Sunday, June 28, 2009

David Wright: No longer a home run hitter?

What's up with David Wright's power numbers this year? How is it that somebody who averaged over 28 homers a year only has four home runs this season?

Yes, I know that Citi Field is getting the blame. And I know that Wright is also hitting .346 this year. But why is it that even Wright's own teammates are outdoing him with homers, even with a lot fewer at-bats? Here are the Mets who have as many or more homers than Wright does:
  • Gary Sheffield: 9
  • Carlos Beltran: 8
  • Daniel Murphy: 5
  • Carlos Delgado: 4
  • Omir Santos: 4
Wright has had 272 at-bats this year, more than anybody else on the team. The vastly less-talented Santos has as many homers as Wright, with 150 fewer at-bats. Gary Sheffield is about to turn 60 years old, and he has five more home runs than Wright, in over 100 fewer at-bats.

The Yankees are also outdoing Wright in the home run department. Of course, they play in a bandbox, but still, it's kind of shocking to see that Melky Cabrera has three more homers than Wright does:
  • Mark Teixeira: 20
  • Johnny Damon: 14
  • Nick Swisher: 14
  • Robinson Cano: 12
  • Alex Rodriguez: 11
  • Hideki Matsui: 10
  • Jorge Posada: 10
  • Derek Jeter: 9
  • Melky Cabrera: 7
Wright's RBI numbers are also nothing to write home about. He has 39 RBI, the same as Nick Swisher. As WFAN's Sweeny Murti noted on his Twitter account, A-Rod has only two RBIs fewer than Swisher, and that's with 100 fewer at-bats - and with having a lousy season so far.

And several of Wright's own teammates - like Gary Sheffield and Omir Santos - are driving in RBIs at a higher percentage than the Met third baseman is.

I don't know what to make of these numbers, other than to note that Wright gets more of a pass for this than many other players would. He seems to have that Derek Jeter untouchable aura, only without the four rings!

What do you think? Leave us a comment!


Anonymous said...

Wright may only have 4 HR, but he has a .927 OPS right now, the second highest of his career. Here you go again, Lisa, comparing apples and oranges. Of note is the fact that only one Yankee, Mark Teixera, has a higher OPS. He comes in at .963. No other Yankee has one above .900. So, to finish your statement, he's just like Derek Jeter except that he doesn't have 4 rings, gets paid 67% less, and doesn't suck as much.

Anonymous said...

Hey moron, Derek Jeter doesn't suck. He's a HOF shortstop who's having a fine season at the age of 35. Last time I checked Wright was much younger. And Jeter has more HR's than him.

I was going to say something nice about Wright, but taking uncalled for potshots at Jeter makes me mad.

Anonymous said...

Wright gets a pass?? Since when? He got blasted all offseason for not being "clutch". And now this season in which his leading the league in hitting and second in the league in OBP, almost all of the talk about him has been about how he can't hit HRs and is striking out too much.

Paul from Boston said...

Its an odd thing when a player drops off like that. I don't think its just the new park - he hit 3 of his 4 there.

RBIs can be tricky because that requires you to have runners on ahead of you - and in the case of the Mets, runners that won't make some baserunning blunder.

Here's a few numbers for Wright - .359 with runners on and .341 with RISP. Doesn't seem too bad to me.

However, he drops to .244 with RISP and 2 outs and a mere .182 with the bases loaded. I think the last two stats leave a poorer taste with the fans.

Would it be better if Wright started hitting solo shots in blowout games as ARod is often accused of?

Lisa/Jon - have fun at the game tonight (Jon, please have just a little bit more fun than Lisa).

Happy Sunday everyone!

Uncle Mike said...

Wow, Paul from Boston makes Wright sound like a New York third baseman who puts up big numbers but can't be trusted in the clutch.

Chuckle chuckle smirk smirk.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 2...Jeter is a hall of fame shortstop, but he's also incredibly overrated and has probably only been the best player at his position one or two years in his entire career. He's not even a top five shortstop this year and is being paid like he hits 40 dingers a year. He's also the third best shortstop in New York, behind ARod at third base and Jose Reyes on the DL.

Uncle Mike said...

Let's get something straight: A-Rod was NEVER a better shortstop than Jeter. Nor was Reyes. Next you're going to tell me Rey Ordonez was better. As Flushing's own Fran Drescher would say, "Nev-a!"

You want to talk about a better New York shortstop than Derek Jeter? There ain't one. There's four New York shortstops in the Hall of Fame: George Davis of the 1890s Giants, Travis Jackson of the 1920s-30s Giants, and the two great rivals of the '40s and '50s, Phil Rizzuto and Pee Wee Reese. Was any of them better than Jeter? No. Here's a list of the shortstops who were better than Jeter: Honus Wagner and Cal Ripken. That's it, and by the time Jeter crosses the 3,000-hit barrier in 2011 we can take Ripken off that list and crown Jeter the greatest shortstop in American League history and the greatest shortstop of the preceding 100 years.

Besides, at this rate, Jose Reyes will be the fourth-best shortstop in New York, behind Jeter, A-Rod and Ramiro Pena.

And let's stop with the "Anonymous" stuff: Either log in, or at least sign your work, so we know who stands by their stuff and who's too chicken to do so.

LG said...

Wright's had a whopping 11 AB with the bases loaded... thats not much to go one as far as measuring "clutch". He's hitting .341 with RISP, .310 in close and late situations, and .385 in high leverage situations.... thats pretty clutch.

And A-Rod not better than Jeter??? LOL. Jeter is a good player, a HOFer, but A-Rod is the much much better player- it's not even close.

mhochman said...

I don't know if its CitiField or not. but it looks to me like those pitches on the outside that he used to drive the other way, he's now swinging over or pulling off of, like he's trying to pull everything.

As for Jeter, As a Mets fan, i'm prolly biased against him, but i think if you ask most non Mets/Yankees fans, they will say that he's an overrated player, I don't say that to take anything away from him, because he is a consistant very good player. i'm just not sure he's AS good a Shortstop as Yankees fans claim (nor is he as bad as some Mets fans claim)

"Nutball Gazette" said...

Come on Mike, we all Know that Jim Mason was the greatest Yankee shortstop of all

Anyone saying Jeter is overrated just has not watched him play, Numbers do not tell the story.

LG said...

Wright is not pulling too much. He's been using the whole field- 57 of the balls he's put in play have been pulled, 54 were hit the other way, and 90 up the middle....thats a good balance. If anything, if he did try and pull more (not saying he should since he's at his best when he is using the whole field) he'd probably hit more HRs. Its a lot easier for a RHB to hit the ball out of LF in Citi (the walls are high but the dimensions aren't terrible) than hitting it out of the park to CF or the huge RCF gap.

Anonymous said...

Right on, Uncle Mike. Regarding Anon Anons.


Uncle Mike said...

LG: If A-Rod is the better player, then he should, by now, have proven it when it matters the most. He has proven the opposite.

Your analysis of Wright's hitting is considerably more interesting. It does look like he's got good balance as to where he hits. At a park with a great variance in distance -- say, Yankee Stadium or Fenway Park -- this would be a plus. I haven't memorized Citi Field's dimensions yet, although I do know Teixeira juuuust missed a home run in this series hitting it off the wall at the 415 mark, so there is certainly the potential for Wright to be a doubles hitter in the place.

This brings up a point that I made to Yankee Fans I knew in 2003, when we got Hideki Matsui: Even with that short porch, I knew he wasn't going to hit 50 home runs like he did the year before in Japan. But looking at his opposite-field ability, I thought he might be able to hit 40 doubles and 20 homers. He's topped 40 doubles twice and 20 homers three times, and averaged 29 doubles and 19 homers a full season, which I gladly take. If Wright ended up as this kind of hitter, it would be well worth taking, even if it didn't live up to the potential he supposedly had.

Nutball: Jim Mason? Please, W.B. Mason has been more productive for the Yankees. If he was any good, the Yankees would not have traded for Bucky Dent. Although Mason did have the only Yankee home run in the 1976 World Series, which puts him one World Series homer ahead of A-Fraud.

Thanks, Cindy... as long as you're not Cindy Garvey. LOL

"Nutball Gazette" said...

Hey Uncle Mike.

I am sure you know I was joking, But I did not realize that he has more WS Homers than A-Fraud

"Nutball Gazette" said...

Quick story, When Mason took over at SS I was at a game when Stick Michael was signing along 1st base line, Some little kid ashed Michael if he liked Jim Mason,
Michael and all the fans there died laughing.

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