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How many games until you start worrying about the offense?


LUKE232323

We are sitting at game 14 tonight, and Fielder, Weeks, Hardy, Hall, and Braun are all batting .222 or worse. We're batting .244 as a team. Only the Astros and Giants have a worse OBP as a team. But I guess the most concerning thing at this point is team-wide lack of plate discipline across the board. Swinging early in the count without taking any pitches, trying to pull everything, etc.

 

I know it's early, but to have this many players struggling this badly to me is very concerning. The lack of being able to hit mediocre RH pitchers is also concerning.

 

So are you worried yet? Or chalk it up to early season struggles?

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It's obviously pretty frustrating, but I think I'll be more worried if it continues when Cameron is back and has a decent amount of AB's. I'm really not worried about Fielder too much, and I doubt Hardy's going to have any stretch like his first 3 months last year so it's hard to be too disappointed in him. However I'm a little worried about Braun's and Hall's approach, but it's been 12/13 games for them.
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I'm most worried about Braun. Hall is what he is. A decent power hitter who will stike out more than is comfortable. He always was that but he does provide good defense and is ususally a slow starter. Braun is a good hitter who pitchers figured out will swing at anything. With so little to go on it's hard to know if he can ever stop swinging at balls. If he can't he may just not be as good as hoped.
There needs to be a King Thames version of the bible.
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For me it's only frustrating to find out so early that it looks like we're going to be prone to being extremely streaky again this year. I'm not worried about them individually, as they're hitters, but this damn team wide streakiness. Hart seems the only one who's not prone to it.
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i dont think i can even wait until cameron comes back, much less mid-may. waiting for camerson to come back means 16% of the season has already passed. thats too much time as far as i'm concerned. i just dont think the brewers are good enough to go through struggles offensively for such an extended period of time and then just flip a switch and make up a lot of games because they just aren't good enough to do that.

 

i am just confident in this team with this manager to win a close playoff down the stretch and have almost no confidence in them coming back from any kind of deficit in the second half of the season.

 

the brewers need to get it together, like NOW.

 

i will give them 16 or 17 games (10% of the season) before i start really getting worried/mad.

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Fielder will hit, and when he does, he will more than likely bring the rest of the offense along with him - Hall and Braun in particular, not to mention Cameron. I think teh biggest thing right now is for Weeks to simply get on base. If he does that, I expect everyting else to fall into place nicely. The good news is, we are sitting at 8-5 or whatever it is, with the offense having done nothing, with GAllardo and Cameron due back in the next week or two.

 

If a month from now, they still aren't hitting, there will be legitimate reason for concern.

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Hart seems the only one who's not prone to it.

 

If this were posted after the second game of the Mets series Hart would be included in this discussion. He was batting like .231 before he had a great two games. I am not really worried at all about numbers. I am mildly worried about the approach at the plate. Few people on the team are working counts and trying to get on base. It is still very early in the season. Going into the Cincinnati series we were the highest scoring team in the NL. Things go up and down early in the season. The approach is a little troubling but this is often what happens until hitters get in the groove.
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Most of these players already have hundreds if not thousands of ML ABs. It's going to take a lot more that 50 AB before I start adjusting my offensive expectations for the players involved, good or bad. Prince and Braun are going to do much better (although possibly not better than last year, as they both had monster seasons) and Kendall and Kapler are going to do worse. It's just how it works. I am more interested in guys like Weeks and Hardy; players who's production could go either way, IMO.

 

That said, it sure has been pretty ugly on the offensive side so far. If it weren't for the Brewer's great production with RISP (.321/.386/.422/.808), their record might be much worse.

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I'm worried only because the approaches seem so wrong for so many of the hitters. I never understand why hitters at this level would have such terrible plate discipline, unless they simply aren't that good. Or the coaching approach is all wrong.

 

I will admit I've been perplexed with the logic that puts last year's 3rd highest OPS player batting 6th.

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I am more interested in guys like Weeks and Hardy; players who's production could go either way, IMO.

 

I can agree with that. Those guys need to start doing something. Hopefully they go the right way. As long as Weeks gets on base any which way and Hardy can start hitting in front of the pitcher we will be okay I think.

Formerly BrewCrewIn2004

 

@IgnitorKid

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The only guy I worry about is Hall. Otherwise I think we'll be fine. Our two boppers aren't hitting and we're stilling winning. In fact this might be the best thing for Braun. He hasn't struggled yet, it might do him some good, and he might learn about making adjustments. I'll give them to the All-Star break.
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I think the mere fact that this team is 8-5, and playing waaaay under its ceiling, is incredibly exciting. I'd much rather see the Brewers settle into the season gradually, as opposed to starting out fluky-hot like 2007... though I guess to turn down 24 wins in 34 games is borderline moronic.

 

 

If it weren't for the Brewer's great production with RISP (.321/.386/.422/.808), their record might be much worse.

Clearly, it's just a healthy dose of Ted Simmons mojo!

Stearns Brewing Co.: Sustainability from farm to plate
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I'd much rather see the Brewers settle into the season gradually, as opposed to starting out fluky-hot like 2007...

 

Actually we're one game ahead of last year's pace so far. It sure doesn't seem like it but last year we had plenty of guys playing well above expectations so maybe that is part fo it. Cappy, Soup, Hardy, Turnbow all had very good starts that would have been very hard to maintain. So looking forward we can expect better perfromances while looking back we probably stole a few games while waiting for our players to get going. That's a good thing.

There needs to be a King Thames version of the bible.
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I personally believe the thought of working the count is screwing with some of their heads. I am all for getting a pitcher into deep counts and making him work as I batted leadoff my entire life. However, I think many teams see the Brewers are looking to do just that and pumping a first-pitch strike right down the heart of the plate.

 

From 0-1, the hitter obviously is at a disadvantage, making plate discipline an even tougher prospect for the aggressive hitters...which many of the Brewers are. Friday night against Figueroa was a prime example. Many of the guys weren't even ready to swing at the 1st pitch, you could see they were taking all the way. Depending on the situation of the game, I actually think it would do some of the guys some good to attack the pitchers more...at least look fastball middle away and go to hacking, then settle in and work the count if it suffices.

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However, I think many teams see the Brewers are looking to do just that and pumping a first-pitch strike right down the heart of the plate.

 

That's certainly not he case with Braun. I think pitchers are told not to throw a strike to him regardless of count. Even 3-0 is a ball throwing count for him since chances are he'll swing.

There needs to be a King Thames version of the bible.
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I'd much rather see the Brewers settle into the season gradually, as opposed to starting out fluky-hot like 2007...

 

Actually we're one game ahead of last year's pace so far. It sure doesn't seem like it but last year we had plenty of guys playing well above expectations so maybe that is part fo it. Cappy, Soup, Hardy, Turnbow all had very good starts that would have been very hard to maintain. So looking forward we can expect better perfromances while looking back we probably stole a few games while waiting for our players to get going. That's a good thing.

We're on pace to start 16-10, last year we started 24-10, or are you just talking about our record after 13 games?

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We're on pace to start 16-10, last year we started 24-10, or are you just talking about our record after 13 games?

Yep. After the same amount of games last year we had one less win. The only differance I can see is this year we've done it without the aid of unsustainable performances from some of our players. We snuck a few wins while playing relativley poorly IMO. It never hurts to be a little lucky when the team isn't playing well. When they do start to play up to their abilties those extra couple wins we got while struggling will only look that much better. Maybe that will be the differance between last year and this with regard to making the playoffs.

There needs to be a King Thames version of the bible.
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After some quick research, I found some things about Braun and his 1st pitch results. The ratio of 1st pitch called strikes aren't quite as large I as perceive on the large scale, but there are some interesting footnotes about them.

1st pitch result breakdown (53 ABs)

Strike Looking - 22 times (14 of those pitches were fastballs)
Strike Swinging - 4 times (0 instances in the last 6 games)
Out or Foul Ball - 11 times (about half were "in the zone"...can't completely trust pitch location)
Ball - 14 times (however, 4 in opener, only 10 in last 11 gms.)
Hits - 2 times

Take from it what you will. I still think he could stand to take advantage of those 1st-pitch fastballs and not think too much about working the count

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with it being only 13 games into the season, wouldn't some of the reasoning behind the Brewers' walk total be directly related to the pitching they were facing during that small a sample of games?

 

I understand working the count, but when you're facing pitchers that are pounding the strike zone, drawing a walk isn't exactly a given.

 

a few examples...

 

opening day against Zambrano - he's normally a pitcher that walks alot of guys, but that day he was dealing

 

Dempster - I'll give him credit, he worked ahead in the count all day against Milwaukee, and the Brewers were trying to work the count

 

all the reds games, particularly against Harang and Cueto - two very good pitchers who were constantly pitching to 0-2, 1-2 counts because they were throwing nothing but strikes early in at bats.

 

Santana - we had alot of good ABs against him, but he rarely walks hitters

 

Figueroa - threw alot of strikes, and the zone was huge due to weather concerns.

 

that's 7 of their 13 games against starting pitching that just wasn't walking anyone, whether Brewer hitters were overaggressive or not.

 

I think the problem Brewer hitters have right now is that they're trying to draw walks so much that they're often letting very hittable pitches go by for strike one - to compile the problem, they have collectively shown an inability to take waste pitches when they're behind in the count. In short, Brewer hitters are watching strike one coast by when they could do damage to the pitch, then swinging at garbage once they're behind in the count.

 

The answer's not to simply take more pitches, hitters need to have better strike/hitting zone management, i.e., hit the pitches that they can do damage with no matter what the count.

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