ALW, Players to Target

Players to Target – Rougned Odor

Rougned Odor won’t be undervalued in drafts. He will be a 22 year old 2B coming off of a fantasy line of 16 HR, 54 R, 61 RBI, 6 SB, a .261 AVG and a.316 OBP in only 120 games. It’s easy to see the potential and foam at the mouth over the possibility of a full season. 2016 should finally be the year where Odor has the 2B locked down from spring training until the end of the season. Barring injury, I would expect Odor to log 140+ games and I would expect him to deliver something close to the above pace over those 140 games.

Odor’s power took off last year and he was able to log 16 HRs with an 11.8 HR/FB. The HR/FB rate was almost four percent higher than in 2014 but given the ballpark, his 2015 rate doesn’t seem like luck. It will be interesting to see where he falls this year so we can try to establish a credible baseline. In the meantime he should beat his 2015 total by merely playing more games. If he can crack 140 games, he should hit more than 16 HRs even with a lower HR/FB.

I would like to think that Odor could put up a 20 SB season, but he was terrible at stealing bases last year registering 6 in 13 attempts (46%). He was even worse in 2014 in the majors with only 4 of 11 SB (36.4%) attempts resulting in success. Odor has actually been a decent base stealer in the minors according to the chart below.

Level SB %
Rangers (A-) 0.7143
Rangers (A) 0.6552
Rangers (A+) 0.7714
Rangers (AA) 0.7143
Rangers (AA) 0.6667
Rangers 0.3636
Rangers (AAA) 0.75
Rangers 0.4615

(stats via Fangraphs)

However, he just can’t seem to crack the code in the majors. Obviously both pitchers and catchers are significantly better at this level, but they shouldn’t be fooling a guy with Odor’s speed on a regular basis. My guess here is that Odor (remember he is only 22) hasn’t quite put it all together. The good news is that he is playing in a division in which the catchers are not overly adept at throwing out runners. BP has a great stat called SRAA that measures how good a catcher is at throwing out a runner once the runner decides to steal. Below are the ranks of the ALW in 2015.

Name Rank (out of 106)
Castro 95
Perez 77
Vogt 64
Iannetta 6

(stats via Baseball Prospectus)

As you can see, the catchers in the ALW outside of Chris Iannetta are not particularly adept at throwing out runners. The hope is that Odor can learn how to read pitchers better and improve his SB ratios. If he does this, there is potential for 20+ SBs but until the adjustments are made, Odor might max out at 10. The Rangers are unlikely to allow him to keep running if he can’t drastically improve his current success rate.

One place that Odor should see an improvement is with AVG. He hit .261 last year with a .283 BABIP. That BABIP seems low but his LD rate was only 14.6%. In 2014 his BABIP was .294 with a LD rate of only 15% and I would expect his BABIP to tick up some this year. It wouldn’t surprise me one bit for Odor to come out and bat .270. If he can improve his LD rate (not a given), he could become an elite 2B.

Unfortunately, Odor is not going to come at a major discount, going 8th among 2B according to NFBC data. In a dynasty or keeper, Odor is likely going to cost a pretty penny. However he is still a guy I’ll be targeting. The upside is 20/20 with .280 average. A more realistic expectation this year is 18/12 with a .270 average which is pretty good for one of the weaker fantasy positions. Steamer projects Odor for 17 HR, 70 R, 71 RBI, 12 SB, a .273 AVG and a .321 OBP in 136 games. I think Odor logs 140 games and I’ll give him a line of 19 HR, 75 R, 79 RBI, 13 SB, a .272 AVG and a .322 OBP. This is probably the final year to get any sort of discount on Odor and I expect to have him on several of my redraft league teams.

 

  HR R RBI SB AVG OBP
Steamer 17 72 71 12 0.273 0.321
Spauny 19 75 79 13 0.272 0.322

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