As usual, I take a rather unusual but insightful approach to figure who is the best at hitting home runs, at least at CitiField. Why don’t some of these players go on tour in, say, October or November at different stadiums to really determine who’s better and who’s best? Get the leading (available) home-run hitter from each club to participate.
Here are the stats I’ve seen about CitiField’s HRs:
Fun fact: When game time temp was 90 degrees plus, only 15 HRs have been hit here. One game saw 2 HRs; that was on 7/5/13, with the temperature at 91. Cole Hamels of the Phillies surrendered HRs to David Wright and Scott Hairston.
Robinson Cano has 2 HRs here in 61 PAs. with a ..561 SLG, pretty high up for his park average. His Fear Factor stats (see my earlier post on my unique sabermetric stat) for CitiField are: Contact: .819. BpH(bases per hit) 1.882. FF: 462.407, an oustanding mark. This high number suggests he’s very capable, in a normal game with a normal pitcher, able to make contact and hit the ball out at CitiField on just about any pitch. Lifetime stats: Contact: .811 BpH: 1.639. FF: 398.76. OffVl%: .515. Very balanced hitter for average and power. Lifetime record of one HR for every 94 pitches seen.
55% of his lifetime HRs are pulled, 37% up the middle, 8% are opposite field.
Both of his CitiField HRs came in 2012, 6/22 (deep RF) and 6/24 (deep CF) , both off Miguel Batista, with an estimated true distance of 440 for each. The homer to RF would have been out in all 30 ballparks.
Here are his biorhythms for today: From www.facade.com
Never mind that this is a critical physical day with an upward swing. This is actually the best place for a home run hitter, as the hits are going to feel effortless. Robinson probably will not have a real gauge as to his real strength or feel tired, or anything. Pure athletic ability is on the rise and on the high side, and looking good for tonight.
Prince Fielder: lifetime contact average is .673, BpH: 1.866. FF: 376.86. OffVl: 38.27%,, a very free swinger.
He averages one HR every 73 pitches.
49% of his HRs are toward CF or the power alley, 43%, pulled, and 8% opposite field. 17% of his HRs are line drives.
CitiField history: 1 HR in 45 PAs, SLG of .333, ranking near the bottom for all parks (only Nationals Park gives him a worse SLG, .323). The one HR came in 2011, August 20, vs. Chris Capuano,, hit 424 feet pulled toward the RF pole, out in every ballpark. FF stats: contact .577. BpH: 1.332 for a rock bottom FF of 230. CitiField might as well be Kryptonite for his game.
Biorhythms for Fielder:
Mixed bag here; Mastery of the plate is in pretty good shape tonight for him. The strength is there but waning, and he might have trouble judging even the BP pitches tossed to him. Doesn’t look good for tonight.
Chris Davis: contact average .615, BpH 1.91 for an FF of just 352.39. Off Vl% is .42.3, a free swinger. Not going to scare too many pitchers as he can’t connect that much. Averages 1 HR every 69.9 pitches.
36% of his HRs are pulled, with 54% sprayed, and 10% to the opposite field. Only 4% of his HRs are line drives.
CitiField history: No HRs in 8 PAs, 0-for-8 with 4 Ks.
Hmmm. This is practically a triple-critical day, very rare to experience the cycles like this, and it’s safe to see he’s not going to be in touch with his athletic self at all..like being in a void. That can work both ways, whether he hits everything he sees (his physical cycles IS going up after all) or he’ll make some terrible swings with no judgement, no sense of being ‘locked-in’. Real tough to gauge tho I might give some benefit of doubt considering that cycle….then again his poor record at this ballpark kinda evens things out.
Yoenis Cespedes lifetime contact .701 average, BpH of 1.774, for an FF of 373.07, respectable. Off VL% is .445, so he swings and misses more often than usual. He hits one HR for every 85 pitches.
60% of his HRs are hit straight-away or the power-alley, 36% are pulled, and 4% hit to the opposite field. 27% are line drives.
Never batted at CitiField.
Under the influence of two critical days in a row, and a downward physical cycle, this does not look good at all for Yoenis’s chances. Average, to be fair, but average at best.
David Wright: Your host HR hitter has these careet stats: Contact: .695. BpH: 1.681, for an FF of 350.48, which is rather average. Off VL: 45.6%. At CitiField: Contact: .673. Bph: 1.604. FF: 323.847. So he’s actually even less of a HR threat in his home ballpark! He has just 37 HRs at CitiField, one out of evey 36 PAs.
He’s averaging 1 HR, every 106 pitches.
35% of his HRs are pulled, 47% are sprayed, 18% to the opposite field, 10% of his HRs are line drives.
2009 (first year at CitiField): Average distance was 404 feet, longest being 434. Each HR had plenty in it. 4 of the 5 would be HRs in each ballpark.
2010: Average HR distance was 403, Longest was 447. (Wanna see it? Sure you do!) Mixed bag of pure distances. 8 of the 12 hit would have been out in all 30.
2011: Averaged 397 in distance,, longest was 432..3 of the 5 would be out in all 30 ballparks.
2012: 12 HRs, with an average of 403, longest being 434. One HR would be good in all 30 ballparks this year, averaging 21 ballpark-clearances this year
2013: 3 HRs at home this year, averaging 406 feet, long is 427. all 3 would be out in 28+ of 30 ballparks, one 30 of 30.
Looking pretty good for Captain America, with mastery of the strike zone intact, even with a waning physical cycle and a high mental cycle at that. Have to like his chances, along with the home park advantage of sorts.
Pedro Alvarez: Contact: a very low .593. BpH: 1.858, for an FF of 330.53, fairly low. Off Vl%: .415, the mark of a free-swinger. Averages one HR every 83 pitches.
48% of his HRs are pulled, 44% are sprayed, and 8% go to the opposite field. 11% of his HRs have been line drives.
CitiField: 2 HRs in 43 PAs at this ballpark, for an SLG of .568, ranking among the top ballparks he hits in. He’s gonna love it here. The 2 he hit were: 9/25/12, going 420 ft to the opposite power alley, out in all 30 parks; and 5/9/13, a distance of 433, pulled to right field, out in all 30 as well.
For all his good stats here, he’s just not in form to make it happen, while he’s in the midst of a triple-low. I think he might survive the first round. But, these exhibitions do take some endurance by the time if and when you reach the final.
Michael Cuddyer: Contact average: .723 (average for the league), BpH: 1.682, for an FF of 364.82, slightly above average. Off VL: .483, very balanced hitter. Gotta love players who can hit for power and average and not miss much.
Averages one HR every 117 pitches.
53% of his HRs are pulled, with 42% sprayed, and 5% to the opposite field. 12% of his HRs are line drives.
CitiField: No HRS in 12 PAs here, and, in fact has an SLG of .100 (1 single in 10 ABs). CitiField does not suit him at all.
Cuddyer is approaching a triple-low himself and already having a long negative physical cycle, reaching its nadir today. Cannot expect him to advance out of the first round.
Bryce Harper: Contact average: .692. BpH: 1.824, for an FF of 378.662 Off Vl%: .406, definitely a free-swinger.
One HR every 93.6 pitches.
33% of all HRs hit to the OF were pulled, 54% are sprayed, 13% to the opposite field. 17% of his HRs are line drives.
CitiField: Bryce has the most HRs of any visiting player in the bunch, with 3, coming in 41 PAs,, and an SLG of .697 5th best among the parks he has hit in. What are his FF stats here? Contact: .682. BpH: 2.093. FF: 428.22, very high.
Here’s what happened in his 3 HRs at CitiField:
7/23/12: 410 ft to straightaway CF, out in 26 of 30 parks.
4/20/13: First HR went 433 to the power alley in RF, out in 29 ballparks. Second HR went 423 to about the same location, out in 28 of 30.
Yes, waning stats, but still has enough power to be a force tonight.
Now to put this all together!
Best HR/PA ratio at CitiField: Harper. Worst: Cuddyer.
Best SLG at CitiField: Harper. Worst: Davis.
Lifetime contact average. Best: Cano. Worst: Altuve
Lifetime Bases per hit average. Best: Davis. Worst: Cano.
Lifetime Fear Factor. Best: Cano. Worst: Altuve
Pitches per HR: Best: Davis. Worst: Cuddyer
Longest average HRs at CitiField: Best: Cano. Worst: Wright
Biorhythms: Best: Cano. Worst: Cuddyer & Harper.
And here’s how I rank the 8 thusly:
Finalists: Cano over Harper.
Advancing to the 2nd round but no further: Davis, Fielder.
All others will fail to get to the 2nd round.