Marcus Semien
Marcus Semien
28-Year-Old ShortstopSS
Oakland Athletics
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Want to win a bet? Ask, "What nine players have double-digit homers and steals each of the last four seasons?" Most would miss Semien. Granted, his totals lag behind the others, but there's something to be said for reliability and consistency in today's landscape. Semien is two years removed from 2016's 27 homers, rendering it a likely outlier. The rest of his skill set is stable, save for an improving contact rate. This bodes well for a batting average limited by a weak hard-hit rate, supported by Statcast's exit velocity and barrels data. One element of Semien's game that's improved greatly is defense. Once a major liability, Semien's range and throwing took a huge step forward this past season, ingraining him at shortstop for the foreseeable future. A winning fantasy roster is about balance. Semien doesn't excel in any particular category, but his reliability offers roster stability so you can take chances elsewhere. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a one-year, $5.9 million contract with the Athletics in January of 2019, avoiding arbitration.
Avoids hearing with Oakland
SSOakland Athletics
January 11, 2019
Semien and the Athletics agreed to a one-year, $5.9 million contract Friday, avoiding arbitration, Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports.
Semien has posted a wRC+ between 95 and 98 for four straight seasons, though he received the best defensive grades of his career from both DRS and UZR last season, giving him a career year. He should continue to be a competent but not particularly interesting everyday shortstop for Oakland next season.
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Batting Stats
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Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2016
Since 2016vs Left .757 488 65 21 52 8 .247 .311 .446
Since 2016vs Right .705 1222 149 31 133 28 .247 .314 .392
2018vs Left .758 222 32 7 22 3 .250 .324 .434
2018vs Right .682 481 57 8 48 11 .257 .315 .367
2017vs Left .670 109 11 3 11 2 .224 .303 .367
2017vs Right .743 277 42 7 29 10 .258 .333 .410
2016vs Left .813 157 22 11 19 3 .257 .299 .514
2016vs Right .707 464 50 16 56 7 .231 .300 .407
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Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2016
Even Split
OPS at Home
OPS at Home
OPS on Road
Since 2016Home .720 816 105 21 79 20 .253 .325 .395
Since 2016Away .720 894 109 31 106 16 .242 .302 .418
2018Home .717 346 44 6 31 8 .266 .342 .375
2018Away .694 357 45 9 39 6 .244 .295 .399
2017Home .786 180 28 5 24 6 .257 .352 .434
2017Away .669 206 25 5 16 6 .242 .301 .368
2016Home .683 290 33 10 24 6 .235 .287 .396
2016Away .781 331 39 17 51 4 .240 .311 .470
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Stat Review
How does Marcus Semien 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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Defensive Stats
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
After hitting 27 home runs and stealing 10 bases in 2016, Semien missed 74 games in the first half of 2017 after undergoing surgery to repair a fractured bone in his right wrist. He did his best to erase doubts about his power potential afterward, though, clubbing all 10 of his home runs from last season over the final 74 games. While it doesn't appear that he'll put together a helpful batting average anytime soon - too many strikeouts and flyballs - his walk rate has improved in each of the last two seasons while his strikeout rate has remained almost flat. He's also stolen 10-to-12 bases in his last three seasons, which helps offset his plate woes. Many will fear his cavernous home ballpark, but he doesn't have drastic splits over his career. His improved defense since his horrible 2015 should keep him in a starting spot for Oakland, or whomever they may trade him to. Power-speed combos in the middle infield rarely price themselves as cheap as Semien should be on draft day.
Investors in Semien for 2016 cashed in as he set career highs in plate appearances, home runs, RBI, runs scored and slugging percentage, while he reached double-digit stolen bases for the second straight year. Even his former hatchet-job defense has improved, which should lock him into the lineup, where he mostly hit toward the top down the stretch last year. His production dipped in the second half, but the 19 first-half home runs linger as a reminder of his upside. To reach the next level, the 26-year-old must show he can do anything in the batting average column, which on the back of his weak batting eye and flyball profile doesn't look like an immediate avenue for growth. Speculators are better off hoping he steals more bags if he continues to bat near the top of the order. For owners who can take the batting average hit, Semien will settle in as a midrange shortstop in mixed leagues who could repeat his returns from last year.
Semien, acquired by Oakland in the Jeff Samardzija trade, was slotted into the lineup as the everyday shortstop for the A's. He started the season hot, then struggled in June and July before righting the ship down the stretch. The final product of all those ups and down was useful especially when factoring in his eligibility at three infield positions. The big issue was the astounding numbers of errors he made at shortstop. Semien led all of baseball with 35 errors, eight more than anyone else at any position, but he improved a lot after the A's hired Ron Washington to tutor Semien at short. After a brutal 28 errors in 89 games before the All-Star break, he only made the seven the rest of the season. That second half may have saved Semien's role heading into 2016, and as a speed/power combo at a middle-infield position, his stock may rise steadily throughout the spring.
Expectations were fairly high for Semien entering the 2014 season after he get on base at over a .400 clip between Double-A and Triple-A in 2013. Unfortunately, he might have been rushed to the major leagues too early. Semien was the White Sox's Opening Day second baseman after Gordon Beckham got hurt and served in a utility role after Beckham returned. Semien struck out in 31 percent of his plate appearances, hardly walked and was back at Triple-A Charlotte by June 2. However, the A's saw something they liked and included him in a trade for Jeff Samardzija. In an ideal world, he plays regularly while posting doubles power and an above-average OBP. He'll get a chance to prove he can do that, as he's expected to compete for the starting shortstop job in Oakland.
Semien is the latest White Sox prospect to run the minor league gamut. He finished 2012 in virtual obscurity at High-A, but he found his way into 21 September contests for the big league club. Stellar plate discipline helped him make is way to the top (98:90 BB:K in 137 minor league games), but this skill faded a bit against better pitching (1:22 BB:K in his September audition). His struggles continued into the Arizona Fall League, and he likely needs a bit more seasoning before he is ready for a regular MLB role. Still, the White Sox's lack of depth at third base could force him into action at some point again in 2014.
More Fantasy News
Homers in second straight game
SSOakland Athletics
September 27, 2018
Semien went 2-for-5 with a home run, two RBI and two runs in Wednesday's 9-3 win over the Mariners.
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Solo homer in losing effort
SSOakland Athletics
September 26, 2018
Semien went 1-for-5 with a solo home run and two strikeouts in Tuesday's extra-innings loss to the Mariners.
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Two-run blast
SSOakland Athletics
September 22, 2018
Semien went 1-for-4 with a two-run home run Saturday against the Twins.
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Drives in five
SSOakland Athletics
September 20, 2018
Semien went 3-for-5 with a double, five RBI and a run scored Thursday against the Angels.
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Reaches base four times
SSOakland Athletics
September 7, 2018
Semien went 2-for-2 with a home run, a single, two walks and two RBI in Friday's win over the Rangers.
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