As Ross approaches a 100 wRC+ on the season with his 3rd hit of the game vs the Red Sox tonight I just noticed something I had not noticed before.
His k% is a career low 15.2
His career k% is 21.2 % and he has never had a full season under 20.
In the context of a league with more k's than ever before that is a remarkable change.
This drop in k's has been accompanied by a drop in power. His ISO is a career low .115 vs career avg .190' which again is a remarkable change. He only has 6 homers on the year. The two doubles today bring him to 15 and he has 1 triple. Generally he has hit more doubles than this, so its not only a drop in homers, but a drop in xbh overall.
Are the two changes linked ? Very possibly, as intuitively it would seem that if a guy is focusing on making more contact he might shorten his swing and give up some power. And then you have to figure that the coaching staff and team direction against k's is a factor in him altering his approach.
Up until now its a tradeoff that has not worked out all that great....but if this recent hot streak is a sign of an adjustment to his new approach finally clicking, maybe he hits for high BA and a lot of doubles going forward. If he trades HR for higher BA and higher OBP that can work, depending on how high the BA goes. If it only goes up 10 to 15 points over career avg, its not worth giving up the homers and doubles. But if he stays hot and ends up 30 points or so above career batting avg then the drop in homers is worthwhile