BATTERS: BPV leaders, May 2018

Let's continue our look back at the most skilled hitters of the prior month by looking at the top skilled bats in May.

75+ BPV, May 2018*

Name                League  Position       bb%  ct%  Eye   PX   HctX  xPX  Spd  BPV
==================  ======  =============  ===  ===  ====  ===  ====  ===  ===  ===
Ramirez, Jose           AL          3B/2B  14%  88%  1.31  213   132  125   98  180
Betts, Mookie           AL             RF  10%  86%  0.85  196   145  153  125  162
Trout, Mike             AL             CF  24%  76%  1.30  220   135  162  108  162
Martinez, J.D.          AL          RF/DH  10%  79%  0.52  227   147  170   82  142
Lindor, Francisco       AL             SS   9%  83%  0.60  200   142  153   90  139
Santana, Carlos         NL             1B  13%  88%  1.17  155   123  152   95  130
Happ, Ian               NL          CF/2B  21%  55%  0.61  279    95  230  113  121
Rizzo, Anthony          NL             1B  15%  90%  1.80  132   128  108   69  118
Mazara, Nomar           AL             RF  10%  76%  0.48  195   103   92  108  114
Benintendi, Andrew      AL             LF  10%  83%  0.67  145    92   89  138  113
Shaw, Travis            NL             3B  11%  83%  0.69  169   128  148   68  110
Rendon, Anthony         NL             3B  13%  83%  0.86  163   155  175   69  109
Adams, Matt             NL          1B/LF  10%  83%  0.64  174   142  169   46  107
Moreland, Mitch         AL             1B   9%  73%  0.37  211   118  145   82  105
Nimmo, Brandon          NL             LF  15%  73%  0.68  176   123  161  125  104
Suarez, Eugenio         NL             3B  11%  81%  0.68  171   149  127   69  104
Arenado, Nolan          NL             3B  14%  76%  0.67  169   132  116  108  102
Bregman, Alex           AL          3B/SS  13%  85%  1.07  125   150  166  102  100
Simmons, Andrelton      AL             SS  10%  98%  6.00   63   139   75  120  100
Brantley, Michael       AL             LF   9%  89%  0.92  122   133   81   76   96
Puig, Yasiel            NL             RF  12%  77%  0.58  168   119  123   80   93
Machado, Manny          AL          3B/SS   7%  84%  0.44  140   130  136   96   91
Name                League  Position       bb%  ct%  Eye   PX   HctX  xPX  Spd  BPV
==================  ======  =============  ===  ===  ====  ===  ====  ===  ===  ===
Profar, Jurickson       AL       SS/2B/LF   5%  84%  0.35  136    64   59  106   90
Candelario, Jeimer      AL             3B  12%  74%  0.53  174   109  140   96   89
Carpenter, Matt         NL       1B/3B/2B  11%  71%  0.42  195   160  243   76   88
Goodrum, Niko           AL    1B/2B/3B/LF   9%  75%  0.41  161   120  142  120   87
Muncy, Max              NL       3B/1B/LF  15%  72%  0.68  177   145  179   76   87
Mesoraco, Devin         NL              C  10%  81%  0.58  151   114   78   69   86
Judge, Aaron            AL             RF  16%  67%  0.58  204   130  132   70   86
Harper, Bryce           NL             RF   8%  74%  0.33  190   139  194   70   86
Frazier, Adam           NL          LF/2B  16%  90%  2.00   61    68   39  137   85
Gennett, Scooter        NL             2B   3%  76%  0.14  181   119  109   88   85
Rosario, Eddie          AL             LF   3%  85%  0.22  139   134  143   89   85
Gattis, Evan            AL           C/DH   7%  77%  0.33  177   130  125   64   83
Contreras, Willson      NL              C  12%  81%  0.71  120    92   88  129   83
Gardner, Brett          AL             LF  12%  84%  0.85  108   121   93  118   82
Bryant, Kris            NL             3B  10%  77%  0.52  155   136  188   81   80
Stassi, Max             AL              C   6%  66%  0.18  219   149  155   87   79
Walker, Neil            AL          2B/1B  14%  82%  0.89  117   118  114   93   79
Kiner-Falefa, Isiah     AL          3B/2B  10%  92%  1.38   57    89   45  152   79
Abreu, Jose             AL             1B   8%  78%  0.39  157   123  153   75   79
Markakis, Nick          NL             RF   6%  89%  0.62  101   123   57   91   78
Olson, Matt             AL             1B  10%  75%  0.44  163   158  168   74   76
*min 50 AB

Let's take a closer look at a bunch of noteworthy May skill performances:

AMERICAN LEAGUE

Jeimer Candelario (3B, DET) showed some flashes of his upside in May. He had 4 HR in 65 AB, and his extra-base production gave him a .907 OPS. And he produced at that level without abandoning his plate skills (12% bb%, 74% ct%, 0.53 Eye). In addition, his 140 xPX gave pretty good support to his 174 PX. The key for him has been his ability to barrel the ball. He is doing so at a high rate in spite of a subpar 88.0-mph exit velocity.    

Brett Gardner (LF, NYY) finally showed signs of coming out of his early-season funk in May. He delivered a .917 OPS along with really good plate discipline: 12% bb%, 84% ct%, 0.85 Eye. For the season, his 127 Spd is aligned with what we've seen from him in prior years. He's still a good bet to finish near the 15-HR, 20-SB baseline he has established in recent years.

Niko Goodrum (1B/2B/3B/RF, DET) did not produce anything in April (.664 OPS), and his skills were even worse (7 BPV). Both his production and skills surged in May though (.893 OPS, 86 BPV). The big holes in his swing that plagued him in April (63% ct%) closed down some in May (75% ct%). He also showed an intriguing combination of power (160 PX, 141 xPX) and speed (119 Spd). He's hitting both lefties and righties at a decent clip too. He'll likely remain inconsistent, but his multi-category potential and IF/OF eligibility make him a good play in deep leagues.

Isiah Kiner-Falefa (3B/2B, TEX) carries more SB potential than you might realize. His legs delivered a 152 Spd in May, and few batters displayed better pitch recognition that Kiner-Falefa did that month: 10% bb%, 92% ct%, 1.38 Eye. He's a must-start in most leagues against lefties especially, against whom he has produced a 15% bb%, 87% ct%, and 1.33 Eye in 47 AB so far this year. A 22% h% vL has kept those gains hidden.

Jurickson Profar (SS/2B/LF, TEX) received steady playing time in May and made the most of it. His marginal .693 OPS in April jumped to a decent .751 OPS in May, and that mark would have been even higher if not for a reduction in his hit rate from 29% to 26%. His overall skills surged even more (35 BPV in April, 90 BPV in May). He's still not producing the power or speed that was part of his prior prospect pedigree, but at age 25 and after years of development that were zapped by injury, don't assume that he has reached his ceiling.

Jose Ramirez (3B/2B, CLE) was the game's most skilled bat in May. He combined a lot of power (213 PX) with excellent plate discipline (14% bb%, 88% ct%, 1.31 Eye). He also produced a high rate of hard contact (132 HctX). All of those skills helped to give him a fantastic .369 xBA that month. Keep riding him.

Andrelton Simmons (SS, LAA) put up an excellent .357 BA in May due to some amazing plate discipline. He had a 12/2 BB/K in 112 AB that month, good for a 10% bb%, 98% ct%, and 6.00 Eye. That level of plate discipline nearly guarantees that he'll deliver a .300+ BA. And his 120 Spd in May gives him some SB potential too if he can get a green light.
 

NATIONAL LEAGUE

Matt Adams (1B/LF, WAS) was one of the game's best hitters in May, both on the surface (.963 OPS in 83 AB) and beneath it (107 BPV). His power display was fully supported by his 179 PX/169 xPX. Just note that he's not someone you want to start against lefties (.671 OPS vL, 104 PX vL).

Adam Frazier (LF/2B, PIT) did not fulfill his spring upside early in the season (.568 OPS, -16 BPV in April). Both marks showed signs of life in May (.715 OPS), especially his overall skills (85 BPV). His plate discipline was excellent (16% bb%, 90% ct%, 2.00 Eye). He combined those skills with really good wheels (136 Spd). He just wasn't given any opportunity to run (0% SBO%). Frazier is a good MI stash in deep NL-only leagues.

Ian Happ (CF/2B, CHC) was one of the game's best hitters in May, even if his .226 BA suggested otherwise. He had a .981 OPS that would've been even higher if not for some huge holes in his swing (55% ct%). His elite 279 PX had the backing of a 230 xPX, and his 121 BPV was topped by only by six other batters. His chronic contact problems make it unlikely that Happ will attain the consistency needed to become an everyday impact bat, but at age 23, he has time to improve that weakness.

Devin Mesoraco (C, NYM) stayed healthy in May and made the most of the semi-regular work he received with his new club (.800 OPS in 62 AB). He delivered that production in spite of an 18% h%. While his power wasn't supported by his 78 xPX, we know he produced at a high level during the last season that he stayed healthy. He's a good guy to stash as your second catcher if he's available.

Max Muncy (3B/1B/LF, LA) is making the most of his semi-regular work. He had a .932 OPS in 69 AB during May. While he didn't make consistent contact (72% ct%), he drew a lot of walks (15% bb%), and his 177 PX was supported by a 179 xPX. The key has been reversing the groundball stroke he showed in 2017 (51/19/30 G/L/F). Muncy's 91.4 mph exit velocity and 14.9-degree launch angle both suggest he can continue his May surge.

Brandon Nimmo (LF, NYM) is another bat who made the most of the playing time he received in May. He had a .984 OPS in 83 AB that month, maintained solid control of home plate (15% bb%, 73% ct%, 0.68 Eye), and his 176 PX was supported by a 161 xPX. He also delivered a 125 Spd. Just keep in mind that you don't want him in your lineup against lefties (.589 OPS vL).


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