BATTERS: 2019 LIMA targets

The Low Investment Mound Aces (LIMA) Plan is a way for you to target consistent, affordable hitters who offer both solid plate discipline and some power/speed upside.

Our latest iteration of the LIMA model suggests that we should target hitters who are projected to meet some of the following thresholds:

  • CT% + BB% of 90% or greater
  • PX or Spd level of 100 or greater
  • Regular playing time
  • Projected R$ between $10 and $30

LIMA values can vary based on your league context. We encourage you to use our Custom Draft Guides to see customized LIMA targets for your league.

Here are the top 2019 projected LIMA hitting targets in a 5x5 mixed league:

                                       -----------Projected 2019----------
Name                 League  Position  bb%  ct%  Eye   PX   Spd  BPV  LIMA
===================  ======  ========  ===  ===  ====  ===  ===  ===  ====
Rendon, Anthony          NL        3B  11%  83%  0.72  119   95   80    A
Santana, Carlos          AL        1B  15%  84%  1.11  109   77   79    A
Marte, Ketel             NL     2B/SS   8%  84%  0.56   90  141   69    A
Kepler, Max              AL        RF  10%  80%  0.60  111  103   65    A
Gallo, Joey              AL     LF/1B  13%  57%  0.35  222   93   60    A
Profar, Jurickson        AL  SS/3B/1B   9%  83%  0.60   91  102   57    A
Peralta, David           NL        LF   7%  79%  0.37  110  114   55    A
--------------------------------------------------------------------------
Turner, Justin           NL        3B  10%  85%  0.76  121   77   82    B+
Guerrero Jr, Vladimir    AL        3B   9%  84%  0.65  115   88   76    B+
Rizzo, Anthony           NL        1B  11%  84%  0.82  112   70   72    B+
Harper, Bryce            NL        RF  17%  72%  0.74  147   92   71    B+
Andujar, Miguel          AL        3B   5%  84%  0.34  122   88   71    B+
Hoskins, Rhys            NL        LF  13%  74%  0.57  155   76   71    B+
Carpenter, Matt          NL     1B/3B  15%  74%  0.70  145   84   71    B+
Votto, Joey              NL        1B  17%  80%  1.04  112   79   70    B+
Hicks, Aaron             AL        CF  14%  78%  0.72  124  104   70    B+
Soto, Juan               NL        LF  16%  76%  0.78  123  105   68    B+
Bogaerts, Xander         AL        SS   9%  80%  0.50  116  108   66    B+
McNeil, Jeff             NL        2B   6%  87%  0.52   78  139   65    B+       
Dozier, Brian            NL        2B  11%  77%  0.55  125  103   64    B+
Braun, Ryan              NL        LF   8%  80%  0.44  124   92   64    B+
Gurriel, Yulieski        AL     1B/3B   5%  87%  0.39   87  104   62    B+
Simmons, Andrelton       AL        SS   6%  91%  0.69   63  117   62    B+
Brantley, Michael        AL        LF   8%  88%  0.78   77   89   61    B+
Moustakas, Mike          NL        3B   7%  83%  0.45  116   64   61    B+
Cabrera, Asdrubal        AL  2B/SS/3B   8%  82%  0.46  114   76   60    B+
Name                 League  Position  bb%  ct%  Eye   PX   Spd  BPV  LIMA
===================  ======  ========  ===  ===  ====  ===  ===  ===  ====
Donaldson, Josh          NL        3B  15%  75%  0.72  127   84   60    B+
Hernandez, Enrique       NL  CF/2B/SS  11%  79%  0.59  113   99   60    B+
Stanton, Giancarlo       AL     DH/RF  11%  68%  0.38  173   85   59    B+
Pollock, A.J.            NL        CF   7%  79%  0.35  120  102   59    B+
Dickerson, Corey         NL        LF   5%  81%  0.27  109  116   59    B+
Pederson, Joc            NL        CF  10%  74%  0.45  143   83   59    B+
Benintendi, Andrew       AL        LF  10%  82%  0.61   95  112   58    B+
Cozart, Zack             AL        3B   8%  83%  0.51   96  108   58    B+
Bryant, Kris             NL        3B  12%  72%  0.47  138  113   57    B+
Cruz, Nelson             AL        DH  10%  77%  0.48  135   64   56    B+
Rosario, Eddie           AL        LF   6%  80%  0.29  112  113   56    B+
Davis, Khris             AL        DH   9%  69%  0.32  172   72   55    B+
Bellinger, Cody          NL     1B/CF  11%  72%  0.45  131  127   55    B+
Shaw, Travis             NL     3B/2B  11%  76%  0.52  131   71   55    B+
Inciarte, Ender          NL        CF   7%  86%  0.54   70  131   55    B+
Bell, Josh               NL        1B  12%  80%  0.71   99   94   55    B+
Reddick, Josh            AL        RF   9%  84%  0.62   83  114   55    B+
Seager, Corey            NL        SS   9%  79%  0.45  111   96   54    B+
Piscotty, Stephen        AL        RF   9%  78%  0.45  120   82   53    B+
Haniger, Mitch           AL        RF   9%  76%  0.42  122  104   52    B+
Span, Denard             AL        CF   9%  85%  0.64   80  101   52    B+
Judge, Aaron             AL        RF  15%  64%  0.47  177   78   51    B+
Conforto, Michael        NL        LF  12%  72%  0.49  141   83   51    B+
Albies, Ozzie            NL        2B   7%  81%  0.36   89  136   50    B+
Franco, Maikel           NL        3B   6%  84%  0.42   95   76   50    B+

Let's take a closer look at a bunch of intriguing LIMA targets who could deliver significant profit in 2019.
 

AMERICAN LEAGUE

Xander Bogaerts (SS, BOS) has a top prospect pedigree and is on the verge of his first $30+ season. His solid plate skills (89% ct% + bb%) and power/speed combo make him one of the better LIMA batter targets in the game. And he got better as the 2018 season went along, posting a .927 OPS and 95 BPV in the second half.

Asdrubal Cabrera (2B/SS/3B, TEX) owns value based on his multi-position eligibility. In addition, his signing with TEX also increases his intrigue, as his solid underlying power (115+ xPX last three seasons) gives hope that he could enjoy a power spike in 2019, especially given his long history of good durability (500+ AB in seven of past eight seasons).

Mitch Haniger (RF, SEA) had a mini-breakout in 2018, posting a $28 season on the back of good power (26 HR), batting average (.285 BA), and some sneaky speed (8 SB). Credit his big gains against lefties for his step forward (.889 OPS vL). His emerging overall skills (34, 48, 57 BPV) and multi-category production make Haniger an intriguing LIMA target.

Max Kepler (RF, MIN) seemingly is stuck in neutral. On the surface, he took a step backwards in 2018 (.224 BA, 20 HR, 58 RBI in 532 AB). But there were some real signs of encouragement a level deeper. For one, his plate skills soared (12% bb%, 82% ct%, 0.74 Eye). As did his flyball rate (38/16/46 G/L/F) and expected power (120 xPX). Kepler is a steal at his current 251 ADP and is one of the better breakout targets in the game.

Jurickson Profar (SS/3B/1B, OAK) is another batter whose multi-position eligibility gives his owners plenty of flexibility. His former No. 1 prospect bat showed signs of that life in 2018, a season where he managed a 92% ct% + bb%, good power (115 PX), and speed (110 Spd) that was held back by a lack of green light on the basepaths (8% SBO%). He needs to stay healthy for another season before we can consider him a true upper-tier bat, but that's his only true risk.

Eddie Rosario (LF, MIN) has delivered a mid-$20s return in each of the last two seasons, along with good power and above-average speed. That collection of skills continues to make him an intriguing LIMA batter target, and he's one that could take another step forward if he can continue his gains against lefties (.594, .682, .726 OPS vL last three seasons).
 

NATIONAL LEAGUE

Josh Bell (1B, PIT) is making some slow but steady gains that could help him tap into his 30-HR raw power. Check out Bell's flyball rate over his three seasons in the majors: 29%, 31%, 33% FB%. Given his ability to draw walks and make decent contact (92% ct% + bb%), Bell carries some nice profit potential (257 ADP) after his down 2018 season.

Kris Bryant (3B, CHC) wouldn't seem like an obvious LIMA batter target, since he already has put up a $30 season. But coming off a year that was torpedoed by a shoulder issue, he carries a lot of profit heading into 2019. If he has put that behind him, there are reasons to believe this could be one of Bryant's better seasons. Check out his BPV trend coming into 2018: 53, 81, 85 BPV.

Enrique Hernandez (CF/2B/SS, LA) owns some really intriguing underlying skills that profile him as an elite LIMA batter target. His 92% ct% + bb% from 2018 was paired with good pop (115 PX, 105 xPX) and emerging wheels (87, 93, 105 Spd last three seasons). And his production against righties (.833 OPS vR) was the best we've ever seen from him.

Ketel Marte (2B/SS, ARI) will qualify at both 2B/SS and OF early in 2019. Those looking for breakout targets from mid-range producers should consider making a heavy investment here, especially given how Marte closed the 2018 season (.836 OPS, 95% ct% + bb% in 2H). There's sneaky .300 BA, 15 HR, 20 SB upside here.

Jeff McNeil (2B, NYM) is another middle-tier bat with a strong collection of skills. He flashed good plate discipline with NYM in 2018 (6% bb%, 87% ct%, 0.52 Eye). He also displayed really good speed skills (164 Spd) and decent underlying power (103 xPX). McNeil makes for a strong LIMA target and should be a good BA/SB producer in 2019.

Anthony Rendon (3B, WAS) isn't quite being treated as an elite bat (44 ADP), but that could change after 2019. Check out his contact rate trend over the last four seasons: 77%, 79%, 84%, 85% ct%. His power skills have been inching upwards too: 104, 116, 112, 122 xPX. Rendon carries 30-HR breakout appeal this season.


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  For more information about the terms used in this article, see our Glossary Primer.