In both an injury-shortened 2011 season and a breakout 2012, Ike Davis has shown a lot of pop. What he hasn’t shown is the ability to hit for average. Or even the ability to consistently hit for any average.
In his three major league seasons, Davis has batted .264, .302, and .227. The .302 average came in a small, 36-game sample, and the .227 average came in his most recent season. Despite the serious shortcomings Davis had last year in the batting average department, I’d argue he’s more of a .270 hitter with a chance at a .280-.290 season.
Last year Davis increased his line drive rate to 21.1%, and even though his infield fly rate was higher than the league average at 11.8%, his batted ball profile suggests he should have posted a BABIP much higher than .246. Our xBABIP and xBA formulas confirms this, pegging Davis as exactly a .270 hitter last year on the strength of a .306 xBABIP.
At a Glance
Strengths: HR, RBI, OBP, SLG, OPS, BB
Neutral: R, BA
Best-case scenario: Mark Teixeira (NYY)
Likely scenario: Paul Konerko (CHW), Kendrys Morales (SEA) , Mark Trumbo (LAA)
Worst-case scenario: Mike Moustakas (KC)
Ike Davis 2013 Fantasy Projection
I believe in Davis’ power, and he’s a slight fly ball hitter which should only help augment his homer numbers even if he can’t maintain that 21.1% HR/FB rate.
An increase in batting average — something that I’d label a near-certainty — will certainly help Davis increase his RBI totals, and there’s the distinct possibility that when September, 2013 has come and gone, Davis is sitting pretty with a .280/30/100 fantasy line.
Davis is currently the 116th player off draft boards according to early MockDraftCentral.com mock results, so apparently people believe in Davis just as much as we do. Davis walks a lot, so in OBP leagues I’d give you the go-ahead to reach on him a little sooner as he has a chance at a .360 OBP this season. And if Davis can turn some of those tough outs into extra base hits, he should be a great contributor in SLG and OPS leagues, too.