Friday, October 12, 2007

2007 Review: Ryan Doumit

What's the point in quoting stats here? Doumit was having the best season of his short career (.274/.341/.472 with 9 homers and 19 doubles) when the injury bug bit him again, keeping him out of action from August 13th to the end of the season, save one game in which he managed to injure himself. After hamstring problems last year, it was wrist and ankle problems that got to him this year.

Doumit has yet to hit even 300 plate appearances in Pittsburgh in a season, which is a bit discouraging. 2007 was positive for him in that he finally hit over an extended period of time with the big club, letting him set career highs in almost every significant offensive category. He was also a bit of a revelation in right field. That's not to suggest that he was a Gold Glover out there, just that he wasn't totally awful. In fact, he probably had the best arm of anyone to play right field for us all year. Doumit's bat would play best behind the plate (even with his good year this year, his OPS was .813... it's easy to find a right fielder that can do that but it's not so easy to find a right fielder that can) but it's really hard to think that a guy that gets hurt like he does belongs back there.

There is a bit of a silver lining, however. None of his injuries are of the chronic, nagging type. That hammy did bother him a little this year, but not a whole lot given the problems he had with it in 2006. He hurt his wrist making a diving play in the field and he hurt his ankle... I don't know how he did it but it must've been trying to do something on the field. What I'm saying is that if you're optimistic, you could just say that Doumit's been really unlucky with injuries and there's a chance he'll stay healthy next year. He and Nady would make a great right field platoon because Doumit crushes righties (.282/.347/.518) the way Nady crushes lefties.

If Doumit could stay healthy for a few months in a row, he'd be a great utility/platoon guy. Kind of like Rob Mackowiak, only a little bit better in every aspect of hitting and a little less flexible in the field. Instead, he's almost never healthy and when he is, he's one of our best hitters. Not a great recipe for success.