JAYWALKER’S POWER STATION for 7/31/17
The Power Report is back for the welcome to the new week Monday slate! There are a sweet spot eight games tonight, with a lot of excellent targets for our hitters.
First a recap of the metrics we are looking at here:
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.
We released a video with me explaining the charts, how to use them, use cases, etc. at the link below:
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, 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.
These help us identify who might be relatively off the radar and can be exploited for our success in tournaments tonight!
First I want to take a look at the chalky stacks tonight:
TORONTO BLUE JAYS at James Shields
Shields does not look like he will even be somewhat usable in any matchup this season, as he was sometimes last season. Over his L30, Shields has a 6.00 SIERA, 11.5% walk rate, 41% FB rate, 36% hard contact rate and a terrible 49% F-Strike rate. TOR, however, is terrible in this split, scoring only 83 wRC+, .149 ISO and .298 wOBA. This will not keep people off of the Jays, however, because Shields has been awful and Guarantee Rate Field is considered a hitter’s park. Also, game total watchers will see TOR at 6+ runs. So they will be highly owned for sure.
Justin Smoak, 1B (217 EP, +46 GAP, 75% Contact) – 49% FB rate, too – somehow always underowned, but probably not tonight.
Steve Pearce, OF (139 EP, +33 GAP, 81% Contact) – Also 49% FB rate and higher contact rate than Pearce is associated with, typically.
Kendrys Morales, 1B (122 EP, +16 GAP, 73% Contact)
Ezequiel Carrera, OF (103 EP, -77 GAP, 71% Contact)
Jose Bautista, OF (102 EP, +7 GAP, 71% Contact)
CLEVELAND INDIANS at Doug Fister
Fister’s return to the league has been rough, as he has a 6.23 SIERA, 14.9% walk rate and a 6.1% swinging strike rate over the 74 batters faced. His first strike rate is worse that even Shields’, at a poor, poor 44.6%. Like Toronto, Cleveland will be chalk because of this and more so because the Indians have been very, very good over the last two months, and they rank highly in this split, with a 103 wRC+, .180 ISO and .326 wOBA as a team.
Edwin Encarnacion, 1B (163 EP, +39 GAP, 77% Contact)
Carlos Santana, 1B (138 EP, -38 GAP, 78% Contact)
Francisco Lindor, SS (105 EP, +22 GAP, 83% Contact)
Austin Jackson, OF (92 EP, +59 GAP, 95% Contact)
Jose Ramirez, 2B/3B (80 EP, -47 GAP, 91% Contact)
NEW YORK YANKEES vs. Michael Fulmer
The Yankees are going to be a popular stack due to their popularity overall, and specifically at Yankee Stadium and on a smaller slate. Fulmer has excellent stuff, but it is not translating to missed bats, with a swinging strike rate of only 8.9% over his L30 (130 batters faced) and 13.1% K-rate. He is offering a lot of contact, with a 91% rate when pitching in the zone, which he does often due to a low 3.1% walk rate. But, he is only drawing 17.6% soft contact. This is fine in spacious Comerica, but in Yankee Stadium, this is a dangerous strategy. The Yankees are fine with a SP pitching to contact at home, especially RHP, as they have a 123 wRC+ with a .224 ISO in split since June 1st (731 PA).
Clint Frazier, OF (182 EP, +21 GAP, 69% Contact)
Aaron Judge, OF (164 EP, =16 GAP, 55% Contact)
Todd Frazier, 3B (131 EP, +2 GAP, 70% Contact)
Gary Sanchez, C (101 EP, -14 GAP, 70% Contact)
Now, for the less popular stacks, in my opinion:
WASHINGTON NATIONALS at Jose Urena
Even in Nationals Park, it is possible the Nats would be the fourth most popular stack, but playing in Marlins Park deflates interest. Toss in that Urena is not the popular target that Shields or Fister might me, and it potentially lessens interest further. The Nats are good away from their home park, too, scoring a 110 wRC+, .345 wOBA, .222 ISO in split. Urena’s home splits are not good this season, with a .363 wOBA, 5.65 xFIP and it goes up to a 6.73 xFIP against LHH.
Brian Goodwin, OF (150 EP, -27 GAP, 68% Contact)
Ryan Zimmerman, 1B (146 EP, +25 GAP, 73% Contact)
Daniel Murphy, 2B (140 EP, +0 GAP, 85% Contact)
Bryce Harper, OF (138 EP, -67 GAP, 82% Contact)
Anthony Rendon, 3B (120 EP, -33 GAP, 84% Contact)
Adam Lind, 1B/OF (111 EP, -3 GAP, 80% Contact)
OAKLAND A’s vs. Matt Cain
Park factors and west coast disinterest will impact the A’s ownership, even against Matt Cain, whose numbers away from the safety of AT&T Park are abysmal. .404 wOBA, 6.36 xFIP, and a 9.9% K-rate means that Oakland will play more to their excellent .197 ISO in split than Cain will be able to take advantage of a 26% K-rate. More contact, more problems for Cain tonight.
Matt Chapman, 3B (166 EP, -38 GAP, 64% Contact)
Khris Davis, OF (163 EP, -28 GAP, 62% Contact)
Bruce Maxwell, C (131 EP, +60 GAP, 75% Contact)
Marcus Semien, SS (103 EP, +15 GAP, 75% Contact)
Rajai Davis, OF (102 EP, +28 GAP, 78% Contact)
Jed Lowrie, 2B (92 EP, +40 GAP, 77% Contact)
Ryon Healy, 1B/3B (81 EP, +47 GAP, 78% Contact)
OTHER TOP HITTERS:
Evan Gattis, C, HOU (192 EP, -21 GAP, 74% Contact) – Houston can EASILY be another top stack, given their #1 status against RHP at home since June 1 (602 PA) with a 145 wRC+ and .213 ISO.
Rougned Odor, 2B, TEX (177 EP, +4 GAP, 76% Contact) – 91 degrees in Arlington, Felix Hernandez away from home vs. LHHs.
Nelson Cruz, OF, SEA (205 EP, +78 GAP, 73% Contact) – Back in TEX, against LHP Cole Hamels, who has given up 39% hard contact over his last 128 batters faced.
Giancarlo Stanton, OF, MIA (166 EP, -81 GAP, 73% Contact)
Mike Moustakas, 3B, KCR (146 EP, -6 GAP, 85% Contact)
Melky Cabrera, OF, KCR (142 EP, +22 GAP, 86% Contact)
Brandon Moss, OF, KCR (171 EP, +6 GAP, 66% Contact) – BAL RHP Ubaldo Jimenez has been considerably worse at home, making the Royals yet another potential stack
Josh Reddick, OF, HOU (126 EP, +14 GAP, 77% Contact)
Jose Altuve, 2B, HOU (102 EP, -26 GAP, 91% Contact)
LAST SEVEN DAYS STARS:
Nomar Mazara, OF, TEX (174 EP, -17 GAP, 83% Contact)
Michael Brantley, OF, CLE (148 EP, +13 GAP, 81% Contact)
JT Realmuto, C, MIA (154 EP, -39 GAP, 78% Contact)
Bradley Zimmer, OF, CLE (154 EP, -74 GAP, 75% Contact)
And that’s the list – ONE OFFS can be found in the tables, but with so many super stacks and plays here, it makes sense to perhaps target one of the seven teams I have listed above for that.
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. Specialty 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