My First Ackley Blog Post

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Out of the last 13 months at my own blog and all the many different posts I’ve written about the minor league, I’ve never written anything about Dustin Ackley. This just seems rather wrong.

So while playing around with Fangraphs I got to looking at Dustin Pedroia, who I’ve always thought was a better comparison for Ackley than Chase Utley. Which was then followed by a trip to Baseball-Reference.

Below is a small comparison of some of their minor league statistics from B-R.

AAA Age Games PA BA OBP SLG OPS SB-Attempts BB SO
Pedroia 21 51 240 255 356 382 738 1 of 1 24 17
Ackley 22 52 237 274 338 439 776 2 of 3 20 38
Utley 23 125 534 263 352 461 813 8 of 11 46 89

Something to consider as you look at the chart above Ackley was promoted to AAA his first season of professional baseball. Both Pedroia and Utley were in their third year as a minor leaguers. Both saw their careers start in A ball and worked their way up.

I’m sure I’m not the first person to put this together. But, I just hadn’t seen it anywhere. I personally like the Pedroia comparison for Ackley opposed to Utley.

With those minor league numbers in mind, I thought I’d take a look at the Major League Equivalents using projectionist Sean Smiths’ formula and calculator.

Projected MLE BA OBP SLG
Pedroia 213 300 311
Ackley 238 292 364
Utley 221 297 375

While it’s a little sad to see, it’s not completely off either. Take a look at Utley and Pedroia’s first season/taste of the big leagues below.

First full Season Name AB BA OBP SLG
2006 Pedroia 89 191 258 303
2003 Utley 134 239 322 373

It shows how there is an adjustment time for these young players. I would like to take this time just to remind people that Ackley is going struggle. Write this down now and take it to the bank. He’s most likely not going to hit .335 and be named to an all-star team. But, he still has a bright future. Don’t automatically just throw him into the “he will never hit” Mariner prospect category.

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Tags: Chase Utley Dustin Ackley Dustin Pedroia

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