Jose Ramirez
Jose Ramirez
26-Year-Old Third Baseman3B
Cleveland Indians
2019 Fantasy Outlook
At the end of July, Ramirez was fantasy's most valuable player, having hit .298/.408/.630 with 32 home runs and 25 stolen bases through 105 games. Ramirez then limped to a .210/.343/.387 line with seven homers and nine steals over his final 52 regular-season games. So, how much do we downgrade him because of that late slide? Per Statcast, Ramirez had a .209 xBA, .339 xSLG and 87.3 mph average exit velocity over the final two months, so it wasn't just all bad luck. His average flyball distance was also down to 181 feet down the stretch (203 feet over the first four months). The final numbers were still elite, but given the caliber of talent in the game today, it's not unreasonable to think Ramirez, a top-five overall earner in 2018, should perhaps fall closer to the 1-2 turn in mixed leagues. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a five-year, $26 million contract extension with the Indians in March of 2017. Contract includes $11 million team option ($2 million buyout) for 2022 and $13 million team option for 2023.
Returns to lineup
3BCleveland Indians
March 4, 2019
Ramirez (foot) will start at third base and bat third in Monday's Cactus League game against the Padres, Zack Meisel of The Athletic reports.
The Tribe kept Ramirez on the bench for the past two days mostly as a precaution after he took a pitch to the foot during Friday's exhibition versus the Dodgers. The fact that he's back in action Monday at third base rather than as the designated hitter suggests that Ramirez's health isn't viewed as a concern heading into Opening Day.
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Batting Stats
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Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2016
Since 2016vs Left .874 603 85 20 77 18 .304 .360 .514
Since 2016vs Right .923 1358 216 59 187 55 .298 .382 .542
2018vs Left .809 192 28 6 24 7 .267 .339 .471
2018vs Right .991 506 82 33 81 27 .271 .405 .586
2017vs Left .953 229 34 10 31 4 .329 .371 .582
2017vs Right .958 416 73 19 52 13 .312 .375 .583
2016vs Left .841 182 23 4 22 7 .311 .368 .473
2016vs Right .818 436 61 7 54 15 .312 .361 .457
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Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2016
OPS at Home
OPS at Home
OPS on Road
OPS at Home
Since 2016Home .944 975 166 37 147 38 .314 .400 .544
Since 2016Away .873 986 135 42 117 35 .287 .350 .523
2018Home .981 340 64 19 61 17 .278 .418 .563
2018Away .900 358 46 20 44 17 .263 .358 .542
2017Home .899 319 50 10 37 8 .314 .373 .526
2017Away 1.012 326 57 19 46 9 .322 .374 .638
2016Home .952 316 52 8 49 13 .347 .408 .544
2016Away .694 302 32 3 27 9 .275 .316 .379
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Stat Review
How does Jose Ramirez 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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Indians Depth Chart
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
Following his breakout 2016 campaign, Ramirez arguably was the top player for a 102-win Indians squad last season, raising his production in every meaningful fantasy category except steals. Even so, Ramirez still swiped 17 bags to go with 29 long balls, making him one of only four players in baseball to reach both benchmarks. Even the MLB-wide jump in power wasn't enough to dim the luster on his 115-point improvement in ISO, and Ramirez's sterling plate discipline, downward-trending GB/FB rate and ability to spray the ball around the yard are skills that make him a good bet to keep his average near or above .300. Moreover, Ramirez's placement in the heart of a potent lineup should keep propping up his run and RBI outputs, making the 25-year-old one of the few true five-category contributors. Due to Jason Kipnis missing extensive time last season, Ramirez regained eligibility at the keystone in addition to third base heading into 2018, further burnishing his credentials as a worthy selection in the first two rounds of fantasy drafts.
If we simply combined Ramirez's 2014 and 2015 production, we all would have seen 2016 coming, right? Well, except his batting average would have been around .240 instead of the .312 he hit last season. Ramirez went from an afterthought on draft day to a serviceable fantasy asset in 2016 in many ways. The power department is a bit light, but he should score runs, drive some in, steal bases and hit for average while qualifying at both third base and the outfield in 2017. He is an extreme contact hitter who sprays the ball around the yard. There could be some more thump on the way if his positive GB/FB trend continues and he gets some HR/FB fluctuation. He is just 24 but already has over 1,250 plate appearances in the big leagues. Ramirez looks like a bat-first player instead of the glove-first prospect profile that got him to the majors at 21. Don't bank on growth, but even his new foundation will help as a fantasy depth piece.
Ramirez opened the season as the Tribe's starting shortstop but struggles at both the plate and in the field got him shipped out to Triple-A Columbus two months into the season. He was hitting .176/.243/.235 at the time of his demotion despite a respectable strikeout (13.8%) and walk (7.5%) rate that was undermined by a .200 BABIP mark. A .293/.354/.408 mark in 44 games earned him a promotion back to Cleveland when Jason Kipnis landed on the DL in August and he saw time at second base, third base and left field upon his return. He rewarded the Indians with a .259/.337/.438 line over his last 40 games, dropping his strikeout rate (8.2%) and bumping up his walk rate (10.4%) along the way. Barring a trade, Ramirez is positioned to serve as a backup infielder in Cleveland for 2016.
When Asdrubal Cabrera was traded away, many were surprised that Cleveland did not call up uber-prospect Francisco Lindor to see what he could do at the big league level. Ramirez quickly showed why that was not necessary. At the plate, he held his own despite his youth and swiped 10 bases in 11 tries, but Ramirez really shined in the field. Slash and dash is the name of the game for Ramirez while he looks over his shoulder to see what Lindor is up to on the farm. He's a nice late-round speed source for AL-only players, while mixed leaguers can pick him up in the reserves.
The Indians have a plethora of middle-infield prospects and it's easy to overlook a guy like Ramirez as a result. He received a short look with the Indians in September to give the team some speed off the bench, but he spent the rest of the season at Double-A Akron as a 20-year-old, hitting .272/.325/.349 with 38 steals. It certainly wasn't as impressive as his 2012 season (.354/.404/.465), but keep in mind that he skipped High-A entirely. He doesn't strike out much and has a decent enough eye at the plate to take full advantage of his speed. Ramirez won't hit for power, but his speed makes him an intriguing fantasy prospect at the keystone should he find his way into a situation where he's no longer blocked by Jason Kipnis.
More Fantasy News
Remains out after HBP
3BCleveland Indians
March 3, 2019
Ramirez (foot) is not in the lineup for Sunday's spring game against the Royals, Mandy Bell of reports.
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Still out after HBP
3BCleveland Indians
March 2, 2019
Ramirez (foot) is not in Saturday's lineup against the A's, Mandy Bell of reports.
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Fine after HBP
3BCleveland Indians
March 1, 2019
Manager Terry Francona said Ramirez (foot) is fine after getting hit by a pitch during Friday's game against the Dodgers, Mandy Bell of reports.
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Exits after being hit by pitch
3BCleveland Indians
March 1, 2019
Ramirez exited Friday's game against the Dodgers after being hit by a pitch on the top of his foot, Mandy Bell of reports.
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Collects first two hits of camp
3BCleveland Indians
February 28, 2019
Ramirez went 2-for-3 with a home run, four RBI and two runs scored Thursday against Arizona.
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