Alexei Ramirez has to stop starting the season off so slow and has to be consistent. It was one of the reasons the Chicago White Sox aren’t in the playoffs. While I’m not placing blame squarely on the shoulders of Ramirez, he is one of the reasons.
Since Ramirez has been on the White Sox, he has been a slow starter. While the slow start didn’t hamper him in 2010 since he won a silver slugger award, it hurt Ramirez this year.
Like I said, Ramirez does shoulder some of the blame for the White Sox not being in the playoffs. Think of how many games the White Sox could have won if Ramirez was consistent? The White Sox, more than likely, could have won a few more games.
Ramirez also has to cut down on his strikeouts. Ramirez had 77 strike outs in 158 games. This is an improvement from 2011 when he struck out 84 times. The next stat is a real head-scratcher. Ready? While Ramirez struck out 84 times in 2011 he also walked 51 times. This gave him an on base percentage of .328. Yet, in 2012 he only walked 20 times and had an on base percentage of .287.
What happened between 2011 and 2012? The walks helped Ramirez’s on base percentage and even his average. In 2011 he hit .269 even with his slow start, yet in 2012 he hit .265. I have a problem with strike outs from players that aren’t your power hitters. When Adam Dunn strikes out, it can be very aggravating and it’s something that he needs to cut down on. Yet as a power hitter I can understand it and Dunn had a lot of walks to go with the strikeouts. Ramirez only walked 20 times.
Ramirez’s defense is still one of the best both he and Gordon Beckham are one of the best defensive tandems in the MLB. They both make turning the double play, look easy. I don’t want to see Ramirez go anywhere. It could hamper the development of Beckham and also leave a big hole in the infield.
Stop with the slow start, and take more walks, and work on bunting a little more. All of that can help the Cuban Missile get back on track. Without taking these steps though, the missile will be grounded.