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Entries in mark reynolds (7)


Mark Reynolds Getting Beat on Inside Stuff

Since he clubbed his way to the majors in 2007, Mark Reynolds has been a one-tool player. He's got an iron glove, costing his team more runs (76) compared to an average defender than every infielder not named Michael Young, Yuniesky Betancourt or Derek Jeter. And his D looks pretty good compared to his contact skills: Reynolds has struck out 1,276 times, second-most among hitters since '07 (Adam Dunn is first). But Reynolds' one tool -- pure, unadulterated pull power -- is special enough for teams to hold their noses and focus on his epic blasts.

Or, at least it used to be. Reynolds' home run total has dipped from 37 in 2011 to 23 in 2012 and 21 this past season, with his slugging percentage tumbling by nearly 100 points (.483 in '11, .429 in '12, and .393 in '13). Considering how often he punches out, Reynolds needs to maul the ball when he does connect. With elite power, he's a pretty good hitter (his park-and-league adjusted on-base-plus-slugging percentage was 16 percent above average in 2011). With average pop, he's a liability (his OPS was four percent below average in 2013).

The 30-year-old recently signed a minor league deal with the Brewers, though he's expected to make the opening day roster either as the club's primary first baseman or the short half of a platoon with Juan Francisco. Granted, even a diminished Reynolds would be better than the balsa wood-toting brigade that Milwaukee featured at the position last season (a combined .370 slugging percentage). But if he plans on giving Bernie Brewer a workout on Miller Park's homer slide, he'll have to reverse a three-year decline against inner-half pitches.

Reynolds' slugging percentage vs. inner-half pitches, 2011


Reynolds' slugging percentage vs. inner-half pitches, 2012


Reynolds' slugging percentage vs. inner-half pitches, 2013


Reynolds was a beast versus pitches thrown to the inner half of the plate in 2011, posting the eighth-best slugging percentage (.659) among qualified batters. But that figure declined to .575 in 2012, and just .398 this past season. Here's another way of looking at it: Reynolds crushed inside pitches like Jose Bautista and David Ortiz back in '11. In 2013, though? He barely outslugged waterbug shortstops Elvis Andrus and Erick Aybar.

Reynolds simply doesn't have the sort of well-rounded skill set that allows him to hit for good-not-great power. He's either jacking 30-plus homers, or he's riding the bus in Triple-A. Short of a return to elite slugger status, he could be looking at a succession of minor league deals in the years to come.


AL Homer & Strikeout Percentage Leaders

I wanted to spend a few moments looking at ultimate results, all or nothing, homers vs. strikeouts.

There are 20 players in AL with at least seven homers this season led by Chris Davis, Mark Davis, and Edwin Encarnacion with 11 each.

There are 17 players with at least 36 whiffs led by Colby Rasmus and Chris Carter with 54 each

But who are the batters with a good home run percentage and a decent strikeout percentage?


On this chart you want to be in the lower right corner where you see the effectiveness of Edwin Encarnacion, Robinson Cano, Alex Rios, Ian Kinsler, Miguel Cabrera, Adrian Beltre, J.J. Hardy, and just out of the zone, Jose Bautista.

The lower left corner represents the batters who are lower in terms of strikeouts and lower in terms of homers. This group includes Elvis Andrus, Nick Markakis, Jeff Keppinger, Melky Cabrera, Jacoby Ellsbury, Dustin Pedroia, Torii Hunter, Victor Martinez and others.

The upper right corner is comprised of guys who are hitting some homers, but striking out too much: Colby Rasmus, Chris Carter, Adam Dunn, and Nelson Cruz are some of the folks here.

The upper left corner are guys who are whiffing without showing power. This unenviable group includes Drew Stubbs, Carlos Pena, Jason Castro, Justin Smoak, Josh Hamilton, and assortment of other players you are already not happy with.


Yankees looking at Mark Reynolds and here's what they'll see

The Yankees need a third baseman at a price they are willing to pay which is why Mark Reynolds is getting their attention.

But while Reynolds does hit homers, 181 in his career including 23 this past season, he strikes out...a lot.

Here are the locations of Reynolds 159 2012 strikeouts

And if it seems as if he's chasing a lot of pitches, you are correct.

 Since 2008, Reynolds has hit .277 at Yankee Stadium

But in 151 plate appearances in New York, he has 20 walks and 49 whiffs.

But the Yankees need to replace homers and they need an affordable option, but these strikeout figures don't even address Reynolds iron glove.