Relax! We're OK at Third Base
Platoons of Keppinger and Gillaspie will be fine, and be SUCCESSFUL!
Let's look at Jeff Keppinger:
A down year to say the least for Keppinger in 2013, but was it a cause for concern? His .253/.288/.317 line looks pretty bad but was it bad luck or misuse?
in 2012 (the reason he's making 4M a year) he hit .376/.402/.521 against LHP in 117 ABs. Which was a career high in terms of his career averages of .318/.362/.457 vs LHP. In 2013, in similar number of ABs as 2012 he finished .217/.265/.320 clearly WELL below career averages vs LHP.
So looking at his BAbip for his career comes to .290 with an actual BA of .282
His BAbip in 2013 was 20points lower than his career numbers which makes me believe he can and will bounce back in terms of Batting average in 2014.
Power numbers of course down as well but well off from his career numbers
XBH% was at 4.0% down from his career line of 6.2%
But what's interesting is he had a well above average Line Drive percentage, putting that with his low BAbip it seems Keppinger became a victim of bad luck often. And for a guy who puts the ball in play 85% of the time and hits line drives 23% of the time to have a BAbip of .270 screams bad luck, a lot of attum' balls.
BTW He got off to a horrendous start in 2013 so the final stat line is a bit skewd Keppinger finished the season with a line of .287/.343/.422 over June-July-August-Sept
So looking into 2014, having Keppinger get majority of ABs vs lefties, and assuming the bad luck string ends at the dish, he will be a productive $4M spent in 2014.
His platoon partner is simple, Gillaspie will see the RHP because he struggled mightily against LHP in 2013 and in his career .155/.189/.239 compared to the .258/.323/.407 vs RHP
Putting the two together (roughly) We can have a pretty successful platoon at Thirdbase for about $5M.
With Keppinger back to near career norms, Gillaspie seeing only RHP I can't seem to doubt a 2014 Thirdbase production of
.279/.345/.440, 20-25HR, 80+RBI, And average Defense.
So from a financial rebuild stand point where dollars count and not completely filling the position w/ trash looking to 2016 It's going to be an OK season on the southside at ThirdBase ..........PS this is not factoring Davidson and/or Semien.
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