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Kyle Schwarber excelling out of Nationals' leadoff spot

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NBC Sports EDGE's Christopher Crawford dives into how productive Kyle Schwarber has been since moving to the leadoff spot.

Video Transcript

CHRISTOPHER CRAWFORD: You may not look at Kyle Schwarber and immediately think "leadoff hitter." But since making his move to the top of the lineup for Washington, there haven't been many hitters better than him. Schwarber homered three times in the win over the Mets on Sunday. And that came after hitting two in the previous game.

In 10 games as the leadoff hitter for the Nats, the former Cub is slashing .361/.415/1.111 with nine homers. That's a 1.562 OPS if you were curious, and you should be.

Now give Nationals manager Dave Martínez some credit for this move. But some of this-- and by some, I'm really talking about all of this-- is just the case of the 28-year-old getting some deserved results. On the year, he ranks in the 89th percentile in hard-hit percentage, 93rd in barrel percentage, and 86th in average exit velocity. Despite that, Schwarber still has a batting average on balls in play of just .267, which helps tell the story of how much bad luck he had earlier in the year.

Schwarber is still a very flawed player who doesn't add anything on the bases, and he strikes out a ton. But this isn't flukey. When he's at his best, his power potential competes with anyone in the National League.

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