I’ve said it before and I mean it, spring training stats, good or bad really don’t matter. And the guy who should be really excited about that this year is the Cubs’ new $177 million man, Dansby Swanson.
But it’s a good thing that his manager set a low bar for him anyway.
Because through his first 17 spring at bats, Dansby has one hit, a single, and six strikeouts. That’s a red hot .059 average.
Nah, that’s fine. Don’t want to waste any of those hits in the games that don’t matter.
Swanson earned his big seven year, $177 million contract from the Cubs by posting his two best seasons of his big league career in 2021 and 2022 for the Barves.
Prior to 2021, Swanson was a borderline average player. His career slash to that point was .249/.321/.396. He had 50 homers in his first 1,815 at bats and his OPS plus was a nothing to write home about 87 (100 is league average).
Then, in 2021 and 2022 he emerged as a much more impactful hitter. He slashed .263/.321/.448 with 52 homers in 1228 at bats, and his OPS+ was 107.
He increased his power without increasing his strikeout percentage. It was 25.9% through his first five season and 25.8% in his last two. I mean, that’s not great either way, but at least the increase in power production didn’t come with a subsequent increase in K’s.
Should the Cubs be concerned though, that so much of his value—so much of what they paid him for and committed to him for seven long years—came in just two seasons?
Apparently, they aren’t.
But it’s not like in those two years his improved numbers were all concentrated in just a few months, total, right?
I mean, let’s look.
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