Arizona Diamondbacks: Jake Lamb’s Power Is On The Rise
By Randy Holt
The Arizona Diamondbacks are playing good baseball right now. With the Los Angeles Dodgers nipping at their heels in the standings, the Snakes are finally healthy and have put a rough May behind them. One key offensive piece is also on the come up.
Jake Lamb has had a rough year. As so many of his seasons tend to be. Lamb’s gotten hot at various points in recent years, only to see injuries hamper his production. The 2016 seasons immediately comes to mind in that regard. Lamb posted a 151 wRC+ and hit 20 homers in the first half that year, only to experience a brutal second half. A hand injury limited him to a park-adjusted offense figure of just 68, while his ISO dropped 138 points in the second half.
The 2017 season was a very similar story. Lamb turned in a strong first half, but hit barely over .200 in the second. His ISO dropped nearly 70 points, while his wRC+ came in at just 86. This year, we’ve seen sort of the inverse of Lamb’s woes. The year got off to a rough start, mostly due to a shoulder injury. Thus far, Lamb has been limited to just 156 plate appearances across 36 games.
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As such, his numbers are certainly indicative of a player that has limped through the year. He’s hitting only .237, while his wRC+ has him just barely above average at 101. The important thing, though, is that Jake Lamb is finally showing signs of returning to form. Now having been off the disabled list for over a month, he’s looking much more like his true self.
For the month of June, Lamb is hitting .253 and reaching base at a .326 clip. Those numbers could certainly stand to improve, but they largely fall in line with his career averages. The really notable thing about his June, though, is the power game. Lamb’s skill set at the plate heavily based on what he produces in regard to something like ISO. And if that’s what we’re looking at, then the numbers certainly bode well for him moving forward.
All five of Lamb’s homers for the year have come in June. His ISO for the month is .193. That’s much closer to his .208 career average. He’s hitting the ball hard, too. His 40.3% hard hit rate for the month indicates a player who is seeing the ball well. His wRC+ for the month is at 111. It’s not quite where we’d hope Lamb would be, but it’s trending in the right direction, at the very least.
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In his last five games, Lamb has eight hits and hits in seven straight games overall. While the power numbers aren’t quite back to the norm, they’re getting there. Making more consistent contact and getting healthier with that shoulder each day are very positive signs. With encouraging results in recent days, it shouldn’t be much longer before we see Jake Lamb finding the gaps and getting balls over the wall with more regularity. The Arizona Diamondbacks would love nothing more.