Fantasy Baseball 2017: Mets OF Jay Bruce Looking For More Fly Balls

Brad Berreman

Brad has contributed to (or is contributing to) various websites, most notably Rotowire, Rant Sports, FanSided and Bruno Boys Fantasy Football. He joined GoingFor2 in June of this year.

The Cincinnati Reds version of Jay Bruce is not the one the New York Mets got upon trading for him last year, as he hit just .183 with two home runs and six RBI over his first 26 games with the team. Things got a bit better from there, with Bruce posting a .263/.333/.513 slash-line with six home runs over his final 24 games, and his power numbers for the season (33 home runs and 99 RBI) finished in line with his track record.

With a crowded outfield, and health questions around Lucas Duda, the Mets have tried Bruce at first base this spring. But he promptly had a hip issue, so right field will surely be Bruce’s primary position.

Earlier this week, to the point of having someone in the Mets’ analytics department dig into the numbers, Bruce told the New York Times he wants to hit more fly balls this season. More specifically, he said he’s hoping for a 50 percent fly ball rate in 2017. There are automatic fantasy-related questions and implications there, so is Bruce’s goal even realistic?

First off, a 50 percent fly ball rate would be a significant upward spike for Bruce. Via FanGraphs, he had a 41 percent fly ball rate in 2016 and his career fly ball rate is 41.9 percent. His career-high fly ball rate, 46.7 percent, came in 2011 with the Reds and yielded the third-best home total of his career (32).

There is an outlier in Bruce’s 2016 season-a 19.4 percent home run/fly ball rate. That is the best rate of his career over a full major league season, and a reversal of an over five percent drop-off in home run/fly ball rate from 2012 (18.7 percent) to 2015 (13.3 percent).

Assuming a customary 550-600 at-bats, which he has done in four of the last five seasons, 25-30 home runs and a representative RBI total can be almost written in stone for Bruce. Some correction in his home run/fly ball rate is coming this year, especially with a full season of home games at pitcher-friendly Citi Field, but hitting more fly balls could help offset that a bit.

A 50 percent fly ball rate, if it’s not already obvious, would be an incredible outlier for Bruce in 2017. By now fantasy baseball owners should know what they’re getting here, a low batting average and solid power numbers. The faint possibility of adding position eligibility at first base would add to his fantasy value, but not enough to move the needle in drafts and auctions.

Jay Bruce 2017 Projection: .245, 27 home runs, 85 RBI, 70 runs scored

Join our 909 subscribers. Daily option includes ALL content. Weekly option will exclude Daily Fantasy NBA and MLB (still includes NFL DFS)

Select list(s):


The following two tabs change content below.

Brad Berreman

Brad has contributed to (or is contributing to) various websites, most notably Rotowire, Rant Sports, FanSided and Bruno Boys Fantasy Football. He joined GoingFor2 in June of this year.

Brad Berreman

Brad has contributed to (or is contributing to) various websites, most notably Rotowire, Rant Sports, FanSided and Bruno Boys Fantasy Football. He joined GoingFor2 in June of this year.

Leave a Reply

Be the First to Comment!

Notify of
avatar
wpDiscuz
Facebook Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com