Five years ago, Jake Lamb was manning third base for Washington baseball. Today, he is a starting third baseman for the Arizona Diamondbacks and a 2017 National League All Star.
Jake Lamb played three seasons for the Washington Baseball team between 2010 and 2012 before he was drafted by Arizona in the sixth round of the 2012 MLB Draft. The 26-year-old is now an everyday third baseman for one of the most talented teams in baseball.
Lamb made the All Star Game as a reserve thanks to impressive numbers at the plate: a .282 batting average along with 18 home runs and 65 RBI’s. His .540 slugging percentage ranks second on the team, only behind MVP frontrunner Paul Goldschmidt.
Lamb and Goldschmidt’s styles at the plate are similar. Both hitters possess a ton of power, and still manage to get on base and protect the strike zone effectively.
Cleaning up at cleanup
Hitting one spot after Goldschmidt in Arizona’s lineup, Lamb has taken advantage of his cleanup opportunities this season. He’s a key part of a team that currently owns the third best record in baseball at 52-32. Stuck in a brutal NL West division, the Diamondbacks still currently hold the top Wild Card spot.
The primary shortcoming of his offensive game is a high number of strikeouts, most on the team with 88 this season. Lamb’s 2016 season saw a high level of productivity while playing a career high 151 games. His power numbers took off, slugging .509 with 29 homers and 91 RBI’s. His .249 average and 154 strikeouts were acceptable for a power hitter.
Lamb nearly made the All Star Game last year, among the five NL players competing for the Final Vote. Brandon Belt beat out Lamb, Ryan Braun, Starling Marte, and Trevor Story to claim the final roster spot and become an All Star.
Lamb’s time in Seattle
In his final year with Washington, Lamb started 54 games and hit .321. His slugging percentage was .442 thanks to a trio of homers and 30 RBI’s over the course of the year. The Huskies failed to make the NCAA Tournament in any year of Lamb’s three-year career.
The home grown slugger attended Bishop Blanchet High School in Seattle prior to playing at UW. The Pittsburgh Pirates selected Lamb in the 38th round of the 2009 draft. He chose to remain in his hometown to play for Washington and watched his draft stock rise after posting strong college numbers.