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Matt Duffy (2B/3B, TB) - Week 26 Waiver Wire Pickups

BALLER MOVE: Add in 14+ Team Leagues

OWNED IN: 11% of leagues

ANALYSIS: He hasn't even been able to hit a HR in the 237 AB that he's taken since the start of July, but Matt Duffy is about to bring his first full season with the Rays to an encouraging conclusion after having missed the entirety of 2017. Duffy has been performing steadily better at the plate in each month since July, with his OPS being rather mediocre in July and August at .584 and .639. Though this month, Duffy has produced a slash of .305/.406/.373 in addition to the six stolen bases (in nine attempts) that he was able to wrack up over that three-month span. Despite the complete absence of power-hitting for him over the second-half of the season, what offensive characteristics have made Matt Duffy an asset of value?

While his exit velocity of 86.9 mph is below league-average, his 402-foot average HR-distance suggests that he can bomb balls deep when he gets a good rip in. He has been striking out at a rate of 18.8% so far in September but has supplemented his OBP considerably with a 13% walk rate that is his best of the year. Even though he has managed a great hard contact rate of 39.1% this month, it is no surprise he struggles to hit for power but has been reaching base with a .391 BABIP in September. His pull rate is just 32.6% and his GB/FB ratio is 1.92 off of 51.1% grounders and 26.7% flyers, not to mention that his soft contact rate jumped up this month to 19.6%. So while this lays the foundation for why his first and second-half ISO of .096 and .032 are reasonable, this peripheral line also lays the foundation for why Duffy's BABIP appears to be sustainable. If his BABIP is sustainable and his walk rate stays high, Duffy can continue to contribute with his BA/OBP and base-running within the scorching September offense of Tampa Bay. If you can afford to take a hit in the power department, Matt Duffy will make it worth your while for the remainder of the regular season.

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