He was one of the more polarizing figures on a polarizing team. Houston Astros slugger Chris Carter may be on the hottest of Houston hot seats going into the 2014 season. Carter led the Astros in nearly every offensive category both good and bad. He led in home runs, RBIs, walks and strikeouts. Yet he finished 15th in batting average (.223). His 212 strikeouts led all professional hitters in MLB. That right there is the most telling stat.
It can’t be stated enough that the Astros absolutely have to cut down on strikeouts. This is why Carter may feel his seat heating up. Having a bad year isn’t the end of the world. It’s how you answer it that is a testament to the kind of player he is.
Carter has to feel that the 2013 campaign was more of a failure than a success. Sure, he led in power numbers, but that was on a team drastically lacking in power. Even with those power numbers, his strikeouts and batting average alone should be enough motivation for him to really prove what he’s made of in 2014.
The talent is obviously there, there’s no doubt of that. He hits the ball harder than anyone else in Houston, but it’s getting a hold of it that’s the problem.
Surprisingly, Carter actually hit better in clutch situations, but even then his average never surpassed .250. As a power hitter, this has to be amended or moves have to be made. He isn’t on the team for his defense, he’s there because of his raw offensive tools. But somewhere down the line, those raw tools need to be honed, and the sooner the better for his sake as well as the team’s.