Friday, July 9, 2010

Pie not wasting much time

Activated from the disabled list just a few days ago, Felix Pie is doing his best to make up for being gone since mid-April. In three games and 13 at-bats, Pie has collected four hits, including a home run and a triple. He has yet to draw a walk or strikeout, which is interesting, though mostly attributable to the fact that he's only seen 46 pitches in those 13 at-bats (about 3.5 pitches per at-bat). That Miguel Tejada-like approach isn't exactly the most ideal model to imitate, but Pie does seem to have a somewhat better eye at the plate to go along with decent power.

There's been some talk that Pie will eventually take control of the leadoff spot despite the recent solid play of Corey Patterson. Patterson obviously isn't the best long-term option to hit there, but the Orioles have been limited because of Brian Roberts's lingering injuries. But is Pie necessarily a better option? While he's been improving over the past few years, Pie still has a career on-base percentage of .312 -- obviously not what teams want from their leadoff hitter. (Patterson's career OBP: .292.) Anyway, Pie is surely a better option than Patterson to hit just about anywhere in the lineup, but don't be too upset if Pie doesn't produce like a prototypical leadoff hitter. That's probably not where he belongs in the lineup, but it may give him the chance to work on drawing walks and seeing more pitches. Whether he's capable of doing that is another issue.

Still, it's way too early to make any kind of proclamation about how good Pie will be for the rest of the season. Hopefully he'll be able to simply stay healthy and man left field for the next few months. With the way things are going in Baltimore, the O's sure could use some young players showing some progress.

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