It’s steady as it goes for Michael McDade in New Hamphire, as he continues to be amongst the league leaders in many important categories despite being one of the younger hitters in the league. He just turned 22 on the 8th of May and is tearing up AA pitching. Some of the more prominent areas in which he is within the leaders include (with 119 ABs behind him):
– 3rd (tied) in doubles with 11. To put this in perspective, Brett Lawrie hit 36 doubles in AA last season in 554 ABs. If McDade continues to hit doubles at his current pace, he will have 51 to his credit by the end of the season. Say it with me….WOW!
– 9th in TB with 55 total. This one is just as impressive as he’s finding ways to get on base at a steady rate, something that critics said he couldn’t do with “so many strike outs” in HiA last season. As I said then, and will continue to say now, he was in a very weak lineup and still had to learn a few things.
– 17th in OPS with .824. It’s an important stat because it indicates just how great Michael has been and how steady his bat has been regardless of the situation.
Overall, he’s doing great at the plate and promises to put himself into a much higher position on the prospect charts by the time mid-season comes around if he keeps it up. Some other promising traits we’ve seen from McDade over the last 10 games include more walks and fewer SOs. In his last 37 ABs, he has 3 walks (8%) and 5 strike outs (13.5%), showing much better plate discipline and effectiveness than he had the majority of 2010. His line over that span is .324/.390/.514, indicating just how steady and oh so good his stats are at this point in the year.
He’s crushing lefties to the tune of .341/.386/.463 and is doing well versus righties to the tune of .308/.349/.462. That shows us just he can handle both sides and his walks and strike outs also remain consistent on either side, showing promise that he can be a regular in the lineup if he truly does not have weak stats versus LHP or RHP.
To top it all off, I want to point out that he struck out 141 times in 2010 with 480 ABs to his credit. If he project his strike outs thus far in 2011 to the same number of ABs, he would only have 100 total. That’s a massive reduction of 30% fewer strike outs (-41) in a season that has him seeing better pitching. Impresive to say the least. Simultaneously, his walk rate has remained almost identical, although it has gone up within the last 10-15 games.
It seems that McDade is anxious to get to his home town of Las Vegas. If he keeps this performance up and stellar defense (1.00 fielding % in 2011 at 1B), there’s no doubt in my mind that he’ll earn a shot to go to LV, late in the season at a minimum. He simply continues to get better, is marching his way up the charts, and is definitely someone you want to have on your radar in fantasy leagues. If doubles in the minors really do translate to HRs, as they say, then McDade could be one major force on your fantasy team and at Rogers center at some point in the near future!
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