07 August 2012
The 2012 Diamondbacks have pretty solid overall offensive numbers, ranking 5th in the National League in Runs per Game with 4.49 R/G, and the team ranks 5th in OPS+ at 97 and 6th in wRC+ at 96. But despite decent overall numbers, what has really hurt the Diamondbacks has been the high number of low scoring games by the team's offense. The Diamondbacks now have a league-leading 28 games in which they have scored just 0 or 1 run.
|TEAM||Games with 0 or 1 Run|
For a good overall offensive team, and one that plays its home games in a good hitters' park, that is a surprisingly high number. Of these 28 games, the Diamondbacks have been shutout 7 times, and have scored exactly one run 21 times. And in these 28 games, the Diamondbacks have lost every one.
What explanation can be found for the high number of bad offensive games? It is not due to the team's performance with Runners in Scoring Position (.267/.350/.423), which is quite a bit better than the league average of .247/.337/.391. But one area where this year's team has struggled has been in High Leverage situations, with a batting line of .232/.302/.377 compared to a league rate of .258/.332/.399.
A related stat is the team's performance in "Late and Close" situations, defined as the 7th Inning or Later, with the team either ahead by one, tied, or with the tying run at least on deck. In Late & Close, the team is only hitting .176/.244/.278, for a very poor .523 OPS (The NL average OPS in L&C is .686). In fact, the only regulars with an OPS over .600 in L&C situations are Chris Young (.826) and Jason Kubel (.771), and the highest batting average on the club in L&C is Kubel's .234.
LATE & CLOSE BATTING STATS
Hopefully this has just been a case of some bad luck, and the team will start to turn things around. Usually a team's performance in clutch situations is pretty similar to their overall batting line. With the Diamondbacks 4 games behind the Giants with 53 games left to play, the team really needs the offense, especially in clutch situations, to improve.
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