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Royals 2015 Season Projections: Salvador Perez

The two-time All-Star wore down last year, can we get a fresh Salvy in 2015?

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Salvy solidified himself as one of the game's best young catchers in 2014, as he was tabbed to start the All-Star Game last summer, his second appearance. He did get the game-winning hit on a pitch out of the strike zone in the amazing Wild Card game, but also made the last out in Game 7 of the World Series, a pop-out after swinging at several pitches out of the strike zone.

Those two at-bats kind of summarized his season. Salvy was pretty solid in the first half. Although he'll never been known for his plate discipline, he did provide good pop in the first few months of the season, smacking ten home runs over the first three months.

The second half was another story. Salvy was dreadful, clearly fatigued from his heavy workload. He hit just .234/.244/.355 after July 1 with just FOUR WALKS in 307 plate appearances. Even Mark Quinn think that's too aggressive.

2014 Season .260 .289 .403 17 70 3.3
Career per 162 games .285 .315 .433 18 84 4.8
2015 ZIPS .282 .312 .423 14 68 3.6
2015 Steamer .274 .309 .425 14 51 3.6
2015 PECOTA .277 .307 .420 15 71 N/A

Salvy is noted for being one of the better "bad ball" hitters in the league, but you have to wonder if pitchers will begin exploiting his lack of selectiveness. Madison Bumgarner seemed to figure it out in Salvy's last at-bat in the World Series, having Salvy swing at three fastballs that were above his shoulders. Players can improve their selectivity, although it doesn't happen that often.

Salvy is entering his age-25 season, so we should be seeing him in his prime seasons. His dive in the second half is worrying, and I'm not convinced it was completely attributable to fatigue. Also concerning is his tremendous pop-up rate. For all we criticize Mike Moustakas for his pop-ups, Salvador Perez led the Majors in infield fly percentage, capped off by his pop-out to end the World Sereis.

Salvador Perez's low on-base percentage will likely always be a concern with him, but if he's providing solid defense and able to keep the home runs in the double digits, he is still a very valuable player. The Royals have given lip service to resting Salvy more in 2015, and with some fresher legs down the stretch, hopefully Perez can be a more productive offensive force.

What do you expect out of Salvador Perez in 2015?