2016 Phillies Report Card: Roman Quinn
I’m going to run through this report card quickly, before a sudden injury prevents me from completing it. In the sporadic moments when Roman Quinn is on a baseball field, his talents are apparent. He is fast. Very fast. And there is obvious benefit to possessing such elite speed. Defensively, it translates to range in the outfield. Offensively, it means creating havoc on the base paths. But in order to run the bases, the rules of the game require that you first reach them. Quinn spent his brief time with the Phillies hinting at his capacity to do just that.
Quinn came to the plate 69 times in a Phillies’ uniform. Despite that paucity of sample, he exhibited two discernible traits: exceptional plate discipline and a penchant for hitting the ball on the ground.
Regarding the plate discipline, Quinn swung at only 20.5% of pitches outside of the strike zone. For context, that level of pitch recognition would rank among the top 3% of qualified hitters. Quinn’s below average power is not going to demand pitchers eschew the strike zone, but he has the requisite discipline to take a walk when handed to him.
Regarding the ground balls, Quinn knocked 2.6 for every fly ball he hit. Physics of hitting a fraction of a ground ball aside, the high rate, accompanied by his elite speed, depict Quinn as a player who can sustain a high average on balls in play.
The profile is similar to the one Cesar Hernandez employs to reach base at an elevated rate. Lest you wince at the comparison, the comprehensive scouting reports on Quinn provide for two clear distinctions. One, he does possess an iota of power. And two, he has a clear understanding of the infield fly rule.