After watching Bowker square up some balls really well in the Nationals series but still hit into outs, I started to wonder if he was unlucky this year.
His LD% is at 26.4 which is an awesome rate. A hitter that hits a lot of line drives will get on base a lot because they fall for hits 75% of the time. Hitting a line drive is the best thing a hitter can do and Bowker is hitting the ball on the line a lot this year.
After looking at his LD% I checked his BABIP. His BABIP is .284, that's insanely low for what his LD% is right now. If you calculated xBABIP (expected BABIP) crudely (by adding .12 to a hitters LD%) Bowker's BABIP should be .384, or closer to what Aaron Rowand's BABIP is this year (.391)
Just some thoughts on Bowker, he's hitting the ball really well right now, the amount of line drives indicates that he should be hitting much, much better than his current line of .248/.299/.411
Hopefully the Giants keep giving him chances to start and hit because he's actually doing pretty well. His K% could be lower and his BB% could be a little higher, but he's squaring up nicely on balls.
When I get home, I'll see if I can whip up his expected slash-stats based on his xBABIP.
Here's the top 10 hitters in the NL by LD% (Min. 150 PA's)
Notice Bowker's LD% and Chipper Jones' LD%
Name Team BABI GB/FB LD%
Ryan Ludwick Cardinals 0.34 0.55 30.30%
Brian Schneider Mets 0.3 4.86 28.10%
Miguel Tejada Astros 0.32 1.36 27.20%
Gregor Blanco Braves 0.34 1.84 26.80%
Chipper Jones Braves 0.43 1.2 26.40%
John Bowker Giants 0.28 0.72 26.40%
Matt Kemp Dodgers 0.4 1.44 25.90%
Xavier Nady Pirates 0.35 1.17 25.70%
Ryan Church Mets 0.35 1.17 25.50%
Jimmy Rollins Phillies 0.29 1.52 25.50%