Stats Corner: Corner men Marte, Snider deliver punch
Given Andrew McCutchen's first disabled list stint and Gregory Polanco's rough introduction to the majors, the Pirates' “Dream Outfield” easily could have turned nightmarish.
Yet entering Saturday, Pirates outfielders owned an .804 on-base plus slugging percentage since the All-Star break, trailing just the Miami Marlins (.807).
Through injury and rookie disappointment, the Pirates have prevailed because Starling Marte and Travis Snider started raking. Marte is connecting more often and lofting pitches, suggesting he's over his concussion issues, and Snider has rehabilitated his career by crushing breaking and off-speed stuff.
Before the Midsummer Classic, Marte posted a .708 OPS while striking out at a Pedro Alvarez-esque 27.7 percent clip. During the second half, however, he boasts the third-highest OPS among outfielders (minimum 100 plate appearances).
Turning it around
2nd-halfBatter Team OPS*
Adam Eaton White Sox 1.045
Giancarlo Stanton Marlins 1.026
Starling Marte Pirates 1.006
Justin Upton Braves .981
Jon Jay Cardinals .944
*Entering Saturday's games
Marte has cut his strikeout rate to 16.7 percent during the second half, and he's hitting far fewer ground balls since mid-July (38.2 percent of balls put in play) than before (52.2 percent). With four second-half homers, Marte almost has matched his first-half total (five) already.
A former top-10 prospect who slugged his way to the majors at age 20, Snider looked destined to be released this winter after putting up a .660 first-half OPS. But the pinch hitter turned starting right fielder has compiled an .881 OPS since the break and has belted six home runs. Among Pirates hitters, only Josh Harrison (seven) has gone deep more often during the second half.
David Golebiewski is a freelance writer.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Hair Cutch: Pirates superstar lops off his locks for charity
- Forbes: Pirates worth $900 million
- Pirates’ Harrison working to use 2014 success as building block
- Pirates notebook: McCutchen says he’s ‘glad’ to be on field
- Reliever Caminero’s chances of making Pirates’ roster heating up
- Baseball awaits chance to fully delve into Cuba’s talent pool
- Alvarez hopes tweak in mechanics unlocks plate potential
- Pirates notebook: RV is home to pitcher Lincoln for spring training
- Spring training breakdown: Pirates 7, Rays 6
- Spring training breakdown: Orioles 9, Pirates 2
- Pirates, South Korean star Kang optimistic bat will translate to MLB