Back at the end of the regular season, I wrote a little about Matt Joyce‘s year. You can find it here:
Joyce played a much larger role than anyone envisioned due to injuries and ineffectiveness of the other options, appearing in 129 regular season games (starting 39) and all 5 NLDS games (starting 3). During the regular season, he slashed .295/.408/.450 over 238 PA, beating his career averages in AVG and OBP by over 50 points and with a slight increase in SLG. Unfortunately he was part of the middle-of-the-order problem in the NLDS, going 1 for 10 (a single) with one walk.
Overall, he was far more useful than anyone except maybe his own family would have predicted, and he didn’t cost much ($1.25M). However, he’s a 35-year old free agent in 2020, and you have to expect his offensive performance will regress towards his career norms (which are nothing special), and he’s never been a great defender. I’d guess that Duvall will take his spot and we won’t see Joyce back on a major league deal with the Braves next year. So Matt, thanks for 2019 and best of luck in 2020.
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