ST. LOUIS, MO - JULY 25: Jose Altuve #27 of the Houston Astros runs against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium on July 25, 2011 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Jeff Curry/Getty Images)
Jonathan Villar hit another home run last night making it four in his last eight games, and all but one coming while on the road. His recent improvement does require notice, but with cautiosness. He really did struggle in June after his call-up, but has been really good for the month of July, posting an OPS of .875. And, he's been even better more recently with an OPS of 1.247 in the last ten games.
But, lets compare some peripherals from his time in Lancaster to his time in Corpus since the sample sizes are almost identical now. His BABIP has dropped sixty-two points since his call-up which will easily explain his drop in average, but so would his increase in ground balls. But, he's been able to off-set the groundball increase with a small increase in line-drives, although a 14% LD-rate isn't all that high. The best good news is that in almost the same amount of at-bats, he's almost doubled his home run total in Lancaster.
What is still disturbing about his numbers, is the same as what many of you have already pointed out, his plate discipline numbers. I've seen in many places that he's a patient hitter but his current K% (29%) doesn't indicate that, nor does a BB% of 8.6%. I'm ok with that walk rate as long as the K% is much lower than it is now. The sample size for these stats still isn't quite large enough to fully explain the type of hitter he is, but it's large enough to get an idea. Now, since he is apparently patient, something has to lead to that high of a K%. Either he can't perform when the pressure is on and there's two strikes, or he has some serious holes in his swing. I'm not going to go look and see how many times he whiffs, but I'm fairly certain it's a lot. So, I'm going to go with a lot of holes.
At this stage of his career, significant changes in his swing are not likely to happen. Although, there are some adjustments that will likely occur, similar to JD Martinez adding loft and power to his swing. Minor adjustments are conceivable, and likely. Which means you probably won't see him this year or next year. If they really do want to make adjustments, you are likely to see him go back to Corpus next year to start out. Which I'm perfectly ok with.
Oklahoma City won 8-2
- Sergio Perez-5 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 1 SO, 1 HR, 10/0 GO/AO
- Douglass Arguello-1 1/3 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 SO
- Ross Wolf-1 1/3 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 SO
- Jeff Fulchino-1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 SO
- Luis Durango CF-0-3, 2 BB, 1 SO, CS
- JB Shuck LF-2-5, 3B, SB
- Brian Bogusevic 1B-1-3, 2B, 2 SB, 2 BB, SO
- Collin DeLome RF-2-5, 2 SO
Corpus Christi won 9-3
- Dallas Keuchel-6 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 1 SO, 1 HR, 10/3 GO/AO
- Xavier Cedeno-1 1/3 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 SO-Don't understand this...I hope it's just to eat some innings.
- Jonathan Villar SS-3-5, 3B, HR, SO-Continues that upward trend.
- JD Martinez LF-2-4, BB
- James Van Ostrand 1B-2-4, SO
- TJ Steele CF-2-4, SO
Lancaster lost 5-4
- Andrew Robinson-6 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 4 BB, 5 SO, 7/2 GO/AO
- Austin Wates CF-1-3, 2 BB
- Adam Bailey RF-2-5, HR
- Jonathan Meyer DH-1-3, 2B, 2 BB, SO
- Grant Hogue LF-2-3, 2B, BB, SO, SB
Lexington lost 5-4
- Mike Foltynewicz-5 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 0 BB, 5 SO, 6/3 GO/AO-Pitched really well until the fourth.
- Jason Chowning-2 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 2 SO, 4/0 GO/AO
- Jorge De Leon-1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 SO
- Delino DeShields 2B-2-4, 2B, SO
- Telvin Nash LF-1-4, 3 SO
- Ben Heath DH-1-4, HR, SO
- Mike Kvasnicka 3B-2-4, 2B
- Tyler Burnett 1B-1-4, 2B, 2 SO
- Roberto Pena C-2-4
Tri-City lost 2-1
- Juri Perez-6 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 8 SO, 4/3 GO/AO
- John Hinson 2B-2-4, SO
- Zach Johnson 1B-1-3, 2B, BB
- Jacke Healey SS-0-1, 2 BB, CS, PO
Greeneville lost 8-2
- Luis Ordosgoitti-2 IP, 7 H, 6 R, 5 ER, 0 BB, 0 SO, 4/0 GO/AO
- Paris Shewey-2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 SO
- Jordan Scott CF-2-5
- Joshua Magee 2B-2-4
- Jesse Wierzbicki 1B-2-2, 3B, BB
- Ariel Ovando RF-1-4, 2 SO-Also recorder an OF assist at 3rd base!
GCL Astros lost 2-1
- Tanner Bushue-4 Ip, 6 H,1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 2 SO, 4/3 GO/AO
- Adrian Houser-4 1/3 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 4 SO, 4/2 GO/AO, 2 WP
- Jose Fernandez SS-1-4, 1 SO, SB
- Jean Carlos Batista 3B-0-3, BB, SB
DSL Astros: Off