Chicago Cubs: Projections for ideal bounceback seasons by key players

Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports /
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Anthony Rizzo / Chicago Cubs
(Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images) /

Cubs: While a down year, it was not all terrible for Anthony Rizzo.

There is no question that Anthony Rizzo was not producing at a normal level in 2020, it just was not quite as bad as Bryant or Baez.

In 58 games he hit .222/.342/.414 with 11 home runs, .755 OPS, 103 wRC+, 0.74 BB/K ratio and was a 1.1 fWAR player. Most of those numbers are not bad especially considering the OBP was roughly 22 points above average, the OPS was roughly 35 points above average and the wRC+ was in the triple-digit mark. These just were not Rizzo-esque numbers.

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Rizzo has done a great job in his career at putting up consistent numbers year in and year out. He is a career .271/.372/.485 hitter with a .857 OPS and 131 wRC+. Compare the career numbers to 2020 and you can see the difference. His 2020 season was very similar in terms of strikeouts and walks (0.71 career BB/K vs. 0.74 in 2020).

What stands out is his batted ball numbers in 2020. He put up a .218 BABIP (lowest since his first 2011 MLB stint) and pulled the ball 47.9 percent (highest pull rate since 2011). More pulled balls and less batted balls landing on grass than normal. He is a career .286 BABIP so the difference between normal and 2020 is pretty big.

If there is one player Cubs fans should not worry about, it is Anthony Rizzo. He is known for being a bit streaky during the season (despite the incredible consistency by the end of the year) and the small sample size might have caught him.

Ideal numbers:

.278/.380/.510 – 28 HR, .890 OPS, 130 wRC+, 0.80 BB/K ratio

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