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This is the outfield edition of Welcome to Splitsville, where we discuss players at the position from both a daily and seasonal perspective. For an introduction and catcher week, click here. For first-base week, click here. For second-base week, click here.For third-base week, click here. For shortstop week, click here.

Outfielders as a whole hit at a level slightly below league average in 2016, with a 98 wRC+. The breakdown is 97 for left fielders, 96 for center fielders, and 101 for right fielders. Outfield was the third least productive position as a group in baseball by wRC+, behind catcher and shortstop.

There are a few prominent outfielders who have been massively productive against one particular handedness that fantasy owners can target in daily leagues. The first one that jumps out is Nelson Cruz against lefties. Cruz has a 181 wRC+ (1.038 OPS) and .313 ISO vs. LHP in the last three seasons. He is the second most productive hitter in baseball against left-handed pitchers since 2014, and most productive outfielder. Cruz will be 37 in 2017, so he’s going to slow down at some point, but he hasn’t shown signs of it yet. Giancarlo Stanton—if healthy—is generally another elite play against below average left-handed pitchers. Stanton has a 180 wRC+ (1.054 OPS) and .345 ISO against LHP since 2014.

Here are the top performers among outfielders against right handed pitchers and left handed pitchers over the last two seasons. MLB average wRC+ for outfielders is 100 vs RHP and 98 vs LHP.

Vs. RHP (min. 200 PA)

Player

wRC+

ISO

BB%

K%

Mike Trout

170

.266

14.7%

22.4%

Bryce Harper

164

.274

19.2%

18.2%

Kyle Schwarber

157

.272

14.7%

24.0%

Andre Ethier

146

.209

10.2%

15.9%

Trea Turner

146

.243

5.1%

19.4%

Jose Bautista

141

.266

16.6%

18.4%

J.D. Martinez

140

.243

8.0%

25.9%

Kris Bryant

140

.227

10.7%

25.9%

Tyler Naquin

138

.225

9.2%

32.3%

Nelson Cruz

138

.237

8.1%

25.4%

Curtis Granderson

136

.231

13.6%

19.1%

Michael Brantley

136

.170

11.3%

6.3%

Yoenis Cespedes

136

.253

5.2%

19.6%

Christian Yelich

135

.179

11.1%

19.0%

Joc Pederson

134

.245

15.3%

26.9%

Josh Reddick

133

.178

8.9%

10.7%

Derek Dietrich

133

.187

8.8%

19.6%

David Peralta

133

.214

7.8%

19.6%

Carlos Gonzalez

133

.265

9.2%

19.1%

Shin Soo Choo

131

.189

12.5%

23.1%

Mookie Betts

130

.201

7.0%

12.3%

Hyun Soo Kim

129

.125

9.9%

14.6%

AJ Pollock

128

.181

8.2%

13.5%

Hunter Pence

128

.162

9.3%

21.6%

Jackie Bradley Jr

127

.262

10.9%

23.2%

Adam Eaton

126

.172

9.2%

18.2%

Michael Conforto

126

.238

10.3%

23.2%

Andrew McCutchen

126

.185

12.4%

20.6%

Willson Contreras

125

.213

10.8%

25.5%

Mark Trumbo

125

.241

7.7%

25.3%

Khris Davis

124

.274

7.7%

27.7%

Denard Span

123

.143

8.8%

10.5%

Starling Marte

123

.154

4.5%

18.5%

Charlie Blackmon

123

.224

7.0%

16.7%

Ryan Braun

122

.217

7.9%

19.6%

Justin Upton

121

.226

9.7%

26.0%

Odubel Herrera

120

.149

7.6%

21.1%

Giancarlo Stanton

120

.259

10.0%

29.9%

Corey Dickerson

119

.268

5.9%

22.3%

Seth Smith

119

.189

11.4%

20.3%

Carlos Beltran

119

.201

7.4%

16.2%

Mark Canha

118

.210

6.6%

22.4%

Tommy Pham

118

.230

8.8%

29.3%

Danny Valencia

118

.189

6.5%

23.9%

Randal Grichuk

116

.254

5.7%

31.7%

Ben Zobrist

116

.175

14.2%

10.8%

Matt Holliday

116

.166

10.0%

17.1%

Nick Markakis

116

.123

12.4%

13.4%

George Springer

113

.160

11.1%

24.9%

Dexter Fowler

112

.166

13.6%

23.9%

Adam Jones

111

.201

4.8%

15.2%

Jay Bruce

111

.257

9.0%

21.6%

Vs. LHP (min. 150 PA)

Player

wRC+

ISO

BB%

K%

Nelson Cruz

185

.334

11.5%

22.2%

Mike Trout

178

.256

17.1%

19.2%

Giancarlo Stanton

170

.388

12.9%

29.4%

Chris Young

163

.252

10.5%

17.4%

Lorenzo Cain

160

.230

7.3%

13.2%

George Springer

159

.264

12.5%

21.9%

Ryan Braun

159

.244

11.7%

16.3%

Brandon Guyer

157

.199

6.9%

14.8%

Kris Bryant

152

.273

13.0%

26.9%

Yasmany Tomas

152

.267

7.7%

22.2%

Stephen Piscotty

152

.235

11.4%

17.4%

Franklin Gutierrez

151

.255

10.3%

26.7%

Jayson Werth

146

.291

10.6%

21.7%

Marcell Ozuna

143

.243

6.3%

18.5%

Ben Zobrist

143

.171

12.0%

14.4%

Enrique Hernandez

142

.230

12.2%

22.6%

Danny Valencia

141

.188

10.6%

17.4%

Dexter Fowler

139

.163

11.7%

17.8%

JD Martinez

137

.239

11.1%

26.7%

Matt Kemp

136

.259

6.7%

19.4%

Bryce Harper

135

.223

15.2%

22.4%

Yoenis Cespedes

133

.241

13.1%

23.5%

Carlos Beltran

130

.223

6.3%

17.4%

AJ Pollock

130

.175

7.7%

13.5%

Andrew McCutchen

129

.182

11.7%

18.9%

Melvin Upton Jr

128

.225

11.8%

27.7%

Yasiel Puig

128

.230

9.0%

20.0%

Jake Smolinski

123

.196

10.6%

12.0%

Ian Desmond

118

.177

7.3%

20.6%

Jose Bautista

118

.215

16.9%

14.8%

Randal Grichuk

118

.252

6.7%

27.3%

Khris Davis

118

.255

9.8%

26.7%

Mookie Betts

117

.209

6.3%

9.7%

Steve Pearce

113

.222

10.0%

19.6%

Matt Holliday

113

.226

11.7%

17.1%

Jorge Soler

109

.160

12.5%

28.4%

Cameron Maybin

109

.130

12.8%

20.8%

Some thoughts on various outfielders:

We talked about Giancarlo Stanton as a hitter who has destroyed lefties. In 2016, his numbers against lefties were still strong, but not as elite as they were in 2014 and 2015. It was part of a huge overall drop in production last year at age 26, which is a little strange. I suspect it may have been related to his hamate bone fracture from 2015. I am interested to see how Stanton performs in 2017 as he distances himself from that injury. Stanton was on his way to a historic season in 2015 power-wise, with a .341 ISO, before breaking his hand on a violent swing. A .341 ISO over a full season would rank in the top 60 all time for a single season among qualified hitters. Stanton looked like he was putting everything together and on his way to a 50+ HR season when he suffered the hand injury, which ended his season in late June. In 2016, Stanton had the worst season of his career by wRC+, even worse than his rookie year in 2010. Was it a timing thing? Maybe his hand strength wasn’t quite the same and he lost some bat control after having his hand operated on? He also had an ugly groin injury that he rushed back from and didn’t hit well at all in the 38 PA he got after he returned to finish out the season in September. I own Stanton in a seasonal keeper league, and I am waiting for him to re-establish his value. If he can do that early on, I’ll probably look to move him. Stanton is frequently injured, which can drive a fantasy owner crazy. In 2016, he suffered a serious groin injury. In 2015, he had the aforementioned hamate bone break in his hand while swinging. In 2013, he hurt his hamstring, shoulder and ankle. In 2012, he had surgery on his knee. He’s averaged only 115 games played per season since 2012. Stanton is amazingly talented, and has the talent to hit 50+ HR if he can stay on the field, but I have little faith in his ability to consistently stay healthy year to year. If he’s constantly hurt in his mid 20s, how well is he going to age?

Kyle Schwarber was mentioned in the catcher week Splitsville piece, because he will retain C eligibility in Yahoo leagues. Schwarber’s position in most leagues in 2017 will be outfield, so I’ll rehash my thoughts on him here. Schwarber made an amazing recovery to come back from that horrible knee injury and hit .412 in the World Series with a .971 OPS. Schwarber said he tracked a lot of pitches on a pitching machine using the nastiest pitch setting the machine had in order to prepare for the series, which appeared to work. It wasn’t just the numbers; Schwarber’s timing wasn’t nearly as off as I thought it would after being away from the game for six months, and his pitch recognition looked on point. This gives me more confidence that he won’t get off to a terribly rusty start in 2017 because the missed reps didn’t seem to affect him as badly as it would most other hitters. Schwarber has crushed RHP so far in his career with a 157 wRC+ and is best used only against RHP in daily leagues for now.

Christian Yelich has always had plus raw power, but we hadn’t seen much of it in games until 2016. He finally started to tap into it in the second half. Yelich hit 14 HR in 275 second half AB, more home runs than he hit in any full season prior to 2016. Yelich increased his fly ball rate to around 24% in the second half, up from 17% in the first half and 16% in his career prior. A 24% fly-ball rate is still low—the league average fly-ball rate is 35%—but because of his plus raw power, a 20 home run repeat in 2017 isn’t out of the question. Yelich just turned 25 and still has room for growth.

Trea Turner is moving back to shortstop, but will be outfield eligible in most leagues. Turner is one of the most exciting young players in baseball and is going very early in fantasy drafts after hitting .342/.370/.567 last season with 13 HR and 33 SB in 73 games. What adds to the excitement of Turner is his stolen base upside. Turner’s speed is ridiculous, and is in the handful of fastest non Billy Hamilton players in the game. He stole 33 bases in only 73 games, with an excellent 85% success rate. The Nationals’ coaching staff wants Turner to be aggressive with base stealing, so having a base stealing philosophy stemming from the dugout will help push those SB totals higher. I love Turner, but his early ADP of 11 is a little aggressive for me right now. At that price, fantasy owners are basically paying for something close to his ceiling. Turner probably isn’t close to a true talent .340 hitter in 2017, so he’ll have to compensate for potentially large AVG regression with more walks to sustain a high on base percentage that gives him more opportunities to steal bases. Turner does have a chance to evolve into a fantasy monster with the ability to hit .300 with 15+ HR, lots of runs scored, and steal 40+ bases at the top of the Nationals lineup if everything goes well.

Byron Buxton changed his swing load in the minor leagues sometime during the summer, adding a leg kick to help with his timing. After doing that, he hit .287/.357/.653 with a 165 wRC+, .366 ISO and nine HR in 113 PA after his recall on September 1st. That’s a very encouraging adjustment, but it also came with a 33.6% strikeout rate, which throws some cold water on that triple slash line. Buxton’s potential power and speed combo, if he can put things together, is enticing in fantasy leagues, but his strikeout rate is still alarming and will put a cap on maintaining a good batting average unless he can cut that down. Buxton has about as much raw talent as any young player in baseball and still can evolve into a stud fantasy hitter. He just turned 23 years old last month.

I am high on David Peralta’s potential if he can return healthy. Peralta has been one of the better outfielders in baseball against RHP over the last two seasons, and if he can establish his wrist health in 2017, he’s a guy I think might be undervalued in both seasonal and daily leagues early on. Peralta’s 133 wRC+ vs. RHP ranks 18th-best over the last two seasons, and that includes his injury plagued 2016. In 2015, he had a very strong 149 wRC+ vs. RHP, which ranked 9th best among outfielders, and it came with a .228 ISO. Arizona is probably the second best hitting environment behind Coors Field, which adds to his value in home games. Peralta’s biggest flaw so far has been poor production against lefties, with a 65 wRC+ and .119 ISO in 200 career PA against them. Peralta’s early ADP in seasonal leagues is 275, and I like taking a shot on him at that price.

There is talk that Andrew Benintendi might hit second in the order for the Red Sox this year, which would strongly elevate his fantasy value. Benintendi is one of the best prospects in baseball and more than held his own last year in the big leagues, hitting .295/.359/.476 with a 120 wRC+, .181 ISO, and 21% strikeout rate.

Brandon Guyer and Chris Young are two lefty mashers that are often priced cheaply in daily leagues. Guyer has a 157 wRC+ and .199 ISO vs LHP the last two seasons, with Young at a 163 wRC+/.252 ISO. Using those players against average to below average lefties when their prices are depressed because of their overall production is usually a good way of maximizing value.

George Springer has been among the best performers against LHP over the last two seasons. His 159 wRC+ ranks sixth-best among OF, and his .264 ISO ranks seventh. Springer will likely hit leadoff for the Astros in front of Alex Bregman, Jose Altuve, and Carlos Correa, putting him in a great spot to score runs. Springer is an excellent play in daily leagues against most LHP.

Yasmany Tomas hasn’t hit same sided pitching yet in his MLB career with a wRC+ of 81 vs RHP, which is driving his overall production down. But against lefties, Tomas has been one of the better hitting outfielders in baseball. Tomas’ 152 wRC+ vs. LHP ranks 10th best among outfielders over the last 2 seasons, and his .267 ISO ranks sixth-best. In daily leagues that price players based on their overall production, Tomas can be a bargain against LHP, especially in home games at Chase Field. Jayson Werth has a similar profile as Tomas over the last two seasons, with big power numbers vs LHP (.291 ISO, 146 wRC+), but poor numbers vs. RHP (81 wRC+, .132 ISO). Werth will be 38 years old this season, but he might be useful against below average left handed pitchers.

Joc Pederson has not been able to figure out LHP yet in his career, with a 67 wRC+ and .146 ISO, but he’s hit very well against RHP. Pederson has a 133 wRC+ and .237 ISO vs RHP in his career. Pederson’s fantasy value problem last season was often lineup slot. Most of his at bats came in the 6-8 holes after having 311 PA in the leadoff slot in 2015. Pederson’s best usage in daily leagues is when he’s hitting towards the top of the lineup against below average RHP. A .367 career OBP vs. RHP should get him some more opportunities for a better lineup slot.