Hope everyone out there is beating the heat most of the nation is experiencing and you have a pool close by you or some body of water you can get a little relief. As we enter the back half the season I’m going to pick out a few Corner Infielders that are due for a nice bump in their numbers and players you want to try and trade for or pick up if available. All right let’s get to it.
1B Ty France Mariners France has hit well since coming off an elbow injury and is the best hitter on the Mariners right now with a 153 wRC+. As other players on the Mariners are dealing with injuries it’s France who is coming through with the clutch hits and is the player the Mariners fans stop and watch to see what happens when he is at bat. France has hits in 7 out of his last 9 games and 5 of those games were multiple hit games. His xBA is at the top of the scale at .281 and continues to be the most consistent hitter in the Mariners lineup. I think the Mariners are definitely making a playoff push and with France and a healthy Julio in the lineup along with some other key veterans they can do some damage in the playoffs. In a healthy lineup, France will continue to see good pitches and seems up to the task to delivering.
1B Josh Naylor Guardians Naylor is another one that is coming off a minor injury but has not needed any time to ramp back up as he has 4 multi-hit games in his last 7. He has hit .357 in that span and even stole a base. Naylor is receiving regular playing time due to his ability to work an at-bat doesn’t strike out a whole lot and is able to put the ball in play. I definitely feel more power is coming from Naylor soon as he does not have any HR post all-star break as of yet but with some games coming up against the Tigers and DBacks whose pitching staffs are not great at limiting HR’s Naylor could be on the verge of a nice breakout here.
3B Matt Chapman Blue Jays After a unslightly two months of baseball to start the season Chapman has steadily improved the last two months and appears to have turned the corner and is playing very good baseball as of late. In the month of July Chapman has a .947 OPS and is hitting .304 with 5 HR and 16 RBI’s. His average exit velocity has risen to 92.5 % and his strikeout rate has fallen to 25.8% which are numbers he was producing before injuries started to crop up in 2020. Out of his last 8 games Chapman has hits in 7 of them with muliple hits in 5 of those.
1B Vinnie Pasquantino Royals Serving up some Italian Breakfast here as Vinny’s Hard Hit Rate is out of control right now at 57.5% (MLB Avg is 35.7) That rate is up there with Yordan Alvarez and Aaron Judge the only hitters that are better currently. His strikeout rate is very palatable as well at 16.5%. He may still be out there in some leagues so jump on him now before he really starts hitting you won’t be disapponted.
3B Ramon Urias Orioles Very nice breakout from Urias in the month of July hitting .397 with a SLG of .707 and an OPS of 1.133. He has hits in 10 out of his last 11 games and his hard hit percentage at 45.3 leads the Orioles. Urias has a good makeup, he didn’t get down on himself earlier in the season when he was slumping and he trusted his approach was working and hits were going to start coming which they did. The Orioles are a nice surprising team to watch and seem like they have good clubhouse chemistry and play hard. Urias is a main factor in their success and will continue to be going forward.
1B/3B Jose Miranda Twins The rookie free swinger is building up a pretty good case for the Twins to play him every day as he has went on a tear in July hitting .358 with a .980 OPS. He has improved his hitting against righties hitting .263. I would temper expectations somewhat as some underlying numbers don’t look the greatest but you have to ride the hot streak while you can and keep him in your lineup.
That’s it for today. Hope everyone has a great week and see ya back next week!