Whether he ultimately will be seen as a legitimate contender for the National League Rookie of the Year Award or not, Alec Bohm’s impressive rookie campaign hasn’t been lost on the baseball world.
Thursday, Jonathan Mayo of MLB Pipeline released his 2020 All-Rookie Team, with Bohm taking the honor at third base. Mayo had this to say of the 2018 first-round pick:
“Bohm didn’t make his big league debut until Aug. 3, but he easily leads all rookie third basemen in average (.333), OBP (.404), RBIs (22), total bases (69) and extra-base hits (14).”
A few statistics show how valuable Bohm has been to the Phillies since making his debut on Aug. 13. Despite not opening the season on the major-league roster because of service-time considerations, Bohm is tied with Didi Gregorius for the team lead in doubles at 10. What’s even more impressive is that the 24-year-old has 46 plate appearances with runners in scoring position in 2020, and has hit .444 with 17 RBIs, eight walks and just four strikeouts in those at-bats. His two walk-off hits in 2020 weren’t flukes – he’s been clutch in his rookie season.
So why does it seem like Bohm is an afterthought in the National League Rookie of the Year race? Not starting the season at the major league level certainly hurt him, but not as much as his defensive metrics have. In 284.1 innings at third base, Bohm has four errors, a -0.4 defensive WAR and a staggering -6 defensive runs saved. While manager Joe Girardi told Phillies Nation last week that the Phillies have been happy with Bohm’s defensive progression and continue to view him as a third baseman, there’s ample evidence that he would probably be best suited to play another spot in the field, or simply DH.
Even with his defensive concerns acknowledged, Bohm’s offensive production is enough to make you think that he could be a cornerstone piece for the franchise. And frankly, since Ryan Howard graduated to the major league level in the mid-2000s, you haven’t been able to say that about many – or maybe any – homegrown position players.
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