Sunday, July 10, 2005

He Giveth. He Taketh Away

A Two-For-One Special for Brad Wilkerson this weekend.

He ties for the team lead in Majority Whips with Friday night's performance. And he ties for the team lead in Lame Ducks with Saturday's performance.

On Friday, Carlos Baerga had the big hit (and run around the bases), but Wilk was constantly on base, ripping out three hits and scoring two runs. It's not his fault that he was caught stealing again; Frank just can't resist a hit-and-run.

In Saturday's game Wilkerson failed to do what he had done the game before. He didn't get on at all, and wasn't able to get on for the non-sucky part of our lineup. Vinny left more on, and Guillen took an ofer too. But the Kentucky Masher needs to do better for this team to win.

For the record, since June 1 (roughly when his arm injury was first discussed), Wilkerson has turned into a perfect lead-off hitter, and any talk of him batting lower in the order needs to be stopped.

The injury has robbed him of his power. He has just a .386 slugging average, with only two homers. Worse, he only was able to crank out 6 doubles in that stretch.

But, while his power had disappeared, he's getting on-base like a madman.

Despite his pedestrian .246 batting average, he's getting on-base at a .394 clip. You're going to score a lot of runs when you're lead-off man is that successful.

For comparison's sake, the name most frequently listed as a lead-off alternative is Marlon Byrd. During that same time period, he's hit .213/ .258/ .270. Ouch.

Cristian Guzman during that same period: .241/ .277/ .430.

Byrd is proving that it is actually possible to hit worse than Guzman. Amazing.

And just because I'm feeling especially cruel, here's Inning-Endy Chavez's line during the same time: .296/ .321/ .407.

Did we really win that trade?

(And yes, that's hard for me to type!)