The game we love is based on the highest production on a yearly basis, which causes fantasy owners to become as fickle as kids with new toys. We all want that new hot addition that we will love forever – well, for about a month. Owners work diligently to acquire players from the wire, who will put their teams in position to best their competition by the seasons end. Aside from the hot prospect for whom the whole league puts up 15-20%, and sometimes over half of their FAAB for the year, the players you pluck from the wire are usually obtained using a very minimal amount in hopes of producing at a very high level. The source of the surprise production comes from injury to other players, hot streaks, and in the case of Mr. Nate Mclouth, previous years of fantasy garbage (pronounced gar-bage).
Since 2009, the luster and expectations have certainly worn off the now 31-year-old outfielder. His projected stats were not appetizing for the year, as well barely foreseeing 330+ at bats (which he currently is a little over 110 away from), under 50 runs, 30 RBIs, and at the very best 10-12 steals. Owners should be elated at the production he has given up to this point. A great third of the season investment definitely paid off in a big way for a low price. He has doubled his projected steals and scored 40 runs, all with a slash line of .285(avg)/369(obp)/407(slg). The 13 RBIs certainly leaves a lot to be desired, but you can’t get nit-picky when overall he is currently 32 on the ESPN player rater for the year. Not bad for a guy with an average draft position close to 300.
Whether you took a late round shot or attained Mclouth via waiver wire he has certainly surpassed any notion you might have had. Currently on pace for close to 60 steals with already 5 in June, batting 30 points over his career average, and in line to score over 100 runs for only the second time in his career, it looks like a great year for the 749th pick of the 2000 draft. The question is, can this pace sustain into a complete year? The highest amount of games he has played in one year was in 2008 with 152. I do believe in a few players having rare performance seasons every year, and this very well might be one, but I just do not see it.
I think the time to sell is now before the wheels come off. You incurred a great start from a low investment or late round pick and you should feel fortunate, though, his value is at the highest you could possibly ask for. At this point in the season, getting someone that could be a lock for the top 50 in production looks like the safer move to make. Banking on Mclouth to finish within the top 50 due to his history is a gamble for a stronger man than I. Surely the 22 bags have provided a pleasant surprise in the stolen base department, to where you can trade for some RBIs or HRs, without falling too far back in that category if you get back any steals in return as well.
Baltimore’s hot start has a lot to do with Mclouth’s, and their yearly decline could very well cause him to come back to reality (for lack of a cheesy cliché). Recently it has been almost clockwork that the O’s have a tale of two halves in the season. One is filled with wins, dominance, and hope; the other filled with limited runs, robust ERAs, and questions in the bullpen. Fourth in runs and third in RBI is certainly something helpful to be surrounded by, but it’s just hard to see that lasting.
Getting a period of great counting stats and knowing when to make the move before the sweet turns sour is always going to be beneficial to success. Holding on to a player for too long is kind of like hot potato; you don’t want to be the person holding it when the music stops!
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Categories: Fantasy Baseball