Thursday, March 13, 2014
Over/under: Chris Davis' home runs
By David Schoenfield
We all know what Chris Davis did last year: 53 home runs and 138 RBIs, both best in the majors.
The impressive thing about Davis' monster season was his ability to go the other way -- 16 of his home runs went to left field or left-center and he hit .442 when going the opposite way. He hit .272 with 12 home runs on outside pitches in 2012 but .291 with 23 home runs on outside pitches in 2013, letting his easy raw power do the work.
So, can he do it again? We remember that he started off crushing everything. Here are his monthly totals:
April: .348, 9 HR
May: .364, 10 HR
June: .290, 12 HR
July: .211, 7 HR
August: .287, 9 HR
September: .216, 6 HR
In the first two months, his contact rate was the best of his career; he had 29 walks and 50 strikeouts. That ratio fell apart in June and July as he had 14 walks and 82 strikeouts. With the swing-and-miss aspect of his game (199 strikeouts in 2013) he's always going to be a streaky hitter.
What will he do for an encore? He hit 33 home runs in 2012 -- but that was in 111 fewer plate appearances than 2013. ZiPS projects him at 41 home runs, Steamer at 37. Let's put the over/under at 40.5.