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Fantasy Baseball: Players Expected Stats Are Too Low On

Baseball Savant’s expected statistics are a great measure of what a player’s production should be. However, this doesn’t mean it should be used as a predictive tool to project what a player will do moving forward.

Based on my research at Fangraphsoverall statistics are more predictive of future production than expected statistics. Why? Well, there are certain limitations of expected stats. These statistics factor in exit velocity and launch angle, but do not take into account other key factors, such as batted-ball trajectory. A pulled fly ball, for instance, has a better chance of ending up as a home run that a ball hit the other way, while hitters with even sprays tend to post higher batting average on balls in play.

As we’ve shown with both expected batting average and expected power, there are clear ways to outperform your expected statistics. Today, we’re going to be looking at players that fit that bill. Who are going to hit for a better batting average or more power than their expected statistics would suggest? Let us take a closer look!

Things look bleak now but there will be baseball in 2022! Why not get a head start and jump in a Fantrax Classic Draft contest? Get a jump on the season with a Best Ball league or maybe a Draft and Hold. Or put some green on the line with a new season-long league to try and conquer. There’s no better time than now to get your baseball on!

Overachieving Expected Batting Average

PlayerBA OverachieveReal xBAxbaBA
Shogo Akiyama85.28375.263.234.204
Raimel Tapia83.5015.277.249.273
Magneuris Sierra81.4105.253.226.230
Jon Berti80.90925.260.233.210
Travis Jankowski78.45975.249.223.252
Nick Madrigal77.1905.288.263.305
Tim Locastro74.2655.231.207.180
Nicky Lopez74.
Myles Straw72.95775.283.260.271
Willi Castro72.2095.267.244.220
Nathaniel Lowe70.958.258.236.264
Brandon Nimmo70.85025.294.272.292
Amed Rosario70.5165.287.265.282
Kevin Kiermaier70.24375.254.232.259
Nico Hoerner70.231.301.279.302
Yonathan Daza70.14675.281.259.282
Adam Eaton69.69575.237.216.201
David Fletcher69.675.292.271.262
Owen Miller69.466.243.222.204
Starling Marte69.366.298.277.310
Jazz Chisholm Jr.
Jeff McNeil68.8935.276.255.251
Andres Gimenez68.35525.231.210.218
Isiah Kiner-Falefa68.32875.288.267.271
Leury Garcia68.27675.260.239.267
Leody Taveras67.86825.232.211.161
Ke'Bryan Hayes67.7765.268.247.257
Mike Tauchman67.6665.215.195.181
Nick Solak67.5405.257.237.242
Brett Gardner67.50625.236.216.222
J.T. Realmuto66.67275.273.253.263
Christian Yelich66.5045.274.254.248
Erik Gonzalez66.37475.273.253.232
Yonny Hernandez65.7715.271.251.217
Tim Anderson65.2805.299.280.309
Joey Wendle64.995.256.237.265
Andrew Stevenson64.6915.257.238.229
Trea Turner64.3455.322.303.328
Harold Ramirez64.33925.288.269.268
Bo Bichette64.16175.310.291.298
Luis Guillorme63.97725.257.238.265
Kelvin Gutierrez63.82875.237.218.232
Odubel Herrera63.4065.270.252.260
Jean Segura63.40475.283.265.290
Phil Gosselin63.3035.257.239.261
Bradley Zimmer63.30075.242.224.227
Brandon Marsh63.12175.283.265.254
Derek Hill62.9725.261.243.259
David Peralta62.6085.260.242.259
Garrett Hampson62.0335.253.235.234
Akil Baddoo61.87575.245.227.259
Juan Soto61.8135.322.304.313
Corey Dickerson61.78325.268.250.271
Jorge Alfaro61.62825.264.246.244
Lorenzo Cain61.527.270.253.257
Edmundo Sosa60.9955.282.265.271
Jake Cronenworth60.6375.297.280.266
Whit Merrifield60.
Alex Verdugo60.35225.302.285.289
Eric Hosmer60.1815.284.267.269
Abraham Toro60.10575.263.246.239
Wilmer Difo60.02225.245.228.269
Harrison Bader59.89525.249.232.267
Gavin Lux59.8835.277.260.242
Tommy Edman59.85575.292.275.262
Luis Arraez59.62525.311.294.294
Santiago Espinal59.582.284.267.311
DJ LeMahieu59.567.299.282.268
Alcides Escobar59.53725.289.272.288
Charlie Culberson59.421.245.229.243
Ryan McKenna59.10125.216.200.183
Jonathan Villar59.0905.251.235.249
Victor Reyes59.07625.273.257.258
Ian Happ58.97175.236.220.226
Shohei Ohtani58.96675.283.267.257
Luis Rengifo58.9475.253.237.201
Luis Garcia58.7285.256.240.242
Cedric Mullins II58.68625.288.272.291
Cesar Hernandez58.58025.257.241.232
Christian Arroyo58.4245.248.232.262
Jake Cave58.
Alec Bohm58.14675.280.264.247
Tyler Stephenson58.0895.273.257.286
Jake Meyers57.92475.263.247.260
Josh Rojas57.84675.252.236.264
Jack Mayfield57.70675.203.187.218
Miguel Andujar57.6805.284.268.253
Steven Duggar57.663.248.232.257
Byron Buxton57.58925.316.300.306
Daulton Varsho57.585.264.248.246
Randy Arozarena57.5145.236.220.274
Brian Anderson57.5075.231.215.249
Michael A. Taylor57.50075.262.246.244
Austin Slater57.412.271.256.241
Danny Mendick57.34775.216.201.220
Wander Franco57.21025.296.281.288
Taylor Walls56.8685.223.208.211
Ramon Urias56.86725.284.269.279
Jesus Sanchez56.81325.259.244.251
Alex Kirilloff56.7515.306.291.251
Eric Sogard56.68175.215.200.249
Phillip Evans56.5965.259.244.206
Manuel Margot56.39425.283.268.254
Yadiel Hernandez56.25325.255.240.273
Adam Frazier56.1795.302.287.305
J.P. Crawford56.
Jose Iglesias56.09125.284.269.271
Yoan Moncada56.
Brendan Rodgers55.60025.266.251.284
Ozzie Albies55.554.274.259.259
Juan Lagares55.481.258.243.236
Tyler O'Neill55.
David Dahl55.13675.260.246.210
Jace Peterson55.03075.252.238.247
Willson Contreras54.88175.253.239.237
Kevin Newman54.718.269.255.226
Matt Duffy54.0955.289.275.287
Bryce Harper54.04475.315.301.309
Eloy Jimenez54.0055.262.248.249
Francisco Mejia53.9125.244.230.260
Jorge Mateo53.82325.257.243.247
David Bote53.82275.244.230.199
Taylor Ward53.76325.273.259.250
Trevor Story53.7215.259.245.251
Bryan De La Cruz53.68475.268.254.296
Hoy Park53.481.230.216.195
Charlie Blackmon53.38225.306.292.270
Cavan Biggio53.26025.220.207.224
Dylan Carlson53.01775.259.246.266
Javier Baez52.88125.254.241.265
Mauricio Dubon52.86725.241.228.240
Trent Grisham52.776.254.241.242
Sam Hilliard52.74825.227.214.215
Tommy Pham52.61075.271.258.229
Oscar Mercado52.5495.229.216.224
Eli White52.44875.189.176.177
Nomar Mazara52.33475.225.212.212
Tyler Naquin52.327.275.262.270
Adolis Garcia51.93925.236.223.243
Gio Urshela51.78875.265.252.267
Andy Ibanez51.5165.276.263.277
Guillermo Heredia51.459.233.220.220
Teoscar Hernandez51.
Brock Holt51.41025.242.229.209
Kolten Wong51.3865.264.251.272
Xander Bogaerts51.
Jurickson Profar51.18825.250.238.227
Dansby Swanson51.1825.263.251.248
Andrew Knizner51.
Yandy Diaz51.
Fernando Tatis Jr.
Lewis Brinson51.0055.254.242.226
Bryan Reynolds50.981.305.293.302
Abraham Almonte50.9605.239.227.216
Lane Thomas50.8915.244.232.235
Ronald Torreyes50.821.245.233.242
Jason Martin50.75675.237.225.208
Nick Ahmed50.686.220.208.221
Jake Marisnick50.5765.208.196.216
Taylor Trammell50.53475.155.143.160
Chas McCormick50.30475.235.223.257
Freddie Freeman50.26525.331.319.300
Rafael Devers50.11.303.291.279
Joc Pederson50.08175.255.243.238
Starlin Castro50.0545.283.271.283
Pavin Smith50.

OF Raimel Tapia, Colorado Rockies

With a 5th percentile average exit velocity, Raimel Tapia isn’t going to pop up on stat cast pages. However, he ranks second in expected batting average over expectation. With a 68% ground ball rate and just a 26% pull rate, Tapia is proficient at hitting ground balls through open holes; he was only shifted on 2.4% of his plate appearances last year. Add in the fact he plays in Colorado, and he’s a solid bet once again to hit for a high average with a lot of stolen bases.

1B Nate Lowe, Texas Rangers

Nate Lowe is the opposite of Tapia; he has plenty of raw power, as evidenced by his 91st percentile max exit velocity. However, with just a .236 expected batting average, he doesn’t stand out in terms of his hit tool. However, with just a 24.9 pull rate and 1.3% pop-up rate, he’s combining few balls in the air with an all-fields approach. Interestingly, he’s still being shifted 27.5% of the time, and has a .389 weighted on-base average (wOBA) when they do- that’s the key to him overachieving his expected stats.

OF Brandon Nimmo, New York Mets

As one of the key anchors for the Mets, you might expect more than a career .250 expected batting average and just a 48th percentile hard-hit rate for someone who hit .292 this year. However, Brandon Nimmo is an outlier. He ranks around one standard deviation better in ground ball rate, opposite-field rate, and home-to-first time. That overall balanced, diverse skillset allows him to beat his expected stats on a yearly basis.

2B/SS Nicky Lopez, Kansas City Royals

Nicky Lopez may have hit .300 last year, but that came with a .239 expected batting average. With a 58% ground ball rate, just a 3% pop-up rate, only a 24.9% pull rate, and a 4.19 home-to-first time, he, like Nimmo, demonstrated the type of skillset to consistently defeat his expected stats. Considering he doesn’t hit the ball particularly hard (4th percentile), this will be the key to him repeating his offensive success in 2022.

Overachieving Expected Power Numbers

PlayerPower OverachieveReal xISOxisoisolated_power
Curt Casali101.51.1636.1310.1400
Alex Jackson97.85.1298.0990.0990
Gary Sanchez97.64.2537.2230.2190
Jose Ramirez97.39.2506.2200.2720
Mike Zunino95.09.3415.3120.3420
Danny Jansen93.38.2416.2130.2500
Jorge Polanco93.02.2475.2190.2350
Dom Nunez90.75.1683.1410.2110
Rougned Odor89.64.1968.1700.1770
Jake Lamb89.17.2026.1760.1740
Patrick Wisdom88.10.2690.2430.2870
Aristides Aquino87.39.2327.2070.2180
Taylor Trammell86.29.1482.1230.1990
Brian Goodwin84.84.1724.1480.1530
Didi Gregorius84.36.1272.1030.1600
Nolan Arenado83.78.1959.1720.2390
Jose Altuve83.70.1819.1580.2110
Jorge Soler82.93.2665.2430.2090
Mitch Garver82.69.3084.2850.2610
Adam Duvall82.66.2924.2690.2630
Marcus Semien82.51.2313.2080.2730
Kurt Suzuki82.25.1282.1050.1190
Sandy Leon81.21.1107.0880.0840
Victor Robles81.14.1216.0990.0920
Mike Yastrzemski80.97.2305.2080.2330
Alex Bregman80.88.1815.1590.1520
Billy McKinney79.98.1671.1450.1660
Jose Peraza79.44.1448.1230.1760
Mike Moustakas79.43.1478.1260.1640
Eduardo Escobar79.25.2207.1990.2190
Eugenio Suarez78.84.2605.2390.2300
Stephen Vogt78.62.1614.1400.1380
Ha-Seong Kim78.40.1213.1000.1500
Asdrubal Cabrera78.24.1382.1170.1360
Andrew McCutchen78.19.2122.1910.2220
Jose Rojas77.51.1938.1730.1900
George Springer III77.49.2758.2550.2910
LaMonte Wade Jr.77.27.2387.2180.2290
Hoy Park77.00.1446.1240.1410
Robbie Grossman76.89.1855.1650.1760
Kyle Higashioka76.79.2885.2680.2070
Mookie Betts76.79.2015.1810.2230
Austin Hedges76.64.1154.0950.1290
Zack Short76.54.1394.1190.1410
Kyle Seager76.29.2512.2310.2260
Manny Pina76.26.2412.2210.2500
Cody Bellinger76.21.1692.1490.1370
Anthony Rendon75.64.1559.1360.1430
Eli White75.59.1329.1130.1310
Kole Calhoun75.58.1839.1640.1390
Wilmer Flores75.02.1806.1610.1850
Ozzie Albies75.01.2236.2040.2290
Ronald Acuna Jr.74.90.3246.3050.3130
Tom Murphy74.13.1732.1540.1480
Aledmys Diaz73.70.1630.1440.1460
Rafael Ortega73.55.1469.1280.1720
Oscar Mercado73.11.1287.1100.1450
Tyrone Taylor72.92.1776.1590.2100
Seth Brown72.74.2545.2360.2670
Kevin Pillar72.61.1664.1480.1850
Albert Pujols72.61.2214.2030.1960
Austin Meadows72.19.2012.1830.2240
Jesus Aguilar71.90.2071.1890.1980
Jonathan India71.72.2000.1820.1900
Enrique Hernandez71.69.2190.2010.1990
Justin Upton71.51.2179.2000.1980
Joey Gallo71.49.2769.2590.2590
Rhys Hoskins71.40.3298.3120.2830
Zack Collins71.34.1868.1690.1280
Jordan Luplow70.58.2254.2080.2520
Mike Brosseau70.11.1462.1290.1600
Miguel Sano70.05.2392.2220.2430
Byron Buxton69.90.3241.3070.3400
Brandon Belt69.71.2970.2800.3230
Matt Carpenter69.65.2190.2020.1060
Gregory Polanco68.98.1946.1780.1460
Eric Haase68.83.2416.2250.2280
Freddy Galvis68.79.1445.1280.1660
Anthony Rizzo68.61.1895.1730.1920
Alex Dickerson68.48.1994.1830.1870
Josh Reddick68.45.1204.1040.1130
Yadier Molina68.22.1663.1500.1180
Paul DeJong67.83.2211.2050.1940
Shohei Ohtani67.79.3561.3400.3350
Stephen Piscotty67.25.1688.1530.1330
Max Kepler67.18.2128.1970.2020
Martin Maldonado67.14.1447.1290.1290
Josh VanMeter66.86.1346.1190.1420
Willy Adames66.44.2174.2020.2190
Jorge Mateo66.02.1332.1180.1290
Chris Taylor65.83.1991.1840.1830
Mitch Haniger65.75.2500.2350.2320
Jake Bauers65.32.1428.1280.0670
Carlos Santana65.15.1898.1750.1270
Jonah Heim65.06.1557.1410.1620
Kyle Schwarber64.96.3127.2980.2880
Matt Chapman64.70.2275.2130.1930
Francisco Mejia64.64.1295.1150.1560
Pedro Severino64.57.1625.1480.1350
Abraham Almonte64.47.1424.1280.1820
Tucker Barnhart64.19.1233.1090.1210
Ehire Adrianza64.14.1343.1200.1540
Hunter Renfroe64.12.2572.2430.2420
Jason Martin64.08.1672.1530.1460
Dylan Moore64.03.1582.1440.1540
Brent Rooker Jr.63.85.2371.2230.1960
Luke Voit III63.75.2591.2450.1970
Austin Nola63.64.1060.0920.1040
Maikel Franco63.59.1300.1160.1460
Zach McKinstry63.56.1740.1600.1900
Cedric Mullins II63.55.1890.1750.2280
Tommy La Stella63.11.1938.1800.1550
Matt Beaty63.03.1247.1110.1320
Luis Urias62.65.1995.1860.1960
Josh Donaldson62.46.2834.2700.2280
Marwin Gonzalez62.44.1294.1160.1050
Ben Gamel62.24.1563.1430.1410
Eddie Rosario62.17.1843.1710.1770
Yasmani Grandal62.15.2623.2490.2800
Brock Holt61.77.0991.0860.0890
Carson Kelly61.65.1850.1720.1710
Hanser Alberto61.51.1330.1200.1330
Ramon Laureano61.50.2250.2120.1960
Chas McCormick61.03.2117.1990.1900
Michael Conforto60.64.1945.1820.1530
Travis Shaw60.64.1855.1730.1730
Xander Bogaerts60.49.1995.1870.1980
Ryan Mountcastle60.28.2244.2120.2320
Matt Olson60.26.2553.2430.2690
Dansby Swanson60.24.2153.2030.2010
Anthony Santander60.23.1883.1760.1920
Salvador Perez60.18.2993.2870.2710
Tim Locastro60.10.0733.0610.0720
Harrison Bader59.98.1742.1620.1930
Andres Gimenez59.59.1200.1080.1330
Adolis Garcia59.55.2140.2020.2120
Santiago Espinal59.54.0910.0790.0950
Omar Narvaez59.49.1460.1340.1360
Brandon Lowe59.45.2609.2490.2770
Joey Votto59.43.3289.3170.2970
Francisco Lindor59.32.2079.1960.1810
Ryan O'Hearn59.23.1728.1610.1440
Ryan Jeffers59.10.2198.2080.2020
Sean Murphy59.09.2088.1970.1880
Nick Ahmed58.86.0947.0830.1180
Mark Canha58.57.1585.1470.1560
Andrew Knapp58.56.1125.1010.0620
Marcell Ozuna58.52.2015.1900.1440
Sam Hilliard58.48.2285.2170.2480
Mauricio Dubon58.48.1445.1330.1370
Dylan Carlson58.40.1694.1580.1720
Tony Kemp58.30.1094.0980.1390
Ronald Torreyes58.00.0782.0670.1040
Tommy Edman57.97.1412.1300.1250
C.J. Cron57.76.2261.2150.2490
Christian Walker57.61.1460.1350.1370
Yermin Mercedes57.54.1810.1700.1330
Jack Mayfield57.36.1409.1300.1690
Luis Robert57.13.2498.2390.2290
Luis Garcia56.93.1347.1240.1690
Mitch Moreland56.91.1797.1690.1880
DJ Peters56.82.1847.1740.2240
Bryan Reynolds56.76.2386.2280.2200
Elias Diaz56.69.1796.1690.2190
Fernando Tatis Jr.56.60.3425.3320.3280
Teoscar Hernandez56.52.2535.2430.2270
Brett Phillips56.46.1905.1800.2210
Randal Grichuk56.30.1744.1640.1820
Jason Heyward56.30.1424.1320.1330
Willians Astudillo56.22.1334.1230.1390
Jake Fraley56.21.1424.1320.1590
Joshua Fuentes56.08.0873.0770.1250
Austin Hays56.07.1973.1870.2050
Kris Bryant55.75.1981.1880.2160
Gavin Lux55.66.1361.1260.1220
Hunter Dozier55.64.1711.1610.1790
Jeimer Candelario55.18.1939.1840.1720
Trevor Larnach55.10.1728.1630.1270
Austin Barnes54.86.1077.0980.1300
Michael Perez54.84.1407.1310.1480
Trent Grisham54.64.1366.1270.1710
Carter Kieboom54.62.1206.1110.1110
Yoshi Tsutsugo54.42.1605.1510.1650
Keston Hiura54.41.1885.1790.1330
Frank Schwindel54.38.1885.1790.2640
Max Muncy54.33.3164.3070.2780
Yu Chang54.31.1544.1450.1980
Jurickson Profar53.94.0942.0850.0930
Wilmer Difo53.88.1012.0920.1140
David Bote53.88.1762.1670.1310
Rob Refsnyder53.67.1851.1760.0940
Wil Myers53.59.1601.1510.1790
Kolten Wong53.57.1401.1310.1750
Will Smith53.47.2280.2190.2370
Jason Castro53.46.2530.2440.2080
Tyler Naquin53.39.2040.1950.2070
Guillermo Heredia53.34.1239.1150.1340
Jake Marisnick53.27.1069.0980.1590
Andrew Benintendi53.18.2029.1940.1660
Manny Machado53.13.2438.2350.2110
Jed Lowrie53.10.2148.2060.1530
Sergio Alcantara53.03.0988.0900.1230
Pete Alonso53.00.2778.2690.2570
Austin Riley52.93.2377.2290.2270
Niko Goodrum52.88.1747.1660.1450
Max Stassi52.60.1916.1830.1840
Akil Baddoo52.58.1846.1760.1770
Kyle Farmer52.44.1395.1310.1530
DJ Stewart52.38.1845.1760.1700
Cavan Biggio52.37.1315.1230.1320
AJ Pollock52.32.2254.2170.2400
Dominic Smith52.28.1644.1560.1190
Trevor Story52.24.2084.2000.2210
Isan Diaz52.01.1133.1050.0880
Josh Harrison51.70.1501.1420.1210
Ji-Man Choi51.63.1941.1860.1820
Charlie Culberson51.52.1000.0920.1380
Paul Goldschmidt51.33.2880.2800.2210
Nick Castellanos51.20.2489.2410.2670
Brad Miller51.16.2189.2110.2270
Willie Calhoun51.14.1369.1290.1310
Connor Joe51.01.1878.1800.1840
Bobby Dalbec50.71.2936.2860.2540
Reese McGuire50.69.0986.0910.0910
Pat Valaika50.18.1314.1240.0890
Taylor Ward50.14.2014.1940.1880

3B Jose Ramirez, Cleveland Guardians

With good-not-great barrel rates, it may be hard to gauge why Jose Ramirez has become one of the elite power hitters in baseball. However, it all comes down to his ability to overachieve his expected isolated power. How? His 54.7% pull rate ranked above the 100th percentile last year, while he combined that with a 31.7% underrate. Being able to consistently hit fly balls, and pull them when doing so, leads to the type of wall scrapers that may not generally be perceived well based on purely exit velocity and launch angle. That’s the beauty of baseball, folks.

3B Nolan Arenado, St.Louis Cardinals

Many may have assumed that playing in Colorado was why Nolan Arenado, despite a career 7.8% barrel rate and .466 expected slugging percentage, has also been one of the most powerful hitters in the sport. However, Arenado appears to have made an offensive approach to sustain his power outside of Colorado. By pulling the ball more (45.8%), he can take advantage of his ability to consistently hit the ball in the air (36.7% under), which is exactly what happened. Those who only use expected statistics may undervalue Arenado heading into 2022, but he remains one of the most productive players at his position.

2B Marcus Semien, Texas Rangers

I have a whole article dedicated to him – he was the inspiration of this research – so it makes sense that Marcus Semien was one of the best players when it comes to sustainably overachieve his expected power numbers. It will be tougher to sustain this approach in Texas, a worse ballpark to hit in, but Semien’s ability to play every day at the top of the lineup while manufacturing as much power as possible still makes him a top-notch fantasy baseball asset in 2022. Based on his expected statistics and the fear of the ballpark he’s now in, he may end up as an undervalued player come draft time.

OF Mike Yastrzemski, San Francisco Giants

With a career .500 slugging percentage versus a career .466 expected slugging percentage, it’s been clear that Mike Yastrzemski has found a way to overachieve his power numbers. In 2021, his high pull rate (46.3%) and underrate (33.4%) guided him to a .230 ISO, notably higher than his .201 xISO. That’s one way to handle hitting for power despite playing in San Francisco.

Stats via Baseball Savant

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