Saturday, November 1, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Ryan Howard in Five Easy Pieces

Ryan Howard's career breakdown.

Ryan Howard in Five Easy Pieces

Ryan Howard. (Matt Slocum/AP)
Ryan Howard. (Matt Slocum/AP)

When he went on the disabled list earlier this month with a torn meniscus in his left knee, Ryan Howard had just surpassed the 5,000 mark for career major league plate appearances.

So we thought it convenient to break his career numbers down into five segments, each ending with the game in which he accumulated another 1,000 PA.

And, as suspected, the early Ryan Howard was by far the best, as virtually all of his numbers below show.

Particularly, notice his home runs for every 100 at-bats. He cranked out 9.2 for every 100 AB over his first 1,000 PA. That number has steadily declined to 5.2 over the last 1000-PA segment.

 From  9/1/04  
 9/10/06  
 6/5/08  8/31/09  
 6/2/11
 To  9/9/06  6/4/08  8/30/09  
 6/1/11  7/5/13  
 Age (at conclusion)  
 26  28  29  31  33
 Plate Appearances  1000  1001
 1003  1002  1012
 Batting Avg.
 .303  .255  .275  .275  .248
 On-Base Pct.
 .389  .384  .352  .354  .325
 Slugging Pct.
 .636  .541  .579  .515  .459
 Home Runs
 80  64  70  51  46
    HR/100 AB  9.2  7.9  7.9  5.8  5.2
 Strikeouts  269  308  271  252  301
    SO/100 AB
 31.0  37.9  30.6  28.6  33.7
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Bob Vetrone Jr.
About this blog

Boop – who goes by Bob Vetrone Jr. when he is undercover or paying bills – has been at the Daily News since 1982, after working for five years at the Philadelphia Bulletin up to its closing. Along with helping to build the sports scoreboards most nights, he has had great input into the papers’ special sports pullouts – March Madness, Broad Street Run, Record Breakers, Greatest Moments – as well as its day-to-day, award-winning event coverage.

A 1980 graduate of North Catholic, he took some evening college courses. Those lasted right up until the first conflict with a Big 5 doubleheader.

His favorite books growing up were the NBA Guide and the Baseball Encyclopedia, which was, for all intents and purposes, the Internet before there was an Internet.

He has been immersed in sports statistics since the early 70s, when his father (long-time sports writer, broadcaster and the Daily News’ Buck The Bartender), would take him into the Bulletin newsroom overnight in the summer and let him update the Phillies statistics in a little, black spiral notebook. But things have changed tremendously in the decades since … He now uses a big, black spiral notebook.

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Reach Bob at vetronb@phillynews.com.

Bob Vetrone Jr.
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