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ABOUT THE ARTICLE
We all love homers, dingers, bombs, big flys, dongs, moon shots, jacks and four baggers. This article breaks down what pitchers, hitters and ballparks to target and avoid. Based on the statistics I find and what my heart tells me, I’ll write about three high-to-mid priced players and a value play I see doing yard work and why.
HIGHEST HR PARK FACTOR IN 2018
- Great American Ball Park – STL vs. CIN (1.395; 1st in MLB)
- Globe Life Park – OAK vs. TEX (1.273; 3rd in MLB)
- Dodger Stadium – MIL vs. LAD (1.057; 11th in MLB)
LOWEST HR PARK FACTOR IN 2018
- SunTrust Park – NYM vs. ATL (0.802 HR; 27th in MLB)
- Kauffman Stadium – CLE vs. KC (0.895 HR; 21st in MLB)
- Chase Field – SD vs. ARI (0.995 HR; 19th in MLB)
HIGHEST HR/9 IN 2018
Note: Still early in the season, so I’ve incorporated a lot of last year’s stats as well as everything that has happened in the new campaign. For the purpose of this article, I’ll be putting up all of the numbers pitcher’s and hitters accumulated in 2018.
HIGHEST HR/9 IN 2018
- Adrian Sampson vs. OAK (2.35)
- Homer Bailey vs. CLE (1.95)
- Marco Estrada @ TEX (1.82)
- Jason Vargas @ ATL (1.76)
Note: Sampson only pitched 23 innings in 2018.
LOWEST HR/9 IN 2018
- Matt Strahm @ ARI (0.88)
- Sean Newcomb vs. NYM (0.99)
- Zach Davies @ LAD (1.09)
- Adam Wainwright @ CIN (1.12)
HIGHEST HR/9 vs. LEFTIES IN 2018
- Homer Bailey vs. CLE (2.29)
- Adrian Sampson vs. OAK (1.93)
- Felix Hernandez vs. HOU (1.85)
- Caleb Ferguson vs. MIL (1.83)
LOWEST HR/9 vs. LEFTIES IN 2018
- Zach Davies @ LAD (0.62)
- Adam Wainwright @ CIN (0.90)
- Jason Vargas @ ATL (1.25)
- Tanner Roark vs. STL (1.26)
HIGHEST HR/9 vs. RIGHTIES IN 2018
- Adrian Sampson vs. OAK (3.00)
- Marco Estrada @ TEX (2.04)
- Jason Vargas @ ATL (1.92)
- Homer Bailey vs. CLE (1.63)
LOWEST HR/9 vs. RIGHTIES IN 2018
- Matt Strahm @ ARI (0.60)
- Sean Newcomb vs. NYM (0.78)
- Justin Verlander @ SEA (1.10)
- Tanner Roark vs. STL (1.14)
HITTERS WITH HIGHEST ISO vs. OPPONENTS HANDINESS IN 2018
- Ryan O’Hearn vs. Jefry Rodriguez, RHP (.393)
- Max Muncy vs. Zach Davies, RHP (.324)
- Jose Ramirez vs. Homer Bailey, RHP (.315)
- Ronald Acuna vs. Jason Vargas, LHP (.293)
- Ryan Braun vs. Caleb Ferguson, LHP (.277)
- Jesus Aguilar vs. Caleb Ferguson, LHP (.267)
HITTERS WITH LOWEST ISO vs. OPPONENTS HANDINESS IN 2018
- Austin Barnes vs. Zach Davies, RHP (.035)
- Delino DeShields vs. Marco Estrada RHP (.059)
- Jonathan Lucroy vs. Adrian Sampson, RHP (.065)
- Isiah Kiner-Falefa vs. Marco Estrada RHP (.071)
- Ender Inciarte vs. Jason Vargas, LHP (.070)
- Orlando Arcia vs. Caleb Ferguson, LHP (.073)
Ronald Acuna vs. Jason Vargas
I love everything about this matchup for Acuna. He’s one of the best right-handed hitters in the game today and absolutely demolishes southpaws. In 136 at-bats against lefties in 2018, he posted a .293 ISO, 415 wOBA and 42.1 Hard%. Additionally, he’s not facing Blake Snell or Clayton Kershaw in his prime, he’s going up against Jason Vargas. The soft-tossing lefty is boasting a 9.00 ERA and 5.83 SIERA in 2019. He’s not a talented guy and someone we will be picking on very often this season. Furthermore, if you watch Acuna at the plate, you’ll notice that he does an excellent job hitting offspeed pitches. With Vargas’ fastball looking like a changeup, I’m expecting Acuna to see the ball well and provide us with a ton of fantasy points.
Matt Chapman vs. Adrian Sampson
Before deciding to roster Chapman or stack this contest, it’s very important for you to stay up-to-date on the weather. As I’m writing this article, there is expected to be 80 percent chance of rain at first pitch. If this forecast sticks, there will likely be a delay and the game could be postponed. However, if the weather clears up, I like Chapman quite a bit this evening.
Chapman was terrific against right-handed pitching in 2018 and that same handiness split has carried over into 2019. In his first 46 at-bats against righties, the third baseman owns a .436 wOBA, .214 ISO and 8.7 K%. He’s going up against Sampson this evening, who is boasting a 5.34 SIERA after two appearances and is making his first start of the campaign. I’m looking for Chapman and the Athletics to put quite a few points on the board this evening.
Michael Brantley vs. Felix Hernandez
After a slow start to the new season, Brantley has really picked things up. In his last 10 contests, he’s posted a .333 AVG to go along with a dinger. Although King Felix has not allowed a longball in 6.1 innings of work this season, I still like Brantley’s chances this evening. He hits right-handed pitching extremely well, and Hernandez struggled against lefties a year ago. Left-handed hitters posted a .353 wOBA and 41.3 Hard contact rate against him. Moreover, similar to Acuna, Brantley is another guy that hits slow pitching well. As we all know, Hernandez has seen a major dip in his velocity since he was in his prime, which gives Brantley an edge.
Hanley Ramirez vs. Homer Bailey
Similar to Ronald Acuna, the ballpark Ramirez will be playing in tonight isn’t the most ideal location for long balls. However, both guys are facing pitchers that are prone to giving up dingers. This season, Bailey has given up three homers in last season, and gave up 23 long balls in 106.1 innings of work a year ago. He has a tough time keeping the ball in the ballpark, which is why I like the idea of getting exposure to Ramirez if you’re looking for value. Despite Ramirez being passed his prime, his swing still looks good and he’s performed well against righties. In 29 PA, he’s posted a .347 wOBA and .250 ISO.