Baseball has changed a lot over time.
From the dead ball days (before 1920) to the steroid era (late 1990s and early 2000s), and to our current environment, it’s evident that baseball isn’t the same today than it was 40 or 50 years ago.
Home runs are perhaps the most important play in the game today: offenses are built to hit them, and pitching staffs work hard to prevent them.
The 2022 Cleveland Guardians, however, have an “old-school” offense.
Power is clearly not the be-all, end-all trait to have.
Since the Guardians probably can’t afford to fill their lineup with sluggers, they have to find other ways to score.
Cleveland Has Been Able To Overcome Their Lack Of Power
After all, they rank 27th out of 30 MLB squads in long balls, with 53.
For reference, the New York Yankees have 117.
But Cleveland does find ways to cross home plate: with 300 runs, they are 17th, right in the middle of the pack despite the lack of consistent power sources.
“The Guardians have an offense that is unusual in 2022, very Old School. MLB rankings: K rate for hitters (just 18.4%): 1st. Doubles: 7th. SB: 5th Average: 9th. Hitting into double plays: 4th fewest (39). They rank 4th in Fangraphs’ base running metric. 17-4 in last 21 games,” MLB insider Buster Olney tweeted.
The Guardians have an offense that is unusual in 2022, very Old School.
K rate for hitters (just 18.4%): 1st
Hitting into double plays: 4th fewest (39)
They rank 4th in Fangraphs' base running metric.
17-4 in last 21 games.
— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) June 23, 2022
They do look like an offense from the 80s: they don’t strike out a lot and prioritize speed and contact above power.
Oh, and they don’t forget about base-running.
We should also add that their pitching staff is very, very good.
The formula seems to be working: they have a good manager, and they have won a lot of games recently, as they are right with the Minnesota Twins atop the division.
The Guardians are a good all-around team: despite their limitations, they are making it work.