OK, I know the title of the post makes you say "This guy is a ruh-tard"... or it gets your brain thinking about guys like Otis Nixon, Ralph Garr and Brett Butler... but there is a method behind my madness.
For those of you who don't know this INCREDIBLE statistic: Nate McLouth has the 11th ALL-TIME HIGHEST percentage for scoring whenever he earns his way on base with a hit, walk or HBP! In those situations...Nate comes around to score an amazing 45.8% of the time. Wow!
That's right folks -- our man Nate is 11th out of the 17,200+ people who have ever played major league baseball at doing the ONE thing that is most important - scoring runs! So doesn't this HAVE to mean that Nate is a GREAT baserunner?
It does to me, because it means that he must be doing ALL of these things right: 1) not getting picked off, 2) successfully stealing bases to get into scoring position, 3) taking extra bases whenever possible, 4) tagging up at every opportunity, 5) stealing signs and signalling the hitters, 6) distracting pitchers and making them throw hittable pitches, and 7) hustling every time.
PLUS...Nate did most of this with the Pirates, for God's sake, so it certainly wasn't just a matter of him sitting on first base and ultimately scoring as the result of having Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron hitting behind him. He clearly had to have had some input in helping manufacture a lot of those runs.
Could THIS be why Fredi is batting Nate in the #2 hole? Does Fredi know that if (it was a big if in 2010) Nate finds a way to have any sort of decent OBP... that he will score a boatload of runs?
But regardless of whether or not Nate stays near the top of our order... there is certainly something much more than just "luck" or "fate" involved in him having this success. The ONLY correlation that I can draw from this is baserunning.
Can anyone else think of any other possible explanation?