'm not even cherry picking here. That's really just picking the Top 5 guys by average from the Spring Training stats. You may not think that it can happen to you.  That there is no way that I could be affected by Spring stats anymore, but its a battle everyday to avoid falling back into that trap. It happens to everyone.


Donald said...

I agree. It seems like it takes longer for pitchers to progress to being ready than it does hitters, which makes sense. So mediocre players get to feast on pitchers who are still getting stretched out, or are focusing on improving their #4 pitch or something.

And the established hitters, like Jason Werth, are focused on tracking pitches or letting pitches get deeper, or whatever, rather than just mashing the ball. Hence this phenomenon, I guess.

Anonymous said...

You should give more love to Jeff Baker because he grew up in NoVA. I wish he was that Nats utility guy. I sure hope you're wrong and he has an amazing year...but if you look at stats, it is as if he only plays well in the WS and spring training.

Froggy said...

To the reverse of your point, how about how Span is tearin' it up. Is batting .160 his normal Spring routine?

Or does he think he is such a lock on CF that he can spend more time on Twitter instead?

Harper said...

Donald - there are certainly a ton of crazy good springs every year - more than crazy bad ones it seems. I also among the types fighting for spots batting starters > 4th/5th rotation spot guys; guys on bench > last guys in pen.

Anon - Have you ever driven through NOVA on 95? NO LOVE. ANTI-LOVE. I hope Jeff Baker quietly retires with the large amount of money he's made so far! (I'm not one to wish ill will)

Froggy - watch out for Span...

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