JAYWALKER’S POWER STATION for 6/21/17
The Power Report is back for this split slate Wednesday, where we find a Max Scherzer led four game early offering, followed by a “Who’s The Pitcher(s)?” main slate, 11-game meal.
First a recap of the metrics we are looking at here:
Expected Power, which is a Baseball HQ/Baseball Info 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 cells are simply to highlight that they are more volatile due to their low contact rate (Chris/Khris Davis, for examples).
I like to look at last 30 days’ samples to account for adjustments and latest trends. There is a table in the chart for top expected power hitters over the last 30 days with contact rates over 75% for that span, in case you wanted to see a list free from complete windmills like Joey Gallo, Chris/Khris Davis, Alex Avila and the like. Also, I have added a Top Contact table that has all the highest % contact plays with at least the average 100 expected power.
Finally, I added one last table to the report and that is a quick look at the expected power over just the last seven days, with a high contact (75% contact) and 10 at-bat filter applied.
Can’t stress enough to go through the tables and get used to what you are seeing there in addition to the specific write-ups I do in this report – folks are getting an edge with the data, for sure.
These help us identify who might be relatively off the radar and can be exploited for our success in tournaments tonight!
EARLY SLATE NUGGETS:
Joey Votto, 1B, CIN (166 EP, +20 GAP, 88% Contact) showed last night that The Trop cannot hold him and gets Erasmo Ramirez to try and prove the point once more. Scott Schebler, OF, CIN (176 EP, +16 GAP, 77% Contact) has been excellent as well and has the good split for himself.
No Colby Rasmus, OF, TBR (197 EP, -3 GAP, 65% Contact) today for Tampa, but Logan Morrison, 1B, TBR (194 EP, -30 GAP, 71% Contact) is a dangerous one-off against CIN RHP Tim Adleman.
Adam Lind, 1B, WAS (143 EP, +3 GAP, 83% Contact) gets the call in the 5-hole for the Nationals against MIA RHP Dan Straily and brings a surprising mix of high contact and hard contact into play as a less expensive, less owned piece of the Nationals stack today.
You probably are not feeling real daring enough to stack against WAS RHP Max Scherzer today (or maybe you are, it is a 4-game early slate), but a fair one-off, if you are fading Scherzer, is Justin Bour, 1B (162 EP, -47 GAP, 80% Contact), who has overproduced to his metrics but still provides a high power/high contact bat that can hit it out against anyone.
Andrew Benintendi, OF, BOS is the latest hitter to get banished down the lineup due to unlucky outputs. Managers, who are the leeches/frogs doctors of the modern baseball age, see results outside of metrics and figure a hitter is “struggling” and move him down the lineup to “take the stress off”. Then, when the output eventually evens out to the metrics they were producing all along, they take credit for managing the situation, even though all they did was get fewer at-bats/results than they would have if they had just left things alone. When Benintendi was overproducing earlier in the season, he was batting second, then he did indeed fade, but has been back on top for over 30 days, rocking a (163 EP, +86 GAP, 83% Contact) line of metrics. But since his results/output has not matched the excellent undercurrent of power metrics, he has found himself batting behind Mitch Moreland and company. His last seven days numbers are even more stark, (193 EP, +153 GAP, 80% Contact), but he is forecasted to bat sixth behind Moreland and Hanley against RHP Ian Kennedy. I am playing him anyway.
In cash games, Whit Merrifield, 2B, KCR (139 EP, +55 GAP, 91% Contact) has been a nice 2B play among a field of higher priced 2B. Merrifield appears at the top of the TOP CONTACT table, and even has an above average Expected Power number to go with his elite 90+% contact rate. His matchup against BOS LHP Drew Pomeranz is not ideal, leading off in a positive split with his high contact metrics are a solid cash game play.
CHC RHP Eddie Butler has not been excellent over the last 30 days, and on a short slate like this maybe the Padres top stack of Jose Pirela, 2B (134 EP, -34 GAP, 75% Contact), Franchy Cordero, 3B/OF (129 EP, -27 GAP, 58% Contact), Wil Myers, 1B (162 EP, +61 GAP, 59% Contact), Yangervis Solarte, 2B/3B (141 EP, +21 GAP, 85% Contact) and Hunter Renfroe, OF (146 EP, -20 GAP, 73% Contact) are better than you would expect.
MAIN SLATE GEMS:
The Cardinals, as a whole, are not a good team on the road against RHP. And Nick Pivetta showed something his last time out, but that does not mean that Matt Carpenter, 1B (192 EP, +57 GAP, 80% Contact) is off the board tonight.
Miguel Sano, 3B, MIN (177 EP, +25 GAP, 62% Contact) is way too inexpensive on DK at $3,900 and will be popular against LHP David Holmberg. Teammate Brian Dozier, 2B (144 EP, +12 GAP, 78% Contact) is on our HIGH EP/HIGH CONTACT tables and leading off against a LHP, at home, is a split that which Dozier does so well.
Still on the Yankees stack, despite only two HRs, one from Aaron Judge, OF (208 EP, -19 GAP, 62% Contact) and Gary Sanchez, C (119 EP, -66 GAP, 71% Contact). Aaron Hicks, OF (155 EP, +9 GAP, 80% Contact) made his return to the Yankees stack in the 2-hole and Matt Holliday, 1B/OF (155 EP, +4 GAP, 74% Contact) is just a smidgy below Hicks. Starlin Castro, 2B (118 EP, +22 GAP, 77% Contact) is also viable with his above average expected power, +22 GAP and very solid contact rate as a middle infielder in the middle of that stack.
The Indians/Orioles game was fun last night as Manny Machado, 3B (135 EP, -14 GAP, 75% Contact) came through with a double-dinger game at below 4K on DK. He is there again tonight and is a solid tourney play if he is still batting second, even against CLE RHP Carlos Carrasco.
The Indians have a much better matchup against the struggling Kevin Gausman, putting Francisco Lindor, SS (102 EP, +1 GAP, 90% Contact) back in play as a cash game SS out of the leadoff spot. Lonnie Chisenhall, OF (224 EP, +34 GAP, 82% Contact) continues to display 50+% FB rate with all that hard contact and high contact. Edwin Encarnacion, 1B (172 EP, -17 GAP, 83% Contact) has re-emerged to the spot he had for the last two season in Toronto. Austin Jackson, OF (175 EP, +36 GAP, 76% Contact) has not gone unnoticed in the industry, either, even though batting lower in the order. Jason Kipnis, 2B, has raised his L30 scope above average, thanks to a strong L7 performance (155 EP, +18 GAP, 86% Contact).
The Toronto two-some of Justin Smoak, 1B (157 EP, -5 GAP, 83% Contact) and Kendrys Morales, 1B (153 EP, -24 GAP, 78% Contact) are high contact/high power hitters in a hitting friendly environment in Texas against RHP Tyson Ross.
The Tigers are dangerous, even against a talent like SEA LHP James Paxton, who has admitted some mechanical issues since his return. Ian Kinsler, 2B (131 EP, +28 GAP, 90% Contact) has been locked in, with a 51% FB rate to go along with all that high contact, hard hit goodness. In his last seven games, Kinsler has posted (166 EP, +6 GAP, 96% Contact) and a 54% FB rate.
JD Martinez, OF (156 EP, -18 GAP, 68% Contact) has slipped a little, but still carries an above average EP over last seven days (107) and is raising his contact rate a bit as well. He is not the one-off target right now, but still very included in any DET stack. Justin Upton, OF (143 EP, +3 GAP, 78% Contact) and Mikie Mahtook, OF (154 EP, +38 GAP, 80% Contact) join JDM in the dangerous and reasonably priced DET OF.
Nick Castellanos, 3B (139 EP, +30 GAP, 74% Contact) might bat second if Alex Avila is out vs. a LHP, and has a (174 EP, +110 GAP, 80% Contact, 55% FB rate) over his last seven games, meaning he is gearing up for production. His counterpart on the Mariners, Kyle Seager, 3B (149 EP, +37 GAP, 84% Contact) is a solid one-off against Justin Verlander.
The Dodgers are locked/loaded again against a weaker RHP on the Mets, RHP Tyler Pill. We saw Corey Seager, SS (L7: 238 EP, -19 GAP, 64% Contact) go deep three times, raising his L7 number to those shown, but note the low contact rate. Cody Bellinger, 1B/OF has a switched places with Seager, registering a higher contact rate over his last seven days (81%) than he has for the 30 day scan (63%), but still has a strong (179 EP, -86 GAP, 63% Contact) over L30 and (184 EP, -91 GAP, 81% Contact) over last seven.
Finally, the Oakland A’s. RHP Mike Fiers is in town and the A’s are a solid place to go to for HR potential against Fiers. Stephen Vogt, C (167 EP, +87 GAP, 80% Contact) is a solid catcher punt if he gets the call.
Much to tackle today! Check the tables for Coors Field batters, GAP leaders, CONTACT leaders and more hitters/one-offs from the rest of the slate tonight!
Here is the full table of top expected power hitters, top expected power hitters with high contact rates, and another table for leaders in GAP, a.k.a. Most Owed Power as well as GAP w/High Contact. The new charts on Top Contact and Last Seven Days are in there as well. 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