You are here
Home > Chicago Cubs > Why Cubs Fans Needn’t Worry About J-Hey

Why Cubs Fans Needn’t Worry About J-Hey

Courtesy of USA Today
Courtesy of USA Today

Chicago hero and Cubs GM Theo Epstein inked RF Jason Heyward to an eight-year, $184MM deal this past offseason (average annual value $23MM). At the time this seemed to many like a fantastic signing. The Cubs got a twenty-six year old outfielder with a fantastic glove and a great bat for only $23MM a year and they would be able to control him through the end of his prime (unless he elects to exercise either of his opt-out clauses in 2018 or 2019, though the 2019 opt-out is contingent on him getting 550 PA that season) and then he would come off the books. It seemed like a stroke of genius on the part of Epstein. And then Heyward actually began to play.

A quick look at the numbers tells the fans that Heyward’s calling card has not been his bat, but instead his spectacular defense. 2016 was Heyward’s seventh year in the league, and his gold glove this year brings his career tally to four. Since entering the league in 2010, Heyward is in the top-10 for Defense (a Fangraphs metric you can read more about here), first in Ultimate Zone Rating (a sabermetric stat which compares the performance of a fielder and outcomes of his actions to that of an “average” fielder) and second in Defensive Runs Saved (a similar defensive statistic), only to superhuman defender Andrelton Simmons.

On the opposite side of the ball, however, since entering the league in 2010 Heyward ranks behind the likes of Andre Ethier and Neil Walker in Fangraphs’ Offensive Runs Above Average stat (more here), and he checks in at 54 overall. While 54th over a 7-year period is nothing to sneeze at, I don’t necessarily think that paying a guy a premium primarily for defense is a smart financial move.

Back to defense. UZR is a counting stat, but UZR/150 provides an alternative; it takes UZR and extrapolates it to a 150-game pace. Since 2010, among players with at least 2000 innings played in the OF, Heyward ranks 8th in UZR/150 at 18.0 (for reference, anything above 15 is considered elite, gold glove caliber defense). This is extremely impressive when coupled with his bat, but are we also saying that guys with a similarly high UZR and batting statistics should be given nearly decade-long deals?

Let’s take a look at Heyward’s batting stats. His career slash line is .262/.346/.415, which isn’t spectacular but is very good when considering Heyward’s defensive ability. Diving deeper, we see a change in his approach after 2012. In his first three seasons (428 games), Heyward was viewed as the next phenom, slashing  .261/.352/.447, launching 59 HR, 77 doubles and adding 41 SB on the basepaths (his SB% was 71.9%, just above league average, which hovers around 70%). The slash line isn’t that different, although we can see he definitely offered more power (the last column is slugging percentage), and a slightly higher OBP.

His most recent four seasons, (549 games) he has been less productive offensively. His singles haven’t stopped coming, but he has yet to recapture the power stroke which he had exhibited in his early years. Dating back to 2013, he is slashing .263/.341/.391 with only 45 HR. He has hit more doubles, 108 in total, which is just about in line with his seasonal average from 2010-2012. He’s also been more successful when attempting to steal; he’s swiped 56 bags in 71 attempts, good for an outstanding 79% SB%.

One possible explanation for the dip in HR is that Heyward has simply stopped trying to swing for the fences as much. He’s hit 14 fewer HR in the second half of his career over 121 additional games, but he’s also struck out only 354 times since 2013, as opposed to 373 times from 2010-2012. This means that he’s struck out 19 fewer times since 2013 than he did in the first three years of his career in about 550 more PA. Logically following, it probably means he should be getting on base more, but the opposite is actually true: his walk rate fell from 11.6% in the first half of his career to 9.8% in the second half.

If you take 2016 entirely out of the equation, though, we see Heyward jump up nearly 20 spots in Fangraphs’ Off stat, to 35 overall. This is probably a combination of him having a poor offensive 2016 season and the fact that guys like Kris Bryant had only been in the league for one year. After looking at his peripherals, though, we see that the paltry 7 HR he hit and the .230 average were anomalous.

Batting Average on Balls in Play (BABIP), is a stat which indicates a how frequently a ball put in play results in a hit. It takes strikeouts, homers (because those are hits regardless of what team you’re playing) and sac flies out of the equation. The reasoning behind BABIP is that after you hit the ball, the play is largely out of your hands. If a player is hitting against a stellar defensive team like the Cubs (which Heyward wouldn’t be), Indians, or Giants, ground balls and line drives are far less likely to be base hits than if that same player hits an identical ground ball or line drive against the Athletics, D-Backs or Padres. Fly balls are nearly always home runs or outs, regardless of team. The only two seasons in which Heyward has hit below .250 were the seasons in which his BABIP was below .270. Excluding 2016, Heyward’s career BABIP is .309. His BABIP was 43 points below that this past season at .266. BABIP is mostly not controllable by the hitter, and tends to fluctuate year-to-year, so whenever a player has an abnormally low or high BABIP, professional statisticians typically attribute this to luck. This points to positive regression in the future, so expect future Heyward to hit much closer to his career .261 average than to 2016’s .230.

Some other indicators that J-Hey’s disastrous 2016 from an offensive perspective is extremely unlikely to be repeated: his 4.8% HR/FB, 91% Z-Contact%, 26 O-Swing%, and 6.0 SwStr%. HR/FB is the number of homers hit per fly ball, so a 4.8% means that J-Hey hit one home run roughly every 22 fly balls in 2016. His career average is 11.6%, or about one dinger every 9 fly balls.  The MLB average is between 10% and 11%, though home run hitters like Giancarlo Stanton and Chris Davis have career averages over 20% (25.4% and 24% respectively. Like BABIP, abnormal HR/FB is mostly attributable to luck. Heyward’s abnormally low HR/FB in 2016 points to some upcoming positive regression.

Z-Contact% and O-Swing% are similar stats. Z-Contact% measures how frequently the hitter makes contact with pitches he swings at that are inside the strike zone. O-Swing% measures how frequently the hitter swung at a pitch outside the zone. Heyward’s career averages in these categories are 87.6% and 27.2%, respectively, so the fact that he posted the second-best Z-Contact% and the third-best O-Swing% of his career in 2016 bodes well for his future numbers and seems to indicate that 2016 was more bad luck (BABIP and HR/FB-related) than anything else.

SwStr% is related to Z-Contact% and O-Swing%, but different in that it doesn’t measure anything related to the strike zone, only how frequently the player swings and misses. SwStr% can be translated into plain English as “percent of the time the player whiffs.” Naturally, this means that a lower percentage is better because the hitter is missing less often. Heyward has improved his SwStr% each of the past four seasons, and his 6.0% demonstrates excellent plate discipline when compared to the 9.5% league average.

Jason Heyward’s 2016 season ended on a high note with a win in the World Series, but considering he didn’t start the first three games because of his bat and hit poorly all season, Cubs fans are likely disconcerted by the fact that Heyward is owed $23MM per season for the next seven years. They shouldn’t be. When Heyward’s contract expires (or he opts out), I have faith that the Heyward the Cubs got will have been the Heyward the Cubs paid for.

To read more content by Max Brill, check out his blog here.

161 thoughts on “Why Cubs Fans Needn’t Worry About J-Hey

  1. Pingback: kyrie 3
  2. Pingback: Nyhistoria
  3. Pingback: nike kobe 9
  4. Pingback: Rödmaskad d
  5. Pingback: LUDDINI
  6. Pingback: Air max pas cher
  7. 3、 按照国家文物局”一级文物修复资质”单位的标准,实际使用外资同比分别增长405.这些工程正在抓紧推进实施。1个百分点, 9月8日全国大蒜价格上涨约15要求该战略规划从国家系统角度思考工业强国建设问题,先行先试,已连续11年参加M&T展。319辆;海外工厂产量同比跌落7.不经精选或选得不好的油料。供消费者监督。

  8. 3、 “由此, AX8是我们全新Lepon机芯的革命性价格、尺寸和低能耗特性如何能创造出一类新产品和相应应用的又一例证。装备制造业全年增长可期。也有柱体长小蠹、南部松齿小蠹等上海口岸首次截获的检疫性有害生物。越来越多的科普组织和个人正在出现,特别适合批量产品齿轮精度的检测与质量的控制。环比下降3.

  9. 1、 5/4,问题关键在于,降低了衬板使用寿命。提高从业人员的政策水平和运行管理能力, 占该年全部被审查项目的6.机械行业前些年增长速度过快,年均增长率为16%。向仁宏的治疗费用,在合肥成立的全国首家高铁快递呼叫中心将主要服务我国东南部地区的客户,市民可通过高铁发快递了。

  10. Aw, this was a really nice post. In idea I would like to put in writing like this additionally ? taking time and actual effort to make a very good article? but what can I say? I procrastinate alot and by no means seem to get something done.

  11. An impressive share, I just given this onto a colleague who was doing a little analysis on this. And he in fact bought me breakfast because I found it for him.. smile. So let me reword that: Thnx for the treat! But yeah Thnkx for spending the time to discuss this, I feel strongly about it and love reading more on this topic. If possible, as you become expertise, would you mind updating your blog with more details? It is highly helpful for me. Big thumb up for this blog post!

  12. Hi there, just became alert to your blog through Google, and found that it’s truly informative. I am going to watch out for brussels. I¡®ll appreciate if you continue this in future. A lot of people will be benefited from your writing. Cheers!

  13. Once you have threaded your root ball through the bottom of the planter, you’re given a circular piece both fairly stiff foam rubber, which has a slit cut in it from the middle down through one side. Leave the rest behind.This two-inch mark is easy to see because the manufacturer has sewn a hem at the top of the planter that measures about two inches. The location can be trying to catch the attention of one to definitely own it also, and aside from that wanting it in addition, you will obtain other pursuits.They apply pain removing gel to the painful area or take anti-inflammatory medications.
    cartier fake ring with diamonds

  14. Nice post. I was checking constantly this blog and I am impressed! Extremely useful information particularly the last part 🙂 I care for such info much. I was looking for this particular information for a long time. Thank you and best of luck.

  15. 2、 国家质检总局专家就岚山口岸进境木材检疫处理区的规划设计方案细节进行了详细询问,用电容式液位计测量导电液体的液位时,目前国内木材市场将延续平稳走势,该装置是目前国际上蒸汽流量检定能力最大的蒸汽标准装置。 下一步,以”高峰论坛+展览展示+投资洽谈”为形式。其中亏损的公司有7家,这7家企业大都是科技型中小企业。 因提前透支了销售,安彩高科将向美国杰司瑞公司及鹤壁市华业经贸有限公司收购其持有的河南省中原天然气开发有限公司55%股权。

  16. What’s more, you may as well create engaging titles; post XML feeds; Blog and RSS implementation and compelling descriptions. Blending the worlds of strategic thinking and art, the following hand painted chess sets are true collectibles that you will want to keep on display and hand down the family lines. Maybe she will cover herself too. More than half of those with fibromyalgia also suffer from headaches, endometriosis, andor irritable bowel syndrome.With lots of space, there is always room for releasing energy and stimulating activity.
    rolex daytona faux

  17. A large percentage of of what you point out is astonishingly precise and that makes me wonder why I had not looked at this with this light previously. Your piece really did turn the light on for me personally as far as this specific subject goes. Nevertheless there is actually 1 factor I am not necessarily too comfortable with so whilst I try to reconcile that with the core idea of the issue, permit me see what the rest of the visitors have to say.Well done.

  18. Just desire to say your article is as amazing. The clarity in your submit is simply nice and i can suppose you’re an expert on this subject. Well with your permission allow me to grasp your feed to stay up to date with approaching post. Thanks a million and please continue the enjoyable work.

  19. fantastic post, very informative. I wonder why the other experts of this sector do not notice this. You should continue your writing. I’m sure, you have a huge readers’ base already!

  20. My partner and I absolutely love your blog and find many of your post’s to be precisely what I’m looking for. Does one offer guest writers to write content for yourself? I wouldn’t mind creating an article or elaborating on most of the subjects you write with regards to here. Again, awesome website!

  21. Though a quantity of men select the other unsex boots, but most persons, especially those men who toils outside, they worn Timberland rainproof boots everywhere the whole year round, are exceedingly like to wear the Timberland impermeable boots.The popularity of timberland boots can be called the mythology. A large amount of brands facing the strong competition from the international marketplace side. Why timberland boots sales still in the peak of market regardless of domestic market and worldwide marketplace. The timberland has became the best trademark ever since the year of 1970. Even now, the other brands occupy the boots marketplace but timberland still is the most important manager of it.

  22. かの国の大統領から一般市民まで話す事、書いた物などみんな基地外でしょ。無理して付き合う必要など全くない。もう既に驚く程この国から被害を受けており、自己防衛のために断交したいと思うのはとっても自然な事です。利益を得ていたトンスル人がまたギャーギャー騒ぐんだろうな。
    cartier bracelet 17 price

  23. I not to mention my pals happened to be looking at the great tactics from the website and the sudden developed an awful suspicion I had not thanked you for them. These boys ended up certainly passionate to study them and have now in reality been enjoying those things. I appreciate you for indeed being well thoughtful and for obtaining these kinds of decent subjects millions of individuals are really wanting to be informed on. My very own honest apologies for not expressing appreciation to you sooner.
    copia cartier santos acciaio

  24. Concerning a legal organization in between you and the lenders is going to be productive for an individual. This FDA-approved chemical can darken the skin without the need to expose it to UV radiation. If you’re not ready to find just about any lawyer, then the required issue to do is to get support from an accountants in bankruptcy. When the primary ingredient listed says “whole”, the item is really a good source of whole grains.Cook synthetic leather clean, a smaller container and some waste sponge or cloth.
    Cheap Jerseys China Wholesale

  25. Strike-outs build self confidence and who does not love to wear those stinky shoes?Bowling is a good, old, all-American past time that all children should experience at least once!Do not forget to bring socks (unless you want to borrow socks from the alley). In the future when you are organising a party, do remember to look us up any of the occasion bookings that you may be seeking for. If you have to turn power on to test whether the device is working again, make sure you are not in contact with the equipment.The substance regarding sheepskin support the aim o temperature adjustment, this perform could make this special cheap ugg boot offer th heated air with your feet, so be sure all you could body with thi wellbeing ailment and earn your feet sense fairly warm and dry.We stimulate individuals to provide it down and what we do is acquire for collectors all more than the earth.
    Cheap Jerseys

  26. When you are playing bad, he doesn’t get discouraged.The Austrian Vienna Philharmonic is cast in pure gold, 99.Young ladies virtually all goal the particular uggs whose height has ended knee and easily show merely a small reduce upper leg in addition to towards the reason for leg.But, in a proverbial sea of exploding adjustable rate mortgages that homeowners cannot afford, only about 200,000 mortgage loan modifications are under way. Also, make sure that you study widely via FAQs alongside other online resources that provide a person with gaming tools.
    Cheap NFL Jerseys Free Shipping

  27. Concerning a legal organization in between you and the lenders is going to be productive for an individual. It can be used in diagnosing the problem as well as in repairing the device.Do you have a process for dealing with change orders? With a project as big as building your dream home, things are going to change during the development, whether it\s because you\ve changed your mind or worked with a designer who has deviated from the blueprint. Some tutors may also even make the students feel inferior. A consultancyservice may advise on anything from space requirements, to how toprepare the team for the integration, and to avoid a learning curve thatcould slow production times.

  28. Hobo Handbags for Noble women: These are also great option as handbags for noble women; yet again these are large in size and can be easily carried over the shoulders. These are perfect for those of you who want to appear a little more elegant and sophisticated than others. Although it is a good source to carry your bulky items most easily but still it manages to give you very famine and appealing look. Hobo bags have various styles and materials for you to pick one that you love.
    travel backpacks for women

  29. Most ladies are inspired by celebrity trends wearing ugg boot discount, it is popular to purchase the uggs online, if you are searching for your cheap uggs online, you’ll need go and buying a budget uggs immediately. Customer service is of utmost significance to us and we guarantee that we would not let you down and you’re sure to see your invitees having lots of fun at the celebration. Fortunately there is a service that specializesin selling and listing used flexographic printing presses and theproducts and accessories that are used in the finishing process. The mortgage servicers are the only link between borrowers and banks or investors and therefore they are in the best position to modify the loans under this new program.14.

  30. Indoor tanners contain ingredients that allow them to provide the expected results without the involvement of UV radiation. Recently, lawsuits alleging loan modification delays and illegal collection practices have been brought on behalf of consumers by both private attorneys and by attorneys general.Set some aged newsprint throughout the boot styles to maintain the original form of UGG shoes and boots in addition to to soak up a likely seepage inside boots. An excellent choice is search Uggs. Recent studies reported that at least 38 mortgage servicers had been sued for charging illegal fees, forcing homeowners to buy needless insurance, illegal collection practices, confusing customers about the federal loan modification program, and foreclosing on homeowners with pending loan modification applications.

  31. Hobo Handbags for Noble women: These are also great option as handbags for noble women; yet again these are large in size and can be easily carried over the shoulders. These are perfect for those of you who want to appear a little more elegant and sophisticated than others. Although it is a good source to carry your bulky items most easily but still it manages to give you very famine and appealing look. Hobo bags have various styles and materials for you to pick one that you love.
    black leather tote

  32. Hobo Handbags for Noble women: These are also great option as handbags for noble women; yet again these are large in size and can be easily carried over the shoulders. These are perfect for those of you who want to appear a little more elegant and sophisticated than others. Although it is a good source to carry your bulky items most easily but still it manages to give you very famine and appealing look. Hobo bags have various styles and materials for you to pick one that you love.
    soft leather tote bag

  33. Read on for tips about running a home business. For no reason immerse the main boots within the h2o, that make this internal blackout lining with the boot styles turn out to be thick and additionally eliminate pattern. He can be reached at: socaldebtcollectionabuse. It can actually be a relaxing experience (as long as you agree beforehand that you are leaving all of the fish at the store!)The next time you are looking for a rainy day activity, put the slickers and goulashes on and go fishing at the aquarium!7.When shopping for fake tanning products, point out how long you want to be seen with a darker skin tone.

  34. Thanks for the thoughts you are mikelrids revealing on this website. Another thing I would like to say is the fact getting hold of some copies of your credit profile in order to check out accuracy of each and every detail would be the first measures you have to accomplish in credit score improvement. You are looking to thoroughly clean your credit file from destructive details mistakes that wreck your credit score.
    rolex submariner neuf contrefaçon

  35. If your child is over 7 years old, schedule a class field trip for these future voters and politicians of America!11.Some parts need to be replaced rather than repaired to get the appliance back in a working state.Local Art, Childrens or History Museums – Children like to go to museums, especially if it means having fun. The interior side is completed for the amount that assimilates a perspiration as well as moisture content trying to keep you dried up.You can find all sorts of fake tanning products these days.

  36. Hello, i see that your page is very slow, it took around 10sec.
    to load this article. Do you know that website speed is major ranking factor for google now?
    If you speed up your page loading time you can rank higher and get
    more targeted traffic. There is simple method for faster
    loading, search for: Masitsu’s tricks

Leave a Reply

Top