2023 Dynasty Baseball Trade Target: Tommy Pham

by Josh Stevens

Is there a cutoff age for a player to reinvent himself? Once a player starts approaching 30 or even 35, is he just he player that we’ve seen up to this point? Brook Lopez, who didn’t start draining threes until his ninth NBA season, would beg to differ. A similar occurrence might the the case with our next 2023 Dynasty Baseball Trade Target: Tommy Pham.

With modern medicine and technology, players can still make legitimate leaps in their personal performance past the age of 30. They can even play until their 40th birthday now and it is not a strange happening.

With out 2023 Dynasty Baseball trade target: Tommy Pham, we have a prime example of an older guy changing up who he is as a baseball player.

2023 Dynasty Baseball Trade Target: Tommy Pham

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We know who Tommy Pham is as a player, don’t we? He’s bounced around with six different teams, performing similarly for all of them. We can usually count on Pham to provide an average around .260-.270, with a slightly average OPS, will steal some bases and hit 15-20 homers.

Pham is a solid player. Nobody is arguing that, and he’s showed this for almost a decade now. However, Pham has never been the type of player to sprint to the trades for. While he goes on his hot and cold streaks, the numbers usually even out.

On the surface, this seems to be the same case this year. Pham’s OPS in 2023 exactly lines up with his career OPS at .788. His seven homers through 52 games roughly lines up with his career 162 game average of 21 homers, while his eight stolen bases is on pace to be a little more than his 162 game average of 18 stolen bases.

These numbers, while not sounding extremely impressive, are tantalizingly close to a 20/20 season. This raises some eyebrows, as a 20/20 season usually establishes a player as a multi dimensional threat. However, Pham’s 2023 numbers don’t scream “must add”. However, his advanced metrics do.

I’ve been spending the first part of this article painting Pham as a solid, if uninspiring player. However, Pham’s Baseball Savant page has enough red to attract an angry bull.

Are you a fan of average exit velocity? Only two percent of players have a higher average exit velo than Pham. Percentiles more your speed? Pham has a hard hit percentile at 91%. Curious to see what is expected of Pham based off of his swings? The xwOBA, xBA, and xSLG for Pham are all at the 93rd percentile.

After a slow start to the year, Pham is really heating up, as he is hitting .300 with four homers and three steals in the month of June. While Pham is known for going on hot streaks, these numbers are more in line with his expected totals based off of his batted balls.

Why hasn’t Pham lived up to his expected output?

The main problem with Pham has always been launch angle. Pham’s average launch angle is usually about half of the MLB average. While this used to be a bigger problem, the new shift rules in the MLB have limited the penalty for a mediocre launch angle. We’re seeing Luis Arraez put up a historic season with a pretty bad launch angle and exit velocity.

Unlike in years past, hard hit ground balls by Pham are getting through to the outfield. This puts him on base more often, where he can still steal 20 bags at age 35.

What will it take to get Pham?

While Tommy Pham could be considered a household name, he is notorious for posting very up and down stats throughout the course of a season. This can knock down his asking price.

However, Pham’s underlying stats show that he is not the same player as in years past, and that his hot streaks are more indicative of his expected performance. This can set up Pham to be a bargain.

Final thoughts:

Tommy Pham is a bit of an eccentric player, both on and off the field. While his inconsistencies have scared off some managers, Pham’s ability to square balls up in 2023 makes him a must add and our next 2023 Dynasty Baseball Trade Target: Tommy Pham.


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1 comment

AJ June 28, 2023 - 8:58 am

A FA add, just like Aaron Hicks

Reply

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