A What You Need To Know Update
Hello SP Streamer readers! Doing this article plus my streaming article every morning is a bit tough for me to do so here is what I am going to do. I will be making this a weekly article that will come out on Wednesdays or Thursdays with a bunch of info from the last week of baseball. It should be just as valuable and helpful so hopefully, you still enjoy it! This is a new article and it will continue to evolve so please hang with me!
Exit Velocity Readings
*These Stats Are From 7/6 to 7/13*
Why are exit velocity readings critical? It’s proven that the harder a hitter hits the ball, the better the outcome. Of course, there is a bit more to it than that, like launch angle, but overall it is an important metric. Max exit velocity is also important to look at because it tends to show the power output a hitter can have. This is why we track these stats daily in this article.
Your top max exit velocity readings in the last week: Giancarlo Stanton (115.9 MPH), Aaron Judge (114.7 MPH), Cal Raleigh (114.0 MPH), Kyle Schwarber (113.7 MPH), and Pete Alonso (113.5 MPH).
Not a lot of surprising names except for perhaps Cal Raleigh. But if you have noticed Cal Raleigh this actually shouldn’t come as a surprise since Raleigh has been a solid power option at the catcher position so far this season. In 197 plate appearances, he has 11 home runs with a .256 ISO, 15% barrel rate, and 46.7% hard-hit rate. His hit this week that registered as 114 MPH was actually a career-high for him (even though he has only been in the majors for two seasons). The main hit against Raleigh is the poor batting average but his .199 average does come with some bad luck and in June he did hit .250. If you need power, or a catcher at all, and Raleigh is out there is he a solid option for the rest of the season.
In terms of overall exit velocity here are your leaders in the last week: Nelson Cruz (101.5 MPH), Mike Moustakas (99.3 MPH), Matt Chapman (98.3 MPH), Corey Seager (97.3 MPH), and Michael Harris II (96.7 MPH).
Corey Seager had by far the most batted balls of the bunch and he has been on fire lately. Since July 1st he is hitting .349 with six home runs, eight runs, and 12 RBI. A major reason for this sudden outburst is the fact that Seager is seeing the ball extremely well right now. His zone swing rate has rocketed up nearly 10 points while his zone contact rate has risen five points. Both have come to elite levels in July and if this sustains we could see an insanely productive month from Corey Seager.
Michael Harris II has quietly been one of the best fantasy players since June 1st. In the last month and a half, he is hitting .301 with seven home runs and seven stolen bases. You can’t ask for more than that. I’m not sure why he is kind of flying under the radar but if he continues to, he could be a great draft pick if you are drafting early on for the 2023 season.
The Hottest Hitters You Aren’t Looking At
There have been some really hot hitters this past week and two of them play for the same team, the New York Yankees. It isn’t Judge, Stanton, or Gleyber though, it is Aaron Hicks and Matt Carpenter.
Aaron Hicks in the last week has the highest wRC+ in the league (375). While Matt Carpenter has the third-highest (295). But anyone can have a hot week right? Starting with Aaron Hicks, he has actually had two solid weeks of production. In 33 plate appearances, he has three home runs, two stolen bases, is hitting .370, and has a higher walk rate than strikeout rate. His barrel rate has skyrocketed to 22.7% and his pull rate has nearly doubled. You read that right, doubled. Hicks has always had good plate discipline it’s been a matter of him being healthy and actually hitting the ball. This looks like a new approach and it is working. As for Matt Carpenter, that short porch is really helping him. He has ten home runs in 77 plate appearances with four of those coming in the last two weeks. I will say, the BABIP is a bit high but the power seems legit with a 17.8% barrel rate on the season. Carpenter could be a cheap power play moving forward but he is definitely more of a streamer play.
Swings and Misses
*These Stats Are From 6/28 to 7/5*
Why are swings and misses important? For pitchers, this can show their talent since the best pitchers in the world always have a knack for creating whiffs. The higher the whiff rate, the higher the strikeout rate. It’s also essential to view this every day to spot outliers. If an unusual name pops up on the list it could mean one of two things, either they are evolving as a pitcher or they just had a lucky day. This could help you catch emerging pitchers before anyone else does if it is the former. Here are the swings and misses leaders for the last five days (this way we don’t get two starters involved):
- Carlos Rodon – 27
- Hunter Greene – 22
- Max Scherzer – 21
- Blake Snell – 21
- Patrick Sandoval – 20
- Jose Berrios – 20
- Dylan Cease – 19
- Gerrit Cole – 18
- Clayton Kershaw – 17
- Charlie Morton/Logan Webb/Kyle Gibson – 16
It’s really refreshing to see Jose Berrios on this list. We all knew it was somewhere in there and just as doubt was starting to creep in he pulls us all back in. Berrios has now strung together three solid starts where he has pitched 17 innings with a 3.18 ERA, 1.24 WHIP, and 29.7 K%. I know what the overall underlying numbers show for him overall and this could be ignorant of me but I don’t see a pitcher who has been insanely consistent for years all of a sudden just becoming a terrible pitcher. I would bet he has a much better second half of the season.
Pitchers On A Roll Or Stuck On A Hill
Let’s start with who is stuck on a hill. Lance Lynn has been…bad. In six starts he holds a 6.97 ERA with a lowly 8.42 K/9. It’s hard to really know what this is. Is it Lynn finally hitting regression due to age? Is it Lynn finally being figured out since he throws so many fastballs? Or is this simply because he is coming off of an injury and will need more time to get going? It’s difficult to say and I suggest going with your gut, but my gut tells me he will pitch better down the road.
I know it will be boring for me to point out but Shohei Ohtani has been in Fuego. In his last four starts, he has pitched 26.2 innings without allowing a run. Yes, in four starts Ohtani has not allowed an earned run while also producing a 40.4 K%. Ohtani is just a phenomenal athlete and we truly are seeing something we may never see again. Maybe the MLB should start advertising him more…just saying.