Playoff Player Profile: Andrelton Simmons
We are all aware of what Andrelton Simmons can do in the field. We’ve seen and used the #andrelted hashtag. We’ve all looked at that picture and felt inadequate. As fantasy owners though, what exactly is Andrelton Simmons to us? His 2013 was more and less than we expected in many ways. He walked as little as we anticipated, but and struck out less than he did the year before (which was an already impressive 11.5%). High contact, low OBP is as advertised as far as Simmons is concerned.
Where he surprised was with his power. While his slugging percentage couldn’t even surpass .400, Simmons socked 17 home runs on the season, thanks mostly to compiling 658 plate appearances. His 8% HR/FB a very slight increase from the 7.5% he posted in 2012, so it would seem to be that his power is legitimate. The only issue I see with Simmons replicating his success when it comes to power is that nearly half (8) of his home runs were rated as “just enough” per hittrackeronline.com, while only averaging 384.5 feet per home run compared to the National League average of 395 feet.
Where Simmons truly fell short of fantasy owners’ expectations was with his speed. While Simmons swiped 26 bases in 131 games in 2011, he’s only managed seven in 12 attempts in 206 games at the major league level. He also fell short of expectations (perhaps unrealistic) in the category of batting average. After a .289 average in his debut, the bar was set pretty high, but I doubt many were predicting a regression to below .250 given the impressive contact ability that Simmons has displayed. The answer to that of course, is everyone’s favorite friend… BABIP! Simmons hit for a standard .310 BABIP in 2012, it plummeted to .247 in 2013 with no real discernible reason in sight. True, his groundball percentage dropped 13 percentage points and his flyball percentage rose 12 percentage points, which would affect his BABIP, but not to the tune of .247. The culprit may well be Simmons’ disturbingly high infield fly ball percentage, which checks in at 17.8% compared to the league average of just under 10%. I’d normally blame that and call it a day, but Simmons posted a 17.5% IFFB rate in 2012 without the negative results. Sure, a .310 BABIP might be unsustainable given the batted ball profile, but .247 seems unsustainable as well.
Simmons is useful as a compiler given the lack of rest he gets, but he’s always someone you’ll be looking to upgrade from. He may well improve his secondary skills, but he doesn’t project as a 20 home run or 20 stolen base guy down the line. Additionally, as a down in the order hitter, being a contributor in the runs department could be difficult. The result then, is a deeply flawed fantasy player who still provides value thanks to miserable position depth, see: .254/.308/.367 league average slash line for shortstops and solid pop.
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