Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Fangraphs: Swydan: Willie Bloomquist, Leadoff Hitter

Bloomquist, creeking along. Still.

Willie Bloomquist has been playing baseball for a long time. This will be his 10th full year in the Majors, and in the previous nine, he has never been even an average hitter. Despite this, Bloomquist has started the season as the D-backs’ leadoff hitter, a role he filled nearly half of the time last season. He has started the season hot, but history tells us that will not last, and when he reverts back to form, the D-backs may have trouble scoring runs.

Prior to 2011, Bloomquist had started in the leadoff spot 23 times, and had totaled 115 plate appearances there over eight seasons. In those 115 PA, he had hit .226/.287/.274. Despite this ineptitude — albeit in a limited sample — D-backs manager Kirk Gibson decided to slot Bloomquist in at leadoff to start last season. Bloomquist started 13 of the first 16 games, and hit leadoff in all of them. For his part, he hit well during that stretch — .306/.323/.419, playing both shortstop and left field. He homered, drove in seven runs, and stole seven bases in eight tries. If you had a utility guy who could do that all season, that would be pretty valuable, right?

...It is not news that Willie Bloomquist is a bad hitter, nor is it news that he is a bad leadoff hitter. We knew these things before 2011, and we know them now. Stephen Drew is still not all the way back, so Gibson may not have any choice but to play Bloomquist. But while Bloomquist is fleet of foot, he walks less frequently than just about every other regular on the team, and he certainly isn’t one of the team’s best hitters. As a result, he shouldn’t be hitting first. Paul Goldschmidt may not seem like a traditional candidate, but batting him leadoff and dropping Bloomquist to the bottom of the order would improve the D-backs lineup. Bloomquist may be a favorite of Kirk Gibson’s, and he has started this season hot, just as he did last season, but if he keeps hitting him leadoff, it will eventually cost the D-backs dearly.

Repoz Posted: April 14, 2012 at 07:32 AM | 3 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: arizona, sabermetrics

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. shoewizard Posted: April 14, 2012 at 09:57 AM (#4106512)
So sad
   2. Voros McCracken of Pinkus Posted: April 14, 2012 at 06:41 PM (#4106708)
BBRef used to have a great sponsor for Willie Bloomquist's page, but I guess it expired. Something along the lines of: "Willie Bloomquist is an absurd hero. He has no hope of ever being good at baseball... but he continues to play."

When me and Val Arb caught our spring game this year, I gave Willie an ovation. I'm starting to root for the guy for punk rock reasons I guess. You can either rage against the machine or sit back and enjoy the beauty of the chaos. I'm starting to go for the latter with Willie.
   3. shoewizard Posted: April 14, 2012 at 10:10 PM (#4106787)
I think you just described by life here in China

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
dirk
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogAL WILD CARD GAME 2014 OMNICHATTER
(1125 - 3:35am, Oct 01)
Last: Zach

NewsblogSpector: Stats incredible! Numbers from the 2014 MLB season will amaze you
(34 - 3:03am, Oct 01)
Last: PreservedFish

NewsblogOT: NFL/NHL thread
(8173 - 2:55am, Oct 01)
Last: baudib

NewsblogThe Economist: The new market inefficiencies
(19 - 2:21am, Oct 01)
Last: David Concepcion de la Desviacion Estandar (Dan R)

Hall of MeritMost Meritorious Player: 2014 Discussion
(14 - 2:17am, Oct 01)
Last: bjhanke

NewsblogOT: Politics, September, 2014: ESPN honors Daily Worker sports editor Lester Rodney
(4079 - 2:01am, Oct 01)
Last: Joey Bot

Hall of MeritMost Meritorious Player: 1958 Ballot
(13 - 1:55am, Oct 01)
Last: neilsen

NewsblogWSJ: Playoff Hateability Index
(15 - 1:45am, Oct 01)
Last: if nature called, ladodger34 would listen

NewsblogBrown: Winners And Losers: MLB Attendance In 2014, Nearly 74 Million Through The Gate
(33 - 11:27pm, Sep 30)
Last: Bhaakon

NewsblogMLB’s Biggest Star Is 40 (And He Just Retired). That Could Be A Problem.
(76 - 11:27pm, Sep 30)
Last: Walt Davis

NewsblogESPN: Ron Gardenhire out after 13 Seasons with Twins
(42 - 10:49pm, Sep 30)
Last: The District Attorney

Hall of MeritMost Meritorious Player: 1959 Discussion
(6 - 10:35pm, Sep 30)
Last: MrC

NewsblogThe Calm-Before-The-Storm and Postseason Prediction OMNICHATTER, 2014
(110 - 10:25pm, Sep 30)
Last: JE (Jason)

NewsblogOT: The Soccer Thread, September 2014
(455 - 10:08pm, Sep 30)
Last: The John Wetland Memorial Death (CoB)

NewsblogPrimer Dugout (and link of the day) 9-30-2014
(19 - 7:51pm, Sep 30)
Last: Leroy Kincaid

Page rendered in 0.1979 seconds
52 querie(s) executed