Cesar Hernandez
Cesar Hernandez
28-Year-Old Second Baseman2B
Philadelphia Phillies
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Hernandez's batted-ball profile started to resemble that of a power hitter in 2018, as he raised his flyball rate from 24.6% to 33.6% and increased his pull rate from 35.8% to 40.3%. However, it's probably unwise to read too much of his underlying numbers after it came to light that he played most of the second half with a broken foot. He had a career-high 13.4% walk rate but also a 21.9% strikeout rate that represented his highest mark since his small-sample 2014 season. The end result was a career-best 15 homers but a drop in all three slash categories to .253/.356/.362, good for a league-average 100 wRC+, and only five steals after he suffered the foot injury July 20. The dream scenario for Hernandez in 2019 would see him hold onto his power gains while regaining his solid batting average and some stolen bases with improved health. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a one-year $7.75 million contract with the Phillies in January of 2019.
Leading off in lineup return
2BPhiladelphia Phillies
March 14, 2019
Hernandez (hip) will man second base and lead off for the Phillies in Thursday's Grapefruit League game against the Pirates, Bill Brink of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.
Hernandez will check into the Phillies' spring lineup for the first time in more than two weeks after he had been sidelined by a strained right hip flexor. With Opening Day two weeks away, Hernandez should have sufficient time to get in some at-bats and avoid a stint on the injured list, but his placement in the Phillies' regular season lineup is more of an open question. Though Hernandez will get a look in the leadoff role Thursday, it's worth noting that the Phillies are splitting their squad with two games on the schedule and are giving days off to Andrew McCutchen and Bryce Harper. Once the Phillies have all hands on deck, it's possible that Hernandez could settle near the bottom of the batting order.
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Batting Stats
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Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2016
Since 2016vs Left .766 497 71 3 30 9 .296 .372 .394
Since 2016vs Right .753 1410 172 27 103 42 .273 .364 .389
2018vs Left .700 176 23 1 15 5 .272 .375 .325
2018vs Right .725 532 68 14 45 14 .247 .350 .374
2017vs Left .810 170 29 2 7 4 .281 .353 .458
2017vs Right .786 407 56 7 27 11 .299 .381 .405
2016vs Left .789 151 19 0 8 0 .341 .391 .399
2016vs Right .756 471 48 6 31 17 .279 .365 .391
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Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2016
OPS on Road
OPS on Road
OPS at Home
OPS on Road
Since 2016Home .741 932 132 17 66 25 .263 .356 .385
Since 2016Away .771 975 111 13 67 26 .294 .376 .395
2018Home .646 347 47 7 32 11 .219 .326 .320
2018Away .789 361 44 8 28 8 .286 .386 .403
2017Home .899 280 48 6 20 7 .320 .407 .492
2017Away .696 297 37 3 14 8 .270 .340 .356
2016Home .704 305 37 4 14 7 .260 .343 .361
2016Away .823 317 30 2 25 10 .327 .398 .424
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Stat Review
How does Cesar Hernandez 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
Hernandez once looked like he would merely be a placeholder in the middle infield until the Phillies accelerated their rebuild, but back-to-back campaigns of at least 15 steals, averages north of .290 and OBPs above .370 may have changed his outlook with the organization. While those three areas are where Hernandez provides his greatest impact in the fantasy realm, he also showed some unexpected pop last season with 41 extra-base hits, making him at least an average contributor among second basemen in terms of power. Middle-infield prospects J.P. Crawford and Scott Kingery are both expected to get fair shakes at everyday roles at some point in 2018, but Hernandez's reliable glove and on-base skills atop the lineup offer value. The youngsters might offer more upside, but it would be unwise to dismiss the 27-year-old's chances of retaining regular at-bats throughout the season with few other proven table setters on the roster.
Hernandez showed growth in his patience, increasing his walk rate by nearly two percent and his on-base percentage from .339 in 2015 to .371 last season. He walked at just a five percent clip in the first half of the season, but a benching in late June sent a message and he walked at nearly a 16 percent clip over the second half of the season. Hernandez has minimal power but possesses great speed. His 11 triples were tied for the most in baseball. Despite that speed and his on-base skills, he managed just 17 steals on 30 attempts. Only Jonathan Villar was caught stealing more often than Hernandez, but he stole nearly four times as many bases. An improvement in efficiency could result in 20-plus steals, but there is some playing time risk, as a potential midseason promotion of prospect J.P. Crawford would force the Phillies to decide between Hernandez and Freddy Galvis at second base. .
Hernandez won a bench job with the Phillies last spring and produced when given opportunities to play early in the season. When Chase Utley went on the disabled list in June, Hernandez moved into a starting role and made enough of an impression that the team had him split time with Utley until the veteran was shipped off to the Dodgers in August. Unfortunately for Hernandez, his season ended early when he suffered a dislocated thumb and ligament damage in mid-September. Hernandez's biggest contribution in fantasy leagues was his 19 stolen bases. He has stolen over 30 bags a couple times in the minors, so the potential is there for him to make a dent in the stolen base category. He will likely open the year as the starter at second, but he'll have to hit for average and work counts to get on base because he offers little else with the bat. If he slumps, the Phillies could turn second base over to Darnell Sweeney.
Hernandez split his time between the majors and minors last season. The Phillies tried to increase his versatility by having him play third last season, but with 11 errors in 32 games in the majors and minors it is clear that Hernandez has some work to do. Hernandez's best skill is his ability to put the ball in play. He has no power, but does have decent speed despite stealing just nine total bags last season. He is out of options which should increase his chances at winning a bench job this spring. Chase Utley has managed to stay fairly healthy of late, but he does have a chronic knee condition that could flare up at any time. Hernandez would stand to benefit with increased playing time at second if something were to happen to Utley.
Hernandez got his first opportunity in the majors last season when the Phillies called him up as a short-term injury replacement. He managed to stick around after Chase Utley was sidelined with a strained oblique, and showed enough with the bat that the Phillies started looking to increase his versatility. Hernandez saw his first action in the outfield last year, and the Phillies have said they want him to also start working out a third. Hernandez does not hit for any power, but he does make pretty good contact and he has speed. He will get a chance to compete for a bench job this spring, but is likely to start the year back in the minors. He could provide some value later in the year thanks to his stolen-base ability should he get a chance at regular playing time.
Hernandez earned a late-season promotion to Triple-A last year after hitting .314/.351/.451 with two home runs for Double-A Reading. He is considered a slick fielder and he has shown some speed on the basepaths during his time in the minors. His upside with the bat is limited due to his lack of power, but he looks like he should at least have a future as a solid utility infielder.
Hernandez, who was signed out of Venezuela in 2006, was added to the Phillies' 40-man roster this winter despite being only 20 years old and not playing above short season Low-A yet. The Phillies clearly think highly of his potential, but Hernandez's lack of power makes him only a mildly interesting fantasy prospect for now. Hernandez does have good speed so if he continues to hit as he moves up the ladder his prospect star will brighten. Keep an eye on his progress.
More Fantasy News
Slated to play Thursday
2BPhiladelphia Phillies
March 13, 2019
Hernandez (hip) is scheduled to rejoin the Phillies' Grapefruit League lineup Thursday for one of the team's split-squad games versus the Pirates and Rays, Matt Breen of The Philadelphia Inquirer reports.
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Still out Monday
2BPhiladelphia Phillies
March 11, 2019
Hernandez (hip) remains out Monday against the Rays.
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Not in Sunday's lineup
2BPhiladelphia Phillies
March 10, 2019
Hernandez (hip) is not in the lineup for Sunday's spring game against the Orioles, according to Todd Zolecki of MLB.com.
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Sitting out again
2BPhiladelphia Phillies
March 9, 2019
Hernandez (hip) remains out of the lineup for Saturday's Grapefruit League game against the Blue Jays.
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Takes batting practice
2BPhiladelphia Phillies
March 7, 2019
Hernandez (hip) took batting practice Thursday, Scott Lauber of The Inquirer reports.
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