Eric Hosmer has been on a tear for the San Diego Padres in their recent Cactus League games. Although the home runs are nice, they are such a small part of his game.
I went over some of Eric Hosmer‘s advanced stats in an article last week. The San Diego Padres no doubt pored over some of this same data before signing him to an eight-year, $144 million deal last month.
I only touched on a handful of areas in my last look into Hosmer’s stats. This time I plan on going into his on-base mastery, as well as his above-average strikeout numbers.
In the Padres’ last five Spring Training games (since March 15), Hosmer’s gone 7-for-16 with two doubles, three home runs, and seven RBI. This is an encouraging sign but means next-to-nothing in the big picture.
Hosmer, 29, has been an on-base machine throughout his career and strikes out at a much lower percentage than the rest of this suddenly “OK with striking out 150 times in a season” league.
Over the course of his career (2011-2017), Eric Hosmer has never had a higher strikeout-rate than 19.8%, which came in one of his “dip” seasons, as I call them.
Considering that the MLB strikeout percentages have risen steadily from 17.7% in 2011 to 21.2% in 2017, his 2016 mark is still better than average.
Eric Hosmer’s strikeout and walk rates are unreal
From 2015 through 2017, undoubtedly Hosmer’s most productive seasons outside of his outstanding, breakout year in 2013, his strikeout-rates were 16.2 in 2015, 19.8 in ’16, and 15.5 last year. Well above-average both separately and overall, as per fangraphs.com.
His walk-rate is even more impressive. Over the course of those same years, 2015-’17, Hosmer’s walk-percentages were 9.1 in 2015, 8.5 in 2016, and 9.8 in 2017. Again, even in his down year of 2016, are all still well above league averages.
Since Eric Hosmer came into the league in 2011, his 16.3% strikeout rate and 8.2% walk rate rank 13th and 42nd, respectively, among the league leaders in both of those categories over that duration of time.
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Hosmer’s other stats ain’t so shabby either
After making his debut in 2011, Hosmer’s 566 RBI (9th among active first basemen 2011-2017), .342 on-base percentage (13th), 9.9 WAR (15th), and .316 BABIP (batting average on balls in play, 10th) show the full extent of this young man’s skill-set.
It’s rare to see a player, especially these days, that gets on base at the rate Hosmer does, strikes out as little as he does, and can mix in some power as well.
It’s usually, and this goes back twenty years or so, a combination of two of those traits, at best.
At any rate, Eric Hosmer figures to show off all of these qualities, and then some, this season for the San Diego Padres.
If he can bring the type of numbers he had last season, or even something closely resembling them, to the table this year, it would most certainly be worthy of a chalk-mark in the win column for the franchise, considering the mixed bag of opinions that came along with the signing.
I personally wouldn’t be happier to see Hosmer make all of those doubters (including myself at one point) wrong.