The Statcast era of Major League Baseball brought about an entirely new set of statistics (Average Exit Velocity, Batted Ball Distance, Launch Angle, etc.) that go beyond traditional and advanced stats. Exit Velocity (EV) is the most important of these new stats, and it remains underutilized in DFS.
EV is defined as the speed (measured in Miles Per Hour) at which the baseball comes off a hitter’s bat. Every time the ball is contacted EV is calculated, regardless of the result of the contact. A higher MPH means a batter hits the ball harder on average, which generally leads to more hits and more homeruns.
DFS players need to target hitters with high EV, so we roster guys who are hitting the ball hard. This helps us see hitters who might be slumping in average and HRs, but could break out soon because they’re ripping the ball. Conversely, we can see hitters who may have decent numbers lately, but they haven’t been contacting the ball consistently, so we can avoid them.
WiseTake’s Hitter’s Model utilizes EV (final column), which shows the batter’s average EV over the last 14 days and includes handedness. The EV number you see represents the last 14 days vs either a right-handed pitcher or lefty, depending on the starting pitcher the batter is facing today. If you’re looking for consistency – cross reference this number with the hitter’s average EV for the entire season. If both numbers are high, you’re looking at a consistent hitter.
Hitters, Fast and Furious w/ Slim Gaede
Howie Kendrick (DK – 4800 FD – 3100)
FD play of the day! I love this matchup with gas can lefty Justin Nicolino (xOBA against .378, 2.21 HR/9), and he’s leading off for a lineup that finally exploded again last night. I’ll get to the numbers, but damn look at the price difference from DK to FD! DK has him priced like a Coors hitter due to this matchup, and FD missed the boat. I’m locking him down in all formats on FD, and on DK I’ll pass entirely – just play a Coors hitter if you’re spending 4800! Here are the stats if you still need them – EV14 87.47, .472 xOBA, and HC14 55.56% vs LHP…are you feeling me yet?
Nolan Arenado (DK – 5200 FD – 4700)
Coors Field, team implied over 7 runs, EV14 of 86.25, and ISO .231. I know the numbers are down lately, but this is Arenado at home. He’s still a very strong cash play on both sites. Go back to the well again.
Matt Davidson (DK – 3500 FD – 2700)
On Coors slates I’m always looking for some strong punts, and Davidson is my guy today. His 87.09 EV14 ranks very highly on this slate, and his .285 ISO vs RHP makes me like his matchup with Ervin Santana. He’s 1B/3B eligible on DK which helps find him a roster spot, and FD’s price allows easy affordability. You might get him at 1% today, and he always possesses high potential due to his power.