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
Matt Olson (DK – 3600 FD – 3200)
I realize nobody cares about this guy, but in DFS we should. If you saw his stats without a name attached you’d jump all over him tonight – 96.35 EV14, 50% HC14, .341 xOBA, .344 ISO vs RHP – and he’s facing Mike Leake in his first start for Seattle. He’s a great tournament play, especially on DK at his price and dual eligibility at 1B/OF. Grab him at zero ownership!
Lucas Duda (DK – 3900 FD – 3300)
I’ve said I’m completely done with the Rays, and it’s true. But when I see Duda with this price and this matchup against Reynaldo Lopez, I’m taking notice. The stats are impressive – 87.63 EV14, 50% HC14, .383 xOBA, .283 ISO – and the Rays are implied for 5.0 runs. My WiseTake homies rank him a 90 today, which makes me love this play even more. The focus will be on Coors, and with good reason, so guys like Duda will go way overlooked.
Adam Jones (DK- 4400 FD – 3400)
The pricing on Jones continues to be strange. Every time he has a big game, his price drops the next day. DK dropped him 700, and he’s staring at another plus matchup with Biagini – he’s only been consistently effective from the bullpen. The O’s offense rocks everyone, so I’m still fully on board here. His 86.83 EV14 vs RHP is one of the highest on the slate, and he’s batting 4th for a hot offense implied at 5.3 runs. Don’t forget about this game tonight!