I am buying Robbie Grossman everywhere I can. As of today (4/20/17) he is owned in just 33% of leagues at an average salary of $2.25.
Key 2016 Stats:
- .363 wOBA in 389 PA
- .364 BABIP
- 14.1% BB rate vs. 24.7% K rate (0.57 BB/K)
- Contact% 77.3%
- 31.4% Hard Hit Rate
- 12.8 HR/FB%
- Crushed LHP at .423 wOBA (.232 ISO)
Key 2017 Stats (just 51 PA):
- .443 wOBA
- .393 BABIP
- 23.5% BB rate vs. 13.7% K rate (1.6 BB/K)
- Contact% 83.3%
- 48.3% Hard Hit Rate
- 14.3% HR/FB
- .439 wOBA vs. LHP; .447 wOBA vs. RHP
Grossman is just 27 y/o and now looks to have full time AB’s in MIN as DH. He was terrific last year as a platoon vs. LHP, but so far (SSS) he looks like he’s figured something out vs. RHP too and may stabilize in 2017 as an above average starting OF, a gift that can be very valuable off the waiver wire in deep leagues like Ottoneu. Good signs include a higher contact rate, almost zero split so far vs. L and R SP (he’s only K’d once vs. RHP so far), higher BB rate, much lower O-Swing% (from 20.5% to 10.8% YTD), and strong Pull% at 62%.
Will his current .393 BABIP drop? Absolutely, but he does have two seasons under his belt running a BABIP above .350 (2013 at .353 in 288 PA and 2016), and because he’s a switch hitter that may have figured out RHP, he’ll likely be in the lineup every day. xStats has Grossman projected for a 138 wRC+ ROS based on batted ball data, and though that would be a solid decline from where he is to start the season (173), that 138 wRC+ (he finished 2016 at 127) would have ranked him 6th among all OF’s in 2016 (just above Mookie). At this point I would take way over the Depth Charts ROS projection of .322 wOBA, with an outside chance he finishes the season with a wOBA near his .363 from last year. That would be tremendous value if it comes over a full season’s worth of AB’s in 2017.
In Ottoneu you have to make quick waiver decisions based on limited information, but from what we’ve seen so far in 2017, Grossman looks like he’s really figured something out and would be well worth a ~$5 (maybe more) bid as a 4th or 5th OF this year. You may even be able to sneak him through right now at $1 (just 33% owned), which is absolutely a gamble worth taking.