Sabermetric analysis is and has been the foundation of our Fantasy Baseball player projections since 1999. This analysis along with our founding concept of position scarcity, has helped us achieve superior consistency in projections accuracy. All of which can be customized to your league settings in our 2016 Player Projections Software. Let's start by looking at some of the Sabermetric indicators that are defining our 2016 Shortstop projections:
SS Lindor, Francisco Decent contact rate (83%) with good GB|FB mix (1.8:1). That said his HR/FB rate of 13% was elevated based on his BBS and Distance on HRs. Lots to love here at only 22 YO, but progression will come in waves and we shouldn't expect a finished product in 2016.
SS Seager, Corey Absolutely tore it up in his limited appearances in 2015. His 46% Hard hit rate in 113 plate appearances is not sustainable though, and led to an elevated BA (337). Although his 22% ISO is encouraging, it's likely not sustainable as the 17% ISO he posted between AA and AAA is a more reasonable upside in 2016. That said his bat speed is in the top quartile and if he can maintain the same approach in 2016 with his sub .20 K rate and 12% BB rate, he could be a top 3 fantasy shortstop.
SS Correa, Carlos Sub 20% K rate and 23% ISO in his first taste of the majors is extraordinary! Coming in he was the top prospect in baseball and he showed why with 22 HRs in only 381 PA. That said the 24% HR/FB ratio is not sustainable at this point in time, as the average distance on those HRs of 381 feet and 99.6 BBS indicates that he was quite fortunate to achieve these totals. Look for a shift in the rate to a more doubles oriented format in 2016. Other than that the future is bright for this 21 YO.
SS Hardy, J.J. HR/FB rate has dropped to only 7% over the last 2 years, as he's just not hitting the ball with the same authority as he once did. That said there is upside in his power production, but the offset of the BA is going to makes him a low end option.
SS Aybar, Erick Some speed, some Batting average, but not enough OBP to make his RS enticing.
SS Castro, Starlin HR/FB rate of only 8% is a little baffling, consider his 104 BBS on his HRs, but a closer look shows that he just doesn't make solid contact on a consistent basis (24 hard%). Still at only 25 there is some optimism moving to a more hitter friendly ballpark.
SS Cabrera, Asdrubal Heavy flyball hitter that really doesn't have homerun power, as evidenced by his 101.5 batted ball speed on his HRs. He does have gap power which will drive in runs, but owners will be hard pressed to get more than 75 RS from a hitter that doesn't get on base often enough.
SS Ramirez, Alexei Alexi just doesn't make consistent "hard" contact (21%) which limits his upside on HRs to the 12-15 range. . His BA however was depressed to an unlucky Singles % of only 218, so there is room for upward movement there. At 34 there's a risk we don't see 20+ HRs from him again.
SS Crawford, Brandon Unfortunately the jump in HRs and power production is likely not sustainable. Consider that his 16% HR/FB ratio is coming from a hitter with good but average batted ball speed. Additionally his home park is one of the most difficult to hit HRs in.
SS Gregorius, Didi Tends to be a flyball hitter without the pop (1.31 GB/FB hitter), which of course is going to hurt his BA, and Runs Scored ability. Ranked 313 in batted ball speed.
SS Escobar, Eduardo Could be a sneaky pick with upside. His power is legit, as he ranks inside the top 40 in overall batted ball speed, and as a flyball hitter (~1 to 1 ratio) with decent contact rates, he could hit 20 HRs down the line. Not much pop available at SS, makes him intriguing at a minimum.
SS Escobar, Alcides There is upside to the BA as his speed dictates a higher BABIP than .286. was 12 of 14 in SB attempts in 2nd half, so its fair to assume that he'll be running more in 2016.
SS Desmond, Ian Excellent bat speed, but consistency of that contact makes him a big variable to breakout or fail. Consider that his BBS on HR is 106, was among the top 10 in the league, however his 13% HR/FB rate was slightly above average. His Hard Hit% gives us a clearer picture, as Desmond only made hard contact 28% of the time last season, which is below average. If he can climb back into the 33% range of previous seasons be should be in line for a nice bounce back season, but he's still is looking for that new home.
SS Andrus, Elvis Production has been slipping, yet he's just entering his prime age range (27). Once a heavy groundball hitter, Andrus went from 2.8 GB;FB ratio to 1.5:1. This may have increased his HRs by 5, but dropped his BA to .258. Not sure what to think his approach will be this year, but someone should be in his ear, and hopefully he'll return to his groundball ways.
SS Iglesias, Jose Heavy Groundball rate (2.4:1) and 91% contact rate makes Iglesias a legit 280-290 hitter. Absolutely no power to speak of, and lack of walks hurts Runs Scored department. Additionally he was only 11 for 19 in SB attempts....which all limits his upside.
SS Simmons, Andrelton 89% Contact rate with the heavy 2.5:1 GB|FB rate would typically indicate a high BA, but upon closer inspection Simmons has a sub par 23% hard hit rate, yet his career BBS on his HRs is slightly above MLB average (103). All fantasy owners are hoping that he goes back to his upper cut swing of 2013 when he hit 17 HRs with almost an even 1:1 GB/FB ratio. He was certainly more productive offensively, despite having a BA that was 15 points less.
SS Duvall, Adam Adam Duvall is less a "prospect" than he is at least a AAAA player, and he really should be a major leaguer by now, at least from an age standpoint (26). However, Cincinnati doesn't promise any more opportunity for Adam than San Francisco did. The Reds seem to be set at first and third for a while so I'm not sure what the Reds' plans are for Adam. He has some plus raw pop, with some contact issues as well. Last year he posted a 68% contact rate with a 36% K rate! Ba is going to be a pretty big issue here as well as RS.
SS Ahmed, Nick 79% Contact rate, 6% walk rate, flyball oriented 1.2:1 GB/FB rate, below average power 99.8 BBS on HRs, with a teen SBs. Nothing to get excited about.
SS Bogaerts, Xander .372 BABIP/.310 BA is not sustainable, but he does make solid contact and he's quick out of the box. Will continue to progress as a gap hitter, which will of course aid his RS and RBI numbers. As he matures his 36% Outside of the swing zone rate will improve, allowing him to make better contact when he does swing.
SS Semien, Marcus Playing in a pitchers park, that typically doesn't forgive flyball hitters, and Semien is a flyball hitter (1:1 FB|GB ratio). Maintains a healthy 15% ISO, but doesn't really have the bat speed to become a mid 20s HR hitter.
SS Miller, Brad Miller has maintained a consistent 14% ISO during his time in the bigs, and his 30% Hard Hit rate is better than most. A few years ago his batted ball speed on his HRs was in elite territory (105.5), but that dropped considerably last season to only 101.7. At only 25, consider this a short term blimp, there is room for upside in the HR department.
all of the player projections and Fantasy Rankings customized for your league
setup in the 2016 Fantistics Fantasy Baseball Software.
SS Reyes, Jose Move to Colorado will have minimal impact on power, but will have an impact on runs scored. Facing ban for domestic violence, which dampens his draft status.
SS Peralta, Jhonny Decent option at shortstop with his 15-20 HRs, 70 RBI, and decent 270 BA.
SS Tulowitzki, Troy Scorches the baseball when healthy, but therein lies the rub. 37% of his batted balls were considered hit hard, but outside of Coors field, his .451 Slug is solid especially at his position, but no longer elite.
SS Polanco, Jorge Luis The grade B prospect according to Prospect Central, Polanco posted a solid .288/.339/.386 line with 6 homers and 19 steals in AA and AAA in 2015. Eduardo Escobar has been competent at SS, but Polanco has the superior tools. His solid EYE and contact skills may force the issue by the All-Star Break.
SS Sardinas, Luis Traded to the Mariners in the offseason, the once promising prospect is now fighting for a backup role in the great northwest. He doesn't walk (4% rate) and he chases over 40% of pitches out of the zone, which is a recipe that hasn't given him a chance to do what he did in the minors: steal bases. Unless an injury hits Cano or Marte, he'll struggle to find PT.
SS Shaffer, Richie Shaffer, a C level prospect, hit 26 homers and posted a .267/.357/.539 line in AA/AAA in 2015 before the Rays called him up. And while he hit 4 homers after the call up, he posted a 58% contact rate in 74 Abs. He needs more seasoning, but his versatility combined with the injury-risks ahead of him on the depth-chart should earn him some sporadic looks.
SS Marrero, Deven Marrero showed slight improvements across the board at AAA, slashing .256/.316/.344. A C- prospect, Marrero has posted ISO's under 1 in the upper minors, and he struck out 34% of the time with Boston. While he's added 3B to positions he can play, barring injury, he'll struggle to find playing time.
SS Baez, Javier Can hit the ball a country mile, but is still battling the K rate. That said he did show progression in his 76 Abs last season, dropping his K rate to 30% from 41%. At only 23 there's plenty of time for development, but we can't expect it all to happen in 2016. If he sticks in lineup can easily be a 20-25 HR guy, but BA is a major risk play here.
SS Marte, Ketel Marte posted an 82% contact rate and a 2:1 GB/FB rate to go with a BB-rate over 9%. BABIP was .341, but underlying indicators suggest he'll maintain an AVG in the .270-.280 range.
SS Taylor, Chris Taylor posted a solid .287/.347/.346 line with the M's in 2014, but struggled to a .170/.220/.223 line last season before being sent down. His high FB rate and low contact rate have banished him to the Instructional League this fall and likely the minors for most of 2016.
SS Turner, Trea Turner posted a .322/.370/.458 line in AA/AAA in 2015 while hitting 8 homers and stealing 29 bases. While Dusty Baker will likely begin the year with the Vets, Turner showed he's ready in his 2015 audition, posting an 84% contact rate. He should force the Nats' hand by mid-May.
SS Kang, Jung-ho Displayed superior BBS of 107 on HRs last season with 409 distance. Couple this with his 34% Hard Hit rate and we're looking at a 20+ HR shortstop in 2016. A moderate 1.8:1 GB|FB ratio keeps his average in 270-280 range despite a 77% contact rate.
SS Crawford, J.P. The Grade A, uber-prospect should be up near the ASB. He posted a .288/.380/.414 line with 6 homers and 12 steals across high-A/AA and only Freddy Galvis stands in his way. It's tough not to like a SS with future 15/20 upside who brings a BB:K ratio above 1, but look for the Phillies to ease him in with an eye on 2017.
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