The GREAT Debate, the Battle of the Beards, who becomes designated hitter vs who just get’s designated.
Let’s take a look at our contestants. We will evaluate their Season Stats, Career Stats, and Remainder of Season stats, and XBA/XSLUG/XWOBA. Additionally, we will tell a little of their backstory and some side notes for utility.
Our resident polar bear, El Oso Blanco, comes in at 32 years old, at a solid 6’4, 270 pounds. Evan has a great backstory, starting when he was the 19th pick in the 23rd round (704th overall). He has clawed his way to the majors, with stories of him quitting baseball and being a janitor, giving one of the best feel good stories in the game. This is Evan’s final year under contract, and I would assume another team will sign him and put him as backup catcher / DH next year.
2018 - .226/.283/.467 in 421 PA with 25 HR, 73 RBI, for a wRC+ of 103
Career - .248/.300/.478 in 2632 PA with 139 HR, 405 RBI for a wRC+ of 111
ROS - .243/.298/.474 in 42 PA with 2 HR, 5 RBI
Expected - .227/.284/.442 with a xWOBA of .316
The Great White Shark smells blood in the water, sensing that the Polar Bear’s hold on the DH spot has weakened. Tyler is not nearly as intimidating weighing in at 5’11 and 225 lbs for his age 27 season. Tyler is the non-prospect, who just would not quit, hitting until they had to call his name despite being a 33rd round draft pick (977 overall).
2018 - .304/.382/.613 in 191 PA with12 HR, 38 RBI for a 173 wRC+
Career - .255/.326/.479 in 534 PA with 23 HR, 76 RBI for a 120 wRC+
ROS - .256/.329/.452 in 37 PA with 1 HR, 5 RBI
Expected - .267/.345/.497 with a xWOBA of .364
They are both chasing the Designated Hitter spot, so admittedly their hitting is the most important factor, but let’s here are some other items of note:
Sprint Speed – Gattis – (26.7) vs White (26.5)
BsR – Gattis (-2.4) vs White (-0.5)
wGDP – Gattis (-0.9) vs White (0.6)
Spd – Gattis (2.0) vs White (3.9)
UBR – Gattis (-1.5) vs White (-0.6)
White technically has played 1B, 2B, 3B, LF, and even Pitcher in the Majors. He also received some time at Shortstop in the minors. As you can imagine, in none of these was he a standout defender.
Gattis has the ability to play Catcher, although for the Astros it would basically be only in emergency circumstances it seems. Gattis has also seen time at !B and LF, but again the stats leave a lot to be desired.
There is no doubt that Tyler White has been a phenomenon this year. His wRC would be third best in the majors if he was qualified. I think everyone knows that he is hitting over his head right now both with his xWOBA and BABIP showing some significant luck in his batted ball profile.
With that said, the sample size is creeping past where it can be ignored. His career is now basically a full season of stats, and while it’s lower than he’s hitting now, it’s better than Gattis for this season and the career.
On a speed perspective, Gattis is faster, but has performed significantly worse on the basepaths as represented in Spd, BsR, and wGDP.
You do have to give Gattis the positional flexibility despite White’s short stints at a ton of different positions. His ability to suit up as a catcher is a distinct benefit.
So let me know who you’d vote for being our primary DH for the remainder of the year and post-season.
Who should be our Primary DH?
This poll is closed