2011 Season in Review: Nate Schierholtz

One of the only bright spots of this year’s offense was Nate Schierholtz, who had somewhat of a breakout. It wasn’t a spectacular season, but he managed to post a pretty respectable .278/.326/.430 before his season was cut short due to injuries. Around late June, Schierholtz altered his batting stance, and shortly thereafter, he got red-hot: from June 25 to July 10, he hit .421/.469/.667, bringing his season line to .293/.343/.464. In fact, from June 25 through the rest of the season, he hit pretty well — albeit in a small sample (.306/.353/.465 in 184 PAs).

More than anything, it was probably a short-lived hot streak. He’s a career .273/.318/.409 hitter, and he’ll probably (more or less) hit like that in 2012. There’s also, however, the chance that — given his age (27) — he’s entering the beginning of his peak. It’s conceivable that Nate could be a league-average hitter again next season, which, combined with his above-average defense and baserunning, would make him a pretty useful player.¬†Schierholtz enters next season as the starting right fielder, and if all goes well, he’ll be good for solid-average production.

Schierholtz is under team control through 2014 (his three arbitration-eligible years), so 2012 could be an important season for him. If he does happen to thrive in a starting role, perhaps he’ll solidify a place as the Giants’ starting right-fielder for the next few years. I’ll be particularly interested to see what ZiPS projects for Nate, as it’s always been sort of high on him.

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2 thoughts on “2011 Season in Review: Nate Schierholtz

  1. I thought Nate had a much stronger approach at the plate last year. Maybe it was the tweaked batting stance or maybe it was just him finally getting more comfortable and confident at the plate. In the past, he always seemed to be up there just protecting the plate, trying to not strike out. In 2011, he was able to attack the ball a lot more often. Those observations coupled with him entering the classic peak years make me optimistic that he can build on last year’s success…..if he can stay healthy. That’s the last piece of the puzzle.

  2. New to this sight. I just wanted to chime in, and say that Scierholtz is an absolute asset to the Giants. He plays a great right field, and often comes through in the clutch. The more playing time he gets the happier we will be with him for sure

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