JAYWALKER’S POWER STATION for 5/24/17
The Power Report is back for a sneaky split slate, with five games early and 10 games on the main slate.
First a recap of the metrics we are looking at here:
Expected Power, which is a Baseball HQ/Baseball Data Solutions metric that looks at hard hit percentages, line drive and fly ball rates, and shows what that batters’ rating is on a 100 is average scale.
Actual Power, which is the metric that displays the production that players have actually produced.
GAP: The difference between the two. Positive gaps mean they have underproduced to their metrics, whereas negative indicates regression could soon be coming. It is to show how “real” their production has been and if they are poised for progression or regression.
The purpose of the exercise is to see who is legit, who has been lucky or relatively so, and who has been unlucky and perhaps due for bounce back. Or maybe it is a hitter that has been in a slump, but is showing signs of above average hard contact/power.
The red is just to highlight that they are more volatile due to their low contact rate (Chris/Khris Davis, for examples).
These help us identify who might be relatively off the radar and can be exploited for our success in tournaments tonight!
EARLY SLATE GEMS:
With Ryon Healy, 1B/3B, OAK () going deep last night, the OAKLAND train just keeps rolling. Getting Edinson Volquez as their opposing pitcher, it is the left side of the plate that has the advantage. Jed Lowrie, 2B (144 EP, +26 GAP) and Matt Joyce, OF (170 EP, +34 GAP) are the most likely targets here, while Yonder Alonso, 1B (184 EP, -49 GAP) would also be a prime target, but he may not be in the lineup today after getting hit on the hand with a pitch last night. Look at the chart below and pick your Oakland bats as they are a fine choice today on the early slate.
On the other side, OAK SP Sonny Gray struggles against LHH, putting the obvious LHH on the Marlins, Justin Bour, 1B (182 EP, -20 GAP) in play but also the surprising J.T. Riddle, SS (186 EP, +60 GAP, 81% Contact%) should be extremely inexpensive across the industry and makes for an excellent punt, along with the cheap pitching on the slate, to stack all the other top bats you want.
Paul Goldschmidt, 1B, AZ (212 EP, +26 GAP) is locked in and gets a LHP at home (the so-far below expectations Jose Quintana) and can easily be rostered with the value on the slate. Do not overthink things. While you are at it, get the other AZ RHH bats in there, namely, Yasmany Tomas, OF (167 EP, +44 GAP), Jeff Mathis, C (142 EP, +13 GAP) and Brandon Drury (128 EP, -39 GAP).
Justin Smoak, 1B, TOR (147 EP, +19 GAP) is a terrific one-off in MIL against SP Matt Garza, who has given up a ton of goodies to LHH at home so far this season (over 3HR/9 IP).
MAIN SLATE GEMS:
If you look at the chart, you are going to see a logjam of Tigers there at the top. Tonight’s game against Houston pits them against Charlie Morton, who has been excellent this season and not a strong target as an opposing pitcher. However, Charlie has given up the longball to RHH, four in 76 batters, or 17.2 IP, so a one-off around hitters like Miguel Cabrera, 1B (225 EP, +128 GAP), JD Martinez, OF (266 EP, -22 GAP), Nick Castellanos, 3B (117 EP, +55 GAP) would be the way to go there.
DET SP Daniel Norris has been really bad this season, with a hard hit rate of 46.4%. On the other hand, he is good about not giving up a ton of longballs, and most of the ones he does give out have been to LHH. Considering the Astros are very righty heavy, this puts them on a stack or nothing approach and gives more value to the higher contact plays. Jose Altuve, 2B (45 EP, -87 GAP) is an example, but as you see, he has massively overproduced in terms of power, still the contact is good and should take advantage of Norris’ 88% contact rate against and all that hard contact.
Daniel Murphy, 2B, WAS (122 EP, -19 GAP, 86% contact) leads the way against small sample SEA SP Sam Gaviglio. The RHP has given up some very hard contact in his short stint and the Nationals are very good against RHP this season, with a near .200 ISO and 111 wRC+, good for seventh in the league. If he gets into the lineup, Adam Lind, 1B (225 EP, +53 GAP, 81% contact) is a nice flyer, if you want to be different at 1B.
SF SP Matt Moore has been horrible so far this season, especially away from SF. His 5.63 xFIP, .438 wOBA and 42% hard contact rate underlines that fact. The Cubs will have plenty of bats to take advantage, as even the LHH have smoked Moore this season. Here are the best:
Ian Happ, 2B (142 EP, -124 GAP)
Kyle Schwarber, OF (125 EP, +24 GAP)
Ben Zobrist, 2B/OF (119 EP, +0 GAP)
Kris Bryant, 3B (113 EP, -87 GAP)
The Tampa Rays have been throttling RHP, even at home and they have a big time target in LAA SP Ricky Nolasco, who has given up 38% hard contact against only 14% soft contact. It is even worse on the road, where it jumps to 41.1% hard contact. He has a track record of reverse splits, but has been bad to LHH too, so Logon Morrison, 1B (213 EP, -6 GAP), Colby Rasmus, OF (176 EP, -9 GAP) are a couple of home run targets with low contact rates, while Evan Longoria, 3B (85% contact, 104 EP, +19 GAP) and Corey Dickerson, OF (75% contact, 130 EP, +38 GAP) offer a smidgy more contact rate.
There are a lot of guys who could be one-offs! Here is the full table of top expected power hitters and another table for leaders in GAP, a.k.a. Most Owed Power. Feel free to ask about anybody specifically and enjoy!
There is a lot to find in there, so fire away with any questions – find me in the Premium Slack Chat (@jaywalker72). I hope you find all the power today – good luck! – JW