It took one year for Joey Gallo to establish himself as one of the top power hitters in MLB. His 41 home runs in 2017 ranked 5th in baseball and his 40 home runs in 2018 ranked 3rd. Gallo’s power is without question, though he has enough weaknesses for his potential to be questioned.
Gallo is a new age hitter. His offense is all about launch angle, exit velocity and the Three True Outcomes. He’ll rank towards the top in those three statistics likely for his entire career. While his strength and power are in a league of their own, improvements in other areas of his game could promote him from good to great.
Gallo hit .206 in 2018, three points down from 2017. His OBP was down 21 points, OPS down 59 points, and strikeouts up 11 (though he did record 51 more at-bats). Do those differences indicate he’s getting worse? Absolutely not. Do they indicate he’s getting better? Not really.
That’s the problem with Joey Gallo thus far in his brief career. It just seems like he is what he is. He won’t get worse, but can he get better?
Power will always be there, but he won’t take the next steps until he can increase his contact rate and perform better in the clutch. Imagine how dominant of a season he would have if hitting .230 and striking out less than 170 times.
Once he does that, he will be one of the most feared hitters in all of major league baseball. He would put the ball in play more often, meaning more extra-base hits, more RBI and a higher OBP. Until he does that, his ceiling will be up for debate.