30 May 2012
The Diamondbacks have had a disappointing month of May, with a 10-17 record heading into Wednesday night's game against Tim Linecum and the Giants. That leaves the team with a 22-28 overall record, and puts the team 10.5 Games Behind the Dodgers. While both the starting pitching (overall 4.38 ERA, 14th out of 16 NL teams) and the bullpen (3.90 ERA, 10th out of 16) have played below expectations, the biggest source of frustration has been the team's offense. The Diamondbacks have scored only 100 runs in 27 games in May, or an average of just 3.85 R/G. They have scored 2 runs or fewer in 5 of the last 9 games, and in 19 games for the year. Only the Padres and Pirates have been held below 2 runs more times in 2012:
|Team||Games with 2 Runs or Less|
What's been wrong with the offense? The biggest problem has been the lack of power. While the Diamondbacks rank 4th in the NL with a .329 OBP, they are only 8th in Home Runs and are 7th in Slugging Percentage. For a team that plays half its games in hitter-friendly Chase Field, that's just not good enough. For the entire month of May, the Diamondbacks have hit only 16 Home Runs, well below the NL average of 25 per team.
Looking at the players with over 100 plate appearances this year, almost every batter is slugging worse than in 2011. The biggest culprits are the team's #3 and #4 hitters, Miguel Montero and Justin Upton, who have both seen their SLG drop by over .140 this year.
|Player||2012 SLG||2011 SLG|
Upton has shown some improvement recently, slugging .558 over the last two weeks, but Montero has been going in the opposite direction, with just a .301 SLG for May, and only batting .130/.287/.217 over the last two weeks. The only players on the roster with a SLG over .500 are Chris Young (.581 in 82 Plate Appearances), Lyle Overbay (.552 in 70 PA), and surprisingly, John McDonald (.531 in 68 PA).