What the Hell, Brent Morel?

For the first four-plus months of the season, Chicago White Sock Brent Morel played pretty similarly to how one might have expected Brent Morel to play, striking out rarely and walking even more rarely while displaying what is referred euphemistically to as “gap” power.

Over the past month, however, he’s basically turned into a third base-playing Ian Kinsler, walking and striking out at about the same rate while hitting home runs at a pretty excellent pace, but with the low-ish BABIP that Kinsler routinely posts.

To wit:

Because you’re a nerd, you’re definitely prepared to inform the author about the sample size with which we’re dealing here and its relative small-ness. Please understand that your warnings are being considered, one-by-one, as carefully and lovingly as possible. And, indeed, it’s true: even James Loney can look good for 100 PAs at a time.

It’s worth noting, though, that it’s not just Morel’s slash line we’re looking at. The other numbers here become reliable with smaller samples — samples such that, even if we were to regress to the reliable sample size with Morel’s career numbers, we’d still be seeing what basically amounts to a different guy. Speaking anecdotally, that’s a less common thing.

There are zero hard conclusions to be drawn from this. But I, personally, will be watching Morel with more interest over the remainder of the season and into next.

Thank to you Baseball Reference for their sweet game logs.

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What about his groundball rates? If he made a change in his swing to get more lift, more balls in the air would probably result in a drop in BABIP and an increase in slugging. Not uncommon for young players to work on increased power in the majors after getting more comfortable there. Also looks like he might be more selective looking for a pitch to drive out of the park, resulting in more walks and a slight increase in Ks.