Friday, March 21, 2014
Over/under: Paul Goldschmidt's homers
By David Schoenfield
The Diamondbacks and Dodgers kick off the regular season in Australia with a game that starts Saturday morning at 1 a.m. West Coast time, so let's do an over/under on D-backs first baseman Paul Goldschmidt.
Goldschmidt hit .286 with 20 home runs in 2012, his first full season in the big leagues and followed that up by hitting .302 and leading the NL with 36 home runs (tied with Pedro Alvarez), 125 RBIs, 332 total bases and a .551 slugging percentage, numbers that helped him finishing second in the MVP voting behind Andrew McCutchen. He added a Gold Glove Award and swiped 15 bases, a testament to his all-around game.
Most of his improvement came against right-handed pitching. After hitting .257 with 10 home runs against them in 2012 he improved to .300 with 25 home runs, while continuing to mash against lefties. Goldschmidt also wasn't a product of playing in a hitter-friendly park, as he hit .311 with 19 home runs on the road.
Goldschmidt is 26, so it's hard to envision him getting much better; he may be at his peak right now. His BABIPs have been .340 and .343 the past two seasons, so he's been consistent in that regard.
ZiPS has him at 32 home runs, Steamer at 31. I'm a little more optimistic and will set the over/under at 33.5 home runs.