Steven Souza
Steven Souza
29-Year-Old OutfielderOF
Arizona Diamondbacks
2018 Fantasy Outlook
Souza might've had one of the quietest high-impact performances last year, as his upside was finally realized. The righty launched 27 of his 30 home runs against right-handers, doing away with concerns that he could only occupy the small side of a platoon. There were other positive signs: Souza greatly improved his success rate on the basepaths (80 percent, up from 54 percent), he more than doubled his walk rate (from 6.6 percent to 13.6) and he chased fewer pitches outside of the strike zone (24.4 percent O-Swing%). Unfortunately, he still had a sub-70-percent contact rate, and those issues combined with his pull tendencies will limit what he'll offer in terms of batting average. In leagues that count on-base percentage, investors will gain a safer floor to pair with his combination of power and speed. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
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$Agreed to a one-year, $3.55 million deal with the Rays in January of 2018, avoiding arbitration.
Slugs pinch-hit homer in finale
OFArizona Diamondbacks
October 1, 2018
Souza (back) supplied a pinch-hit solo home run in his lone plate appearance during Sunday's 4-3 loss to the Padres in 10 innings.
ANALYSIS
Souza didn't make any further starts for the Diamondbacks after experiencing back spasms in a Sept. 23 contest against the Rockies, but he came off the bench in two games, suggesting he won't be hindered by the issue heading into the offseason. The outfielder wrapped up an injury-marred campaign with a meager .678 OPS -- his lowest mark since his debut season of 2014 -- and managed only five home runs across 272 plate appearances. Since Souza remains under club control for two more years, he'll likely have a fairly clear path to a full-time role in 2019, especially with fellow outfielder A.J. Pollock headed for free agency this winter.
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Batting Stats
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Minor League Game Log
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Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2016
 
 
+2%
OPS vs RHP
2018
 
 
+24%
OPS vs LHP
2017
 
 
+4%
OPS vs RHP
2016
 
 
+13%
OPS vs RHP
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2016vs Left .741 392 46 11 39 10 .248 .334 .406
Since 2016vs Right .753 965 111 41 117 19 .234 .323 .430
2018vs Left .776 96 9 3 11 2 .244 .323 .453
2018vs Right .624 176 12 2 18 4 .206 .301 .323
2017vs Left .785 170 22 3 16 8 .262 .388 .397
2017vs Right .819 447 56 27 62 8 .230 .337 .482
2016vs Left .653 126 15 5 12 0 .233 .270 .383
2016vs Right .735 342 43 12 37 7 .252 .316 .419
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Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2016
 
 
+13%
OPS on Road
2018
 
 
+45%
OPS on Road
2017
 
 
+5%
OPS on Road
2016
 
 
+8%
OPS on Road
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2016Home .704 671 72 24 77 13 .213 .315 .389
Since 2016Away .792 686 85 28 79 16 .261 .337 .455
2018Home .561 147 12 3 18 4 .164 .272 .289
2018Away .812 125 9 2 11 2 .283 .352 .460
2017Home .789 303 36 14 36 8 .218 .358 .431
2017Away .829 314 42 16 42 8 .258 .345 .484
2016Home .685 221 24 7 23 1 .239 .285 .400
2016Away .738 247 34 10 26 6 .253 .320 .418
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Stat Review
How does Steven Souza 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
0.37
 
BB Rate
10.3%
 
K Rate
27.6%
 
BABIP
.298
 
ISO
.149
 
AVG
.220
 
OBP
.309
 
SLG
.369
 
OPS
.678
 
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
Souza struggled to make consistent contact once again in 2016 before undergoing hip surgery in late September. He struck out in more than one-third of his 468 plate appearances while his contact rate languished at an unsightly 63 percent. Despite the difficulties, however, Souza did bump up his average 22 points to .247 in his sophomore campaign, while setting new career highs in home runs and RBI. The slugging outfielder's hip is expected to be fully healthy by the time spring training rolls around, so the hope is that Souza will be able to hit the ground running in the new season. With even a marginal improvement in plate discipline and better health, he could reach 20 homers for the first time while perhaps adding double-digit stolen bases.
The plan was to give Souza the everyday job in right field to replace Wil Myers. The Rays reportedly grew tired of Myers because of his issues at the plate and in the field and a perceived unwillingness to improve. Souza had some of the same issues himself in 2015 as he would take strikes to fall behind and then swing at balls out of the zone to get himself out. He flashed big power at times as he punished mistakes by pitchers, but good velocity up or breaking balls away were a problem for him all season long. He missed six weeks in the second half with a wrist injury, and that issue affected him at the plate the rest of the way as he had just five extra-base hits upon his return, but did hit .277/.385/.385 in those 78 plate appearances. He turns 27 very early into the 2016 season, and must start making more contact.
Souza had a massive campaign at Triple-A, hitting .350/.432/.590 with 18 home runs and 26 steals en route to being named the International League MVP as well as the Nationals' Minor League Player of the Year. However, it was his diving catch to preserve Jordan Zimmermann's no-hitter in the ninth inning of an otherwise meaningless September game that most people will remember about his season. The 26-year-old didn't do much offensively in his brief time in the big leagues, but he's clearly got nothing left to prove in the minors. He may get a chance at a regular role in the majors after he was traded to Tampa Bay in the offseason.
Souza had another impressive year in the minors, adding some plate discipline to his skill set and cementing his place in the Nationals' future plans, but the question now isn't whether he will play, but where. The move to right field got Souza out from under Ryan Zimmerman on the depth chart but now Jayson Werth's giant contract looms as a roadblock in right field instead. Too much talent is a better problem to have than not enough, of course, so the Nationals will probably let Souza continue to develop at Triple-A, see if he can stay healthy for a change, and worry about the glut of outfielders next offseason.
A third-round pick out of high school way back in 2007, the Nationals have been very patient with Souza even after a 2010 suspension for PED use, and that patience was finally rewarded to a degree last season as he hit 23 home runs in just 97 games between Low-A and High-A. It is hard to see where he fits into the team's future plans though. A 23-year-old beating up on A-ball pitching is not as impressive as it might seem at first glance, and with Ryan Zimmerman at the head of an organizational depth chart that also features Anthony Rendon and Matt Skole, playing third base in Washington just does not seem all that likely. If he keeps hitting at Double-A he could emerge as useful trade bait, and another team with bigger needs at the hot corner might give him a chance.
More Fantasy News
Stays out Sunday
OFArizona Diamondbacks
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September 30, 2018
Souza (back) is not in the lineup Sunday against the Padres.
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Remains on bench Saturday
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September 29, 2018
Souza (back) remains sidelined Saturday against San Diego.
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Out again Friday
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September 28, 2018
Souza (back) is not in the lineup against San Diego on Friday.
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On bench Wednesday
OFArizona Diamondbacks
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September 26, 2018
Souza (back) is out of the lineup versus the Dodgers on Wednesday.
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Remains out Tuesday
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September 25, 2018
Souza (shoulder) is not in the lineup Tuesday against the Dodgers.
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