Fun With Splits—Matt Carpenter


This is the first installment in a new series I am starting.  From time to time, when the muse hits (or I just need a post) I will choose a Cardinal player at random and post interesting factoids about that player using splits.  I find splits fascinating, being able to see whether a particular opposing team or ballpark gives rise to glee or despair in a player, or what pitch count or inning is that player’s favorite to hit in.  I will be using Baseball Reference as my primary resource.  BRef has a wealth of interesting splits for the Split Crazy.  In some instances I will be using a minimum amount of plate appearances as a starting point, to weed out the microscopic sample sizes.  That minimum number will be an arbitrary pick of my choice, because this exercise is for fun only, not to get into a sabermetric holy war.  That PA minimum will not be the same across all players; players who have less major league time will have lower PA thresholds than veterans will.  So, with all that in mind, below is Fun With Splits with my first choice, Matt Carpenter.

Sep 1, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; St. Louis Cardinals second baseman Matt Carpenter (13) reacts at second base after hitting a double against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the first inning at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

For the awesomeness that is Matt Carpenter, let us first start with basic platoon splits.  Carpenter is a left handed hitter, but unlike many left handed hitters, he does not have a significant platoon split against left handed pitching.  By the way, all splits are career numbers.

Across all pitching, both starters and relievers:

RHP (696 PAs)   .317/.399/.471;   7HR  78 RBIs

LHP (308 PAs)   .280/.329/..466;  9HRs  38 RBIs

Home/Away splits:

Home:   .343/.412/.543    9 HRs  59 RBIs

Away:    .267/.344/.398    7 HRs  57 RBIs


Starter:   .311/.384/.481    16 HRs  104 RBIs

Sub:        .204/.281/.296      0 HRs   12 RBIs

1st Half/2nd Half:

1st Half:    .306/.382/.487   12 HRs  66 RBIs

2nd Half:   .304/.372/.444    4 HRs  50 RBIs

Now lets look  at Carpenter’s “best” splits:

Best Month:  May

Best Position (as hitter with >100 PAs):  2B

Best Batting Order Position:    With no minimum PAs:  6th      With >100 PAs:  1st

Best Pitch Count (with no minimum PAs):  2-1 Count

Best Bases Occupied:   Bases loaded, number of outs irrelevant

Best Clutch Stat:  2 outs RISP

Best Inning:  6th

Best vs Power or Finesse Pitcher:   Either

Best Hit Trajectory:   Line Drive

Best Opponent (Min 20 PAs):  San Francisco Giants

Worst Opponent (Min 20 PAs):  Miami Marlins

Best Road Ballpark (Min 20 PAs):  AT&T Park

Worst Road Ballpark (Min 20 PAs):  PNC Park

Best Game Condition:  Day games

There you have it folks, everything you always wanted to know about Matt Carpenter Awesome Hitter.  I hope you find these little factoids as fascinating as I do.