Ian Happ
Ian Happ
24-Year-Old Third Baseman3B
Chicago Cubs
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Happ experienced a heavy dose of the sophomore slump last year as he failed to meet the expectations his bat established in 2017. His overall offensive production was still slightly above league average, but that is not how he was drafted. He was very helpful in OBP leagues as he jumped his walk rate nearly six percentage points to 15.2%, but his strikeout rate worsened (36.1%), which pulled down his batting average while his slugging percentage dropped over 100 points. The frustrating part with Happ was that he chased a lower percentage of pitches in 2018 than he did in 2017, but he struggled to make contact within the strike zone as pitchers kept him guessing on pitch type and location. He is much more effective against righties and the team has not hesitated to leave him on the bench against lefties, which cuts into his overall playing time. Happ lost his second-base eligibility, but gained third-base eligibility. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
#343
ADP
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$Signed a one-year, $603,500 contract with the Cubs in March of 2019.
Struggling at Triple-A
3BChicago Cubs  AAA
April 22, 2019
Happ is batting .209 with a .681 OPS and 25 strikeouts through 18 games with Triple-A Iowa.
ANALYSIS
It was somewhat of a surprise when Happ was demoted to Triple-A to begin the season, and the 24-year-old has not responded particularly well. He's still struggling to make consistent contact, as evidenced by the .209 average and 33.3 percent strikeout rate. Happ did pop his second home run of the year Monday, but at this point, a return to the majors does not seem imminent.
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Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2017
 
 
+20%
OPS vs RHP
2019
No Stats
2018
 
 
+34%
OPS vs RHP
2017
 
 
+9%
OPS vs RHP
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2017vs Left .698 230 27 8 28 4 .239 .301 .397
Since 2017vs Right .839 645 91 31 84 12 .244 .356 .483
2019vs Left 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2019vs Right 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2018vs Left .608 117 17 3 12 4 .202 .291 .317
2018vs Right .816 345 39 12 32 4 .244 .374 .442
2017vs Left .789 113 10 5 16 0 .276 .313 .476
2017vs Right .863 300 52 19 52 8 .243 .334 .529
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Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2017
 
 
+3%
OPS on Road
2019
No Stats
2018
 
 
+8%
OPS on Road
2017
 
 
+2%
OPS at Home
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2017Home .790 434 62 22 61 9 .228 .336 .454
Since 2017Away .811 441 56 17 51 7 .256 .346 .465
2019Home 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2019Away 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2018Home .730 219 26 7 22 3 .224 .347 .383
2018Away .789 243 30 8 22 5 .240 .358 .431
2017Home .850 215 36 15 39 6 .232 .326 .524
2017Away .834 198 26 9 29 2 .274 .332 .503
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Ian Happ
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2018
2017
2016
It is great when rookies come up and exceed expectations as Happ did in 2017, even if it was not in full-time duty. Happ was part of the outfield rotation as well as the second-base situation in Chicago as manager Joe Maddon likes to keep everyone involved. His rookie year saw him slug over .500, something only the likes of Kris Bryant and Billy Williams have done for the northsiders. With the great power came the great problems with contact as he struck out in nearly one-third of his plate appearances. The power comes nearly all from the left side (19 of his 24 homers game off righties), but he hits for a better average when put into the game to face lefties. Many rookies struggle at the big-league level when moved as quickly as Happ has been -- he had fewer than 400 plate appearances above A-ball. This kid is special and has more room for growth.
The ninth overall pick in 2015, Happ hit .296/.410/.475 in 69 games with High-A Myrtle Beach to begin the 2016 campaign, earning a promotion to Double-A Tennessee as a 21-year-old. Predictably, there were some growing pains as his walk rate fell by nine percent between levels, resulting in a nearly 100-point drop in OBP. Happ also saw a 60-point decline in SLG, but he made more consistent contact with Tennessee and the decline in numbers did little to dim his prospect star. This is a highly appealing skill set -- Happ is a switch-hitter with a quick bat, an advanced eye and more than a splash of both power and speed. The question has been; where will he play with Chicago? That was seemingly answered with a move to second base in 2016, although there's also a chance he never ends up calling Wrigley Field "home." Trade rumors have followed Happ and will for the foreseeable future.
The Cubs selected Happ with the ninth pick in the 2015 draft, and the former college star hit the ground running. Happ, who hit .369 with 14 home runs in 198 at-bats for the University of Cincinnati last year, finished his first professional year slashing an aggregate .259/.356/.466 with nine home runs and 10 stolen bases in 251 at-bats with short-season Eugene and Low-A South Bend. He started slowly in South Bend, but came on strong late in his run and finished with a strong walk rate with good power. With most of the strongest Cubs prospects getting promoted to the majors in the last couple of years, Happ may already be one of the best players in the Cubs' system. He's a good name to know for dynasty leagues, especially because he'll rise through the ranks quickly as a polished college bat.
More Fantasy News
Heading to Triple-A
3BChicago Cubs  AAA
March 23, 2019
Happ was optioned to Triple-A Iowa on Saturday, Jordan Bastian of MLB.com reports.
ANALYSIS
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Struggles continue
3BChicago Cubs  AAA
March 21, 2019
Happ went 0-for-2 with a walk and two strikeouts in Thursday's Cactus League game against the Giants and is slashing .143/.208/.204 through 49 at-bats this spring.
ANALYSIS
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Rough start to spring
3BChicago Cubs  AAA
March 18, 2019
Happ has recorded six hits in 41 at-bats (.146 batting average) during Cactus League play while chipping in six RBI, four runs and a stolen base.
ANALYSIS
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Figures to keep splitting time in center
3BChicago Cubs  AAA
February 26, 2019
Happ will likely remain in a center field timeshare with Albert Almora and, to a lesser extent, Jason Heyward in 2019 based on matchups, Jordan Bastian of MLB.com reports.
ANALYSIS
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Out of lineup for regular-season finale
3BChicago Cubs  AAA
September 30, 2018
Happ is out of the lineup for Sunday's game against the Cardinals.
ANALYSIS
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