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Statcast Review: Trey Mancini, Ronald Acuna Jr., Hunter Greene (2022 Fantasy Baseball)

Aug 18, 2022
Ronald Acuna Jr.

For as straightforward as a home run appears — a ball either lands beyond the fence or in front of it — it still has another set of underlying metrics that can be used to best categorize it. This is common, and looking at the standard output through advanced filters has been the focal point of these Statcast articles.

As has been the case with the bulk of this series, the topic of this piece was addressed earlier in the season. Numbers change over time, of course, so we are revisiting it both to see what the state of the home run looks like in late August, as well as touch upon what has changed in this category over the past eight weeks.

Home Runs — Expected Home Runs: Batters

Below are two tables for Home Runs — Expected Home Runs for batters. The first table is sorted low-to-high by HR-xHR, while the second table is sorted high-to-low by HR-xHR. The columns of Doubters, Mostly Gone, No Doubters, and No Doubter % represent the likelihood of a player’s home run in all ballparks across Major League Baseball. Per Statcast, the elevation of the field, wind, weather, and other environmental factors have been included in the calculations. The top 25 and ties were used as a cutoff for each table below.

Sorted Low-to-High

Player Doubters Mostly Gone No Doubters No Doubter % Actual HR xHR HR-xHR
Trey Mancini 8 20 4 30.8 13 18.7 -5.7
Alex Verdugo 10 11 3 42.9 7 11.4 -4.4
Oscar Gonzalez 4 8 0 0 3 6.5 -3.5
Ronald Acuna Jr. 5 7 8 80 10 13.5 -3.5
Javier Baez 6 16 4 36.4 11 14.3 -3.3
J.D. Martinez 8 13 4 44.4 9 12.1 -3.1
Ha-Seong Kim 6 11 2 33.3 6 9 -3.0
Vinnie Pasquantino 6 6 5 62.5 8 11 -3.0
Franchy Cordero 4 6 3 75 4 6.9 -2.9
Cesar Hernandez 6 4 0 0 2.8 -2.8
Dylan Carlson 6 7 5 62.5 8 10.8 -2.8
Jeimer Candelario 4 10 5 50 10 12.7 -2.7
Garrett Cooper 7 9 4 57.1 7 9.6 -2.6
Jesse Winker 4 11 6 50 12 14.6 -2.6
Andrew Benintendi 10 6 0 0 3 5.5 -2.5
Albert Pujols 6 7 6 60 10 12.5 -2.5
Ryan Mountcastle 8 15 8 50 16 18.5 -2.5
Anthony Santander 7 16 11 55 20 22.5 -2.5
Rafael Ortega 3 5 3 60 5 7.4 -2.4
Juan Yepez 5 8 8 72.7 11 13.4 -2.4
Austin Meadows 2 3 0 0 2.3 -2.3
Christian Bethancourt 5 10 1 20 5 7.3 -2.3
Franmil Reyes 3 12 2 20 10 12.3 -2.3
Ramon Laureano 5 10 7 58.3 12 14.3 -2.3
Daulton Varsho 5 16 5 31.3 16 18.3 -2.3

 

Sorted High-to-Low

Player Doubters Mostly Gone No Doubters No Doubter % Actual HR xHR HR-xHR
Corey Seager 11 21 5 19.2 26 21.5 4.5
Yordan Alvarez 12 21 11 35.5 31 27 4.0
Mookie Betts 12 23 4 15.4 26 22.1 3.9
Bo Bichette 10 12 5 29.4 17 13.3 3.7
Bryan Reynolds 5 13 3 17.6 17 13.6 3.4
Brandon Drury 7 20 6 26.1 23 19.7 3.3
Rowdy Tellez 7 19 8 33.3 24 20.7 3.3
Brendan Rodgers 5 9 1 9.1 11 8 3.0
Jose Altuve 7 13 6 31.6 19 16 3.0
Alex Bregman 11 11 4 25 16 13.2 2.8
Victor Caratini 3 4 2 25 8 5.5 2.5
Anthony Rizzo 9 18 10 37 27 24.5 2.5
Cody Bellinger 6 13 4 25 16 13.7 2.3
Hunter Renfroe 3 11 9 45 20 17.7 2.3
Joey Votto 7 10 2 18.2 11 8.8 2.2
Willy Adames 8 16 7 31.8 22 19.8 2.2
Sergio Alcantara 2 1 0 0 3 0.9 2.1
Harold Ramirez 4 2 1 25 4 1.9 2.1
Brian Serven 4 2 1 20 5 2.9 2.1
Edwin Rios 0 6 1 14.3 7 4.9 2.1
Frank Schwindel 8 4 2 25 8 5.9 2.1
Jared Walsh 6 12 3 21.4 14 11.9 2.1
Randy Arozarena 9 13 2 13.3 15 12.9 2.1
Taylor Ward 13 14 3 18.8 16 14 2.0
Tyler Stephenson 3 3 1 16.7 6 4.1 1.9
Jazz Chisholm Jr. 4 11 3 21.4 14 12.1 1.9
Will Smith 7 12 6 35.3 17 15.1 1.9
Jose Ramirez 8 15 7 31.8 22 20.1 1.9

Notes

  • The more things change, the more they stay the same. Trey Mancini was atop the leaderboard for positive home run regression in the last iteration of this article two months ago, and he retains that honor today. The irony is that Mancini had played most of the season in a ballpark that was no longer conducive for right-handed power — the Baltimore Orioles moved back their fence in left field — but he was recently traded to the Houston Astros and a home ballpark with a left-field fence much closer to home plate. Mancini has made some progress — his HR-xHR was -6, so it has moved slightly — and, while he probably won’t shift down the list too dramatically, there is still the same expectation of better home run numbers ahead of him.
  • Javier Baez is having a season to forget, and he has found himself on the wrong side of many of these articles over the past few months. Here, we can give him a slight break. Baez isn’t performing to his former standards, but we can also see that he has a route to some positive home run correction. Between these numbers and the now-rock-bottom perception, there might actually be an opportunity to add Baez at a low price and take advantage of any late-season pop.
  • Ronald Acuna Jr. has some interesting numbers in the chart above. Of the group listed, he has the highest “No Doubter %” with 80%. He is also tied for third in HR-xHR. There is a strange combination, therefore, where he is either crushing pitches that easily clear the fences, or he is the product of bad luck. Acuna is obviously one of the top names in fantasy baseball — at least, on a per-at-bat basis — and there is some justification for expecting a little more out of him than we have seen to date.
  • Corey Seager has appeared in many of these Statcast articles since the start of the season, but it is truly a surprise to see him leading this particular list. That’s because Seager was often highlighted as a player whose actual numbers were far worse than his expected ones. Not in the case of home runs. Seager may be a prime candidate for positive correction in his ratio statistics, but he is obviously outpacing his expected home runs to the point that he is now at risk for a negative regression in that category.

Home Runs — Expected Home Runs: Pitchers

Below are two tables for Home Runs — Expected Home Runs allowed by pitchers. The first table is sorted high-to-low by HR-xHR, while the second table is sorted low-to-high by HR-xHR. The columns of Doubters, Mostly Gone, No Doubters, and No Doubter % represent the likelihood of a player’s home run in all ballparks across Major League Baseball. Per Statcast, the elevation of the field, wind, weather, and other environmental factors have been included in the calculations. The top 25 and ties were used as a cutoff for each table below.

Sorted High-to-Low

Player Doubters Mostly Gone No Doubters No Doubter % Actual HR xHR HR-xHR
Josiah Gray 6 25 7 22.6 31 26.3 4.7
German Marquez 10 11 8 38.1 21 17.3 3.7
Julio Urias 6 14 2 13.3 15 11.9 3.1
Sean Manaea 3 15 8 38.1 21 18.1 2.9
Daniel Norris 3 3 2 28.6 7 4.1 2.9
Hunter Greene 5 13 11 47.8 23 20.3 2.7
Will Smith 5 8 1 11.1 9 6.3 2.7
Jose Urquidy 9 15 7 35 20 17.4 2.6
Alex Wood 4 9 2 16.7 12 9.5 2.5
Dauri Moreta 2 6 3 33.3 9 6.5 2.5
Tyler Mahle 7 15 1 6.7 15 12.6 2.4
Vladimir Gutierrez 4 6 1 12.5 8 5.6 2.4
Austin Gomber 10 12 6 35.3 17 14.7 2.3
Colin Poche 2 6 3 33.3 9 6.8 2.2
Kyle Gibson 9 7 9 52.9 17 15 2.0
Corbin Burnes 8 12 5 31.3 16 14.1 1.9
Michael Kopech 10 9 5 38.5 13 11.1 1.9
Shane Bieber 9 9 3 27.3 11 9.1 1.9
Matt Bush 1 5 0 0 6 4.1 1.9
Jose Urena 4 7 2 25 8 6.2 1.8
Ian Gibaut 2 0 0 0 2 0.2 1.8
Jose Berrios 7 20 10 38.5 26 24.3 1.7
Charlie Morton 5 13 6 33.3 18 16.3 1.7
Aaron Sanchez 1 7 0 0 6 4.3 1.7
Jhoan Duran 2 3 2 33.3 6 4.3 1.7
Ryan Pepiot 1 2 2 40 5 3.3 1.7
Edwin Diaz 1 2 0 0 3 1.3 1.7

 

Sorted Low-to-High

Player Doubters Mostly Gone No Doubters No Doubter % Actual HR xHR HR-xHR
Nick Pivetta 9 25 3 16.7 18 24.2 -6.2
Zach Plesac 11 14 9 56.3 16 19.9 -3.9
Rony Garcia 4 11 4 44.4 9 12.8 -3.8
Alex Faedo 4 9 4 57.1 7 10.7 -3.7
Jordan Lyles 15 22 6 31.6 19 22.6 -3.6
Drew Hutchison 8 11 0 0 5 8.5 -3.5
Spenser Watkins 6 9 4 50 8 11.1 -3.1
Corey Kluber 10 13 5 38.5 13 15.9 -2.9
Bailey Ober 1 6 0 0 2 4.8 -2.8
Sandy Alcantara 12 11 3 37.5 8 10.8 -2.8
Carlos Carrasco 5 15 7 46.7 15 17.8 -2.8
Beau Brieske 8 15 7 50 14 16.7 -2.7
Konnor Pilkington 8 6 2 50 4 6.6 -2.6
Adam Wainwright 11 15 6 42.9 14 16.6 -2.6
Craig Kimbrel 3 6 0 0 2 4.5 -2.5
Garrett Hill 4 5 4 66.7 6 8.5 -2.5
Daniel Lynch 7 15 2 18.2 11 13.5 -2.5
Dean Kremer 6 9 3 42.9 7 9.2 -2.2
Taylor Hearn 5 9 4 40 10 12.1 -2.1
JT Brubaker 7 10 7 58.3 12 14.1 -2.1
Chris Bassitt 11 15 4 26.7 15 17.1 -2.1
Andre Pallante 2 11 2 25 8 10 -2.0
Tarik Skubal 5 7 5 55.6 9 11 -2.0
Marco Gonzales 7 19 9 42.9 21 23 -2.0
Kyle Barraclough 0 3 0 0 1.9 -1.9
Tyler Matzek 2 3 1 50 2 3.9 -1.9
A.J. Puk 1 7 1 25 4 5.9 -1.9
Roansy Contreras 6 8 5 55.6 9 10.9 -1.9
Zac Gallen 5 12 2 18.2 11 12.9 -1.9
Brady Singer 6 14 3 23.1 13 14.9 -1.9
Cole Irvin 15 11 9 60 15 16.9 -1.9

Notes

  • Josiah Gray’s numbers are, in a word, sad. He has allowed more home runs than any other pitcher in Major League Baseball, and he would still lead in this category if he were to only have allowed his xHR number instead of his actual HR total. The worst part for Gray is that he appeared in this same table in the last installment of this column, and he was a candidate for positive correction. He has continued to struggle to the point that we can’t use his position at the top of the list as anything more than a troubling realization of his poor season.
  • Hunter Greene is another repeat from the prior version of this article, but we can look at his numbers through a different lens. Indeed, he isn’t limiting home runs, but he is stabilizing his HR-xHR. It has decreased slightly over the past two months, and it is possible that his actual HR total is reflecting a better output than it could have been. Greene is currently injured, but it will be interesting to see how he returns to action — assuming the Reds don’t shut him down for the remainder of the season — where we are either seeing his real home run rate or a corrected version that will continue to improve, albeit in small increments.
  • Tyler Mahle is another player who has been featured in Statcast articles throughout the season, but we weren’t the only people to pay attention to his underlying numbers. The Minnesota Twins traded for Mahle and, through two starts, have seen solid results. He has allowed four earned runs through 12 innings, which is already a vast improvement from his numbers with the Reds. The focus of this article, of course, is on home runs, and that is where Mahle can provide even more hidden value. Only one of the 15 home runs he has allowed on the year was considered a “No Doubter” and he is currently on the wrong side of the HR-xHR equation. If he can move his home runs in the direction that the above chart suggests, the Twins — and fantasy managers — will love what they have in Mahle for the rest of the season.
  • Nick Pivetta’s HR-xHR sticks out so boldly that we can’t start a write-up about the second chart by looking anywhere else. Unfortunately for Pivetta, he appeared in the same table two months ago and has only moved in the wrong direction since then. In being fair to him and highlighting other names, Sandy Alcantara is another returning player from the prior installment and he, too, has seen his home run numbers suffer. In fact, his post-All-Star-Break numbers are consistently worse than what he did in the first half of the year. Granted, we are looking at a small sample size, but the key point is that he was a negative regression candidate for home runs and has now allowed two through five games as compared to a total of six home runs in his first 19 starts.

Have something you want me to cover in this space, or do you just want to talk baseball? Feel free to reach out on Twitter @MarioMergola with questions or requests.

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Mario Mergola is a featured writer at FantasyPros and BettingPros and the creator and content editor of Sporfolio. For more from Mario, check out his archive and follow him @MarioMergola.

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