Will he bat 1st in 2012?
Any Reds fan out there can tell you how disappointed they were to see Drew Stubbs strike out as much as he did in 2011. 205 strikeouts in 2011 put him 3rd overall in single season leaders for strikeouts, Mark Reynolds is 1st, 2nd and 4th. 223 being the highest single season record.
I wanted to look a little more into this and see exactly who struck Drew Stubbs out the most and it is very interesting to see what pitchers had the most fun against him in 2011. Ryan Dempster along with Matt Garza and Shaun Marcum top the list with 5 SO. All three of these pitchers gave Drew Stubbs nothing but problems in 2011. Stubbs only went 3 for 15 against Dempster and 3 for 13 against Garza while really struggling against Marcum by going 1 for 10. There were four pitchers that got 4 strikeouts against Stubbs in 2011. Chris Carpenter, Yovani Gallardo, Jair Jurrjens and Marco Estrada. His batting average against some of these pitchers was not as bad with the top three but he still went down swinging a lot. The next group of pitchers who got three strikeouts against Stubbs also only saw him a few times which really makes it interesting. With some pitchers he only had 4 plate appearances while striking out 3 times. Jason Grilli struck him out 3 times with 3 PA. After writing this, I honestly had to look up Jason Grilli just to see who he was. He played in 28 games for Pittsburgh Pirates getting 2 wins and 1 loss with a 2.48 ERA at 34 years old. He had a total of 37 strike outs in 32.2 innings pitched.
If Drew Stubbs batted 8th or 9th in the order for the Cincinnati Reds I am sure many of us would not have noticed that he was struggling so much but that was not the case for most of the season. He batted 1st and it was painful to watch this poor kid come up to bat every time. It was very clear to me, (as a fan) that he was just not very comfortable while he stood in the batters box. Sometimes it even looked like he was not even at the ball park that day. His mind seemed to be somewhere else many times. Joey Votto is a fun player to watch in the batters box. You can see him thinking about the next pitch and what was just thrown to him, he is always thinking up there. Drew Stubbs and sometimes Jay Bruce need to learn from Votto on that matter.
Like I said before, if he batted lower in the batting order I am sure we would not have noticed as much but he played over 95 games batting 1st getting a .250 BA, .329 OBP, .373 SLG with 131 SO and 44 walks. Once Dusty woke up and realized he was struggling Stubbs then batted 6th for 35 games and 7th for 12 games. What amazes me is that he only played 3 games batting 8th but with guys like Paul Janish in the order that explains it.
Leading off an Inning was very painful to watch when it came to Stubbs. As 1st batter in the game he had a .212 BA, .295 OBP and .282 SLG while getting 27 SO in 85 at bats. Leading off an inning he got .243 BA, .305 OBP and a .341 SLG while getting 63 SO in 214 AB.
Another thing I noticed is that the more times he saw a pitcher the better he got but it was usually to late. vs. SP for the 1st time he went 28 for 128 with 50 SO. 2nd time facing a SP he went 33 for 127 with 38 SO. He went 31 for 110 with 28 SO the 3rd time he faced a starter. And 4+ times facing a starter he went 11 for 31 with 14 SO. And as you can see it took him quite awhile to learn the pitcher and usually the team would bring in a relief pitcher before he did, in which case he went 41 for 199 with 72 SO against a RP the 1st time.
At first I thought maybe it was something to do with Great American Ball Park but he had just as much problem on the road as he did at home. In GABP he went 77 for 287 with 98 SO while going 70 for 317 with 107 SO on the road. Which shows that he had a way better batting average at home and that if he was traded he might not have a job for long on any other team. His speed is great and his fielding is not bad but if he can’t hit at this level he won’t last long on other teams.
Pitchers who struck Drew Stubbs out the most in 2011
AB H SO BA OBP SLG OPS Ryan Dempster 15 3 5 .200 .200 .467 .667 Matt Garza 13 3 5 .231 .286 .462 .747 Shaun Marcum 9 1 5 .111 .200 .333 .533 Chris Carpenter 14 5 4 .357 .438 .429 .866 Yovani Gallardo 9 3 4 .333 .400 .778 1.178 Jair Jurrjens 7 1 4 .143 .143 .571 .714 Marco Estrada 6 0 4 .000 .000 .000 .000 Zack Greinke 8 5 3 .625 .667 .750 1.417 Jaime Garcia 9 3 3 .333 .400 .444 .844 Jordan Zimmermann 4 0 3 .000 .200 .000 .200 Cliff Lee 7 3 3 .429 .429 .429 .857 Jhoulys Chacin 6 2 3 .333 .333 .333 .667 James McDonald 7 1 3 .143 .250 .286 .536 Hiroki Kuroda 6 1 3 .167 .167 .167 .333 Ivan Nova 4 1 3 .250 .250 .250 .500 Cole Hamels 5 0 3 .000 .000 .000 .000 Josh Johnson 4 0 3 .000 .000 .000 .000 Jason Grilli 3 0 3 .000 .000 .000 .000
The Reds have given chances to some of their young players over and over again in the past few years. Drew Stubbs and Homer Bailey are the two that really come to mind when I think about this. Stubbs was drafted by the Reds in the 1st round (8th pick) in the 2006 amateur draft and Homer Bailey was drafted by the Reds in the 1st round (7th pick) of the 2004 amateur draft. I have heard so many people praise these two men and some even say that they are the future of the Reds and that really scares me. Don’t get me wrong I wish they both would prove me wrong but I have not seen anything from either one lately to really impress me enough to say they are the Reds future and they have had their chances. I just hope the front office can even get anything of value from another team when they do finally decide to trade them.