Tommy La Stella
Tommy La Stella
29-Year-Old Second Baseman2B
Chicago Cubs
Out
Injury Back
Est. Return 9/21/2018
2018 Fantasy Outlook
The Cubs didn't have much playing time available for La Stella last season, but he was an effective left-handed bat off the bench when called upon. Most of his time in the field was split between second base and third base, and as long as the Cubs have Javier Baez and Ben Zobrist available to cover multiple positions, it's difficult to imagine a larger role for La Stella. If he were to end up on another 25-man roster, he could see an uptick in playing time. La Stella has a good eye at the plate, and a good hit tool, but he lacks the raw power necessary to hit more than 12-15 homers even if he becomes a starter for a prolonged stretch down the road. Even on a team with less depth, La Stella is ideally suited for a part-time role as a pinch-hitter who consistently offers quality plate appearances. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
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$Agreed to a $950,000 deal with the Cubs in January of 2018, avoiding arbitration.
Doesn't travel to Arizona with team
2BChicago Cubs
Back
September 17, 2018
La Stella (back) stayed in Chicago while the Cubs flew to Arizona to take on the Diamondbacks, Jesse Rogers of ESPN.com reports.
ANALYSIS
La Stella is dealing with a sore back, so the Cubs decided it would be best for him to avoid two plane rides. Chicago is hopeful he'll be available for Friday's series opener against the White Sox, although more news on his status should emerge as the weekend nears.
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Batting Stats
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Minor League Game Log
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Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2016
 
 
+5%
OPS vs RHP
2018
 
 
+84%
OPS vs RHP
2017
 
 
+18%
OPS vs LHP
2016
 
 
+14%
OPS vs LHP
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2016vs Left .722 58 11 1 8 0 .260 .362 .360
Since 2016vs Right .761 439 46 7 44 0 .277 .360 .402
2018vs Left .384 22 3 0 3 0 .111 .273 .111
2018vs Right .707 158 19 1 16 0 .290 .348 .359
2017vs Left 1.000 13 4 1 2 0 .385 .385 .615
2017vs Right .845 136 14 4 20 0 .277 .390 .455
2016vs Left .856 23 4 0 3 0 .316 .435 .421
2016vs Right .748 145 13 2 8 0 .264 .345 .403
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Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2016
 
 
+13%
OPS on Road
2018
 
 
+1%
OPS on Road
2017
 
 
+51%
OPS on Road
2016
 
 
+4%
OPS at Home
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2016Home .706 227 29 1 22 0 .263 .352 .354
Since 2016Away .799 270 28 7 30 0 .286 .367 .433
2018Home .666 83 15 0 11 0 .276 .337 .329
2018Away .674 97 7 1 8 0 .264 .340 .333
2017Home .669 65 7 0 6 0 .241 .354 .315
2017Away 1.008 84 11 5 16 0 .324 .417 .592
2016Home .779 79 7 1 5 0 .265 .367 .412
2016Away .748 89 10 1 6 0 .275 .348 .400
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Stat Review
How does Tommy La Stella 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.
BB/K
0.60
 
BB Rate
8.3%
 
K Rate
13.9%
 
BABIP
.314
 
ISO
.061
 
AVG
.270
 
OBP
.339
 
SLG
.331
 
OPS
.670
 
Advanced Batting Stats
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Additional Stats
Games By Position
Defensive Stats
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Stats Vs Upcoming Pitchers
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2017
2016
2015
2014
2013
La Stella cracked the Cubs' Opening Day roster as a part-time player, and opened the year with a .291/.378/.494 line in 38 games before he hit the disabled list with a hamstring strain in early June. Things took an unusual turn from there, as his eventual activation from the DL was halted by a demotion back to Triple-A prior to the non-waiver trade deadline, and the veteran infielder initially refused to report to Des Moines for the assignment. After a change of heart in mid-August, La Stella returned to the organization and put himself back in the good graces of the front office to the point of earning a September callup when rosters expanded. A patient left-handed bat with a modicum of pop, La Stella is a useful bench piece for a big league club, but it remains to be seen if he can hit enough to merit being placed on the large side of a platoon. With health, a slight increase in playing time is a possibility in 2017.
The Cubs liked La Stella's batting eye and versatility when they acquired him from Atlanta in November of 2014, but injuries and the emergence of a number of other youngsters limited him to just 33 games with his new team last year. He was an above-average prospect in the Braves' system after slashing .343/.422/.473 in half a season with Double-A Mississippi in 2013. Unfortunately, his major league numbers have been disappointing, with just two home runs, two stolen bases and a .327 on-base percentage in 386 at-bats. On the other hand, his strong career 41:47 BB:K is a contrast to most of his teammates. He'll likely play a bit of second and third again this year, but he's a bench player for the Cubs unless injuries strike.
Dan Uggla's demise put La Stella on the radar heading into 2014, and it was less than two months before he officially took over the starting second base job in Atlanta. His keen eye at the plate was apparent from the get-go, as La Stella hit .292/.371/.357 with 20 strikeouts against 19 walks prior to the All-Star break, but he failed make the necessary adjustments as pitchers learned his tendencies and thus floundered to a .565 OPS in the second half, ultimately losing his starting job to Phil Gosselin late in the season. The Cubs, liking his contact and on-base skills, acquired La Stella from the Braves for right-hander Arodys Vizcaino in November. There's a remote chance he could work himself into a regular role at second base to begin the year, but La Stella won't be much of a factor outside of OBP leagues regardless given his utter lack of power and speed, even at a premium middle-infield position.
While Tyler Pastornicky is an obvious candidate for playing time at second base if Dan Uggla is dealt, La Stella is definitely in the mix as well, after raking at Double-A Mississippi (.343/.422/.473) in 2013. He also drew the praise of the team's director of player development, Bruce Manno, with an impressive performance in the Arizona Fall League. The 25-year-old La Stella is very disciplined at the plate, as evidenced by his 35 strikeouts in 303 at-bats last season, and even if the Braves can't unload Uggla, a hot start in the minors could put him in contention for a major league roster spot. Further, La Stella offers significantly more upside at the plate than Pastornicky, making him a better speculative target for those in deeper formats.
The Braves may have struck gold in the eighth round of the 2011 draft with La Stella. With an underrated glove and a big bat, he is being viewed as the team's future second baseman. Dan Uggla is firmly entrenched as their current second baseman and his contract runs through 2015 so there is no need to rush La Stella. Still, he hit .328/.401/.543 in 63 games at Low-A in 2011 and followed that up with a .302/.386/.460 line in High-A in 2012. If he keeps hitting like that, he is going to force the Braves to continue advancing him.
More Fantasy News
Scratched with back tightness
2BChicago Cubs
Back
September 16, 2018
La Stella was scratched from Sunday's lineup due to lower-back tightness, Sahadev Sharma of The Athletic reports.
ANALYSIS
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Starting at third in Game 1
2BChicago Cubs
September 8, 2018
La Stella is starting at third base and batting second in Game 1 of Saturday's doubleheader against the Nationals.
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Hits go-ahead home run in win
2BChicago Cubs
August 30, 2018
La Stella hit a go-ahead, two-run home run off the bench in the sixth inning of Thursday's 5-4 win over the Braves.
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Batting leadoff Sunday
2BChicago Cubs
August 19, 2018
La Stella is starting at second base and batting leadoff in Sunday's game against the Pirates.
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Picks up start at second base Sunday
2BChicago Cubs
June 3, 2018
La Stella is starting at second base and batting eighth in Sunday's game against the Mets.
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