Tag:Chris Snyder
Posted on: April 3, 2008 1:30 pm

Arizona Diamondbacks Batting Order

 Arizona doesn't have a pure clean-up hitter, period. The closest players we have to a clean-up hitter is Eric Byrnes, Mark Reynolds, and Conor Jackson. Those are the most pathetic clean-up hitters I've seen. Eric Byrnes is a stereo-typical 2 hitter, Mark Reynolds strikes out too much and doesn't fit the clean-up hitter scenario for this team (advance runners, get rbi's), and Conor Jackson has the worst RISP average. Even with the team makeup (to produce one run at a time) these guys are bad for the clean-up spot. With that said, Arizona's batting order is perpetually needing to be changed, and will always be geared towards getting those one or two runs per inning instead of the three or four. Regardless of whether the top, middle, or bottom of the order is due up.

Granted the line-up will be changing more than the shifting sands in the Sonoran Desert, and players will rise and fall within the lineup more than a "Streety's" britches on Van Buren. But as a general rule of thumb this is how I think the batting order ought to look, not for power numbers, but to maximize what this team tries to do, score one or two runs per inning. This line-up would use certain strengths of players, such as Young's speed or Jackson's eye for the strike zone, to keep pressure on the opposing teams pitchers.

Lead Off Hitter

Chris B. Young - He's got great speed and can swipe bags as good as anyone else on the team. He's also got a bit of pop in his bat. His .239 carreer batting average and high strike out numbers are a cause for concern, but what he brings to the table when he's on makes him a shoe-in for the leadoff spot. He can improve, but being a young player you have to give him the benefit of the doubt... for now.


Orlando Hudson - Hudson started the year off as the lead-off last season, and did a great job. When Chris Young started getting hot, Hudson moved to the #2 slot, which is a good place for him. He's an aggressive runner and his speed makes it difficult for teams to double him up. He's also a carreer .278 hitter with his lowest being .268. That kind of consistencies is what you look for in the top of the order. If Young struggles at the dish it won't be long until Hudson takes over the lead-off spot.


Eric Byrnes - He's only hit .300 one time in his carreer, and that was when he played 10 games with Oakland his rookie year. Last year was his best year for batting with a meager, in regards to a #3 hitter, .286 average. So why do I want him batting #3? Because I don't like any of the other options more. He's got good speed so he also doesn't get doubled up frequently, he's got average power numbers, but most importantly last year with RISP he batted .296 with 19 BB and 62 RBI's.

Clean Up

In my opinion, the best player for the cleanup spot has to be Mark Reynolds. He's got a lot of pop in his bat, and I expect to see a better year this year than last. As a switch hitter, his batting average is nearly identical no matter where he plays or what side of the plate he is swinging from. He strikes out quite a bit, but you expect that out of an average power hitter. He batted .279 his rookie year with 17 homeruns and 62 rbi's in 111 games. Most of that damage was done in the second half as he adjusted to the pitching in the Bigs.


Chris Snyder - Once again the batting average is low (.252) but provides different threats depending on if he's facing a lefty or a righty. Last year against lefties he bats .316 with 23 RBI's and a .407 OBP. While the rbi's don't drop off against the lefties, his batting average goes down while his power numbers go up.


Stephen Drew - I expect to see a break-out year from Stephen Drew. He doesn't have the power numbers to be a three,  four, or five hole hitter, or the speed to be the one or two. He's a consistent bottom of the line up guy who puts the ball in play and puts pressure on the defense and the pitcher. He's got a .259 carreer batting average and average numbers across the board. Drew has a strong second half upside as his batting average, run production, and rbi's consistently climbs through July, August, and September.


Justin Upton - Upton his touted as one of the greatest prospects in baseball. He floundered last year after being brought up after the All-Star Break. He can benefit greatly from getting some good looking pitches to hit. Placing him seventh isn't because he deserves it, but because he can develop more here than batting ahead of the pitcher where he won't get any decent looks. I expect a rough start early on for the kid, but as the season progresses look for some decent numbers with increased run production and fewer strikeouts. He'll also provide some good speed in the bottom of the lineup.


Conor Jackson - I know a lot of people will disagree with me on this one, but frankly I'm not impressed by his unfulfilled potential. His 2008 RISP average is a horrendous .235, with an overall ba of .284. My greatest reason for putting him here as opposed to sixth or seventh is because he walks... a lot! The eight hole hitter always gets junk pitches because you've got the pitcher behind you. If your eight hole guy isn't swinging at bad pitches, it means you aren't beating yourself. If Mark Reynolds fails to produce in the clean-up spot, you almost have to give the guy the nod for that spot.


**For those of you that aren't familiar with my disdain for CoJack, let me just say this: I can't stand the guy and he ought to be traded. He hasn't lived up to his potential at this point, and like many other "up and coming" Diamondbacks, I doubt that he ever will. And until he can prove me wrong, I'm going to continue raggin' on the guy, regardless of complete logic. If it weren't for my distaste for him, he'd probably be batting sixth instead of ninth.**

Posted on: February 13, 2008 11:53 am
Edited on: February 13, 2008 11:55 am

Arizona Diamondbacks: Batting Order

Since Spring Training is starting this week, I figured I would take a break from my beloved PAC-10 Basketball and discuss some baseball. I've got a few season predictions, and a bit of analysis... and then it's back to basketball again until the regular season gets underway. The first order of business is the Diamondbacks batting order. First of all, with the "Mad Scientist" Bob Melvin at the helm we know that this lineup is going to be ever changing. But as a general rule of thumb, this is what I think the BO (no, not that kind of BO) will look like...

1.Chris Young - proved he can handle the lead-off spot. He's a threat to steal and to go long with it. Love his hustle. He's worked his way through the first year adjustments and proved that he is going to be an elite player.
Big Concern: Will he avoide the typical sports Sophomore let down?

2. Orlando Hudson - Very consistent hitter with a lot of speed will keep the pressure on the bases and limit the double-play ball.
Big Concern: How will he respond after the wrist surgery?


3. Eric Byrnes - Keep the speed coming. Byrnes proved he can get it out of the park with some regularity. Byrnes seemed to come up with big hits last year to keep drives going. He was quick on the basepaths when the D-backs needed to keep the pressure on.
Big Concern: Can he keep his emotion under control? The emotion is a good thing, but at the end of the year last year he stumbled a bit because he was overly excited.


4. Mark Reynolds - Should be more consistant than last year. This kid has some major power in his bat. His numbers on the road vs. at home only vary by 0.010, and against righties and lefties there is only a 0.001 vairance. He's a constant threat so long as he's not in one of his adjustment funks (which should have ended last season).
Big Concern: Can he learn he doesn't always need to hit it out?


5. Chris Snyder - He's a solid hitter than had more success when he wasn't batting 8 or 9. Had 13 HR's last season, and he doesn't strike out very frequently. Not the ideal hitter for the 5 spot, but its the best the Diamondbacks have.
Big Concern: Can he have big numbers like you want out of a 5 spot guy when he'll be splitting time behind the plate with Miguel Montero?


6. Stephen Drew - He gets on base constantly, and I expect he should have a break out year this year as he becomes more mature and understands the pitchers better. He's got decent pop to his bat, and does a great job of making the defense work. He should make some great progress this year.
Big Concern: Can he keep out of the double play?


7. Conor Jackson - Jackson has a great eye for the strike zone, but is frequently too patient at the plate and passes up on big pitches. He has the potential to have good HR numbers, but his clutch numbers are horrible. His RISP is barely over .200, and he's almost a guaranteed out after the 7th inning with the game within 1 run. Not the player make-up you want for your 4 or 5 guy.
Big Concern:  His clutch numbers are horrendous, and he's not the swiftest of foot. If Upton is running behind him he better find another gear.

8. Justin Upton - Love his speed and his potential. Batting 8th will make him look at the pitches and in the long run will make him a better hitter. He's got decent power, but he will need some development. Overtime he should develop into a great hitter.
Big Concern: Batting 8th is a tough spot to hit. Don't usually get very good pitches to hit. Should be interesting to see what he can do with this spot being as it will be his first full year in the Bigs.

9. Micah Owings  - With the exception of Owings (and Davis a slight bit) this spot is typically an automatic out. Owings proved last year he can handle a bat just as well as he can pitch. You never know, if his pitching goes south he might end up pulling a Rick Ankiel.
Big Concern: It's the pitcher's spot... what do you think? He's not going to pitch but every fifth game. This isn't the AL you know.

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