Kyle Higashioka
Kyle Higashioka
31-Year-Old CatcherC
New York Yankees
2021 Fantasy Outlook
After toiling in the Yankees' minor-league system for over a decade, Higashioka was named Gary Sanchez's backup coming out of spring training in 2020 and ultimately took over the starting role in the postseason. The switch was more a result of Sanchez's futility than Higashioka's performance, though the latter held his own with a .250/.250/.521 slash line and four homers in 48 regular-season PA. Three of the homers came in one magical mid-September game, which proved Higashioka does have some pop in his bat. That said, the backstop is apparently immune to taking free passes -- incredibly, he did not walk a single time in 104 PA over the last two seasons -- and has a career .246 batting average in the minors. He's clearly the superior defensive option over Sanchez, but the lack of offensive upside will likely keep Higashioka in a backup role. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
#541
ADP
$Signed a one-year, $562,900 contract with the Yankees in March of 2019.
Sits out Thursday
CNew York Yankees
May 13, 2021
Higashioka is out of the lineup for Thursday's game against the Rays.
ANALYSIS
Higashioka's hold on the No. 1 catching job appears to be shaky, as he's now sitting for the third time in six games. Gary Sanchez, who hit a solo home run in his last start Tuesday, will spell Higashioka behind the plate.
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Batting Stats
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2021
2020
2019
2018
2017
2021 MLB Game Log
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2020 MLB Game Log
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2019 MLB Game Log
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2018 MLB Game Log
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2017 MLB Game Log
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Batting Order Slot Breakdown
vs Right-Handed Pitchers
vs RHP
#1
#2
#3
#4
#5
#6
#7
#8
#9
9
4
vs Left-Handed Pitchers
vs LHP
#1
#2
#3
#4
#5
#6
#7
#8
#9
3
Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2019
 
 
+13%
OPS vs LHP
2021
 
 
+124%
OPS vs LHP
2020
 
 
+312%
OPS vs RHP
2019
 
 
+43%
OPS vs LHP
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2019vs Left .818 49 7 4 7 0 .234 .265 .553
Since 2019vs Right .723 118 17 8 22 0 .207 .246 .477
2021vs Left 1.326 18 4 3 4 0 .313 .389 .938
2021vs Right .592 44 5 2 4 0 .132 .250 .342
2020vs Left .250 16 0 0 0 0 .125 .125 .125
2020vs Right 1.031 32 7 4 10 0 .313 .313 .719
2019vs Left .867 15 3 1 3 0 .267 .267 .600
2019vs Right .605 42 5 2 8 0 .195 .190 .415
More Splits View More Split Stats
Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2019
 
 
+1%
OPS at Home
2021
 
 
+16%
OPS on Road
2020
 
 
+96%
OPS at Home
2019
 
 
+55%
OPS on Road
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2019Home .756 76 10 5 13 0 .203 .263 .493
Since 2019Away .747 91 14 7 16 0 .225 .242 .506
2021Home .736 29 3 1 3 0 .174 .345 .391
2021Away .855 33 6 4 5 0 .194 .242 .613
2020Home 1.111 18 4 4 7 0 .222 .222 .889
2020Away .567 30 3 0 3 0 .267 .267 .300
2019Home .528 29 3 0 3 0 .214 .207 .321
2019Away .821 28 5 3 8 0 .214 .214 .607
More Splits View More Split Stats
Stat Review
How does Kyle Higashioka 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.

* Exit Velocity and Barrels/PA % are benchmarked against 2019 data (min 400 PA) and Hard Hit Rate is benchmarked against last season's data (min 400 PA). See here for more exit velocity/barrels stats plus an explanation of current limitations with that data set.
  • BB/K
    Walk to strikeout ratio
  • BB Rate
    The percentage of plate appearances resulting in a walk.
  • K Rate
    The percentage of plate appearances resulting in a strikeout.
  • BABIP
    Batting average on balls in play. Measures how many of a batter’s balls in play go for hits.
  • ISO
    Isolated Power. Slugging percentage minus batting average. A computation used to measure a batter's raw power.
  • AVG
    Batting average. Hits divided by at bats.
  • OBP
    On Base Percentage. A measure of how often a batters reaches base. Roughly equal to number of times on base divided by plate appearances.
  • SLG
    Slugging Percentage. A measure of the batting productivity of a hitter. It is calculated as total bases divided by at bats.
  • OPS
    On base plus slugging. THe sum of a batter's on-base percentage and slugging percentage.
  • wOBA
    Weighted on-base average. Measures a player's overall offensive contributions per plate appearance. wOBA combines all the different aspects of hitting into one metric, weighting each of them in proportion to their actual run value.
  • Exit Velocity
    The speed of the baseball as it comes off the bat, immediately after a batter makes contact.
  • Hard Hit Rate
    A measure of contact quality from Sports Info Solutions. This stat explains what percentage of batted balls were hit hard vs. medium or soft.
  • Barrels/PA
    The percentage of plate appearances where a batter had a batted ball classified as a Barrel. A Barrel is a batted ball with similar exit velocity and launch angle to past ones that led to a minimum .500 batting average and 1.500 slugging percentage.
BB/K
0.47
 
BB Rate
12.9%
 
K Rate
27.4%
 
BABIP
.156
 
ISO
.333
 
AVG
.185
 
OBP
.290
 
SLG
.519
 
OPS
.809
 
wOBA
.349
 
Exit Velocity
83.0 mph
 
Hard Hit Rate
29.7%
 
Barrels/PA
15.3%
 
Advanced Batting Stats
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Additional Stats
Games By Position
Defensive Stats
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Batted Ball Stats
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Stats Vs Upcoming Pitchers
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Kyle Higashioka
Week 6 FAAB Recap
Week 6 FAAB Recap
15 days ago
15 days ago
Shane McClanahan was the big prize free agent in a number of leagues this week.
FanDuel MLB: Friday Targets
18 days ago
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MLB FAAB Factor: Waiver Pickups of the Week
19 days ago
Jason Shebilske analyzes the top waiver-wire options for the week, including the Mets' J.D. Davis, who is swinging a hot bat since returning from injury.
AL FAAB Factor: Waiver Pickups of the Week
23 days ago
Erik Siegrist looks over the available talent in the American League as Luis Patino becomes one of the first elite prospects to get a promotion to the big leagues in 2021.
MLB: Chris Liss' Portfolio
52 days ago
Chris Liss takes stock of his seven fantasy baseball rosters which include five shares of Yankees shortstop Gleyber Torres.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
2020
2019
2017
HIgashioka slugged .581 with 20 homers at Triple-A in 2019, thereby besting his home-run total in the minors from 2016-2018 by one. He has shown little ability to hit major-league pitching in the cups of coffee the Yankees have given him the past three seasons; his job has been as the third catcher during September, or when Gary Sanchez and/or Austin Romine are hurt and the club needs another body. He doesn't have the tools necessary to be the primary catcher on a big-league roster and is now in a make-or-break situation since he is out of minor-league options and turning 30 years old. He will have to make the Yankees' roster out of camp or find another organization looking for a caddy catcher.
Higashioka spent most of the second half of the season on the Yankees' roster with Gary Sanchez missing time with a groin injury. He found himself the subject of a fun anecdote, becoming just the second Yankee in history after Alfonso Soriano to have each of his first three hits for the team go for home runs, but his performance was quite forgettable after that, as he finished with a .167/.241/.319 line (and no more homers) in 79 plate appearances. Throw in his 20 plate appearances in 2017 and his career line sits at .133/.212/.256. The 28-year-old projected as a mediocre backup as a prospect, with below-average defense and a decent bat. If the bat never comes around, he'll remain nothing more than a third catcher. He'll likely have to bide his time at Triple-A to begin 2019, and he's unlikely to excite should at-bats open up.
2016 served as a breakout campaign of sorts in the minor league ranks for the 26-year-old Higashioka. The catcher was limited to a total of 24 games between 2013 and 2014 after undergoing Tommy John surgery and he was slow to shake off the rust after that, but he found his stroke to the tune of 21 home runs, 81 RBI and a combined .276/.337/.511 slash line across both Double-A and Triple-A this year. Though he's always projected as a good power hitter, it's difficult to determine how much stock should be put into his 2016 season, as he floundered at the lower levels of the minors in the early parts of his career. Additionally, a sudden and sustained emergence like this is uncommon for someone who will turn 27 in the first month of the 2017 season. Higashioka was added to the 40-man roster for Rule 5 protection, and will compete with Austin Romine for the honor of backing up Gary Sanchez.
More Fantasy News
Not in lineup
CNew York Yankees
May 11, 2021
Higashioka will sit Tuesday against Tampa Bay.
ANALYSIS
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Idle Sunday
CNew York Yankees
May 9, 2021
Higashioka is out of the lineup for Sunday's game against the Nationals.
ANALYSIS
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Sitting Friday
CNew York Yankees
May 7, 2021
Higashioka is not in the lineup Friday against the Nationals.
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Takes seat Wednesday
CNew York Yankees
May 5, 2021
Higashioka isn't starting Wednesday's game against the Astros.
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Blasts RBI double in win
CNew York Yankees
May 2, 2021
Higashioka went 1-for-3 with an RBI and two strikeouts in Sunday's 2-0 win over the Tigers.
ANALYSIS
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