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Justin Smoak and the Opposite Field

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Turns out Justin Smoak has problems hitting the other way for power. Until this spring, that is. Where have I heard this one before?

long swing buddies!
long swing buddies!
Kyle Terada-US PRESSWIRE

This is the beginning of a new semi-regular series entitled No Nonsense, in which I discuss something interesting and little-known about the Mariners... using as few words as possible. Lots of pictures, lots of numbers, lots of GIFs. 150 words. (Darn you, SBN minimums!) Stats, unless otherwise noted, are from FanGraphs. Here we go!

Smoaksaunders_medium

Lefty Smoak and Saunders have something in common besides not knowing how to smile.

PA %BIP to LF HR to LF %BIP to CF HR to CF
Smoak (L), 2010-2012 956 12% 3 21% 6
Saunders, 2009-2011 635 16% 0 19% 2

Or, in picture form:

4752532010030420121003raaaaspray-chart

4594312008030420111003aaaaaspray-chart

Justin Smoak (per Baker) has spent the offseason fixing his too-long swing with an outside instructor.

Last year (per Brewer), Michael Saunders spent the offseason fixing his too-long swing with an outside instructor.

So Saunders did this:

PA 2B to LF
Saunders, 2009-2011 635 3
Saunders, ST 2012 45 4

and then he became a good hitter.

So Smoak did this:

Smoakhr_march_21_medium

and this:

PA HR to LF HR to CF
Smoak (L), 2012 347 1 2
Smoak (L), ST 2013 33 2 1

...can history repeat itself?