Since we questioned Eric Hosmer‘s performance over the past week, the Royals first baseman has been on a bit of a tear lately. As much as we would like to think that Hosmer reads the articles here and has used the doubters as fuel for a bit of a resurgence, we are aware that such things are likely not the case (we can always hope though). Regardless of the reason, Hosmer has seen his bat start to show signs of life lately.
Since Ned Yost moved Hosmer to the second spot in the lineup, he has responded with a .282/.378/.282 batting line, raising his batting average to .255 for the season. Hosmer, who had been a strikeout machine through the first two and a half months of the season, has only struck out five times in 39 at bats while drawing six walks. Considering that Hosmer still only has 23 walks on the season, the recent patience at the plate is certainly great to see and may be a sign that he is truly breaking out of his early season malaise.
However, there is still a reason for concern. Even though Eric Hosmer has eleven hits in his last ten games and has been drawing walks, he has not hit for much power during that stretch. Actually, he has not hit for any power, as none of his hits have gone for extra bases. In fact, Hosmer’s last extra base hit occurred back on June 15th, when he hit a home run off of Adnre Rienzo in the Royals 6-3 victory over the Chicago White Sox.
It is certainly great to see that Hosmer is beginning to make more consistent contact and that he is once again drawing walks. Yet, that inability to hit for anything close to power has to be a concern. Even though Hosmer is never going to be confused with any of the great sluggers in baseball, the Royals need him to be more than a singles hitter who draws the occasional walk. That type of hitter may work at short, especially with the type of defense that Hosmer provides, but at first, there needs to be the threat for extra bases. Hosmer simply has not been that over the past two and a half weeks.
In theory, the idea of moving Eric Hosmer up in the lineup should alleviate some of these problems. With having either Lorenzo Cain or Alcides Escobar on base in front of him, the threat of the stolen base should allow Hosmer to see more fastballs, which should give him a better chance to get an extra base hit. That, however, just has not happened yet.
Eric Hosmer is showing signs of life and that he may be getting himself back on track. Yet, until he starts driving the ball with authority and getting extra base hits, Hosmer has not been fixed.