Moss continuing to excel and improve

Brandon Moss has done a couple of things to increase his value to the Oakland Athletics this season.

Brandon Moss

Brandon Moss

#37 1B
Oakland Athletics

2014 STATS

  • GM55
  • HR15

  • RBI48

  • R30

  • OBP.369

  • AVG.280

Hitting two home runs in a win at Yankee Stadium was just the latest of those.

Moss’ second home run, which he hit in the 10th inning, gave the Athletics a lead in a game they would win 5-2. Moss now has the last two multi-homer games by an Athletics player at Yankee Stadium. He had one last season as well.

Extra-inning go-ahead homers by the Athletics at Yankee Stadium are a regular occurrence. They’ve hit three in the last four seasons, with the others coming from Coco Crisp (2011) and Jonny Gomes (2012).

Moss’ strength is hooking the ball on the outer half of the plate, and it's no surprise that both of his home runs came on outer-half pitches on Tuesday.

Moss’ 30 home runs against outer-half pitches from right-handed pitchers in the last two seasons are second most in baseball. Only Chris Davis (32) has more.

Moss is now halfway to his 2013 home-run total of 30 in only 55 games. He’s benefited from a decreased strikeout rate while keeping his other numbers steady, or bettering them.

This didn’t come into play on Tuesday, but the primary reason for this is Moss’ improvement against left-handed pitching (and he could see a lefty if he starts on Wednesday, as the Yankees will start Vidal Nuno).

Moss is 12-for-35 with three homers against lefties after going 16-for-80 with 38 strikeouts and four home runs last season.

The other big improvement for Moss this season has come in the field. Last season, he finished with a combined -15 Defensive Runs Saved, with much of that damage coming at first base (-12).

This season, he’s rated average at each position, and going from sub-par to average is a notable jump.

The end result is that his night on Tuesday should push his Wins Above Replacement past what it was in 2013 (2.2), with quite a long ways to go.