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2 years agoIn 24 games with the Pirates in 2020, Ke'Bryan Hayes was other-worldly with a slash line of .376/.442/.682 and a .464 wOBA over 95 plate appearances. It is an extremely small sample size and clearly unsustainable, but he does have a minor-league track record of being able to post pretty solid batting average and on-base numbers. The key with him heading into 2021 will be to have realistic expectations and the underlying stats can give us some insight there. He hit the ball hard, garnering a 110.3 mph maxEV and 55.4% HardHit% which, combined with his 93.5% contact rate, means that a majority of his BBE were struck with authority. Additionally, his 9.2% barrel rate would have put him in the company of Cody Bellinger and Kyle Tucker. He was selective with just a 44.1% swing rate but did have a Meatball Swing% of 82.6 allowing him to do damage when pitchers made mistakes. He smacked five home runs over his 95 plate appearances in 2020 but don't expect that type of power output over a full season. He lacks the home run track record as he hit just 25 bombs in 461 games in the minors. He does have the chance to give you low double-digit steals, capitalizing on a 79th percentile sprint speed. Hayes has been locked in this spring as well as he's slashing .441/.486/.824 with a home run, eight RBI, and two stolen bases over 34 at-bats. We shouldn't read too much into those stats but it gives us a snapshot of the potential that he possesses. Hayes has a fairly high floor for such a young player and plenty of ceiling, but there is some risk with his NFBC ADP of 139. He will take some lumps this season so if you aren't prepared to ride with him during the ups and down then you may be better off taking Gio Urshela at 162 for more certainty or Austin Riley around 212 for power upside with a much lower price tag.--Matt

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