Detroit Tigers shortstop Niko Goodrum watches as third baseman Jordy Mercer makes a throw to first base during intrasquad action July 17 at Comerica Park.

CINCINNATI — Just looking at the numbers, you don’t necessarily see Niko Goodrum as the prototypical lead-off hitter – if there even is such a thing in today’s game.

Certainly he wouldn’t be the first choice of most analytics departments. Not with his 29 percent strikeout rate and 9.8 percent walk rate last season. Not with his .322 on-base average nor his career .276 OBA, with 47 strikeouts and 14 walks from the lead-off spot.

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