Let baseball return with the craziest shizz they got! Robot umps? Check! 7-inning games? Why not? Divisions changed? Sure! No shifts! No foul balls! Everything is in play! Pitchers have to throw with their wrong hand! Hitters have to stand on one foot! Mascots get stockpile of vaccines and choose who gets one! I don’t care! Just let baseball return! With all that said, universal DH is being thrown about like that somehow fixes baseball post-Covid-19. Has anyone on this green earth that Al Gore is eating his way through asked why? This is one that keeps coming back after every discussion about restarting baseball like they’ve already unplugged it and blew in the cartridge. Could someone, preferably a journalist, ask WHY? Why does a DH make things better for restarting? I’m guessing no one asks why because they know there’s no reason and it would just make Manfred uncomfortable. Shame more journalists don’t ask questions to make people uncomfortable. Not to go down that rabbit hole too far, but too many sports journalists (and maybe other types) are so concerned with access they refuse to ask tough questions, then they go on Twitter and make fun of the subject. Twitter is bad for a lot of reasons, but this is the reason number one for me. You see reporters say point blank about how stupid something is, but did they pose the stupidness to the actual subject? No, never. Prolly why I couldn’t make it as a journalist. If Manfred said to me about universal DH, I’d ask, why, and minds would be blown. Any hoo! Assuming there is a universal DH, our writer, JKJ, is going over a series of hitters who would benefit from it. I don’t want to go over what JKJ has said already, but Tyler O’Neill…O’Well, he’s too juicy to ignore. So, what can we expect from Tyler O’Neill in 2020 fantasy baseball and what makes him a great dart throw?
According to Steamer Hitter Projections, Tyler O’Neill’s projections in 350 ABs are about 20 HRs and .240 average. I say ‘about,’ because right now our Steamer projections have O’Neill down for 247 ABs. They’re assuming O’Neill’s not an everyday player, which I tend to agree with, and don’t end a sentence with with — damn! That’s why I started this one about the universal DH. With a universal DH, O’Neill will play and hit. He’s hit for power everywhere he’s gone. In 2018, he hit 26 HRs in 64 games, then nine homers in 61 games in St. Louis, hitting .254. He followed that up with five homers in 141 ABs and a .262 average for the Cards. He has a career .376 BABIP, which does seem a tad inflated. Speaking of inflated, his Launch Angle is 19.7. That led to a rather pedestrian fly ball rate (39.8) when considering his Launch Angle. With a similar Launch Angle, he had a 48% fly ball rate the year before, and, with that Launch Angle, that fly ball rate feels more likely. Considering he can muscle the ball out of any park, a 48% fly ball rate and 25% HR/FB seem well within his wheelhouse. For a full season of ABs in a 100-game season (350 ABs), that fly ball rate would give him around 90 fly balls, and a 25% HR/FB would give him roughly 23 homers. According to Steamer Hitter Projections, that would make O’Neill the 11th best home run hitter this year, equal to Franmil, Yelich, Trevor Story, Schwarber, Matt Chapman…Well, you get the picture. Schwarber and Chapman are actually interesting because their projected batting averages are only about .010 away from O’Neill. Tyler O’Neill is a full-time job away from being about as equal as Matt Chapman. Whee! Sign me up for that great dart throw!