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2/3/1986 (31 y, 17 d)
2007 June Amateur Draft - Round: 7, Pick: 29, Overall: 243, Team: New York Mets
$7.2M / 1 Years (2017)
Duda agreed to a one-year, $7.25 million contract with the Mets on Thursday, avoiding arbitration, Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports. (1/12/2017)
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Let's Build a Scouting Report on Lucas Duda's Arm
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Lucas Duda's Turn With the Anomalous Dinger
Jeff Sullivan (FanGraphs)
(Click Year to Expand /
El Dudarino didn't show power in college, and only started perculating once he reached the high minors. But the 6'4" 250-pounder did start making some hard contact once he hit Double-A, and he hasn’t looked back. He's abided to the tune of a .195 isolated slugging percentage so far, and in a full season that should produce 20-25 home runs, especially once the Mets move the fences in this offseason. The plate discipline has also tasted like a decent white russian so far: He walks at an above-average rate and strikes out less than league average. Expect a decent batting average and better-than league average power, which plays in fantasy outfields that are any deeper than ten-team and three-deep. But, well, you know, that's just, like, my opinion, man. (Eno Sarris)
The Quick Opinion:
It's almost like Lucas Duda peed on someone's carpet -- here's a guy that believes in something, but isn't drafted in all leagues. He can show above-average patience, strike out less than the league, and show enough power to matter in your fantasy outfield. Plus, he'll be as cheap as a Creedence Clearwater tape, so he has that going for him.
I suppose there's at least one reader that checked this page looking for a mea culpa from a certain writer on Lucas Duda. Well, look no longer: I whiffed. The dude did still show a good walk rate, and wasn't terrible in deep on-base percentage leagues, and he did show league-average power, and he's still in the team's plans to some extent, and I did say that he was a dollar-type sleeper... but those might sound like excuses to you. Because he was supposed to have more than league-average power, and he wasn't supposed to hit .239. Mostly at fault was a leap in strikeout rate (26.1% in 2012, 22.2% career) -- his home runs per fly ball (12.5%, 11.3% career) and batted ball mix (.83 ground balls per fly ball, .81 career) were right in line with what he had done before. Had he made more contact, and played more than 459 plate appearances, he could still have gone .280 with 20 home runs and 80 RBI, the benchmarks I set for him. Pro-rate last year's numbers, and you get within a hair of those numbers even. Of course, the problem is that he's atrocious on defense and the team has a first baseman. He's still young-ish, his team needs outfielders and might not value defense as highly as some, and the potential for fantasy utility is still there. He'll at least get a shot in the starter's role to begin the season. (
The Quick Opinion:
Don't get angry about el Dudaroni in 2012. Instead, consider him a possible asset in deeper leagues, especially on-base percentage ones. He still showed patience, and he still has nascent power. Just don't watch him on defense.
The physically imposing Lucas Duda frustrates the Flushing faithful. One the one hand, his power is tantalizing, and if paired with his on-base skills, could be a recipe for a highly effective bat. On the other, each year of opportunity seems to put the notion of Duda fully “putting it together” in further doubt. Duda has been given the chance to be both a regular outfielder and first baseman for the Mets, but hasn’t seized control of either position. The Mets are no more convinced than the fans, and with the acquisition of Curtis Granderson and Chris Young (not a sure thing himself), the outfield is more crowded with better players than ever. There’s been talks of trading Ike Davis, which would open up first base for Duda. Unless that happens (and, I’m less convinced that it will than many Mets fans are), Duda is a man without a position. There’s no reason to think that Duda can’t hit 25 or more homers in a full season. His batting average dipped to a career low .223 last year, on the back of a career high fly ball percentage, which really isn’t the worst thing in the world because what we really want from Duda is to become a three-true-outcome monster. Duda seems ideal for a lower budget American League team looking for some cheap pop at the designated hitter spot. As of now, he could be worth a flier in NL-only leagues due to the potential. But, Duda’s failure to adequately distinguish himself leaves him presently in playing time limbo. (Derek Ambrosino)
The Quick Opinion:
Despite showing above average power and on-base skills, Lucas Duda has not distinguished himself enough to the Mets organization to earn a full time job in either the outfield or at first base. Duda is a three true outcome player and could prove useful, if flawed, even in standard to deep mixed leagues if given full playing time. But, with an outfield crowded with new acquisitions and Ike Davis still on the roster, Duda does not appear to have a path to a consistent starting gig.
Sometimes, you're just three years too early. Like when you like Lucas Duda in 2012 because he showed good power with a good strikeout rate in a half-season 2011 sample, and because his minor league numbers had grown to be great by the end of his tenure on the farm. And then 2012 and 2013 convinced everyone that you were an idiot, that this guy can't make contact, can't play defense, can't be aggressive enough to turn his good eye into good results. And then his team traded away the incumbent first baseman and installed Duda in his natural-born position, and -- finally comfortable, you might say -- the Big Easy swung a little more, improved his strikeout rate, and showed his best major league power numbers. Now that The Dude has shown that he's capable of 30 homers and everyone's going to (maybe) pat you on the back as they rush out to pay market price for the slugger in New York. But in the meantime, the player has aged, and will be 29 by the time next season starts, and in some ways last year really represented the best-case scenario for his skill set. So now you're the damp washcloth in the room, and it feels weird because you liked him first. (Eno Sarris)
The Quick Opinion:
Yeah, Lucas Duda had power -- we all should have seen that. But he still whiffs a bunch, still has platoon issues, and still won't be an asset in at least two categories. Don't pay too much for that power, even if he's relevant in all leagues now.
Lucas Duda followed up his breakout 2014 season with a seemingly carbon-copy performance in 2015: a .359 weighted on-base average (.361 in 2014), 133 weighted runs created-plus (136), and an .838 on-base plus slugging percentage (.830). He also bashed 27 home runs, just shy of the 30 mark he reached in 2014. Sounds like a model of consistency, right? Well, sort of. His 73 RBIs were far less than the 92 he produced two years ago, and he was one of the National League’s streakiest hitters last year — slamming 20 of his home runs
in 23 games
during three separate hot streaks. Duda walks enough to keep his on-base percentage elevated at a respectable level, he took a quantum leap forward in hitting lefties, and produced in a season when a back injury nagged him all year and bumped him to the disabled list at one point. Thing is, as he enters his age-30 season, the tarnish on Duda’s 2015 campaign — too many strikeouts, a loss of 10 feet on his average batted ball distance and the aforementioned streakiness — remind us that Duda’s best days are likely behind him and he’s not a 30-home run, 100-RBI lineup anchor. That doesn’t negate his fantasy value, of course, and there will be far worse options at first base this year, but Duda should not be counted among the top 12 first basemen on draft day. (
Karl de Vries
The Quick Opinion:
Lucas Duda’s productive 2015 proved his breakout 2014 was no fluke, but the Big Lebowski should be eyed as more of a mid-level first baseman rather than the budding star his 30-home run, 92-RBI campaign two years ago hinted at.
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Updated: Monday, February 20, 2017 11:40 AM ET
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