In a previous post I pointed out that there are not many players over the last two seasons who have walked, gotten hits and especially hit home runs at the rate that John Mayberry has with the Phillies over the past two seasons. Another thing that Mayberry has done with the Phillies over the past two seasons is have a large percentage of his hits go for extra-bases while hitting for a relatively high average.

In 2010 and 2011 combined, Mayberry has gotten 309 plate appearances with the Phillies in which he has hit .276 (77-for-279). Of his 77 hits, 17 are doubles, one is a triple and he has hit 17 home runs. About 45.45% of his hits over the past two years have gone for extra-bases.

How many players in either league in 2011 meet all three of these criteria: Got 200 plate appearances, hit at least .276 and had 45.45% or more of the hits they did get go for extra-bases? Two.

PA AVG % of hits XBH
Mike Napoli 432 .320 46.6
Matt Downs 222 .276 50.9

And in 2010? Four.

PA AVG % of hits XBH
Jayson Werth 652 .296 45.7
Miguel Cabrera 648 .322 46.7
Jim Thome 340 .283 55.1
Jim Edmonds 272 .276 50.0

Again, like in the previous post, it’s the high percentage of extra-base hits that make this group so tough to get into.

2011 2010
% of players with 200 plate appearances who hit .276 or better 29.6 32.4
 . . . who had at least 45.45% of their hits go for extra-bases 6.8 8.4

In each of the last two years, more than a hundred players have hit better than .276 across both leagues. In both season less than 30 saw 45.45% or more of their hits go for extra-bases.

This article suggests that Mayberry will spend more time in left than at first base early in the year. Again, the critical question to me seems to be who the Phillies are going to play at first against right-handed pitching if Howard is out and Thome can’t play first. Again again, it seems to me the best choice offensively is to play Brown in left and Nix or Mayberry at first, assuming that the lefty Nix is probably the more conservative choice but that Mayberry might have higher upside. That seems unlikely to me to happen, so I think we should brace ourselves for a significant amount of Wigginton at first against righties early in the year.

Ryan Howard took batting practice and has no time table for his return. He also suggests he might not get to full-strength until around the All-Star break.

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