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Rays 2020 Player Profile: Austin Meadows

ARLINGTON, TEXAS - SEPTEMBER 10: Austin Meadows #17 of the Tampa Bay Rays at Globe Life Park in Arlington on September 10, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TEXAS - SEPTEMBER 10: Austin Meadows #17 of the Tampa Bay Rays at Globe Life Park in Arlington on September 10, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) /
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ST. PETERSBURG, FLORIDA – MAY 10: Austin Meadows makes Domingo German feel like he doesn’t deserve his ice cream cone after the game. (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)
ST. PETERSBURG, FLORIDA – MAY 10: Austin Meadows makes Domingo German feel like he doesn’t deserve his ice cream cone after the game. (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images) /

Tampa Bay Rays young slugger, Austin Meadows had a breakout 2019. Here’s a rundown of his stats and what to expect in 2020.

Austin Meadows
Position: LF/RF/DH
Bats: Left
Throws: Left
Height: 6-3
Weight: 220lb
Birthdate: 05/03/1995
Birthplace: Atlanta, GA
Acquired via trade 07/31/2018 (Chris Archer for Austin Meadows, Tyler Glasnow, Shane Baz)
2019 Salary: $575,400
Free Agent: 2024

2019 Stats
WAR: 3.8
AVG: .291
OBP: .364
SLG: .558
OPS: 922
Games: 138
AB:  530
R: 83
2B: 29
3B: 7
HR: 33
RBI: 89
BB: 54
SB: 12
CS: 7
SO: 131
OPS+: 143

Splits
VS LHP: .275/.316/.521
VS RHP .298/.384/.576

Fun Facts

  • In 2019, Meadows ranked sixth in the American League in slugging and eighth in OPS.
  • Meadows’s seven triples were good for fifth best in the American League.
  • In his first full season, Meadows represented the Rays on the AL All-Star team and was 14th in MVP voting.
  • Player of the month in the American League for September.
  • Meadows crushed 21 home runs after the All-Star break.
  • Meadows is a former first-round draft pick of the Pittsburgh Pirates. He was selected ninth overall.
  • Hit .311 and slugged .602 with runners in scoring position.

2020 Steamer Projections
.271/.337/.491
25 HR
28 2B
79 Runs
79 RBI
13 SB

Austin Meadows was a key cog in the Rays 96-win season in 2019. He was a fixture in the lineup batting mostly first and third. Meadows will return to the Rays as one of the most important offensive pieces in 2020.

Meadows increased his pull percentage by nearly six percentage points last season to 45.1%, improving his power numbers over 2018. His hard-hit percentage increased from 37.1% in 2018 to 45.5% in 2019.

Meadows is Fangraph’s 19th ranked outfielder heading into the 2020 season. Meadows was hyped as a five-tool player coming up through the minor leagues but his defensive metrics have not born those results. Last season Meadows had -6 defensive runs saved and an ultimate zone rating of -1.6. He has a plus arm and logged 44 games at DH for the Rays last year.

What a first full season for the 24-year-old slugger. Meadows ranked near the top of the league in several offensive categories and broke out as a legit lead-off and three-hole hitter for a 96-win team. He more than lived up to the hype he had in the Minor Leagues. He won’t turn 25 until May of the 2020 season and the arrow is pointing upward for the talented young outfielder. Meadows could be a fixture in the Tampa Bay Rays lineup for years to come.

*Stats for this profile were harvested from ESPN, Steamer, Baseball-reference, and Fangraphs.

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What are you looking forward to from Austin Meadows in 2020? Let us know in the comments below!

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