He's Playing Well
Brown is hitting .250/.293/.436 with eight home runs and 21 RBI. That equates to 29 homeruns and 77 RBI over a 162 game season. His eight home runs lead the Phillies while his 21 RBI are third behind Chase Utley (25) and Ryan Howard (22).
Defensively, he has spent much of his time in left field where he has been more than serviceable. He has 65 putouts, two outfield assists, and only one error. He has shown the ability to track down balls but there's still room for improvement in that department.
As a team the Phillies are hitting a mere .240 against lefties. The left handed batters are hitting just .209/.239/.372 against left handed pitching. That is particularly concerning considering the two main power sources in the lineup, Ryan Howard and Chase Utley, are both left handed.
Strangely, the left handed Brown has had success against left-handers this year. He is hitting .289/.300/.553 with three home runs and seven RBI. He has also hit lefties pretty hard. Over 19% (19.4%) of his batted balls against left-handers have been line drives and almost 10% (9.6%) of his batted balls have been home runs.
The numbers get even better when Brown is facing left-handers at Citizens Bank Park. Exactly one-third (33.3%) of his batted balls against lefties at Citizens Bank Park are line-drives and over 8% of the batted balls are home runs.
However it is spun, it is pretty clear that Dom Brown is having about average success against left handed pitching.
How does that compare to some of their recent seasons? When they won the World Series in 2008, they hit .263/.365/.443 with runners in scoring position. When they won a franchise record 102 games in 2011, they hit .269/.358/.406. All of these numbers are significantly better than this year.
Despite all of the Phillies struggles, Brown is having himself a very respectable season with runner's in scoring position. Brown is hitting .263/.326/.474 with two home runs and 15 RBI. That is better the Major League average of .257/.340/.399 with runner's in scoring position.
One of the most elementary tips of hitting is to get "your" pitch and drive it. Most of the time a pitcher will only throw that pitch when it is their only option. That scenario normally comes about when the count is 3-1. The Major League average is .354/.689/.704 in 3-1 counts. Brown's numbers are light-years better than the average: .400/.625/1.200. Brown is getting his pitch in those at-bats and driving it.
What does that mean for the rest of this season and moving forward? Tough to say. Brown has never played more than 56 games and never had more than 212 plate appearances in a ML season. He has played in 44 games with 168 plate appearances already this season.
This year should be the first true barometer on what to expect from Brown. When he made his fast rise to the big club, Brown spent most of 2010 in the minors split between Double-A Reading and Triple-A Lehigh Valley. That year Brown hit .327/.391/.589 with 20 homeruns and 68 RBI in 343 at-bats.
Those are the numbers that many expected when he came to Philadelphia. Fans haven't seen it yet but they might be getting closer to the numbers in 2013 and beyond.
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