Selected by the Diamondbacks in 2009, this classy 1st baseman made his Major League debut in August, 2011. He was an immediate hit. In fact, for this exceptional talent the hits began on Day One of his career and haven’t stopped coming yet.
After a very solid rookie year, Goldschmidt’s star really began to shine. In his second season, 2012, Arizona’s Golden Boy produced offensive numbers that marked him as “a player on the rise.”
But it was in 2013 when the young star really hit his stride. He was selected to represent his team in the All Star game (he made the team in 2014 and this year, as well) and finished the season as National League co-leader in home runs and number one in runs batted in.
Graphic via venomstrikes
This year, Goldschmidt has shown that he is one of the top players in Major League baseball. Awarded a Gold Glove in 2013 for his defense and a Silver Slugger Award for his power production, this 27 year old has “off the chart” numbers over the first one hundred games. Consider …
His .346 batting average is the best in the league. He has twenty-two home runs and a league-leading 74 runs batted in (RBIs). He even has seventeen stolen bases. His numbers compare favorably with his overall performance in 2014, proof that he is improving.
And there is every reason to believe he will finish this season at or near the top in most offensive categories. In fact, he is projected to finish 2015’s regular season with thirty six home runs, an impressive 198 hits, one hundred twenty four RBIs, a batting average of .346 and a whopping eighty-two bases on balls.
Yes, opposing hurlers try to pitch around Goldschmidt because he is a tough out and very dangerous, capable of turning a deficit into a lead with one swing. Arizona’s opponents never want the big first baseman to beat them and his walk total is proof that they would often rather issue a free pass than try to throw pitches by him.
Clearly, the strategy is not working. That’s why Paul Goldschmidt is putting up big numbers and why he will continue to do so for years to come.
Arizona’s Golden Boy is just entering his prime. There are likely to be many years of great, productive baseball in his future. He can certainly “carry a team” and if the Diamondbacks draft wisely and add quality free agents, players who can support Goldschmidt and be productive, this squad can become a regular participant in postseason play.
While baseball is, of course, a team sport, it takes one great player to lead the way. In Arizona, that player is Paul Goldschmidt.
Graphic via topyourleague