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Fantasy Baseball Player Notes

2021 Fantasy Baseball Draft Notes

Aaron Nola Note
Aaron Nola photo 8. Aaron Nola
Nola bounced back from his disappointing 2019 campaign, and looked much closer to the 2018 breakout version of himself last year. His set a career mark in strikeout rate (33.2%, which ranked in the top nine percent in the league) and swinging strike rate (13.4%), and brought his walk rate down to just eight percent. Nola also got batters to swing at pitches outside the strike zone at a rate of 38.1%, far better than he had ever done in his career, and they made contact less than ever, at a rate of only 59.1%. The reason for the change was Nola relying far less on his fastball and more on his changeup, which kept hitters off balance and made both pitches more effective. Nola doesn't throw particularly hard, so his success relies much more on command and finding the right pitch mix, both of which he excelled at in 2020. If he can keep that going in 2021, and it's a good bet he will, he should be considered a fantasy ace.
37 weeks ago
Zack Wheeler Note
Zack Wheeler photo 25. Zack Wheeler
Wheeler's first season in Philadelphia was a success, in that he had the lowest ERA of his career (2.92) and a strong 1.17 WHIP. But his strikeout numbers plummeted, as he struck out just 18.4% of batters. The whiff rate on all of Wheeler's pitches, other than his "show me" curveball, dropped significantly, despite the fact that his velocity remained the same. If Wheeler can again excel at completely limiting hard contact like he did last season (his 85.7 MPH average exit velocity allowed ranked in the top 10% in baseball), then he can probably get away with the lack of strikeouts. Otherwise, he's unlikely to repeat his 2020 success. Given the shortened season, it's a good bet that Wheeler's strikeouts will bounce back, and you can slot him in as an SP3 without much worry.
37 weeks ago
Zach Eflin Note
Zach Eflin photo 57. Zach Eflin
Kyle Gibson Note
Kyle Gibson photo 147. Kyle Gibson
Mick Abel Note
Mick Abel photo 266. Mick Abel
Tyler Phillips Note
Tyler Phillips photo 267. Tyler Phillips
Damon Jones Note
Damon Jones photo 303. Damon Jones
Scott Moss Note
Scott Moss photo 367. Scott Moss
Adonis Medina Note
Adonis Medina photo 387. Adonis Medina