Monday, May 20, 2024

Where Has Andrew Benintendi’s Power Gone?

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Fans were excited to see the White Sox sign Andrew Benintendi in the offseason, as he finally gave the White Sox the opportunity to have a real left fielder. He would sign the richest contract in White Sox history, coming in at a whopping 75 million dollars. But, he has not lived up to the hype as the highest-paid player, as he has yet to hit a single homerun.

All His Power Metrics Are Down

Andrew Benintendi is not a power hitter by any means. The most homers he has had in a season was 20, way back in 2017. But, in four out of the five seasons he has hit 13 home runs or more, with the only season where he didn’t being last year.

It is a curious case, but Kansas City is a tough park to hit consistent home runs in. But, even after being traded to the Yankees, he still only hit two homers, even with the short porch. People thought the midseason trade may have affected him, but it seems to have carried over into this season.

Chicago is also known for being a hitter’s ballpark, as we consistently see opponents hitting plenty of home runs at Guaranteed Rate. But, 40+ games into the season, Benintendi still does not have any home runs.

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Baseball Savant measures the distance of each ball you hit and projects it into every single park. This is because a ball hit in one park could easily be a homer, but in another, it is not. In Benintendi’s case, it is not the park that seems to be affecting him.

If every game was played in 19 other parks, he would still have no home runs. There are only 10 parks in which he would have a home run in at this point in the season. Nine of those he would only have one, and only in Milwaukee would he have two. In today’s game, that is very disappointing for the highest-paid player in your franchise’s history.

You could chalk it up to bad luck, but every single metric that measures how hard you hit the ball is down for Benintendi this year. Most by a decent margin, too. These all rank him in the lowest part of the league. Not great for someone who has shown he has the ability to hit 20+ home runs.

Maybe those seasons will be outliers in terms of his career or a product of the juiced ball, but nonetheless, it is disappointing to see your highest-paid player with 0 home runs next to his name this far into the season.

He Is Not In Good Company

To make matters worse, he is only one of 6 out of 166 qualified hitters that still haven’t hit a homer this season.

This is sad to see, but it may be sadder to see Abreu also on this list. It seems both sides have struggled from the separation this offseason.

Now this is not to say that Benintendi has been bad. He is a good contact hitter and he has provided good outfield defense out in left, but this is not the production that we wanted out of the highest-paid player of all time for the White Sox.

He still has plenty of time to go on a power streak, as once you hit one, more typically come. If his power shows up he will definitely be worth the money that he is being paid.

Regardless, I think that this says more about the front office than it does about Benintendi. Not only the fact that they have not spent more than 75 million on a player, but on one that does not provide the type of game-changing power most teams pay for.

Nobody would be complaining if the exact same contract was given to Benintendi if they had paid a player more before, but it just hurts more when power is such a big part of today’s game, especially when the most home runs on the Sox last year was 17. The game has changed and long balls win you more games. The White Sox need to realize that.

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Yaz M
Yaz M
May 20, 2023 1:51 pm

He is getting on base consistently so who cares wether he hits for the yard or not. You should be talking about Jackie Robinson aka TA7 not doing crap this season.

hod
hod
May 19, 2023 6:46 pm

It seems both sides have struggled from the separation this offseason.

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