32-Year-Old Outfielder – Free Agent
2018 Fantasy Baseball Outlook
There was no outlook written for Chris Heisey in 2018. Check out the latest news below for more on his current fantasy value.
Chris Heisey Contract Information:
Signed a one-year, $1.4 million contract with the Nationals in November of 2016. Released by the Nationals in July of 2017.
Heisey (groin) was released by the Nationals on Sunday, Chelsea Janes of The Washington Post reports.
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Chris Heisey: MLB Games Played By Position
Chris Heisey Split Stats (View Full Split Stats)
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Chris Heisey Defensive Stats
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2017 Stat Review for Chris Heisey As compared to the top 200 hitters in 2016 (min 410 PA)
Patience at the plate often leads to positive outcomes.
A couple of useful stats for evaluating a hitter.
Good contact skills often lead to better fantasy stats.
SLG and ISO are useful indicators of power.
Chris Heisey: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
There was no outlook written for Chris Heisey.
2016 was more of the same for Heisey, as he posted his fifth straight season with less than 10 home runs following a 2011 season where he hit 18 home runs in 308 plate appearances for the Reds. He struck out at an increased clip in 2016 as well, going down on strikes 28.4 percent of the time, the worst mark of his career. His .216 average was an upgrade over the .182 he hit for the Dodgers in 2015, but it still leaves much to be desired, considering he hit over .250 in the first three seasons of his career. His on-base percentage dropped in 2016 as well, despite his increase in average, as his 20.8 percent walk rate (in just 72 plate appearances) from 2015 was going to be extremely tough to replicate. The Nationals gave the 32-year-old a one-year, $1.4 million contract in November, setting him up to battle with Michael Taylor and Brian Goodwin for the fourth outfielder spot in spring training.
Heisey's production has dwindled in every season since hitting 18 home runs and posting a .796 OPS back in 2011. His OPS actually went up in 2015 versus 2014, but with a slash line that's nothing to brag about. In reality, the OPS was inflated by an astronomical 20.8-percent walk rate, a number largely driven by a sample size of just 72 plate appearances. Not surprisingly, Heisey went unclaimed when the Dodgers placed him on waivers in November, and he eventually latched on with the Nationals after becoming a free agent. Like he experienced in 2015, expect Heisey to spend a good portion of the season as Triple-A insurance, as although he still has a pretty good glove, a discerning batting eye, and a bit of pop, Heisey will likely never hit enough to see regular big league at-bats.
When Heisey hit 18 homers in 308 plate appearances in 2011, many thought he was on his way to being the Reds' long-term answer in left field. Alas, it didn't work out that way, as he's regressed each season since then, bottoming out in 2014 to the tune of a .222/.265/.378 line. To be sure, he's been unlucky on balls in play the last two seasons (.268 and .261 respectively), but he's also shown no growth in his plate discipline and his isolated power has dropped. The cries to "Free Chris Heisey" have been muted, and he's now buried in a deep outfield in Los Angeles after being acquired by the Dodgers during the offseason.
It looked like Heisey was finally going to get his big break after Ryan Ludwick went down on Opening Day. Instead, Heisey first spit the bit and then went down with the never-ending hamstring injury. By the time he got untracked over the second half, it was still a case of too little (he hit with more power but still had a .300 OBP in the second half, with a September collapse), too late (with Ryan Ludwick returning in August). Heisey's best path for playing time in 2014 is to hope Billy Hamilton flops or that Ludwick gets hurt again, but there's little hope of him breaking out to be the player he was once expected to become.
By most measures, Heisey's 2012 campaign was a disappointment. Despite a small boost in playing time, Heisey's power dropped off considerably, while his plate discipline actually worsened. What started out as a timeshare with Ryan Ludwick evolved into Ludwick's job full-time in left field, with Heisey trying to pick up the spare start scraps at all three outfield spots. He really could benefit from being on a team where he got all of the platoon at-bats against left-handers, who he hit pretty well against in limited action. Otherwise, his playing time is going to remain unstable.
While Heisey had his moments in the sun in 2011, the movement to "Free Chris Heisey" was only partially fulfilled. Jonny Gomes was eventually dealt and Fred Lewis demoted, but in their place came Yonder Alonso and Dave Sappelt to take away time in left field. As much as Heisey's power and defense are interesting, he probably benefits the most with the Reds' decision to trade Alonso to the Padres. The addition of Ryan Ludwick all but guarantees Heisey will sit against left-handed starters, but he could still provide cheap power as part of a platoon in left field and occasional replacement for Drew Stubbs in center.
Heisey came back to earth after a 2009 breakout season that saw him climb three minor league levels, but he still held his own as the Reds' fourth outfielder in his rookie season. He excelled in a pinch-hitting role with the team, hitting .348/.448/.957 with four of his eight total homers. Look for him to get a little bit more playing time in left field than he did in 2010, whenever the Reds opt to prioritize his defense ahead of Jonny Gomes.
Heisey progressed from a middling prospect to one towards the top of the Reds' food chain in 2009, blowing up at Double-A Carolina before holding his own at Triple-A Louisville and later in the Arizona Fall League. His short-term problem is that the Reds have a slew of candidates to fill the left-field slot that will probably get a shot before Heisey, but it wouldn't hurt him developmentally or the Reds financially to have him spend three months in Triple-A Louisville. Look for a midseason callup.