Productive Hitting Without The Walks

Felix Pie recently set a Baltimore Orioles record, going 63 straight plate appearances putting the ball in play (no strike-outs, no walks, no HBP). Since the streak was snapped though, Felix has K’ed 9 times and only walked twice, batting just .264/.286/.340. Overall this season, Pie is striking out in just 12.8% of his at bats (almost half of last year’s 23%) and walking in a tiny 3.3% of his plate appearances (closer to a third of 2009’s 8.5%). Despite the lack of free passes, he’s still been a relatively productive hitter – .286/.311/.434, and a perfectly average .323 wOBA (100 wRC+). That’s right about the level he was at last year as well (.326 wOBA, 98 wRC+), which got me to thinking about how successful a hitter could be if he never walked. How much would he have to cut down on his K’s? How much power would he have to show? What about a high BABIP? The answer is over at Beyond The Box Score.