Joc Pederson will be in the 2019 Home Run Derby, his first since his runner up finish in 2015. There are many who say that the Home Run Derby will ruin his swing and they use 2015 as an example. This article will take a look at some statistics from 2015 to see some trends before and after the Derby. It will also look at where Joc stands this season heading into the Derby.
Dodger 3B coach Dino Ebel called it an honor to be picked as Joc Pederson's HR Derby pitcher. Both of them have experience at the event. https://t.co/EHnytJFl9j
— Dodger Insider (@DodgerInsider) July 7, 2019
Pederson’s Statistics Pre-2015 Home Run Derby
2015 was Joc Pederson’s first full year in the Major Leagues and he made a quick impact on the Dodgers. His defense in center field was pretty good and he even used to play against left handers plenty of times. As show below in a month-by-month break down of his statistics you can see some gradual decreases in batting average and slugging percentage. What we do see is a steady drop with a big slump happening right before the All-Star break. June already saw the beginning of a slide and then he started to bottom out in July.
|July pre-AS 2015||38||5||0||3||13||.131||.195||.289|
Pederson’s Statistics Post-2015 Home Run Derby
After the 2015 Home Run Derby, Joc Pederson continued his slump that had started in June. There was a slight uptick after the break but it was still bad. The rest of 2015 was a disaster for Joc as he just could not get back on track.
|July post-AS 2015||51||10||1||1||18||.196||.211||.352|
Pederson’s Statistics Pre-2019 Home Run Derby
Now we are more that half way through the 2019 season we can see his statistics reflect almost a wave pattern. He was good in the short days of March, struggled some in April (except the power numbers), had a strong May and an awful June. The awfulness continues into July. Joc Pederson enters the post-Home Run Derby part of the season in an already horrendous slump.
|July pre-AS 2019||16||3||0||2||4||.188||.316||.250|
It’s clear to me that Joc Pederson was already in a slump before the 2015 Home Run Derby. The question about if the Derby impacted his swing is easy for me to answer. My opinion is that it most likely did not hurt his swing as he was already in a slump. As we’ve seen over the last few years Joc can be quite inconsistent at the plate. Every player has their own highs and lows but Pederson’s are pretty extreme. As we saw, he’s already in a slump going into the 2019 Home Run Derby. Any post-break questions about his swing being ruined by the 2019 Derby should just refer at what he’s done on a game-by-game basis.
If anything has hurt Joc these last two weeks it is the on-the-job-training of learning to play first base. The Dodgers need some consistency from Joc Pederson (and a few others) if they are going to make another strong run through the playoffs and win the World Series. Let’s hope Joc can stop playing first base and go back to the outfield. At least he will be comfortable on defense, which could help his offense.