Tuesday, April 7, 2009
Reader Poll: Michael Earley Should Get More At-Bats
With 13 of 32 votes (41%), the readers of Behind the Plate believe Michael Earley should get more at-bats. Vince Gonzalez (21%), Josh Lyon (15%), and Dylan Swift (12%) finished 2nd, 3rd, and 4th, respectively.
It is hard to argue with the readers on this one. In 8 starts this season, Earley has a .300 batting average after hitting .318 in 49 games as a sophomore last season. It is also worth noting that he excelled late in the season and was named to the Big Ten All-Tournament Team as the DH. With his two most likely positions filled by two of the strongest all-around hitters on the team (Dickerson at DH and Sabourin at 1B), this has obviously been a big reason for his lack of PT. That being said, he really only gets to start in the outfield in place of Kipp Schutz when IU faces a left-handed starter. He is listed as an infielder on the roster, though, so I have to think he could possibly field second or third base as well (but that scenario would probably take away at-bats from freshman Vince Gonzalez, who came in 2nd in the poll and is currently batting.342). It’s tough to determine where these at-bats should or could come from given the overall success of the team at the plate so far this season, but it's obvious that at least a portion of the Hoosier faithful would like to see Michael Earley at the plate more often. Thanks to those who voted!