Jump to content
Twins Daily
  • Create Account
  • The Numbers Behind Jose Miranda's Slump


    Jamie Cameron

    Jose Miranda has struggled in his first month in the majors, why? What are the numbers behind his struggles? What can he do to turn it around?

    Image courtesy of Bruce Kluckhohn - USA Today Sports

    Twins Video

     

    Who cares about 46 plate appearances? Not me. Neither, globally speaking, should you. 46 plate appearances, however, is all we have to judge Jose Miranda on so far in the big leagues, and it hasn't been pretty.

    After putting together a MiLB season for the ages in 2021 in which he hit 30 HR and a combined 159 wRC+ between AA and AAA, Miranda has struggled in his opening month with the Twins. Over 11 games, he’s put up an 8 wRC+ and has been worth -0.5 fWAR. Obviously not great. What do the numbers say about Miranda? How might he turn his slow start around?

    Miranda’s 2021 MiLB breakthrough came from the ability to drive the ball well. In 2021, his Line Drive Percentage (LD%) was 24.3% at AA and AAA. For a point of reference, Jorge Polanco, who put up 4.1 fWAR for the Twins, was at 23.1%. Obviously, a different level of competition, but a useful reference point. Fast forward to 2022 and Miranda’s LD% has plummeted to just 2.7%. Essentially, everything he’s hitting is into the ground, or straight up in the air. What gives?

    The clues come in the form of Miranda’s plate discipline numbers. He doesn’t walk often 4.3% BB%. He also doesn’t strike out very often, something we might expect for someone struggling so mightily at the plate (15.2% K%). Miranda’s low walk and low strikeout totals warrant further investigation, for that, it’s useful to look at his swing and contact rates. 

    Miranda has an O-Swing% of 29.9%, meaning he swings at 29.9% of pitches thrown outside the strike zone. This isn’t an alarming number (Polanco, our contextual comparison for this piece, is at 28.8% here). Miranda, however, swings significantly more in the zone than other hitters (70.2% so far in 2022 to Polanco’s 61.5%). We know that Miranda can crush the ball, no one who hits 30 HR in a season can’t. However, his average exit velocity is 88.2 mph, right at league average with a Barrel% of just 5.4%.

    If we put these two data points together, here’s what we can glean; Miranda has a tendency to swing at pitches in the strike zone, which is fine. Currently, his swings in the zone are not selective enough, causing him to ground out and pop out frequently. His tendencies are a much scaled-back version of the challenges Willians Astudillo faced in Minnesota, where his ability to put bat-to-ball was negated by the poor quality of contact he produced.

    I’ll finish with this; who cares? Hitting in the majors is a game of reactivity and constraint adjustments. Whether Miranda continues to work through his struggles in Minneapolis or St. Paul, I remain extremely confident in his ability to hit at the big league level. If he wants to maximize his success, however, he needs to once again hunt for pitches he can drive.

     

     

    MORE FROM TWINS DAILY
    — Latest Twins coverage from our writers
    — Recent Twins discussion in our forums
    — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email
    — Become a Twins Daily Caretaker

     Share


    User Feedback

    Recommended Comments

    Featured Comments

    Thanks, this is a good explanation of Miranda's troubles. This might be as simple as him being over eager in his first trip up to the MLB level.  Unfortunately, it looks like he needs a little more time at the AAA level. I expect him to go back down when Correa or Larnach is ready to play. Good first look, but just not ready yet.  

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Most guys benefit from getting some time in the bigs and getting sent back down.  He knows what he should work on and should learn from the experience.  As hard as it was to watch Celestino last year, I think that experience paid dividends over the winter and into this season.  Hopefully Miranda can do something similar whether he gets sent back down or not.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I am not concerned long term.  I think this is a good learning experience for Miranda and he should be able to learn from it.  This is his first taste of MLB pitching.  Much like a lot of young guys who struggle they need time to learn how the best of the best will pitch them.  He made adjustments last year to become the prospect he did.  I bet he works on this over the year.  Not sure when he gets sent back, but he will at some point.  Some guys take much longer to adjust to MLB level.  

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    It's a big jump to the majors, not to mention playing first. You have to learn and get used to the different ways people throw you the ball. Be nice if he could rotate at third/DH with Gio, let's say. Get his swing back.

     

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    1 hour ago, LA VIkes Fan said:

    Thanks, this is a good explanation of Miranda's troubles. This might be as simple as him being over eager in his first trip up to the MLB level.  Unfortunately, it looks like he needs a little more time at the AAA level. I expect him to go back down when Correa or Larnach is ready to play. Good first look, but just not ready yet.  

    Or it could be like Refsnyder, this is about as good as it gets.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    If I remember, this was the book on Miranda before last year. Great ball-to-bat skills, but wasn't doing enough about it. Last year, he reportedly got more selective with his approach. It's seemed to me like he just needs to get back to that. We've seen (and hopefully he has seen) that he can hit pitches at a major league level. Now he needs to start choosing which ones to hit and which ones to ignore.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    50 minutes ago, Trov said:

    I am not concerned long term.  I think this is a good learning experience for Miranda and he should be able to learn from it.  This is his first taste of MLB pitching.  Much like a lot of young guys who struggle they need time to learn how the best of the best will pitch them.  He made adjustments last year to become the prospect he did.  I bet he works on this over the year.  Not sure when he gets sent back, but he will at some point.  Some guys take much longer to adjust to MLB level.  

    I agree.  He'll either figure it out soon, or be sent down to figure it out.  But, I think he'll figure it out and be a good MLBer.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    5 hours ago, RpR said:

    Or it could be like Refsnyder, this is about as good as it gets.

    Perhaps, but Larnach and Celestino have been examples of guys who really struggle their first times up, and then the second time (the next season), something clicked. This might be the case for Miranda too, or maybe 2021 was all a fluke. Who knows, but I'll err on the side of patience.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I think Miranda is going to be just fine. He just may not be quite ready yet. And that's OK. The learning curve is different for everyone. He's got all the ability and potential you could hope for. He was a high pick who Twins scouts and FO personal have been quietly saying for the past few years, from various reports; "just wait...just wait". Well, he started to figure it out in 2021.

    My opinion? He's pressing. He got off to a poor start with St Paul and was getting hot when promoted. And he wants to do so well he's almost forgotten all the adjustments he made last year. He's suddenly reverted back to just making contact vs the good contact he figured out. And he could suddenly "click" any day! I hope like crazy that happens! But I think he needs to go back down when the roster gets healthy and take what he's learned and get himself right again.

    I DO THINK the Twins did themselves, and Miranda, a HUGE disservice by not brining him up late in 2021 to get his feet wet then. He might be more ready now, regardless of any success he might have had.

     

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    18 hours ago, Alex Schieferdecker said:

    If I remember, this was the book on Miranda before last year. Great ball-to-bat skills, but wasn't doing enough about it. Last year, he reportedly got more selective with his approach. It's seemed to me like he just needs to get back to that. We've seen (and hopefully he has seen) that he can hit pitches at a major league level. Now he needs to start choosing which ones to hit and which ones to ignore.

    Exactly. now when he needs to get back to that. Either the Twins hitting coaches or those back at St. Paul need to get him back in that groove.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I think getting his feet wet this year, rather than last year, is fine. The team vibe is more positive, they are winning. Also, roster additions like Correa, Ursela and Sanchez bring preparation routines and playoff experience. This all makes for an ideal learning environment for Miranda. I'm not sure how it would have been for him last September on a disappointing team.

    He will likely need more seasoning in St Paul when injured players return. But he'll be back.

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I hope Correa is ready when they send Miranda down and that they let Lewis try his hand at 1b, just to keep his bat in the lineup. I know 1b won't be his position for long , but give it a shot

     

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    The problem right now with sending Miranda down, who plays first? Arraez some times, but who would back him up?  So I think Miranda has to stay and work through his batting issues.

    Correa and Larnach are soon off the IL, but neither plays first. 

    Link to comment
    Share on other sites



    Join the conversation

    You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
    Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

    Guest
    Add a comment...

    ×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

      Only 75 emoji are allowed.

    ×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

    ×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

    ×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

    Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...