Matt Olson
Matt Olson
24-Year-Old First Baseman1B
Oakland Athletics
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Olson burst onto the scene in 2017, blasting 24 homers in 59 games. Hitting just two doubles in that span was a warning Olson would be hard-pressed to maintain that pace. Sure enough, his extra-base hit ratio normalized as he swatted 29 long balls with 33 two-baggers last year, a more realistic baseline expectation. Olson made strides with his plate skills, walking a tick more while shaving his K% down a few points to 24.7%. His hard contact ranked sixth on the Statcast exit velocity leaderboard along with a respectable 42nd-place finish in barrel rate. Olson was seen as a below-average defender as a prospect, but has improved in that regard. Entering just his age-25 campaign, he is young enough to improve his contact and his ability to hit southpaws (45 of his 53 career blasts have come off right-handed pitching). By playing all 162 games last season, Olson displayed durability, adding to his growing resume. Read Past Outlooks
$Agreed to terms with the Athletics in June of 2012.
Hits bench Saturday
1BOakland Athletics
September 29, 2018
Olson is not in the lineup against the Angels on Saturday, Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports.
Olson will hit the bench after starting 17 straight games and hitting .317 with four homers and a .981 OPS over that stretch. Chad Pinder will start at first base in his absence.
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Batting Stats
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Minor League Game Log
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Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2016
Since 2016vs Left .703 267 26 8 28 2 .237 .322 .381
Since 2016vs Right .885 637 95 45 101 0 .249 .345 .540
2018vs Left .701 211 18 4 22 2 .251 .332 .369
2018vs Right .830 449 67 25 62 0 .244 .336 .494
2017vs Left .758 53 8 4 6 0 .196 .302 .457
2017vs Right 1.081 163 25 20 39 0 .280 .368 .713
2016vs Left .000 3 0 0 0 0 .000 .000 .000
2016vs Right .527 25 3 0 0 0 .111 .360 .167
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Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2016
OPS on Road
OPS on Road
OPS at Home
OPS at Home
Since 2016Home .815 435 60 26 59 1 .241 .317 .497
Since 2016Away .846 469 61 27 70 1 .250 .358 .488
2018Home .747 326 39 14 36 1 .227 .307 .440
2018Away .829 334 46 15 48 1 .266 .362 .467
2017Home 1.045 101 20 12 23 0 .290 .347 .699
2017Away .961 115 13 12 22 0 .229 .357 .604
2016Home .542 8 1 0 0 0 .167 .375 .167
2016Away .433 20 2 0 0 0 .067 .300 .133
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Stat Review
How does Matt Olson 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 Rate
K Rate
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
A lot was made of the power displays exhibited by Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge, but if you prorate Olson's numbers over a full season, we're looking at something north of 60 homers. Of course, he only played 59 games, so Olson would have been hard pressed to keep hitting a homer every nine plate appearances in a full campaign (Stanton was one per 11.7 PA while Judge was one per 13 PA). Further, Olson's HR/FB was a ridiculous 41.4 percent. There have been only four players in history with a seasonal mark over 35 percent, two of which were Stanton and Judge in 2017. Olson's power earned him the full-time first base spot, enabling the Athletics to deal Ryon Healy. When the dust settles, the lefty-swinging slugger will be another high-power, high-strikeout hitter with a risky batting average. There's a chance he gets exposed versus southpaws over a full season.
Regardless of their flaws, young left-handed bats with an enticing power tool can establish their own market. Olson (6-foot-5, 230 pounds) has proven as much in his early professional career, with 37 home runs at High-A Stockton and 17 at each of his two stops since. Throughout his farm work, he's kept an equally attractive 15.2 percent walk rate, but Olson's prospect appeal has slipped as he's advanced closer to the big leagues. The A's have avenues at first base, outfield and designated hitter to test the potential middle-of-the-order stick. Olson turns 23 in March, though, and like many hackers, he has holes in his swing. His strikeout rate has hovered in the 23-24 percent range in his time at Double-A Midland and Triple-A Nashville, and logic doesn't say to expect immediate improvement in the big leagues as he adjusts to top-level pitching.
Olson moved up to Double-A in 2015 and took a step back from his big 2014, when he had 37 home runs and 111 RBI with a .281 ISO. Olson hit .249 with 17 home runs in his first full season in Double-A and saw his ISO drop to .189. The good news is that his impressive walk rate stayed stable at 17.9 percent even though his strikeout rate did bump up a touch to 23.8 percent (21.6 percent in 2014). Olson is 22, and while he is still a top-five prospect in the organization, his bit of a downturn upon seeing Double-A pitching likely ended any chance of his starting 2016 with the A's. He has a chance to make it up to the majors in the second half of 2016 and could be the A's starting first baseman (or right fielder if Josh Reddick is moved) to begin 2017.
Olson had a monster 2014 in the power department at High-A Stockton, leading all A's minor leaguers with 37 homers and 97 RBI over 512 at-bats. The 20-year-old also had a nice boost in his batting average, hitting .262 (along with a huge .947 OPS) after hitting merely .225 in 2013. In addition, he added a lot of walks to his resume, walking 45 more times than he did in 2013. The A's sent Olson to the Arizona Fall League after the season to give him a look against other top prospects, but his stint there was cut short by a shoulder injury, suffered in a collision at first base. He's expected to be ready for the start of spring training, and Olson will likely begin the season as the starting first baseman in Double-A, with a legitimate chance to join the A's in 2016.
Olson spent the 2013 season at Low-A Beloit and while the power numbers were impressive (23 homers and 93 RBI), Olson struggled to make contact, hitting only .225 and striking out 148 times. The 19-year-old possesses the power upside from the left side of the plate that teams drool over, but he will look to improve upon his contact in High-A in 2014. If he's able to cut back on the whiffs, Olson could make a significant push up the prospect charts as he ascends the Oakland system.
More Fantasy News
Supplies grand slam in win
1BOakland Athletics
September 27, 2018
Olson went 1-for-5 with a grand slam Wednesday in the Athletics' 9-3 win over the Mariners.
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Cranks 28th homer
1BOakland Athletics
September 23, 2018
Olson went 3-for-4 with a solo home run in Oakland's 5-1 loss to the Twins on Sunday.
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Stays hot in rout
1BOakland Athletics
September 21, 2018
Olson went 1-for-2 with an RBI single, three walks and two runs in a win over the Angels on Thursday.
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On base thrice in loss
1BOakland Athletics
September 17, 2018
Olson went 2-for-3 with a walk in a loss to the Rays on Sunday.
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Pops 27th homer
1BOakland Athletics
September 15, 2018
Olson went 2-for-3 with a walk and a solo homer in Saturday's loss to the Rays.
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