Austin Riley

Austin Riley

24-Year-Old Third Baseman3B
Atlanta Braves
2021 Fantasy Outlook
It may not look like it at a glance, but Riley exhibited encouraging improvements in last season's abbreviated campaign. Better selectivity led to a spike in contact rate along with a bump in walks. Riley hit fewer flyballs, reducing power, but he did increase his average exit velocity. Unfortunately, hitting the ball with greater authority was not reflected in Riley's BABIP, though his Statcast xBA was considerably higher than his actual mark. In the field, Riley moved back to his natural spot at the hot corner where he finished last among qualified third baseman with -8 defensive runs saved. He was a below-average left fielder in 2019, so he needs to hit to assure playing time. Riley is due a positive batting-average correction, the extent of which will depend on how much of his contact gain he retains. The chance Riley hits more flyballs offers some power upside. However, poor defense could reduce playing time. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
#51
ADP
$Signed a $1.6 million contract with the Braves in June of 2015.
Homers before walkoff single
3BAtlanta Braves
October 16, 2021
Riley went 2-for-4 with a homer and a walkoff single in Saturday's ALCS Game 1 win over the Dodgers.
ANALYSIS
Riley tied the game at two apiece with a solo shot off Tony Gonsolin in the bottom of the fourth. The score remained tied until the bottom of the ninth, when Riley drove in Ozzie Albies with a one-out single off Blake Treinen. Riley is now 7-for-19 with a pair of homers through five games this postseason.
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Batting Stats
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2021
2020
2019
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2020 MLB Game Log
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2019 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
69
21
6
16
2
vs Left-Handed Pitchers
vs LHP
#1
#2
#3
#4
#5
#6
#7
#8
#9
29
6
2
3
1
Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2019
 
 
+2%
OPS vs RHP
2021
 
 
+25%
OPS vs RHP
2020
 
 
+9%
OPS vs LHP
2019
 
 
+46%
OPS vs LHP
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2019vs Left .816 267 35 12 38 0 .266 .318 .498
Since 2019vs Right .831 892 121 47 145 0 .274 .336 .494
2021vs Left .752 149 17 3 18 0 .274 .322 .430
2021vs Right .941 513 74 30 89 0 .312 .380 .560
2020vs Left .761 44 5 2 5 0 .244 .273 .488
2020vs Right .700 156 19 6 22 0 .238 .301 .399
2019vs Left .984 74 13 7 15 0 .262 .338 .646
2019vs Right .676 223 28 11 34 0 .215 .260 .416
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Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2019
 
 
+2%
OPS on Road
2021
 
 
+18%
OPS on Road
2020
 
 
+6%
OPS at Home
2019
 
 
+30%
OPS at Home
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2019Home .817 558 76 27 93 0 .269 .332 .485
Since 2019Away .837 607 80 32 90 0 .274 .334 .503
2021Home .823 320 39 13 53 0 .287 .344 .479
2021Away .968 342 52 20 54 0 .319 .389 .579
2020Home .738 91 12 3 15 0 .244 .341 .397
2020Away .697 115 12 5 12 0 .236 .270 .427
2019Home .847 147 25 11 25 0 .248 .299 .547
2019Away .654 150 16 7 24 0 .204 .260 .394
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Stat Review
How does Austin Riley 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
0.31
 
BB Rate
7.9%
 
K Rate
25.4%
 
BABIP
.368
 
ISO
.227
 
AVG
.303
 
OBP
.367
 
SLG
.531
 
OPS
.898
 
wOBA
.387
 
Exit Velocity
82.2 mph
 
Hard Hit Rate
35.8%
 
Barrels/PA
9.3%
 
Prospect Rankings History
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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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2020
2019
2018
2017
2016
Baseball is a game of adjustments. After getting the call to the majors in mid-May, Riley went off for nine homers in his first 18 career games, and he still had an OPS north of .900 at the end of June. Then the league caught up to him. Riley hit .169/.221/.324 with a 41.6 K% from the beginning of July until his placement on the IL with a knee ligament issue in early August. He made it back in September but never made the necessary adjustments, slashing an even-worse .132/.190/.263 over the final month of the regular season. Riley was then left off the NLDS roster. Given Riley's pedigree, we should expect skills growth and for him to eventually adapt to the different ways pitchers are approaching him. However, until we see it on the field, there should be some trepidation toward investing heavily in a player with Riley's level of swing and miss. It's not even a lock that he breaks camp with the big club.
Remarkably little has changed regarding Riley's outlook since he made his full-season debut in 2016. The 6-foot-3, 220-pound third baseman still projects as a No. 5 hitter who should provide 30-plus homer power while hitting .250 or .260. He was promoted to Triple-A in early May and missed a month in the middle of the season with a knee injury. After the calendar turned to August, Riley really heated up, hitting .289/.333/.570 with eight home runs in 129 PA. However, strikeouts (31.8 K%) were still an issue during that run and he was not exhibiting much patience (4.8 BB%), so this was not a case of a player being unfairly held down for service time reasons. Riley still has significant approach issues to work on against Triple-A pitching and won't turn 22 until April 2. With the Braves signing Josh Donaldson to a one-year deal and Johan Camargo coming off a 3.3-win (fWAR) season, there won't be any rush to get Riley to Atlanta.
It is pretty obvious at this point in the Braves' rebuild that Riley is the third baseman of the future. He held his own (109 wRC+) as one of the second youngest position players in the Florida State League, prompting an aggressive July promotion to Double-A. That's when he really made his mark. Were it not for teammate and baseball prodigy Ronald Acuna, Riley would have easily been the youngest player to get 200 plate appearances in the Southern League, yet he still proceeded to be 62 percent better than league average while posting his best BB/K (0.40) since rookie ball. He has prototypical size (6-foot-3, 220 pounds) for the hot corner and enough power to challenge for 30-homer campaigns in his peak years, especially in that park. He does not project to hit .300 in the big leagues, but he could be a .270 hitter who walks a decent amount and hits in an advantageous spot in the lineup. If he handles Triple-A the way he handled Double-A, we could see him in Atlanta this summer.
Riley celebrated his 19th birthday on April 2 and five days later got his first taste of life in the middle of a Low-A lineup. He struggled for the first couple months, as most teenagers do when they first face pitchers who can occasionally locate mid-90s cheese and spin breaking balls. However, he made the necessary adjustments and hit .289/.348/.581 with 17 home runs and a 61:22 K:BB over his final 279 plate appearances with Rome. Also notable is the fact that Riley cut his strikeout rate from 32.6 percent in the first half to 21.8 percent in the second half. In a system flush with high-upside arms yet light on impact bat-first position players, Riley boasts the most raw power on the farm. That 65-grade power makes him a top-five third base prospect in the game and will allow him to challenge for the home run crown with High-A Florida while being one of the youngest hitters in the Florida State League.
Standing 6-foot-2 and 230 pounds, Riley generates impressive bat speed and power from the right side of the plate, more than enough to put him on the radar in long-term dynasty and keeper leagues. A supplemental first-round pick in 2015, Riley didn't exactly hit the ground running as a professional, batting .163 with no home runs in his first 14 games with the Gulf Coast League Braves. Riley would go on to hit 12 home runs in his final 46 games between the GCL and Danville of the Appalachian League. He also showed good patience for an 18-year-old, and has the arm to stick at third base. Look for Riley to receive his first full-season assignment in 2016.
More Fantasy News
Homers in Game 2
3BAtlanta Braves
October 9, 2021
Riley went 2-for-4 with a solo home run in Saturday's victory over the Brewers in Game 2 of the NLDS.
ANALYSIS
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Not in Saturday's lineup
3BAtlanta Braves
October 2, 2021
Riley will sit Saturday against the Mets.
ANALYSIS
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Drives in trio of runs
3BAtlanta Braves
September 29, 2021
Riley went 2-for-5 with three RBI in Wednesday's 7-2 win over Philadelphia.
ANALYSIS
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Goes yard in third straight game
3BAtlanta Braves
September 23, 2021
Riley went 1-for-4 with a two-run homer in Thursday's 6-4 loss to Arizona.
ANALYSIS
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Homers again in win
3BAtlanta Braves
September 23, 2021
Riley went 2-for-4 with a solo home run and an additional run scored in Wednesday's 9-2 win over the Diamondbacks.
ANALYSIS
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