Yonder Alonso
Yonder Alonso
31-Year-Old First Baseman1B
Chicago White Sox
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Alonso's 2018 season was a step back from his surprise 2017 season. By now, you know that Alonso converted himself from a slow-footed heavy groundball hitter into a flyball hitter during the 2017 offseason. He stuck with that trend in 2018, but not to the extreme that led to the power breakout. His average exit velocity fell 1.5 miles per hour, the average distance on his batted balls fell 16 feet and his average launch angle dropped from 19.4 degrees to 15.6 degrees. Those numbers are what we should have expected as the league fully adjusted to his changes at the plate, and they're sustainable moving forward. The numbers are much better than where he was two seasons ago, but they're not that great for a first baseman. His 2017 may have been a one-time thing, but the new baseline makes Alonso at least rosterable now in all formats rather than the last-resort option he was not so long ago. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a two-year, $16 million contract with the Indians in December of 2017. Traded to the White Sox in December of 2018.
Dealt to White Sox
1BChicago White Sox
December 14, 2018
Alonso was traded from the Indians to the White Sox on Friday, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports.
It remains unknown as to what Cleveland is getting in return, but more details regarding the trade should be revealed shortly. Alonso slashed .250/.317/.421 with 23 homers and 83 RBI over 145 games for the Indians in 2018, and he could slot in as Chicago's everyday designated hitter, especially with Jose Abreu already a solid option at first base. Alonso does have a $9 million option for the 2020 campaign, so the White Sox could keep the 31-year-old around for at least the next two seasons, per Rosenthal.
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Batting Stats
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Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2016
Since 2016vs Left .635 292 37 10 37 2 .214 .274 .361
Since 2016vs Right .788 1335 151 48 169 3 .265 .345 .443
2018vs Left .619 138 18 4 19 0 .227 .275 .344
2018vs Right .776 436 46 19 64 0 .258 .330 .446
2017vs Left .679 80 8 5 10 1 .181 .263 .417
2017vs Right .900 441 64 23 57 1 .282 .383 .517
2016vs Left .617 74 11 1 8 1 .227 .284 .333
2016vs Right .694 458 41 6 48 2 .257 .321 .373
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Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2016
OPS on Road
OPS on Road
OPS at Home
OPS on Road
Since 2016Home .735 751 86 32 105 1 .240 .313 .422
Since 2016Away .781 876 102 26 101 4 .270 .348 .433
2018Home .691 273 31 12 40 0 .232 .300 .390
2018Away .780 301 33 11 43 0 .267 .332 .448
2017Home .936 240 35 17 36 0 .273 .367 .569
2017Away .805 281 37 11 31 2 .260 .363 .442
2016Home .588 238 20 3 29 1 .218 .273 .315
2016Away .760 294 32 4 27 2 .282 .350 .410
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Stat Review
How does Yonder Alonso 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
Alonso was a success story as the league-wide flyball revolution continued in 2017, fully tapping into the power that made him a top prospect in the Reds' system nearly 10 years ago. The new approach paid off, as Alonso's effort to hit more flyballs (career-high 43.2 FB%) was accompanied by a HR/FB rate spike from 5.1 percent in 2016 to 19.4 percent last season. In years past, he struggled to punish fastballs, but he slugged .683 against four-seamers and .704 against two-seamers in 2017, with 18 of his career-high 28 homers coming against those two offerings. The Mariners acquired Alonso from the A's in a midseason trade, but he faded in the second half, finishing with a .774 OPS when his flyball rate bottomed out at 36.1 percent and he pulled the ball excessively. He should hold the large side of a platoon at first base after signing with the Indians, but Alonso is a much more interesting corner-infield filler than he was a year ago.
Another year, another season of mediocrity for Alonso, who has long lost any semblance of hype from his prospect days. His biggest fantasy asset is playing time, and in 2016, he logged nearly a full season;s worth of at-bats after a few years of platoon play and injuries. The vet, who turns 30 in April, posts contact rates befitting a .300 hitter but has only hit above .280 in a full season twice. Not even his typically above-average plate-discipline indicators have helped him offer consistently great on-base percentages. And of course, fantasy players desire more power from a corner infielder than what he can give. He hasn't hit double-digit homers in a season yet, thanks to his underwhelming ability to hit flyballs. Maybe one year, he'll figure out how to leave the yard, but 2017 is not the season to bank on it without a major change to his approach.
Alonso was once again hit by some bad injury luck in 2015, missing most of May and September due to shoulder and back ailments. In his 103 games in the 2015 campaign, Alonso cobbled together a .282/.361/.381 slash line with five home runs, 18 doubles, and 31 RBI. Those power numbers are concerning, especially coming from a first baseman. His ISO also dropped from an already-low .131 in 2014 to just .099 in 2015, which is not a great sign for a player who theoretically should be entering his prime at age 28. Obviously, having Petco Park as his home stadium did not help matters, and he has a good approach, but plate discipline alone may not be enough to get him out of the basement among mixed-league first basemen. Following a move to another pitcher's park in Oakland this offseason, Alonso's prospects for a big season in 2016 are looking rather bleak, but he should still serve as an option in AL-only leagues.
Through the first two and a half months of last season, Alonso avoided the injury bug that has plagued his career, but a sore right wrist emerged in mid-June and induced yet another trip to the disabled list. The Padres’ wretched offense was in full swing by that point, and their starting first baseman was a prime culprit, mustering a .210/.250/.341 batting line, with a low .131 ISO and .222 BABIP in tow. Upon his return to the lineup in the latter portion of July, he managed to hit the cover off the ball for nearly three weeks, before a right forearm strain ended his campaign for good. The aforementioned surge at the plate boosted his final line to a more respectable .240/.285/.397. If the power demonstrated last year (seven homers and 19 doubles in 267 at-bats) continues unabated, Alonso may finally tap into the potential that has been evident, when healthy, during parts of five professional seasons.
Alonso, who entered the season as the Padres' unquestioned starting first baseman, didn't disappoint during the first two months, belting three homers each in April and May, before landing on the disabled list due to a broken hand. Upon his return just before the All-Star break, he failed to clear the fences thereafter, while tallying just four extra-base hits (all doubles) and receiving no at-bats after Aug. 30 due to sore hands. However, he displayed greater plate discipline in the second half -- a 17:15 K:BB ratio in 135 at-bats versus 15:32 in 199 at-bats in the first -- a telling sign that his ailments were taking a toll on his power stroke. The left-handed hitter, when healthy, clearly took advantage of Petco Park's more friendly right-field fence, which was moved in prior to 2013's opening pitch, as evidenced by four long balls at home. As a result, Alonso enters his age-27 season poised to surpass the career-high nine home runs he achieved in 2012, so long as he avoids the injury bug.
In his first full season in the majors, Alonso got off to a slow start (.263/.344/.362, three homers), but finished strong after the All-Star break (.285/.352/.430, six homers). As a lefty, he unsurprisingly hit righties much better than he hit lefties with eight of his nine home runs coming against them. In sum, it was a promising rookie year for the young first baseman. In 2013, Alonso will need to show more power, if he is to be taken seriously as a corner bat and because his home park demands it. He'll be close to 26 years old when the season starts, so it's natural to expect his power to continue to develop. If he can keep his strikeout rate low, there's good reason to believe that Alonso will avoid a sophomore slump, and he should benefit from having the right-field fences moved in at Petco Park.
At the plate, Alonso hit a robust .330/.398/.545 in 88 at-bats, fueled by a .387 BABIP. Alonso hasn't yet hit for the power many had hoped for from the 2008 first-round pick, but many believe that still could be coming. The Reds included him in a package sent to the Padres for Mat Latos in December, which finally removed Joey Votto as a roadblock to playing time at first base. Now that "lack of position" is no longer a part of his scouting report, Alonso is a nice sleeper after delivering a .943 OPS in limited duty as a 24-year-old for the Reds last season. The Padres traded Anthony Rizzo to the Cubs in January, so Alonso appears to be the favorite to start at first base come Opening Day.
Alonso started slowly in 2010 while trying to recover from the broken hamate bone that slowed his 2009 season down. A strong second half left him with decent overall numbers, though not the monster power numbers the Reds were hoping for when they drafted him. The bigger problem for the Reds is that an attempt to move him to left field at Triple-A Louisville fizzled out, leaving him without a position at the major league level, with Joey Votto obviously not going anywhere. There's a good chance that his bat will eventually catch up to expectations, but the odds are it will be with another organization after Alonso gets dealt. Because of the position issue, Alonso will probably spend half the summer in Louisville again.
Alonso is going to present a dilemma to the Reds in the future, because he can only handle first base (and marginally at that) defensively, and Joey Votto is firmly ensconced there. But that's not going to be an issue in 2010 - Alonso's bat, particularly his ability to hit for power, still needs work. A broken hamate bone suffered midseason while playing for Double-A Carolina slowed down his progress and cut back on Alonso's power once he returned. He hit well in the Arizona Fall League, but once again not for power. Look for him to spend most of 2010 at Triple-A Louisville.
Alonso was the Reds' first-round pick out of the University of Miami and signed right at the deadline after a somewhat rancorous negotiation. He tore it up in the Hawaii Winter League (.308/.419/.510) and could begin 2009 as high as Double-A Carolina. Alonso's good power and plate discipline made it hard for the Reds to pass him up in the draft, despite their needs at other positions. Defensively, he can only really handle first base, meaning that by 2010 the Reds will have to figure out how to get both him and Joey Votto in the lineup.
More Fantasy News
Sits for Game 3
1BCleveland Indians
October 8, 2018
Alonso will be on the bench for Game 3 of the ALDS against the Astros on Monday.
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Out of lineup Sunday
1BCleveland Indians
September 30, 2018
Alonso is not in the lineup for Sunday's game at Kansas City, Jordan Bastian of MLB.com reports.
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Takes seat Thursday
1BCleveland Indians
September 27, 2018
Alonso is out of the starting lineup against the Royals on Thursday, Jordan Bastian of MLB.com reports.
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Day off Sunday
1BCleveland Indians
September 16, 2018
Alonso is not in the lineup Sunday against the Tigers.
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Hits 23rd home run
1BCleveland Indians
September 15, 2018
Alonso was 3-for-6 with a a two-run homer and three runs scored in a 15-0 win over Detroit on Saturday.
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