Nick Williams
Nick Williams
25-Year-Old OutfielderOF
Philadelphia Phillies
2019 Fantasy Outlook
On the surface, Williams appeared to take a step back in his sophomore campaign, with his slash line dropping across the board from .288/.338/.344 to .256/.324/.425. Most of that drop can be chalked up to a regression to the mean by his BABIP, however, which fell from .375 to .312. The 25-year-old made important improvements to his shaky plate discipline which were hidden by that BABIP drop, cutting his strikeout rate from 28.3% to 24.8% while raising his walk rate from 5.8% to a respectable 7.1%. Even the improved version of Williams is hardly a league winner, especially as he’s stolen a total of just four bases thus far in his big-league career, but he’s a capable four-category contributor with the chance to take another step forward in his third season. Williams took on a full-time starting role as the season progressed, though there’s some risk his role could be reduced depending on Philadelphia’s offseason acquisitions. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
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$Signed a one-year contract with the Phillies in March of 2018.
Still waiting on first start
OFPhiladelphia Phillies
April 17, 2019
Williams is out of the lineup for Wednesday's game against the Mets.
Skipper Gabe Kapler has deployed a fairly static lineup all season featuring Andrew McCutchen, Odubel Herrera and Bryce Harper as the team's regular outfield configuration, leaving few opportunities for Williams to see action. Williams still has yet to draw a start through the Phillies' first 17 contests and has received only 15 plate appearances off the bench this season.
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Batting Stats
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Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2017
Since 2017vs Left .688 187 18 4 28 1 .254 .321 .367
Since 2017vs Right .795 622 81 25 80 3 .272 .331 .464
2019vs Left 1.000 3 0 0 2 0 .333 .333 .667
2019vs Right .421 15 1 0 1 0 .154 .267 .154
2018vs Left .625 91 9 2 7 1 .232 .308 .317
2018vs Right .780 357 44 15 43 2 .262 .328 .452
2017vs Left .738 93 9 2 19 0 .274 .333 .405
2017vs Right .838 250 36 10 36 1 .293 .340 .498
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Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2017
OPS on Road
OPS on Road
OPS at Home
OPS on Road
Since 2017Home .748 404 53 15 46 3 .257 .324 .423
Since 2017Away .793 405 46 14 62 1 .278 .333 .459
2019Home .222 9 0 0 0 0 .111 .111 .111
2019Away .873 9 1 0 3 0 .286 .444 .429
2018Home .773 212 30 9 24 3 .260 .330 .443
2018Away .727 236 23 8 26 0 .251 .318 .409
2017Home .746 183 23 6 22 0 .261 .328 .418
2017Away .884 160 22 6 33 1 .318 .350 .534
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Stat Review
How does Nick Williams compare to other hitters?
This section compares his stats with all batting seasons from the previous three seasons (minimum 400 plate appearances). The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that stat and it would be considered average.
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
Williams, one of the more highly regarded members of the prospect cache the Phillies assembled over the last few seasons, hit the big leagues in June and was a quick study. The outfielder, whose poor contact rates in the upper minors founded concerns he might be exposed by major-league pitchers, struck out a manageable 28.3 percent of the time, and parlayed his plus bat speed into ample hard contact (33.6 percent hard-hit rate). More surprising than Williams' steady power output was his .288 batting average over a half season, though a .375 BABIP -- a mark that was high even after factoring in his quick bat and above-average speed -- suggests some regression in the category likely awaits in 2018. In any case, the lefty-hitting Williams' ability to hold his own against both southpaws and right-handers in his first taste of the majors gives him a good chance at holding a full-time role with Philadelphia to begin 2018. The luxury of batting directly in front of or behind rising star Rhys Hoskins, and the addition of Carlos Santana via free agency should prove helpful to Williams' counting numbers.
Williams entered last season with high expectations after taking steps forward in 2015 with his walk rate and cutting back on his strikeouts. Unfortunately, he was unable to build on those improvements at Triple-A last season. Williams saw his walk rate drop from 7.7 percent to 3.6 percent and his strikeout rate balloon from 18.6 percent to 25.8 percent in 2016. Despite those issues, he entered the month of August with a respectable slash line and looked like a lock for a September callup, but then went into a deep funk, hitting just .179/.196/.316 with two homers and 36 strikeouts in 24 games. Two benchings earlier in the year for lack of hustle did not factor into the evaluation for a promotion as Williams' manager at Triple-A indicated he had learned from those mistakes. There is a lot of risk in his profile, but Williams still has plenty of upside thanks to his plus bat speed. He will compete for a roster spot this spring, but may be sent back to Triple-A to begin 2017 as the final step of his development as a prospect.
Williams came over to the Phillies as part of the deal that sent Cole Hamels to the Rangers. He is an aggressive hitter that is prone to striking out, but he showed some signs of improving his approach at the plate last season. His walk rate jumped to seven percent and he cut his strikeout rate to 19 percent. If he can continue that growth while still tapping into his power, then Williams has the potential to be a very valuable fantasy commodity since he can also chip in with double-digit stolen bases. The Phillies will likely start him out at Triple-A Lehigh Valley, but Williams could force his way to the majors later this season with a strong performance in the minors.
If Williams had a good approach, he would be one of the top 10 offensive talents in the minor leagues. His ability to make hard contact on fastballs in and around the zone is elite. Williams possesses the high-end bat speed and athleticism that can wow onlookers on his good days. However, he can look downright lost against pitchers who know how to sequence and offer adequate or better off-speed stuff. He had a 28.7% K% and just a 4.7% BB% in 408 plate appearances at High-A Myrtle Beach, and both of those rates went in the wrong direction in a brief 15-game stint at Double-A Frisco to finish the season. Despite a shoddy approach, he was still able to slash .292/.343/.491 with 45 extra-base hits at Myrtle Beach, but it is reasonable to be skeptical of the 21-year-old outfielder’s ability to continue to thrive when he faces more pitchers at Double-A and Triple-A that can spin a breaking ball.
Williams, a second-round pick by the Rangers in the 2012 draft, spent his first full season of professional baseball at Low-A Hickory in a loaded young lineup. Much like his teammate Lewis Brinson, Williams has outstanding tools that are still in need of refinement. As a 19-year-old, an .879 OPS in the Sally League is ultimately going to make people take notice, but the impressive power and speed are met with plate discipline (15:110 BB:K, 404 plate appearances) that must improve as Williams continues move through the organization. He'll likely spend all of 2014 at High-A Myrtle Beach, but Williams is the type of player capable of making a fast move up top prospect lists if he shows signs of putting everything together.
Agreed to terms after being selected in the third round of the June draft.
More Fantasy News
No starts through five games
OFPhiladelphia Phillies
April 3, 2019
Williams isn't included in the Phillies' lineup for Wednesday's game against the Nationals.
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Decent start to camp
OFPhiladelphia Phillies
March 16, 2019
Williams is hitting .297 with a homer and three doubles in 12 Grapefruit League games.
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Remains out Sunday
OFPhiladelphia Phillies
September 30, 2018
Williams (shoulder) is out of the lineup for Sunday's game against the Braves, Matt Gelb of The Athletic reports.
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Not in Thursday's lineup
OFPhiladelphia Phillies
September 27, 2018
Williams (shoulder, hand) is out of Thursday's starting nine against the Rockies, Thomas Harding of reports.
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Sits again Wednesday
OFPhiladelphia Phillies
September 26, 2018
Williams (shoulder, hand) is out of the lineup against Colorado on Wednesday, Todd Zolecki of reports.
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