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Just The Sports: Ryan Howard Spotlight

Just The Sports

Monday, July 10, 2006

Ryan Howard Spotlight

In light of his winning the All-Star Home Run Derby, I decided to do a little research into the player who is Ryan Howard. I already knew he was a very good hitter, but I had never really taken the time to look at his stats or pay much attention to the Phillies games. Some of this I blame on being in the New York sports market and being inundated with Yankees and Mets games and the rest of this I blame on the Phillies being a bad team. What I did find out about Ryan Howard was a little surprising to me.

At the All-Star Break, Howard ranks fourteenth in the major leagues in slugging percentage. Out of the top fifteen sluggers, there are only three players who have a groundball/flyball ratio of more than one: Matt Holliday (1.48 GB/FB), Ryan Howard (1.27 GB/FB), and Nomar Garciaparra (1.14 GB/FB). The other two hitters get their slugging percentages as a result of their high number of doubles; Howard is quite simply a home run hitter and one of the purest home run hitters playing right now.

While his GB/FB ratio is pretty high for a person of his home-run caliber, he more than makes up for it with a 35.9% HR/FB%, the highest among the top 15 sluggers. He also has a pretty low IFFB% of 5.1%. Howard may arrive at his slugging percentage in an odd way for his skill set, but he gets there nonetheless.


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