Christian Yelich
Christian Yelich
29-Year-Old OutfielderOF
Milwaukee Brewers
2021 Fantasy Outlook
Yelich won the NL MVP in 2018 and was at least in contention to win it again in 2019, but he fractured his kneecap in September of that year and saw his season come to an abrupt end. The injury did not seem of much concern to the Brewers, who rewarded Yelich with a $200 million contract last offseason. Yelich recovered from his injury in time for the originally-scheduled Opening Day, and he was able to play in all but two games last season. However, something clearly was not right, as he stole only four bases and saw all three components of his slash line drop off significantly. Yelich really struggled to put the ball in play, striking out a whopping 30 percent of the time, and when he did, he ran into terrible luck, finishing with a BABIP roughly 100 points lower than his career average. Still very much in his prime at age 29, there's plenty of reason to expect a bounceback from Yelich. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
#12
ADP
$Signed a seven-year, $188.5 million contract extension with the Brewers in March of 2020. Contract includes $20 million mutual option for 2029.
Three hits, two RBI in win
OFMilwaukee Brewers
September 7, 2021
Yelich went 3-for-5 with a double, two RBI and a run scored in Tuesday's 10-0 win over Philadelphia.
ANALYSIS
The outfielder posted his second straight multi-hit effort in Tuesday's lopsided win. Yelich has still gone 16 games without a home run, and he's only gone yard eight times this season. The 29-year-old is slashing .260/.375/.391 with 43 RBI, 61 runs scored and eight stolen bases through 392 plate appearances.
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Batting Stats
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2021
2020
2019
2018
2017
2021 MLB Game Log
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2020 MLB Game Log
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2019 MLB Game Log
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2018 MLB Game Log
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2017 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
1
19
58
vs Left-Handed Pitchers
vs LHP
#1
#2
#3
#4
#5
#6
#7
#8
#9
1
13
2
Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2019
 
 
+6%
OPS vs RHP
2021
 
 
+19%
OPS vs RHP
2020
 
 
+67%
OPS vs LHP
2019
 
 
+27%
OPS vs RHP
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2019vs Left .883 367 55 19 43 10 .262 .365 .518
Since 2019vs Right .936 853 145 44 120 32 .290 .403 .533
2021vs Left .642 105 9 2 11 1 .202 .305 .337
2021vs Right .765 314 54 6 34 7 .265 .379 .386
2020vs Left 1.123 60 14 5 8 0 .314 .417 .706
2020vs Right .673 161 23 6 13 4 .176 .329 .344
2019vs Left .936 202 32 12 24 9 .277 .381 .555
2019vs Right 1.189 378 68 32 73 21 .358 .455 .734
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Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2019
 
 
+16%
OPS at Home
2021
 
 
+2%
OPS on Road
2020
 
 
+30%
OPS at Home
2019
 
 
+19%
OPS at Home
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2019Home .990 580 101 38 96 22 .294 .402 .588
Since 2019Away .851 666 101 26 68 20 .264 .383 .468
2021Home .727 183 26 5 28 4 .242 .339 .389
2021Away .739 236 37 3 17 4 .255 .377 .362
2020Home .897 113 23 6 9 3 .247 .381 .516
2020Away .691 134 16 6 13 1 .168 .336 .355
2019Home 1.201 284 52 27 59 15 .347 .451 .750
2019Away 1.006 296 48 17 38 15 .312 .409 .597
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Stat Review
How does Christian Yelich 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
0.57
 
BB Rate
14.3%
 
K Rate
25.3%
 
BABIP
.331
 
ISO
.125
 
AVG
.249
 
OBP
.360
 
SLG
.374
 
OPS
.734
 
wOBA
.329
 
Exit Velocity
83.0 mph
 
Hard Hit Rate
37.2%
 
Barrels/PA
5.3%
 
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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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Christian Yelich
The Z Files: A Meeting of My Mind
Yesterday
Todd Zola considers what went wrong with his 2021 rosters, including a consistent lack of stolen bases exacerbated by another injury-plagued campaign from Adalberto Mondesi.
MLB Barometer: Risers and Fallers
32 days ago
In addition to risers and fallers, Erik Halterman writes about players he’s rostered and how they’re fairing thus far, starting with Jose Abreu, who’s batting is currently at a career low.
NL FAAB Factor: Waiver Pickups of the Week
33 days ago
The pennant races are heating up and Jan Levine profiles a couple contenders who may soon be seeing some decent producers back in their lineups.
FanDuel MLB: Friday Targets
35 days ago
Chris Bennett checks in with his insights for building a winning FanDuel lineup Friday.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
2020
2019
2018
2017
2016
2015
2014
2013
2012
Some wondered about Yelich's ability to repeat his stellar MVP season, with much of the discussion centering on his HR/FB rate. Well, Yelich did not reach 35.0% in 2019, but he did still post a 32.8 mark in that category -- the best in the league. Yelich's 2019 campaign was unfortunately cut off at 130 games by a fractured kneecap, but he left no doubt what type of offensive force he has become, finishing second in MLB in BA and OBP and first in SLG while setting career highs in HR and SB, numbers that easily could have earned him another MVP had he stayed healthy. Yelich is expected to recover from his injury early in the offseason, so health should not be a concern when Opening Day rolls around. He has established himself as one of the best players in the entire league, and given his power/speed/OBP prowess, he will be worthy of a top-3 selection in just about every format.
Few anticipated that the Brewers were trading for the NL MVP when they acquired Yelich from the Marlins last January, but that's exactly what occurred. Yelich got off to a bit of a slow start, but he kept getting better and better at the plate, and had one of the best second halves of all time, posting a 1.219 OPS after the All-Star break. His second-half surge helped him set career highs in nearly every category, and his doubles decreased only because he doubled his home-run total from the year before. Yelich is able to play all three outfield positions and had a better average against lefties (.337) than righties (.321) last season, so there is never much reason to take him out of the lineup. His conditions will be almost the same in his age-27 season. Last year, Yelich proved he has a very high ceiling, but it is his incredibly high floor that makes him such an appealing first-round pick. He is a true five-category building block.
While he's still just 26 years old, Yelich has already built a remarkable track record of consistency at the big-league level. His strikeout rate has ranged from 19.2 percent to 20.9 percent over the past four seasons (all with 525-plus plate appearances), while his batting average has ranged from .282 to .300 in that time. He's steadily walked in over 10 percent of his plate appearances while making hard contact with at least one-third of his batted balls. His flyball rate is still too low, but Yelich improved in that regard last season, upping his flyball rate more than five percentage points to 25.2 percent. The park change following the trade to Milwaukee should help boost his power. Yelich was given the thumbs up to run again last season and he capitalized, going 16-for-18 on the basepaths. Assuming he keeps the green light with the Brewers, which seems likely given manager Craig Counsell's tendencies, Yelich should easily return top-30 value in the outfield.
Coming into the 2016 campaign, Yelich totaled 20 homers in 1,458 career plate appearances with the Marlins. He matched that, then added another for good luck, sending 21 long balls out of the yard last season. A power spike has long been expected for Yelich as he hits the ball hard, it's just that most of his batted balls are line drives and grounders. He lofted a few more balls, touching 20 percent flyballs for the first time in his career (most power hitters nestle around 40 percent). The added pop emanated from a surge to a 24 percent HR/FB mark, the 14th highest mark among qualified hitters. The safe play is to expect some give-back, dropping Yelich's homers into the low to mid-teens. Also of concern are dwindling steals as Yelich snagged just nine in 13 attempts. He's still a very solid hitter with a projectable floor. Just don't chase last season's tenuous power breakout.
Yelich’s gap-to-gap power continues to play well in cavernous Marlins Park, as the youngster recorded his first .300 season and smacked 30 doubles for a second consecutive season in 2015. Yelich has been remarkably consistent in his three-year career, recording a 117 wRC+ in each one. Unfortunately, what Marlins Park gives in doubles, it takes away in home runs, as Yelich has mustered just three of his 20 career home runs at his home park. He hit seven last year and has a career high of nine, and as long as he is playing in Miami, he’ll struggle to reach double digits. He makes up for it with loads of groundball base hits — he hits four groundballs for every fly ball. He stole 16 bases in 2015 and has 37 in the past two years, and should be expected to keep running with the Marlins going forward.
Yelich backed up his strong finish to the 2013 season with a sophomore breakout at age 22. He truly arrived down the stretch, catching fire during a .339/.425/.459 August as he put up his first 20-steal steal season, scoring 94 runs and collecting 54 RBI along the way. Yelich finished with a steady .284/.362/.402 slash line, showing significant improvement versus left-handed pitching during his second season -- .476 OPS vs. lefties in 2013 and a .819 OPS vs. lefties in 2014. The former first-round draft pick established himself as the Marlins’ leadoff hitter in the second half of 2014, though his smooth line-drive swing and advanced approach at the plate would play at almost any lineup position. Yelich will continue provide a solid average, nice speed, and plenty of runs scored if he sticks atop the Miami lineup as he continues to mature in the majors with the potential to turn into a real run producer if given a chance to bat lower in the order next season.
A strong spring training to open the 2013 season put Yelich on the fast-track toward the majors, and after pounding out a .275/.359/.504 line across three stops in the minors, the sweet-swinging lefty made his MLB debut in late July. He knocked a pair of hits out of the two-hole in his debut, driving home his first major league RBI, and never looked back. At 21 years old, with just under 1,200 minor league at-bats to his name, Yelich posted a stellar .288/.370/.396 slash line in his first 62 major league games, adding four home runs and 10 steals. Not without his warts, Yelich struggled mightily versus left-handed pitching, collecting just 15 hits in 91 at-bats (.165 average) against southpaws while watching his strikeout rate and walk rate both move in the wrong direction when a lefty was on the mound. Still, the future remains bright for an emerging talent capable of a .290 average, double-digit home runs and 20-plus steals right now, with potential to add some balance to his platoon split and strength to his power stroke down the line.
Consider to be the most exciting offensive prospect in the Marlins' minor league system, Yelich made strides in 2012 while playing the majority of his season at High-A Jupiter. He posted a strong .330/.404/.519 line over 397 at-bats while blasting 12 home runs with 29 doubles and five triples while driving in 48 runs on the year. Yelich enjoyed yet another efficient campaign on the basepaths, swiping 20 bags in 26 attempts after going 32-for-37 in that area in 2011. While a shot at the big leagues seems a bit of a stretch in 2013, Yelich should continue to progress towards that goal and could be fast-tracked to Miami as part of the franchise's most recent rebuilding effort.
Ah, the sweet lefty swing. Every once in a while a player comes along who has it, and scouts swoon over that pure unfettered stroke, projecting great things from it. Yelich is the latest example, and while some folks see him turn on a pitch and start throwing around comparisons to Mark Grace or John Olerud, it's important to remember that he could just as easily end up as the next Hal Morris or Dave Magadan. For now he's a kid who's trying to cut it in left field despite an awkward throwing motion, in case he doesn't develop enough power to fit at first base. His first season of full-season ball was mostly a success, with the 32 steals in 37 attempts being a very pleasant surprise, but he didn't put up outrageous triple slash numbers. Until we see a concrete spike in that batting average or slugging percentage, don't fall too much in love with that swing.
More Fantasy News
Not in Sunday's lineup
OFMilwaukee Brewers
September 5, 2021
Yelich is out of the lineup for Sunday's game versus the Cardinals.
ANALYSIS
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Doubles, scores in win
OFMilwaukee Brewers
August 31, 2021
Yelich went 1-for-5 with a double and a run scored in Monday's 3-1 win over the Giants.
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Reaches base three times in win
OFMilwaukee Brewers
August 30, 2021
Yelich went 2-for-4 with a double, a walk and a run scored in Sunday's 6-2 win over the Twins.
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Goes yard twice in win
OFMilwaukee Brewers
August 21, 2021
Yelich went 3-for-5 with two home runs, three runs scored and six RBI in Saturday's 9-6 win over the Nationals.
ANALYSIS
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Day off Friday
OFMilwaukee Brewers
August 20, 2021
Yelich is out of the lineup Friday against the Nationals.
ANALYSIS
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