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  1. Does his tendency to consistently pound the ball to RF have any correlation with his crazy reverse splits (.955 OPS vs LHP)?

    Thanks for doing an article on Belt!

    Comment by HunterPants — June 18, 2012 @ 1:47 pm

  2. Whoops, consistently not* pulling the ball

    Comment by HunterPants — June 18, 2012 @ 1:49 pm

  3. I would say SSS size has more to do with that, since Bochy would rather send his right-handed bat boy to face lefties.

    Comment by Mario Mendoza of commenters — June 18, 2012 @ 2:45 pm

  4. (I mean that as a condemnation of Bochy, not Belt. It would be nice to see what a bigger sample vs lefties would look like.)

    Comment by Mario Mendoza of commenters — June 18, 2012 @ 2:47 pm

  5. Since Bochy seems to be the poster manager for reliance on SSS, the fact that BB9 hit all three of his recent home runs against left handers virtually guarantees that he’ll get a chance to hit against them some more.

    Comment by fergie348 — June 18, 2012 @ 3:00 pm

  6. I’ve always been frustrated that Fangraphs splits page doesn’t have plate discipline stats. But, it is possible to reconstruct such splits by using the game logs page.

    Please see this link: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AkI6iENJPLHudGZVaFJaeGViSkxVR25OT0VpZTJxSlE

    To view Belt’s monthly plate discipline. You’ll notice that SwStr% has held steady for two months. But is still higher than one would want. (But way lower than April).

    Zone Ct% has gone from poor to above average. O-Ct% has fluctuated.

    The one number that really stands out here is Belt’s Z-Sw%. It’s at 78.6% for the year, with numbers of 82%, 74%, and 84% month to month. That is markedly higher than the league average Z-Sw% of 64%.

    I’m kind of at a loss here. So Belt has great recognition of when a pitch is in the zone (as he’s not a pure free-swinger since his O-Sw% is league average or better). Now, I know june is a very small sample size. BUT if this new stance and regular playing time allows him to keep a Z-Ct% of 89% while also swinging at 15% more pitches in the zone than the average player, he’s not going to strike out that often as his SwStk% might suggest.

    The problem here is his below average O-Ct%. At best he’s showing a 51% O-Ct%. So while he swings at out of the zone pitches on a league average basis, he sucks at putting the bat on the ball on those occasions.

    I don’t know if there is much pure predictive value here, but there is a clear pathway here for Belt to get much better at the plate. If he keeps a high Z-Sw%, keeps the higher Z-Ct% of June, and then is able to pull his O-Ct% to league average, we’ll see a guy who can sustain a BB/K over 1.00 (I think).

    But if he fix his problems with pitches outside of the strike zone the scouting reports might get around and he’ll start striking out at a higher rate.

    Those are my armchair analyst thoughts.

    Comment by kellemonster — June 18, 2012 @ 4:08 pm

  7. I think this analysis works for a better batting average, but I’m not sure better contact outside the zone would be better for his power.

    Comment by Eno Sarris — June 18, 2012 @ 6:24 pm

  8. quick, someone now do a story on Freddie Freeman…

    Comment by david — June 18, 2012 @ 9:24 pm

  9. Belt is only 24 years old and was rushed through the Giants system. I think it’s wise to be more patient with players like Belt because they can exceed expectations. Regular playing time and a few years of big league experience go a long way, particularly with a pitcher-turned-first baseman like Belt.

    Comment by nolan — June 19, 2012 @ 5:50 am

  10. And bradon belt doubles bring in 2. tie the game in the top of the 9th

    Comment by tadashi — June 23, 2012 @ 1:17 am

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