When it comes to the bat, there are not many things that Omar Infante has done well this season. His .217/.232/.307 batting line is not likely to invoke comparisons to those second baseman who swing a solid bat, unless it is in a derogatory, mocking manner. In fact, Infante may well lose his starting role when Alex Gordon returns, and the Kansas City Royals have to make a decision on what to do with Ben Zobrist.
Yet, for all of the struggles that Infante has had at the plate, there is one area that he has excelled in. Infante, who has not exactly been hitting the ball with any authority this season, is currently eighth in the American League, and tied for tenth in baseball, with seven triples. Yes, Infante has taken the mantle from Paulo Orlando and has become the Royals triple threat.
This surge in triples has not coincided with an uptick in batting average for Infante. Over his past 16 games, Infante has all of seven hits, three of which have been triples. During that time, Infante has posted a .132/.161/.245 batting line, leading to a 13 point drop in his batting average over the past three weeks.
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Obviously, this has been a disappointing season for Omar Infante. He has battled through a bone spur in his elbow which will require offseason surgery, and despite his almost being named to the All-Star team, has not been right all year. While he has performed well defensively this season, those issues have been quite apparent when Infante has been at the plate.
The year has not been all bad for Infante. He has had the occasional hot stretch with the bat, such as when he posted a .297/.311/.356 batting line from June 15th through the All-Star Break. Interestingly enough, of those thirty hits that Infante had in that time, none were triples. One would have expected that, during his best month with the bat, Infante would have had a ball kick around in the corner or find a gap.
Given that there is a month to go in the regular season, and Infante may find himself displaced from the starting lineup soon, it is highly unlikely that he would be able to catch Kevin Kiermaier for the league lead. However, stranger things have happened. Infante did hit three triples in two days, so as unlikely as it may be, such a run is not out of the question.
It has been a difficult year offensively for the Kansas City Royals second baseman. However, despite those struggles at the plate, Omar Infante is still in the top ten in triples this year.