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Joey Gallo 2020 Outlook


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One of the Kings of raw power and his batting average last year went from liability to respectable. Slumped after coming back from an oblique injury, but it was discovered he had a broken hamate bone. Which ended his season.

BABIP was almost 100 points over his career mark. So did anything change? Well yes, he was more patient last year. He dropped his O-Swing and chase rates. Just an effort to be more selective.

He will regress in BA, but the PD gain could mean more a 215-230 BA range then his .200-.210 range. Either way, with the injury behind him. He should be one the leaders in HRs again. If the ball is de-juiced. He should hit 40+, if it's still going to be juiced. We could be seeing a 50+ HR season.

He's way way more appealing in OBP or OPS formats with his PD gains that bumped his BB rate. Probably one the bigger value disparities in formats. He's at worst, going to be a 3 cat stud who may sprinkle 5-7 SBs. You should plan to complement his skills on draft day by getting a Michael Brantley, Jeff McNeil or Bryan Reynolds to muff his BA risk. IMO

StatCast   Fangraphs

Edited by Slatykamora
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I personally don’t view him as the .200 hitter Gallo anymore. More like the .230-.240 Gallo which is really valuable.

 

I actually think he’ll be undervalued next year based on the injury. I am sort of worried about the hamate injury, despite the fact that it didn’t seem to affect guys like Stanton, Olson. He also has tons of power to spare.

 

 

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  • 2 months later...

Ben Clemens, Fangraphs: Joey Gallo Swung Less, Except When it Was Good to Swing More

Quote

Not only did he keep the valuable swings while cutting the situations where they were less useful, but he put up good two-strike discipline numbers as well. He chased only 22.3% of the time on two strikes while offering at 77.4% of pitches in the zone. Before 2019, he hadn’t been as judicious in chasing, swinging at 28.6% of pitches outside of the zone. Being more judicious with bad swings didn’t hurt him in the zone, either; he swung at 78.5% of pitches there from 2015-2018, barely higher than what he managed in 2019.

In other words, Joey Gallo figured it out. In situations where he had been giving away equity by swinging, he started swinging less. In situations where a swing is relatively more valuable, he kept swinging away at the same rate he always has. And he even improved his plate discipline in the bargain.

So with all those good things going on, why did Gallo’s strikeout rate jump? It’s merely the cost of optimization. It’s correct for Gallo to swing less often, as we just covered. A lot of the time, that leads to favorable counts and pitchers forced to meet Gallo where he wants them, in the strike zone. That’s the good outcome, and it happens enough that Gallo’s strategy is an overall success.

But there are downsides to keeping the bat on your shoulder, even if it’s a good strategy on the whole. Fewer swings means more favorable counts, but it also means more unfavorable counts and less early-count contact. The reason the overall package works is because many more plate appearances end in walks or with a ball in the strike zone getting walloped into outer space, but the cost of those outcomes is more deep counts and strikeouts.

Truth be told, Gallo’s strikeout rate is probably something he can’t fix. You can’t swing like Joey Gallo does and not whiff a decent amount of the time. But his new approach works within the constraints of his game, and it pushed his game to new levels. Can he keep it up in 2020? Who knows! His BABIP will surely drop, but it wouldn’t be a shock to see his strikeouts come down as well, as pitchers are forced to come to him in the zone more. I don’t know the future — but I do know that the 2019 version of Joey Gallo was his cleverest version yet.

 

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14 hours ago, Professor Turgeson said:

Gallo's power plays in the Grand Canyon. So no. 

 

eh.... feel like there's at least some cause for concern:

image.thumb.png.933ca0e25401897a524eb0a73828b6e1.png

image.thumb.png.3dd21daed2cb637eb9e3923f3ff0185d.png

Those are some grim career splits if it turns out the new yard isn't as friendly.

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  • 1 month later...

Projection systems can't really account for a player who makes a lasting change to their approach.  That's just not how they work.

The premise is flawed anyway, as his Contact% was actually down last season from ~62% in 2018 to ~60% in 2019.  What was up last season was the BABIP, which can sometimes be a function of making good contact, but also includes some luck as well.  In just a 70 game sample, it would be foolish to readjust his baseline and throw away several years of data that show he's a liability when it comes to AVG.

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On 1/31/2020 at 3:34 PM, CrypTviLL said:

Anyone slightly worried about the new home park?

 

Edit: I just realized it has a retractable roof.  Not sure how much of a factor humidity will be.

 

Good article.  Will probably be more neutral.

 

https://www.star-telegram.com/sports/mlb/texas-rangers/article222349525.html

Edited by B&F
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1 hour ago, tonycpsu said:

Projection systems can't really account for a player who makes a lasting change to their approach.  That's just not how they work.

The premise is flawed anyway, as his Contact% was actually down last season from ~62% in 2018 to ~60% in 2019.  What was up last season was the BABIP, which can sometimes be a function of making good contact, but also includes some luck as well.  In just a 70 game sample, it would be foolish to readjust his baseline and throw away several years of data that show he's a liability when it comes to AVG.


His Xavg has stayed the same while his average has fluctuated between -20 and +20 for the last 2 years.  I don’t see why this year would be any different, expect an average anywhere between 210 and 250 (Xaverage 230)

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He hits LHP very well which is rare for a Left handed hitting power hitter.  I don't care what his BABIP is...something's up.  You don't see many LH hitters hit to a tune of .333/.427/.747 slash line.  Sure it's a SSS.  But he's generally hit lefties well, maybe even better than righties for his career.  I'm also noting there was only one month he hit worse than .250 and that was in JULY, right before the stint to the DL.  Pre All-Star he was just incredible.

I'm going to roll the dice and gamble if he's not too expensive.

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10 hours ago, KingJoffrey said:

He hits LHP very well which is rare for a Left handed hitting power hitter.  I don't care what his BABIP is...something's up.  You don't see many LH hitters hit to a tune of .333/.427/.747 slash line.  Sure it's a SSS.  But he's generally hit lefties well, maybe even better than righties for his career.  I'm also noting there was only one month he hit worse than .250 and that was in JULY, right before the stint to the DL.  Pre All-Star he was just incredible.

I'm going to roll the dice and gamble if he's not too expensive.

Same. He definitely gets a boost in leagues that factor in BBs or OBP too. And the fact that he isn't a zero in stolen bases helps a lot too.

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His Ks didn’t improve but one thing you gotta Iike about Joey is that he made an approach change to swing at less junk (hence the massive spike in BB%) and go after pitches he could clobber (note the BABIP increase and 50 HR pace before his injuries).

 

One of the things statcast and sabermetrics cant account for is the makeup, awareness, and work ethic of players realizing their weaknesses and making improvements

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Early reports say the new Rangers Ballpark will play more neutral than the old one, but I still think it will be hitter friendly. Right field is 326 down the line! Gallo was smiling after taking batting practice there, excited about the right field dimensions. Willie Calhoun had similar comments about the left field power alley.

Still though, it probably won’t be the hitters paradise that it was in the past. The outfield won’t be as big, no jet stream and pitchers won’t be dealing with 150 degree temperatures like they were in the past. But early reactions indicate it will still be pretty HR friendly.

I expect Gallo’s numbers to look pretty similar to last year. He’ll be swinging for the fences, aiming for the short right field wall.

Edited by DFWSooner
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  • 4 months later...

Rangers have been pretty awful but Joey G is in for a big season I feel. 6/7 BB/K, with 3 bombs and 2 steals even.

Dong off a lefty was very impressive. This guy can take it to another level this year.

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