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Week 21 Hitting Planner: Something About Peaches

Week 21 Hitting Planner
Photo Credit: Brian Dewey

Did you know that there happens to be a holiday this week? August 22 is National Eat A Peach Day and deserves as much respect as any other food related holiday that’s not Thanksgiving.

With a myriad of ways to gobble down some peaches, I am sure you could find a peach to eat on a Tuesday. The Week 21 Hitting Planner is your reminder to set your lineups and to grab some peaches.

Week 21 Hitting Planner

Catcher

Bruce Maxwell, OAK (at BAL, vs. TEX)

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Bruce Maxwell has not been hitting well as of late. His last 35 PA has resulted in a .167 batting average and only a .424 OPS. Over his last 19 PA, Maxwell has fared slightly better, but it is his rise in exit velocity that’s the most encouraging. As it stands, Maxwell has increased his exit velocity to 94.4 mph, but with a launch angle more indicative of ground balls. A slight shift in launch angle will allow him to elevate more pitches and take advantage of the 11th best EV over the last week.

 

First Base

Carlos Santana, CLE (vs. BOS, vs. KC)

Over his last 50 PA, Carlos Santana has an OPS of .868. He’s helped his owners in almost every standard category with three home runs, eight runs scored, five runs driven in, and he even netted a stolen base. It is the shift in batted ball profile that pushes Santana into the Week 21 Hitting Planner.

Over his last 26 PA, Santana’s FB% rose 4.8 percentage points to 50%, but he pulled those fly balls straight out of his groundball rate. More fly balls mean more chance for home runs, and with Santana already hitting well, this was a no brainer.

 

Second Base

D.J. LeMahieu, COL (at KC, at ATL)

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A 92.7 mph EV over the last week, D.J. LeMahieu enters the Week 21 Hitting Planner with a .283 batting average over his last 52 PA. The Royals and Braves are 10th and 11th respectively in batting average against (.259,.258 respectively). LeMahieu should be able to get hits ahead of the Rockies powerful lineup and score plenty of runs (and a couple of peaches in the Peach State).

 

Third Base

Joey Gallo, TEX (at LAA, at OAK)

Joey Gallo has 35 home runs and 36 hits that have not left the yard. The Angels are giving up 1.37 HR/9 and the A’s are allowing 1.26 HR/9, so let’s see if Gallo can get more home runs than not.

Shortstop

Jonathan Villar, MIL (at SF, at LAD)

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Speed is the name of the game here as the Brewers try Jonathan Villar out in center field. Over his last 10 games, Villar has an OBP of .367 with a .321 batting average. While on base, the speedster has begun to run more as he has collected two steals in his last seven games. With stolen bases being hard to count on week to week, look for Villar to rob a few bases as he stretches his legs out in the outfield.

Outfield

Nelson Cruz, SEA (at ATL, at NYY)

Aging gracefully, Nelson Cruz’s exit velocity took a bump up this week and now sits at 98.5 mph over his last week (7.9 mph more than the previous week). The last week has been nothing but spectacular as he has crushed three home runs. Cruz should continue to produce at a high level as he tries to propel Seattle into the playoffs.

Matt Joyce, OAK (at BAL, vs. TEX)

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Entering Week 21, Matt Joyce has been enjoying a nice run. His EV has reached 93 mph (1.4 mph increase from last week) and his HR/FB ratio is up to 25%. The Orioles and Rangers are the 4th and 11th worst pitching staffs in terms of HR/9. Joyce could enjoy another big week in terms of power numbers.

Giancarlo Stanton, MIA (at PHI, vs. SD)

With a matchup at Citizens Bank Park, Giancarlo Stanton should hit a lot of home runs this week. Stanton’s prolific power should punctuate with a four game series against the Phillies who surrender 1.4 HR/9 as a pitching staff. Stanton could be a monster this week.

 

Final Thoughts

Ripe and right off the tree happens to be my preferred method of peach consumption. Just remember to bring a napkin or an extra shirt because fresh peaches can get messy. Thank you for reading and tune in next week for…

 

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Aaron Hinckley

Aaron Hinckley

An aspiring stay at home dad, Aaron is a graduate of Mercer University who is a self proclaimed analytical nut and master grilled cheese maker.
Aaron Hinckley

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