"Splitsville" is a series of articles on the Nationals' prospects that we'll be doing throughout their minor league careers. In version one/chapter one (v1.1) of Doc Brooks, we'll look how he did against the right-handed pitchers versus the southpaws, how he hit with runners in scoring position, and more.
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Struggled Against Southpaws Too: Outfielder Doc Brooks, selected by the Nationals a year ago in the Rule V Draft, hit just .240 for the Potomac Nationals this past season, a far cry from his combined .326 average in two stops in the Diamondbacks organization in 2004. A big reason for the sub-par year in 2005 was his lack of success against left-handed pitching.
The 25-year old Brooks hit just .230 against southpaws, a number sure to drag down his overall average, especially considering the fairly large number of at-bats he was able to accumulate against lefies. His .243 batting average against right-handed pitchers leaved little to be desired as well, but his lack of success against lefties was a big reason for the disappointing season.
Surprisingly where Brooks excelled against lefties was on the base paths. Six of his eight stolen bases came off of left-handed pitchers, which is a very good sign for any base stealer.
Fizzled Towards The End: Doc Brooks began the 2005 campaign with Potomac hitting a very respectable .296 in his first 22 games with the Nationals. And after hitting just .248 in his following 45 games, there was increasing cause for concern. But after finishing the season hitting a paltry .203 in his final 50 games with Potomac, the season's progress chart showed nothing but a steady decline through the course of the year.
Pfitzner Nightmare: G. Richard Pfitzner Stadium, home of the Potomac Nationals, was a house of horrors for Doc Brooks in 2005. Just a .248 hitter on the road this past season, Brooks was even worse at home - hitting only .226 in 190 at-bats at G. Richard Pfitzner Stadium. On a dubious note, he hit safely in seven of his final eight games at home to raise his home average.
Clutch? Not in 2005: Doc Brooks' overall numbers (.240-10-43) were disappointing all around, but his lack of production in the key situations this past season made matters even worse. Just a .230 hitter with nobody on base in 2005, Brooks hit just .198 with runners in scoring position. And as bad as that was, his .111 batting average with runners in scoring position and with two outs showed that he simply wasn't up to the task in pressure situations this past season.
Stat du Jour: Which is the most surprising stat: the fact that Brooks actually hit in every spot in the Potomac batting order this past season or the fact that he found his most success batting clean-up for the Nationals? Yes, Doc Brooks did indeed hit in every spot in the lineup in 2005.
But even more surprising than that was his better success batting fourth in the lineup. Brooks hit .264 with 12 of his 29 extra-base hits in just 39 games batting clean-up, while hitting just a combined .227 in the other spots in the batting order.
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