Friday, May 4, 2012

Is This Really Chris Getz?

Remember during spring training when we were told, despite no results to prove the claim, that the new batting stance being employed by Chris Getz would allow him to hit for more power? Remember how we mocked, and then mocked some more? Our skepticism was warranted due to the underwhelming spring .200/.241/.220 line that included just one extra base hit.

Well maybe there is something to the new batting stance above. Getz doubled in his first at bat of the season and hasn't looked back. After last night's double he now has six extra base hits on the season, which is just three less than all of last year. Look at the difference in slug between his starts the last two years:
2011 51 41 6 13 1 0 0 5 .317 .375 .341 .716
2012 50 46 6 15 4 2 0 4 .326 .354 .500 .854

Sure the sample size is still too small to gather any meaningful data but Getz is passing the eyeball test. He really is hitting the ball harder, right now only Mike Moustakas (.553) and Billy Butler (.526) have higher slugging percentages. His numbers will almost certainly come down, just like they did last year (.255/.313/.287), but if he can hit .280/.330/.400 with average to slightly above average defense I have to believe we'd be looking at a valuable contributor.

When Johnny Giavotella was demoted I was ready to grab my pitchfork and storm One Royal Way with the rest of the angry mob, but now, I'm okay with Getz being the starting second baseman. I like productive baseball players, and at this moment, Chris Getz is a productive baseball player.

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