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prado-heyward-and-injuries | October | 2011 Articles

Prado, Heyward, and Injuries

Written by Joe Lucia on .

In a lot of the interviews I'm reading with Braves staff members after the end of the 2011 season, a lot of them are excusing Martin Prado's poor performance this season because of the staph infection he went through in June that kept him out for a month. I'm not doubting that the situation is very serious; I've seen some very nasty pictures of staph in the past. But if Prado gets a pass on his hideous season because of his staph, why is Jason Heyward not getting a pass on his bad season (which by the way, was still better than Prado's) because of his shoulder injury that bothered him all year, and resulted in his hand going numb at points?

Before Prado went down with his staph (his last game was June 7th), his line for the season was .277/.324/.438...which is solid, albeit unspectacular. His OBP was at or above .330 for just six days before the injury, so it's not like he had been killing it like in years past. His walk rate was 6.8%...which is roughly where he was in 2009. His ISO was .161, which actually would have been a career high. His BABIP was .289....not horrendously low, but way below average for Prado.

Post-staph, he hit a wall. His post-staph stat line was just .244/.283/.339. His walk rate fell down to 4.8%, which is where he was in 2007 in 62 major league plate appearances. The ISO fell down to a pathetic .095, which is acceptabl only if you're stealing a ton of bases and getting on base at a .370 clip. His BABIP fell to .255.

So just looking at the stats, there was a definite dropoff from pre and post staph infection. But Prado wasn't exactly lighting the world on fire before the injury, either. I can understand giving him somewhat of a pass, but not a complete pass.

Now, let's look at everyone's favorite punching bag, Jason Heyward. Heyward's injury was with him since spring training, but I'm not going to right the season off as a loss. We're going to start at the point where Heyward left a game against the Nationals because his hand went numb: May 10th. He had a MRI on the 11th and would get 15 more plate appearances over the next two weeks before going on the DL for about a month. So that's my arbitrary cutoff line: May 10th.

Before May 10th, Heyward was having a down year in the five weeks of games up to that points. His stat line was .220/.322/.433. Because the season was still very young, one bad week could screw up your line. On May 1st, his line was .252/.342/.505, but I digress. We're still using May 10th as the dividing point. The .213 ISO he had before the MRI was actually better than his mark in his rookie season of 2010, and his walk rate was 12.2%, lower than it was his rookie year by 2%. The main culprit for his struggles was a .206 BABIP, which is ridiculously low.

After the MRI though, Heyward's stats hit a wall big time. His triple slash was .230/.307/.367, his BABIP actually increased to .274, his ISO fell to the horrendous rate of .137, and his walk rate fell to 11.1%. The major thing that dissipated with Heyward was his power, which isn't surprising considering how pivotal a shoulder is to your swing. Like Prado, there was a definite dropoff with Heyward's number after the initial injury.

Both players clearly struggled once their separate situations went down. If you're going to give Prado a pass for his struggles post-staph, you need to give Heyward a pass post-numbness. It's just not fair to give credit to one, but not the other. And if Heyward's shoulder really was bothering him during the spring, I don't know why the team didn't do something about it in March. If his struggles this year could have been avoided with proper therapy, someone on the Braves training staff deserves to lose their job. The same holds true if Prado's staph was caused by the training staff, but staph can pop up anywhere and it's usually pretty hard to pinpoint. Regardless of that, both players deserve a pass for their struggles this year....to a point. 
2 comments
congtysangoviet1
congtysangoviet1

In a lot of the interviews I'm reading with Braves staff members after the end of the 2011 season, a lot of them are excusing Martin http://bit.ly/dieu-tri-tri-ngoai-do-3-4 Prado's poor performance this season because of the staph infection he went through in June that kept him out for a month. I'm not doubting that the situation is very serious; I've seen some very nasty pictures of staph in the past. But if Prado gets a pass on his hideous season because of his staph, why is Jason Heyward not getting a pass on his bad season (which by the way, was still better than Prado's) because of his shoulder injury that bothered him all year, and resulted in his hand going numb at points?


Before Prado went down with his staph (his last game was June 7th), his line for the season was .277/.324/.438...which is solid, albeit unspectacular. His OBP was at or above .330 for just six days before giá 1m2 sàn gỗ tự nhiên the injury, so it's not like he had been killing it like in years past. His walk rate was 6.8%...which is roughly where he was in 2009. His ISO was .161, which actually would have been a career high. His BABIP was .289....not horrendously low, but way below average for Prado.

bravesbanter
bravesbanter

I agree. Prado and Heyward both had rough seasons and Heyward is getting the most hate for it. You say that both players deserve a pass to a point so are you saying that they should both be starting in left and right respectively? The offense needs an upgrade and even though I am a big Prado fan, left field seems like the only real position where it could happen. What are your thoughts on that?

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