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Thursday, April 18, 2019

2019 FANTASY BASEBALL CRISIS POINT: JOSE RAMIREZ 2B/3B CLEVELAND INDIANS

This one hits close to home.  From the very beginning, yours truly has been an avowed fan of Cleveland Indians infielder Jose Ramirez.  Going all the way back to his debut and through his MVP-type blockbuster 2018 performance, myself and Ramirez have taken a journey together through thick and thin and in good times and bad.  Well the relationship is quite frayed right now as Ramirez is in the midst of a hellacious slump that has his numbers in the gutter going into Thursday's slate:

.145
1 HR
3 RBI
8 R
5 SB
14/.7 K/9
5.3 BB/9
.155 BABIP

Wow what can I say?  Outside of steals, Ramirez has been a colossal bust to this point no questions asked.  As we always do here however, the advanced metrics need to be looked at and here is where some telling things reveal themselves.  The first is that Ramirez is pressing badly as his 5.3 BB/9 is way down from the 15.2 he posted a year ago.  Always possessing good patience throughout his development, Ramirez is swinging at everything right now which is not his game.  On the flip side, Ramirez is getting no luck on the batted ball as his .155 BABIP is comically unlucky.  Obviously, that number will correct itself and the average will rise.  Don't forget Ramirez has been a big time batting average asset for years and even last season his .270 mark was hurt by an unlucky .252 BABIP.  Finally, Ramirez is getting a bit homer happy with his swing in that his fly ball rate has spiked the last two seasons and is resulting in more outfield outs.  That will no doubt hurt the average a bit and maybe prevent another .300 mark but nothing earth shattering either. 

All in all, Ramirez is your classic slow starter who actually came out of the gates quiet last season as well.  The guy is one of the premier power/speed dynamos in the game and if you can buy low here, by all means do so. The payoff will be immense and the advanced numbers show a rebound is on its way. 


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