How to Become a Player Flipper Part 3 – Quick Hits

by Dap Scout
How to Become a Player Flipper

This week I continue my Player Flipper series with, How to Become a Player Flipper Part 3 – Quick Hits. Here is the link to the article where I introduced Player Flipper – “How to Become a Player Flipper.”

My Wordle Passion Project

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I don’t think there is anything worse than accomplishing a fantastic feat and having no one to share it with. Remember the time you caught that rare Squirtle in Pokemon GO, and your dog wasn’t excited? What about that time you fixed that spelling error in an email right before you hit send? Did the office give you the hour-long slow clap you deserved?

Every day, I see someone sharing their Wordle superhuman stroke of genius on Twitter. Typically it’s in the form of colored blocks and a mixed fraction. The person posting it is so excited and wants you to share in the excitement. I have lost days of sleep trying to figure out what I can do to help. These Wordle posts must be amplified for the good of the human race.

The solution: A historical text that records every Wordle score. I will print out each Wordle score and inscribe it using a beautiful fountain pen in a large leather-bound book. The books will be put into a large hole, or “pit.” The pit will then be filled with concrete. This is to ensure the long-term preservation of these historical texts.

I will be starting a GoFundMe with the tag AllWordleScoresStored. If you can give even a little to this cause, it will make everyone on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram feel like their Wordle accomplishments are not in vain.

How to Become a Player Flipper Part 3

Get prepared for the upcoming Fantasy Baseball season using the FantasyPros Draft Wizard.

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As a reminder, we are looking for players who:

Rank #200 or greater in the NFBC ADP.

Rank in the top 100 of the Fangraphs Splits Leaderboard. Then we look for players that took off in April and May of last season (or had a reason for not taking off)

Instead of deep dives for this final hitter’s edition of Player Flipper, I wanted to mention a few of my favorite hitter targets.

Gio Urshela, 3B, SS, New York Yankees  – (NFBC ADP 258)

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Gio Urshela’s stats for the first two months of 2021:

MonthPABB%K%BB/KAVGOBPSLGOPS
April956.3%25.3%0.3.273.316.455.770
May1817.2%23.2%0.3.257.309.395.705

Wow, these are, um, not really exciting numbers.

2021 in review

Gio Urshela had offseason surgery in December 2020

Urshela showed up for Spring Training on March 4th, 2021, and he said that everything felt fine and he was 100%. Spring training numbers were, well, frankly, and I don’t care because it is Spring Training. But when the 2021 season began, these types of injury updates became the norm.

He spent 35 days on the injured list but missed many more days due to various ailments where the Yankees chose to let him recover on the bench.

If there was an Urshela tweet, most likely it was about an injury.

What to expect in 2022

Injuries. Using my expert analysis, I can say he will get injured at some point in 2022.

While we can expect Urshela to be injured at least once during the 2022 season, I expect a big bounce-back season from him more in line with the 2019 and 2020 seasons. Urshela played 132 games in 2019 with a slash line of .315/.355/.534/.889. In 2020 he played 43 games (out of a possible 60) with .298/.368/.490/.858.

Since we are talking injuries, it is time to bring in my favorite injury expert Nic Civale (follow him on Twitter @NicoCiva1), who would like to point out the following about Urshela:

Just because he was bouncing around from injury to injury, this pretty much aligns perfectly with the narrative that he was battling through the year trying to be as productive as possible with injuries he had (versus complications from the offseason surgery). He is a clear bounce-back candidate for me, and I’m willing to put more trust in the numbers he put up in 2019 and 2020 versus last year due to the injuries he had had.

Why do we flip him?

Did you not read any of the stuff I wrote above? Gio Urshela will get injured. We don’t know how bad the injury will be, but he will miss games. There are also long-term lineup concerns because the Yankees will bring in at least one more bat to play in the infield.

Brandon Nimmo, OF, New York Mets  – (NFBC ADP 292)

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Brandon Nimmo stats the first two months of 2021

MonthPABB%K%BB/KAVGOBPSLGOPS
April8114.8%25.9%0.6.358.463.5371.000
May40.0%50%

Through April, Nimmo was a top 20 hitter. Then came May.

There seems to be something off about the May numbers. I can’t put my finger on it. Oh yeah, it is the four plate appearances. Brandon Nimmo was injured a lot in 2021

2021 in review

73 – The number of days Brandon Nimmo was on the Injured List.

On May 5th, just a few weeks into the season, Nimmo injured his left index finger (bone bruise). He was out till July 2nd. Then on September 4th, he strained his hamstring and was out till September 17th. Both times injuries derailed a promising stretch of hitting.

Start of the season till the first injury in May – .338/.440/.507

Returning from injury in July, Nimmo hit .282/.448/.388 in July, and then .283/.393/.374. Some of the declines can be attributed to Francisco Lindor getting hurt 0n 7/17, just 15 days after Nimmo returned.

From 7/2 to 7/17, Nimmo hit:

 PABB%K%BB/KAVGOBPSLGOPS
5115.7%27.5%0.6.302.412.465.877

For the rest of July, Nimmo hit:

 PABB%K%BB/KAVGOBPSLGOPS
5521.8%32.7%0.7.262.436.310.746

With almost the same number of plate appearances, all his numbers are down (except for walks) across the board once Lindor goes down.

I have a hard time getting excited about a player that is not only injury-prone but needs another injury-prone player in the lineup to perform well.

However, when Nimmo can play 140 games as he did in 2018, he showed he could hit and hit for power: 17 HR and 53 XBH. The slash line of 2021 is not that far off of his 2018 season (.292/.401/.437 vs. .404/.483/.887).


The biggest difference between his great 2018 season and 2021 was his Barrel %:

YearPitchesBatted BallsBarrelsBarrel %
20182262293206.8%
20211547248104%

All the other underlying metrics, including EV (2018 – 90 vs. 2021-89.3) and Launch Angle (10.5 vs. 8.8), are very similar.

What to expect in 2022

At least 150 games played and 50 home runs. Just kidding. I expect a lot of injuries. Entering his age 29 season, Nimmo has a lot to prove both with his health and the consistency of his game. A long off-season could help him heal. The shortened 2020 season was one of Nimmo’s best with a .280/.404/.484 line and playing 55 out of 60 games.

Brandon Nimmo should start fast, and if Lindor is healthy as well, I expect a top 20 hitter for at least the first month.

Why do we flip him?

No way I’m trying to keep Nimmo as a long-term asset. He has shown very little consistency in his game or his health. However, the price is so low I will be adding him to every roster possible at this price. He will quickly get at least one top 150 prospect after a hot start during the first month of the season.

Joey Wendle, 2B, 3B, SS, Miami Marlins  – (NFBC ADP 333)

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Joey Wendle stats the first two months of 2021

MonthPABB%K%BB/KAVGOBPSLGOPS
April882.3%20.5%0.1.313.341.518.859
May9010.017.80.6.291.378.532.909

Nothing to say other than, Wow. Tampa Bay has too many talented infielders when Joey Wendle is not an everyday player. They should be forced to give up one of their infielders to other needy teams once a month. They would still probably have too many fantastic infielders after three years at that rate.

2021 in review

First of all, did you know Joey Wendle was 31 years old? I thought he was at most 28. I am just shocked at the moment.

Ok, I’m back, but that threw me for a loop.

The problem with Wendle’s 2021 season can easily be shown when you break it into two halves:

GamesPABB%K%BB/KAVGOBPSLGOPS
1st Half2776.1%22.4%0.27.275.336.450.786
2nd Half2244.9%22.8%0.22.254.299.388.687

He started slumping right before the All-Star break, and the downward trajectory continued for the rest of the season. The biggest issue with a slump for Wendle is he played for Tampa Bay last season. Also, Wendle is not a superstar either, so Tampa would just let him try to figure it out with consistent playing time. Even if a Rays player is hitting well, no one knows who is starting each game. But since it is the Rays, you don’t get to second guess it because of their track record of being right.

When Joey Wendle started to slump, his playing time suffered. So then the Rays do what they always do, put another stud into the lineup.

What to expect in 2022

Playing time and lots of it. Kim Ng and the Marlins made some fantastic moves in 2021, and I cannot wait to see how the pieces fit in 2022. Wendle is penciled in as the starting 3rd baseman. However, he could slide over to many other positions if a player needs a breather. I’m expecting that more time in the field and at the plate will give him a chance to find a consistent approach.

Why do we flip him?

New team and more playing time for Wendle? Yes, please. He should come out to start the season swinging a hot bat.

However.

The Rays rarely lose trades. When they traded Nate Lowe to Texas last year, I immediately traded him to big Rangers fans in two leagues. The Rays saw a streaky power bat who was massive home runs but had contact issues. After a torrid pace to the season, MLB pitching figured out Lowe, and the Rays were proven right.

The Rays are right more times than they are wrong in trades, so I expect that MLB pitchers will start to adjust to Wendle and prove that his 2nd half in 2021 is more in line with what we should expect. Trade him So trade when everyone focuses on “Wendle’s breakout with the Marlins.”

Tyler Naquin, OF, Cinncinati Reds  – (NFBC ADP 334)

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Tyler Naquin stats the first two months of 2021

MonthPABB%K%BB/KAVGOBPSLGOPS
April749.5%25.7%0.4.266.351.563.914
May1027.8%24.5%0.3.239.304.424.728

Well, that was a roller coaster ride. April was all like, “Here we go! Up! Up!” and then May was like, “We are all going to DIE!!!”

2021 in review

The big difference in 2021 came from moving from Cleveland to the hitter’s paradise at the Great American Ballpark.

Here are his home and away splits for reference

SplitPABB%K%BB/KAVGOBPSLGOPS
Home2277.9%23.8%0.33.273.335.522.857
Away2277.5%22.9%0.33.267.330.432.762

Look at the massive difference in slugging percentage.

However, the one thing that continued to carry over from Cleveland was his struggles against left-handed pitching.

SplitPABB%K%BB/KAVGOBPSLGOPS
vs LHP7011.4%25.7%0.44.197.300.262.562
vs RHP3847.0%22.9%0.31.283.339.514.853

So in 2021, if Naquin was starting at home against a right-handed pitcher, you wanted him in your lineup.

What to expect in 2022

Naquin is no more injury risk than the average player, unlike some of the names here. He spent 20 days on the injured list from 9/14 – 10/3 with bruised ribs. But other than that, he was healthy for most of 2021.

Naquin has shown the ability to start fast, and I expect that to continue in 2022. He should get all the at-bats against right-handed pitching. Hopefully, the season begins with a long homestand for the Reds. That way, he can pad his offensive stats.

Why do we flip him?

Tyler Naquin is a 31-year-old platoon player who had a career year last year. Ride an early season (hopefully with a lot of home games) surge, and put him up on the trade block before the first 30 days are up.

Some additional names I absolutely will be flipping early in the season

Jorge Mateo, 2B, SS, OF, Baltimore Orioles  – (NFBC ADP 408)

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The fantastic Mike Kurland (@Mike_Kurland) highlighted what Jorge Mateo did after he was traded to the Orioles.

I will draft Jorge Mateo’s power and speed combo lottery ticket everywhere this season.

Colin Moran, 1B, Pittsburgh Pirates  – (NFBC ADP 516)

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Colin Moran is my absolute long shot player to come out fast in 2022. He should get playing time at the beginning of the year. Hopefully, that can translate into enough value to flip him for a top 200 prospect or two.



Seriously are you still reading?

I have a contest for my readers! All you have to do to enter is post a Tweet with the name of your favorite player flipper target and make sure to include #DapScoutFlippers in your Tweet. Then, using super cool randomizing software, I will choose the winner on January 30th and announce the winner on Twitter on January 31st. The prize is a secret, but trust me, it is super cool because I bought it with my hard-earned blog money.

If you have any ideas about what I should cover, a show I should watch, or a charity I should spotlight, leave a comment below or hit me up on Twitter – @dapscout.

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