Cincinnati Reds 2015 Grades: Todd Frazier

Without question, Todd Frazier was one of the few offensive highpoints in an otherwise dismal season for the Cincinnati Reds. Coming off a monster 2014 where he hit .273 with a 5.3 WAR, the Toms River native slowed down a little in those categories, hitting .255 and putting up a still-strong 4.0 WAR. But Frazier noticeably improved his power this year, with a .498 slugging percentage and a career high 35 home runs. Frazier also had a slightly improved .807 OPS this year, up from .795 last year.

Frazier’s season appeared to be off to a slow start when he ended April batting just .238, but he finished the month with a .340 OBP and a great .550 SLG, resulting in a .890 OPS.

Frazier’s best month of the season came in May, when he batted .327 with a .398 OBP and an incredible .683 SLG for an amazing 1.081 OPS. He continued with a great June, batting .287 with a .908 OPS, but the wheels completely fell off of Frazier’s season in July, when he batted an anemic .226 with a .633 OPS. He struggled for much of the rest of the season and his numbers continued on a downward trend.

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Frazier’s strong start to 2015 earned him an All-Star Game appearance for the second consecutive year, but his biggest achievement came the day before the All-Star game, when he won the 2015 Home Run Derby in thrilling fashion at Great American Ball Park. Not only was the Home Run Derby victory particular sweet for Frazier because it took place in his home ballpark, but also because he finally won the championship after coming up short in the finals to Yoenis Cespedes the year before.

Frazier triumphed under the new rules, which featured eight players matching up in the derby in a bracket-style, single-elimination timed event. Frazier won his first match, defeating the former two-time Home Run Derby winner Prince Fielder, 14-13. He went on to beat potential AL MVP Josh Donaldson, 10-9, then won the tournament by beating Joc Pederson, 15-14, to win his first ever Home Run Derby championship.

So aside from winning the Home Run Derby, how well did Frazier play this year?

Well, Frazier’s year is really the story of two halves. An amazing first half, and an almost disastrous second half. Frazier’s 2015 wasn’t as good as his 2014, that’s for sure, but he did have a lot of high points. He still had a good WAR and did improve his power numbers. It wasn’t his best year, but it definitely wasn’t a poor one either. Frazier may have slumped at points this year, but I can’t overlook a .809 OPS and 35 home runs.

Grade: B-

Next: Reds 2015 grades: Joey Votto