Batter’s Box: A Cheeseburger With Franchy Fries

Ben Palmer takes a look at some of the best hitting performances from yesterday's games.

Photo by Ric Tapia/Icon Sportswire

There’s been a lot of talk about Franchy Cordero lately, mostly because the guy hits absolute bombs, as best evidenced by this graphic:

And with yesterday’s game going 2-6, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI, Cordero made that graphic old news, launching a 116 MPH home run last night. He’s tempting, right? I mean he’s demolishing the ball and he’s just 23-years-old, I get it, but there are some other things to consider here. First off, the guy strikes out 32.6% of the time with a 4.3% walk rate. That’s not all that surprising from a power-hitting rookie, but it’s going to limit his average to about where it is right now (.250s) at best, and it’s going to make him a liability in OBP leagues. However, the biggest problem with Franchy as a fantasy asset right now is playing time. Manuel Margot got the day off yesterday, but I don’t see that happening consistently. Yes, I know, Margot has been bad so far this year, but he’s almost certainly due to bounce back given the fact that his batted-ball stats are all right in-line with last year aside from an absurd .154 BABIP. So who sits for Cordero? Not Margot, not Wil Myers. Maybe Jose Pirela? But that means there’s just left field for a rotation of Cordero, Pirela, Cory Spangenberg, and Matt Szczur to share. Now, I think the favor of that timeshare would be between Pirela and Cordero, but still, we’re not looking at a full-time gig right now. However, if another injury occurs in the Padres’ outfield, or if somehow Cordero ends up with a steady gig, he’s worth a look in most leagues.

Let’s take a look at some of the other performances from yesterday (and can I just say, holy crap was there a lot of offense yesterday):

Nick Markakis (OF, ATL) – 3-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 3 RBI. Nick Markakis has been looking like he’s back in Baltimore lately, slashing .301/.385/.458 on the year so far. He’s always been good at hitting for average and getting on base, it’s just been the power that’s fluctuated, and given that he’s got a 27.4% hard-hit rate and a 13% HR/FB rate on the year so far, I’m inclined to believe it’s going to regress.

Scott Schebler (OF, CIN) – 2-5, 1 HR, 3 R, 3 RBI. Welcome back Scott Schebler. He was a preseason favorite of mine who’s been struggling with injury so far this season, but he’s back and was batting leadoff yesterday (which is interesting). As long as he’s healthy, he’s a worthy fantasy add, and he’s available in around 89% of ESPN leagues right now.

Didi Gregorius (SS, NYY) – 1-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 4 RBI. I DON’T UNDERSTAND YOUR POWER DIDI but whatever. Two straight games with home runs while in the midst of a seven-game hitting streak, Didi is killing it somehow and maybe it’s time I give up on trying to understand how.

Giancarlo Stanton (OF, NYY) – 4-4, 1 HR, 3 R, 2 RBI. Oh yea, Giancarlo Stanton actually is really good.

Miguel Andujar (3B, NYY) – 2-5, 1 HR, 1 R, 1 RBI. Andujar is now slashing .316/.333/.649 on the year so far, just demolishing the ball. He’s still available in about 60% of ESPN leagues, as long as he’s playing I’d grab him. That average might come down a bit, but he’s got a not-unreasonable .326 BABIP and an absolutely absurd 40.8% hard-hit rate right now.

Tyler Austin (1B, NYY) – 2-5, 1 HR, 1 R, 4 RBI. When Tyler Austin has played this year, he’s been really good, he’s just not playing much, which significantly limits his fantasy upside.

Marcus Semien (SS, OAK) – 2-6, 1 HR, 2 R, 1 RBI. Semien started off a little slow but he’s been raking lately, slashing .283/.344/.472 over the past two weeks, including six hits in the past three games. Oh, and he’s available in like 64% of ESPN leagues. If you need middle infield help, go get him.

Delino DeShields Jr. (OF, TEX) – 2-4, 2 SB. Delino DeShields is back and atop the Rangers lineup. If you need steals, he’s your man, go grab him.

Mitch Haniger (OF, SEA) – 2-4, 1 HR, 2 R, 1 RBI. OH. MY. GOD. MITCH HANIGER. That is four games now with a home run and nine hits in the past four games. This dude is destroying the ball and it looks pretty legit.

Mike Zunino (C, SEA) – 2-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI. Welcome back Mike Zunino. As long as he’s healthy, he’ll be good for power, but that average is gonna hurt bad.

Yoan Moncada (2B, CWS) – 3-5, 1 HR, 3 R, 1 RBI. The White Sox just dominated yesterday and Moncada was right there with them, falling just short of the cycle. Overall, Moncada’s looking solid, slashing .293/.396/.634 over the past two weeks.

Jose Abreu (1B, CWS) – 4-5, 2 HR, 3 R, 3 RBI. Yea, Jose Abreu is pretty fantastic.

Mike Trout (OF, LAA) – 1-3, 1 R, 2 SB. Obviously we all know Mike Trout is basically god or whatever, but I just wanted to note that it’s great to see he’s got three stolen bases in the past three games.

Wil Myers (1B, SD) – 4-6, 1 R, 2 RBI, 1 SB. The Padres absolutely went off in Coors Field yesterday and Myers was right in the middle of that. As long as he’s healthy, he’ll remain a steady power/speed contributor.

Trevor Story (SS, COL) – 1-3, 1 HR, 2 R, 2 RBI, 1 SB. Story is basically doing what we expected him to do this year, hitting home runs and striking out, but it’s worth noting that he’s upped his walk rate to 11.2% so far on the year. He’s still striking out 31.6% of the time, but that walk rate makes him a lot more interesting in OBP leagues if it sticks.

Carlos Asuaje (2B, SD) – 2-5, 1 HR, 2 R, 4 RBI. Hey, good for Carlos Asuaje, but I’m betting this is the first and last time I’ll be talking about him.

Enrique Hernandez (SS/2B/OF, LAD) – 3-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 1 RBI. It’s worth noting that the Dodgers will be seeing their fair share of lefties this week and Hernandez is a career .270/.365/.515 hitter against lefties.

Ben Palmer

Senior columnist at Pitcher List. Lifelong Orioles fan, also a Ravens/Wizards/Terps fan. I also listen to way too much music, watch way too many movies, and collect way too many records.

19 responses to “Batter’s Box: A Cheeseburger With Franchy Fries”

  1. Bob says:

    I know he’s not your write up but I have to ask, why is Yasiel Puig so bad??? I watch a lot of his at bats and it looks like he is hitting the ball hard (for the most part) are they just not falling? Also no home runs yet? Guy came close to 30 last year. I thought he was really going to be great this season :(

    • Ben Palmer says:

      I think Puig will be fine. His batted-ball stats all look pretty in-line with what he did last year. Strikeout rate is up and walk rate is down a slight bit, but no worse than it was in 2016. I think he’s just been cold to start the year and will heat up eventually.

  2. Nick says:

    RE Cordero. I think you’re overly pessimistic on his playing time. As long as Cordero keeps playing like this he’s going to get everyday at bats against righties, which should equal four to five starts per week. Not “every day”, but enough to justify a fantasy roster spot.

    • Ben Palmer says:

      I mean, he’s been fairly mediocre aside from the home runs. The power is showy for sure, but he’s also striking out just about every third at-bat, can’t take a walk to save his life, and has a pretty mediocre batting average. I don’t think that necessarily puts him head and shoulders above Pirela for that left field spot.

  3. Chico Estrada says:

    What do you think of Teoscar Hernandez. Given the choice, would you add him or Andujar?

    • Ben Palmer says:

      I like what Teoscar is doing, but I think I like Andujar more.

    • Chucky says:

      Teo hasn’t learned to hit LHP yet. Cripples RHP, known as a reverse righty, to us old Strat O Matic players. Nonetheless, reminiscent of an old friend, Albert Belle. Yes Albert could hit LHP too, just hit RHP better. Albert Belle lite? If the shoe fits….

  4. Kyle says:

    If I were trying to trade Haniger in a 5×5 h2h league with obp instead of AVG, what tier of sp should I be looking to get? Robbie Ray?

    • Ben Palmer says:

      Well I think it’s a great time to sell as high as you can. I don’t think Robbie Ray is necessarily a crazy ask given what Haniger’s doing right now.

  5. Sticki says:

    I’m a little surprised you didn’t mention Story’s 3rd combo meal of the season and how he now has 5 HR and 5 SB. Last season he had 7 SB total. I expected a .250 average but I didn’t expect a potential 25-25 or 30-30 season. I’m definitely not expecting it but it’s a great start.

  6. theKraken says:

    Someone wasn’t watching the White Sox game. Abreu and Moncada’s were even more impressive than their lines – those guys would be my headliners. It was the most incredible hitting display I have seen this year. Abreu didn’t miss a third HR by much. That said, thanks for doing these.

    • Ben Palmer says:

      I don’t always pick the most compelling hitting performances as my lead, usually I pick the one that has the most relevance for fantasy players. Abreu was amazing, but that’s about as far as the analysis goes considering he’s owned in every league. Dude’s awesome.

  7. AC says:

    Ben, an owner in my 9-team mixed OBP, one catcher league got impatient and cut Gattis. Do you see him righting the ship (his K% is the highest of his career), and would he be a significant improvement in the OBP context over Welington Castillo? I have an open bench spot and could add Gattis without cutting Castillo, though if I’m just better off with Gattis, I could drop WC and use that free spot to grab some power depth for my IF or OF (CSantana, TFrazier, Schebler, Kemp among available options).

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