IlliniGuy76

Kris Bryant 2018 Outlook

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Kris Bryant had a weird year last year -- OPS higher than his MVP year, power/RBI production down significantly from that same season.  You're seeing the strikeouts continue to come down and the walks continue to go up.  One can hope he continues that type of trajectory and that you see the power/RBI numbers tick back up.  Suffice to say, he should be in the conversation for NL MVP this coming season.

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Batting 2nd hurt his RBI's I think, especially with the Cubs leadoff issues last year. 

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His ADP of ~16 is criminally low.  In points leagues he needs to be a top 5 pick.  In roto I can understand worrying about the risk that his profile skews more toward gap power than homers the way it did in 2017, but when the plausible range of outcomes includes unanimous MVP at the top and still a top-3 third baseman at the bottom, and still with room for a lot of skill improvement as just a 25 year-old, you can't let that value get out of the first round.

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On 12/3/2017 at 12:55 PM, tonycpsu said:

His ADP of ~16 is criminally low.  In points leagues he needs to be a top 5 pick. 

 

just landed him at pick #7 in a dynasty startup... had him #3 in my rankings. The on-base skills he showed last year are far more indicative to me, than his underwhelming RBI totals. I think he's a monster, and prefer him over my favorite player, Arenado.

 

Unfortunately he won't qualify at OF any more in most leagues... but as a 25-year-old with a career .915 OPS... there's not a lot to dislike. 

The next 5+ years will be glorious. 

Edited by ChicksDigTheOPS
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3 hours ago, ChicksDigTheOPS said:

 

 

just landed him at pick #7 in a dynasty startup... had him #3 in my rankings. The on-base skills he showed last year are far more indicative to me, than his underwhelming RBI totals. I think he's a monster, and prefer him over my favorite player, Arenado.

 

Unfortunately he won't qualify at OF any more in most leagues... but as a 25-year-old with a career .915 OPS... there's not a lot to dislike. 

The next 5+ years will be glorious. 

 

At nine starts in the OF he qualifies just fine on Yahoo which is, along with ESPN, the two most major platforms numbers wise.

Edited by The Big Bat Theory

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Depends on the scoring, but love the guy. In a point league, he may very well be my top 3B. If not him, it's Nado, and it's close. 

In 5x5, I like Nado more, and it's close with Machado. I am wondering what kind of HR threat Bryant really is, especially as his skill set changes. The dude isn't anywhere near the vicious K machine he was early on. Did he sacrifice some power to make consistent contact? Can he now keep that contact rate and build the power #'s back up? I mean, can't complain when a guy cracks 40 doubles and hits 30 homers. I don't put any weight in the RBI total, that's extremely fluky. Bryants high BB rate will keep him fairly consistent in points leagues, plus chipping in stolen bases. Even when he's down, he's not gonna kill you. 


I think Machado will hit for a better BA with some more pop, but I do think both are negligible. 

If Bryant can mostly repeat 2017, and the RBI's end up where they should (no reason they should) and top .285 BA with 30+ homers, he comfortably becomes my #2 3B. At this point, I'm just kind of curious what hitter he really is. 

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2 hours ago, sngehl01 said:

Depends on the scoring, but love the guy. In a point league, he may very well be my top 3B. If not him, it's Nado, and it's close. 

In 5x5, I like Nado more, and it's close with Machado. I am wondering what kind of HR threat Bryant really is, especially as his skill set changes. The dude isn't anywhere near the vicious K machine he was early on. Did he sacrifice some power to make consistent contact? Can he now keep that contact rate and build the power #'s back up? I mean, can't complain when a guy cracks 40 doubles and hits 30 homers. I don't put any weight in the RBI total, that's extremely fluky. Bryants high BB rate will keep him fairly consistent in points leagues, plus chipping in stolen bases. Even when he's down, he's not gonna kill you. 


I think Machado will hit for a better BA with some more pop, but I do think both are negligible. 

If Bryant can mostly repeat 2017, and the RBI's end up where they should (no reason they should) and top .285 BA with 30+ homers, he comfortably becomes my #2 3B. At this point, I'm just kind of curious what hitter he really is. 

 

Eye test tells me he is more of a true 35+ homer guy. factor in the age, the pedigree, the Cubs lineup, his improved on-base skills, and the handful of steals he chips in... and I see him as a top 10 fantasy cornerstone.

 

5 hours ago, The Big Bat Theory said:

 

At nine starts in the OF he qualifies just fine on Yahoo which is, along with ESPN, the two most major platforms numbers wise.

 

true. but to be fair, Manny Machado also qualifies at outfield in Yahoo, because of that one time he drifted into the grass on a texas leaguer. 

 

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In my points league, he was the 19th best hitter and 24th nest overall player last season. I expect him to have more homers and runs next season, so he should be even better. 

 

I would certainly be willing to take him in the first round. That walk rate last season was simply fantastic. 

Edited by Fuzzy_Slippers
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8 hours ago, sngehl01 said:

Depends on the scoring, but love the guy. In a point league, he may very well be my top 3B. If not him, it's Nado, and it's close. 

In 5x5, I like Nado more, and it's close with Machado. I am wondering what kind of HR threat Bryant really is, especially as his skill set changes. The dude isn't anywhere near the vicious K machine he was early on. Did he sacrifice some power to make consistent contact? Can he now keep that contact rate and build the power #'s back up? I mean, can't complain when a guy cracks 40 doubles and hits 30 homers. I don't put any weight in the RBI total, that's extremely fluky. Bryants high BB rate will keep him fairly consistent in points leagues, plus chipping in stolen bases. Even when he's down, he's not gonna kill you. 


I think Machado will hit for a better BA with some more pop, but I do think both are negligible. 

If Bryant can mostly repeat 2017, and the RBI's end up where they should (no reason they should) and top .285 BA with 30+ homers, he comfortably becomes my #2 3B. At this point, I'm just kind of curious what hitter he really is. 

 

Curious how confident you are in the better BA when Bryant blew him away last year and the difference the year before was incredibly negligible (.292 v. .294). 

 

Here's a few takes on Bryant:

 

Bryant's an exceptionally talented hitter. But, what I believe is massively lost is that I think he's got a way higher Baseball IQ than most give him credit for, and an impeccable hustle and work ethic. Kinda a weird stat to use but I've done it the last three years with Bryant and it keeps staying true: Bryant has had an Infield Hit% of 10+% each of his three years in the league and has been, starting in his Rookie year, 1st, 3rd, and 8th in IFH%. That's very surprising for a hitter that lacks top level speed, but Bryant gets out of the box and down the line fast.

 

Another thing, Bryant had a low Oppo% in 2016 (16th Lowest), and discussed PRIOR to the 2017 season, coming off an MVP season, that he felt the next level of his development involved working on his opposite field approach. He did improve it, albeit not by a ton, but managed to be 49th lowest among 144 Qualified Hitters, so essentially from almost a 90th percentile to a 66th percentile. And while the effects dropped him back in fantasy terms, realistically they represent a development that I see as positive for the overall projection of Bryant. 

 

And then finally, that K% is almost certainly no illusion. His Whiff%'s have gone from 16.5% to 13.0% to 10.0% with his Contact%'s going from 66.3% to 73.3% to 77.7%. Bryant's Rookie year his Contact% was lowest among qualifiers. In 2017, that figure was at the 42nd Percentile. 

 

You take the three stats, primarily the Oppo%, and to me what's happening here is that Bryant is evolving. Did he underperform his expected power? Sure, but I feel like this could be a marginal step towards putting all of the above together-- the power, improved opposite field ability, improved contact, had a career low 5.5% PU% -- and turning into the kind of hitter who hits 30-35 bombs with a 20% K% and a BABIP that ranges closer to the .350 range

 

I think Bryant could easily be on the cusp of something truly great like a .310/.400/.550 line with 35 HRs/120Rs/100RBIs/10SBs. Which sounds high, and wont' be my projection, but I wanna be clear here: to me, we're talking about a guy IMO with a ROY and MVP who is improving and evolving. 

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Take George Springer, who I'm also a huge fan of, as a recent example of a player who continually built up his Contact% at the expense of his power, despite having incredible natural power, but this past year he kept the K% and Contact% (well , improved by a bit) but also found his power stroke. I think a similar thing could be happening with Bryant here. Which could mean that the upside really is in that .310+ range as soon as this year. 

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15 hours ago, taobball said:

 

Curious how confident you are in the better BA when Bryant blew him away last year and the difference the year before was incredibly negligible (.292 v. .294). 

 

Here's a few takes on Bryant:

 

Bryant's an exceptionally talented hitter. But, what I believe is massively lost is that I think he's got a way higher Baseball IQ than most give him credit for, and an impeccable hustle and work ethic. Kinda a weird stat to use but I've done it the last three years with Bryant and it keeps staying true: Bryant has had an Infield Hit% of 10+% each of his three years in the league and has been, starting in his Rookie year, 1st, 3rd, and 8th in IFH%. That's very surprising for a hitter that lacks top level speed, but Bryant gets out of the box and down the line fast.

 

Another thing, Bryant had a low Oppo% in 2016 (16th Lowest), and discussed PRIOR to the 2017 season, coming off an MVP season, that he felt the next level of his development involved working on his opposite field approach. He did improve it, albeit not by a ton, but managed to be 49th lowest among 144 Qualified Hitters, so essentially from almost a 90th percentile to a 66th percentile. And while the effects dropped him back in fantasy terms, realistically they represent a development that I see as positive for the overall projection of Bryant. 

 

And then finally, that K% is almost certainly no illusion. His Whiff%'s have gone from 16.5% to 13.0% to 10.0% with his Contact%'s going from 66.3% to 73.3% to 77.7%. Bryant's Rookie year his Contact% was lowest among qualifiers. In 2017, that figure was at the 42nd Percentile. 

 

You take the three stats, primarily the Oppo%, and to me what's happening here is that Bryant is evolving. Did he underperform his expected power? Sure, but I feel like this could be a marginal step towards putting all of the above together-- the power, improved opposite field ability, improved contact, had a career low 5.5% PU% -- and turning into the kind of hitter who hits 30-35 bombs with a 20% K% and a BABIP that ranges closer to the .350 range

 

I think Bryant could easily be on the cusp of something truly great like a .310/.400/.550 line with 35 HRs/120Rs/100RBIs/10SBs. Which sounds high, and wont' be my projection, but I wanna be clear here: to me, we're talking about a guy IMO with a ROY and MVP who is improving and evolving. 

 

Calling it negligible expresses my level of confidence. 

Bryant is evolving. I love Bryant. I love the idea of what Bryant could be. What you are saying is exactly what I have said I think he is growing into. I think him cutting hte K rate and improving the contact rate was a major step towards being an all around stud. As has been covered before (by you, even, I believe), contact rate is really a hard thing to adjust. Bryant has really brought his up, and I think now that he's able to make a lot of contact, he'll be able to start driving the ball. 

And I'll also say, I was thinking Machado had neared .300 the last two years, and Bryant didn't hit .295 this year. I really try to not overbuy into the past seasons performance in any given year. After looking at it further, I would say Bryant doesn't only have a fair shot at hitting for an average equal to Manny, but I'd speculate that he's the favorite to perform better in that category. Honestly, it moves Bryant comfortably ahead of Machado after looking deeper into it. 

Guess that's what I get for going off of my (obviously not so good memory) without double checking. 

 

15 hours ago, taobball said:

Take George Springer, who I'm also a huge fan of, as a recent example of a player who continually built up his Contact% at the expense of his power, despite having incredible natural power, but this past year he kept the K% and Contact% (well , improved by a bit) but also found his power stroke. I think a similar thing could be happening with Bryant here. Which could mean that the upside really is in that .310+ range as soon as this year. 

 

You had me at "George Springer."

Really though, I agree. This is a guy (Springer) that I have a hard time having faith in given I watch Houston so much. I don't know how many times I've seen him "Carlos Gomez it" swinging out of his shoes in the box, but the guy has really brought the contact rate now. 

Sometimes it's hard to erase your perception and follow the facts. 

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On 12/3/2017 at 3:55 PM, tonycpsu said:

His ADP of ~16 is criminally low.  In points leagues he needs to be a top 5 pick.  In roto I can understand worrying about the risk that his profile skews more toward gap power than homers the way it did in 2017, but when the plausible range of outcomes includes unanimous MVP at the top and still a top-3 third baseman at the bottom, and still with room for a lot of skill improvement as just a 25 year-old, you can't let that value get out of the first round.

He's not a top 10 player to me, I would take Votto and Freeman ahead of  him, if Freeman doesn't miss 7-8 weeks he crushes Bryant's year , At 16 sounds about right to me if you value the top 4 aces over him

Edited by azeri98
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In OBP leagues I can see the case for Freeman and Votto, but Bryant's still got skills growth ahead of him, while I think Freeman is about at his peak, and Votto is just a machine keeps doing his thing and will some day start to fade.  In AVG leagues I'm going with Bryant because 1B is easier to fill with studs in the 2nd/3rd rounds, or capable bats if you want even longer.  3B falls off *really* fast once you get past the elites.  If Freeman is 3B-eligibile, obviously that changes the equation, but I think I'm still inclined to go Bryant.  I think 2017 was just a down year.

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I feel like Cubs need to bring another all star caliber hitter to maximize his value

 

I think they overstated the contributions Schwarber, Baez, Russell  would provide

 

 

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On 12/12/2017 at 1:10 PM, taobball said:

 

Curious how confident you are in the better BA when Bryant blew him away last year and the difference the year before was incredibly negligible (.292 v. .294). 

 

Here's a few takes on Bryant:

 

Bryant's an exceptionally talented hitter. But, what I believe is massively lost is that I think he's got a way higher Baseball IQ than most give him credit for, and an impeccable hustle and work ethic. Kinda a weird stat to use but I've done it the last three years with Bryant and it keeps staying true: Bryant has had an Infield Hit% of 10+% each of his three years in the league and has been, starting in his Rookie year, 1st, 3rd, and 8th in IFH%. That's very surprising for a hitter that lacks top level speed, but Bryant gets out of the box and down the line fast.

 

Another thing, Bryant had a low Oppo% in 2016 (16th Lowest), and discussed PRIOR to the 2017 season, coming off an MVP season, that he felt the next level of his development involved working on his opposite field approach. He did improve it, albeit not by a ton, but managed to be 49th lowest among 144 Qualified Hitters, so essentially from almost a 90th percentile to a 66th percentile. And while the effects dropped him back in fantasy terms, realistically they represent a development that I see as positive for the overall projection of Bryant. 

 

And then finally, that K% is almost certainly no illusion. His Whiff%'s have gone from 16.5% to 13.0% to 10.0% with his Contact%'s going from 66.3% to 73.3% to 77.7%. Bryant's Rookie year his Contact% was lowest among qualifiers. In 2017, that figure was at the 42nd Percentile. 

 

You take the three stats, primarily the Oppo%, and to me what's happening here is that Bryant is evolving. Did he underperform his expected power? Sure, but I feel like this could be a marginal step towards putting all of the above together-- the power, improved opposite field ability, improved contact, had a career low 5.5% PU% -- and turning into the kind of hitter who hits 30-35 bombs with a 20% K% and a BABIP that ranges closer to the .350 range

 

I think Bryant could easily be on the cusp of something truly great like a .310/.400/.550 line with 35 HRs/120Rs/100RBIs/10SBs. Which sounds high, and wont' be my projection, but I wanna be clear here: to me, we're talking about a guy IMO with a ROY and MVP who is improving and evolving. 

 

that was beautiful! I couldn't agree more. His floor is a 30ish homer slugger but he's got the internal goods to keep evolving, and once he truly puts it all together, there won't be enough flowery superlatives like transcendent and otherworldly to describe him. 

 

I'm curious Tao, where do you think his upside compares to Bryce Harper, if they were each to reach their maximum upside? 

 

 

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I don’t think his thumb was ever right after he injured it in July. Think it sapped his power, and he’s going to get back to his MVP ways in ‘18. Also, the Schwarber leadoff experiment killed his RBI totals. That dude was hot garbage in front of Dem Eyes. 

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My bud in Chi Town has been telling me a lot about how B money (my nick for Kris) was all jacked last year focusing so much on going oppo that it screwed the power up. Also the fact that he wants to be more selective and walk more.

 

Off seasons worked on the swing and approach. I think the average is 300 for sure if not a tick over and the homers will be 40 if not more. I mean my goodness, just watch him, he has 40 home run guy written all over him. I do remember a few games last year where he made soft contact to right and it did not look natural for him. He was just going oppo for the sake of doing it and I think it created unnatural habits.

 

My 2 cents, he is a top 5 pick newt year, easily and could be 3 if the SB's to not decline again.

 

Couple article I found.

 

 

http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2018/01/17/chicago-cubs-kris-bryant-improvement-2018/

 

 

https://www.cbssports.com/fantasy/baseball/news/cubs-kris-bryant-wants-to-take-more-walks/

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On 12/3/2017 at 1:03 PM, 2ndCitySox said:

Batting 2nd hurt his RBI's I think, especially with the Cubs leadoff issues last year. 

 

Agreed...I'm guess that at least 30 times this year Happ is going to clear the bases in front of KB.

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8 minutes ago, Damn Yankee said:

 

Agreed...I'm guess that at least 30 times this year Happ is going to clear the bases in front of KB.

 

I think his average with RISP and BABIP had more to do with it. His RISP was .232 and his BABIP with RISP was .241, compared to RISP from the last two seasons (.292 and .263) and BABIP with RISP from the last two seasons (.395 and .305)

 

RBI are very flukey and we're not going to see RBI in the 70 range from Kris again IMO.

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Yeah I agree that was definitely a fluke and would be shocked if he had fewer than 85 this year. I've got him projected for 94 and feel the potential for 100 is even there. 

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Hopefully he repeats his2016 numbers and not 2017s (which weren't bad) I'd just like to see 35 plus hrs again

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Are we looking at another year of mediocrity?  Couldnt even get the ball out of the infield today against a crap pitcher. 

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Jd - Kris Bryant will be fine.  He hit two ropes which found defenders.  He actually had a good day and has had an excellent start to the season.  

Edited by BMcP
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