“Joe Talkin’ To Me?!” AL West Fantasy Baseball Manifest Destiny: Busts and Busts
I think we can all agree that we like a good bust. But, when that bust is on our fantasy roster, it’s another story. I will highlight some of the biggest busts in the AL West through the first two months of the season and classify them as a bust or deserving of a bust.
Stephen Vogt, C/1B, OAK – Drafted outside of the top 250, he is returning top 25 value at a scarce position with some position flexibility. He is showing no signs of cooling off after seeing his BA drop to a season low .305, bringing back to .322 over his last 10 GP. Erect a Bust.
Robinson Cano, 2B, SEA – .251/.295/.344 with 2 HR and 16 RBI. Those stats cost you a top 15 pick in most leagues. Barely returning top 500 value, Cano is un-tradable. BUST.
Prince Fielder, 1B, TEX – The husky 1B was the butt of many butt jokes last year, as he struggled through injury and poor production. With an ADP just outside the top 50, he has returned top 15 value while posting a .359 BA with 10 HR and 38 RBI. Erect a Bust.
Taijuan Walker, SP, SEA – The wildly inconsistent young hurler has posted a 6.18 ERA through his first 50+IP. Although he didn’t cost a top pick on draft day, his wildly tremendous spring training elevated the price on draft day. Not returning top 1000…YES 1000!!!!…value, Walker is a free agent by now in 99% of leagues (see below). BUST.
Felix Hernandez, SP, SEA – Drafted in the 2nd round on average, The King has been second to only Max Scherzer in fantasy baseball. He has posted 8 W, 8 QS, a 1.91 ERA, and over a K per inning. Returning top 5 value, I would classify him as a steal. Erect a Bust.
George Springer, OF, HOU – Drafted between the 2nd and 4th rounds in mostly all drafts, Springer has hit just .222. His OBP is .347, and he has 7 HR and 11 SB. Although he has been terrible to this point, the numbers are creeping up. I anticipate a hot streak and would buy low on him if i could. That being said…Bust.
Dallas Keuchel, SP, HOU – With an ADP close to 200, Keuchel has been a fantasy MVP the first two months of the season. He is returning 1st round value on a 1st place team. He is on 28% 1st place fantasy teams. Erect a Bust.
Nelson Cruz, OF/DH, SEA – Leading the league in HR was not enough last year. Fake baseball GMs were still sleeping on Cruz. He went to a terrible lineup and a terrible hitters park, while carrying a tag of an “injury prone” player. He is once again leading the league in HR, except this time, he is turning in top 5 value. Erect a Bust.
Mike Zunino, C, SEA – After hitting 22 HR as catcher last season, Zunino was a trendy pick to be a late-round breakout pick. Although he is on pace for another 20+ HR season, the problem is that his .199 BA from a year ago has gotten worse. Yuck! Bust.
Ben Zobrist, 2B/SS/OF, OAK – Baseball’s “Swiss Army knife”, Zobrist can blame injury for his terrible 2015. Normally a durable and flexible player, Zobrist was not doing much before getting hurt with a .299 OBP. With diminished power and speed, his 20/20 days are long gone. Bust.
Sonny Gray, SP, OAK – The Godfather of MLFS, Corey Roberts, called that Gray would be the best pitcher in the division. He is very close to The King right now with a 1.82 ERA and 0.97 WHIP, returning top 20 value. He isn’t there yet, but a bold statement looks promising. Erect a Bust.
Josh Reddick, OF, OAK – Picked up off the waiver wire in most leagues after starting the season on the DL, Reddick has produced top 60 value with a slash line of .302/.379/.503. Erect a Bust.
Josh Hamilton, OF, TEX – I just love writing about this guy. He crushes baseballs, parties, crushes baseballs again, and repeats. For what he cost you…Erect a Bust.
Waiver Wire Rescue
Josh Hamilton, OF, TEX – I hate to sound like a broken record, but this guy is still available in 25% of leagues. If you are in one of those leagues, don’t tell me you don’t have any dead roster weight you can drop for The Natural, who already has 5 R, 2 HR, and 5 RBI in 22 AB.
Taijuan Walker, SP, SEA – Once again, giving credit where credit is due, The GF of MLFS called this on the radio show a couple of weeks ago…”Start Walker at home.” There is no nice way to say it, Walker’s numbers suck. But, at home he has posted a 2.22 ERA, 0.90 WHIP, and .179 BAA. Pick him up and start him at home. Then enjoy.
Sean Doolittle, RP, OAK – To do a complete 180 on what I said last week, I’ll tell you to drop this guy. He is back on the DL while Clippard is cruising along in the closer role. I’m done. I dropped him wherever I own him. He can not be counted on this season.
Jake Marisnick, OF, HOU – This dude was the breakout star of the season in mid April. But have times changed. Even though he has 10 SB, he only has one since May 1st. His BA has dropped from .391 (we all knew it would not stay that high) to .275 since May 2nd. His overall .275 BA and 3 HR are average at best. I cut him long ago.
“And Boggs Never Walked Again”
Jed Lowrie, SS, HOU – Thumb, expected return after the All-Star break.
Scott Feldman, SP, HOU – Knee, expected return mid July.
Kyle Blanks, 1B/OF, TEX – Cyst, no timetable for return.
Neftali Feliz, RP, TEX – Abscess, no timetable for return.
Adrian Beltre, 3B, TEX – Thumb, expected return late June.
Derek Holland, SP, TEX – Shoulder, expected return early July.
Yu Darvish, SP, TEX – Tommy John Surgery, out for the season.
Ross Detwiller, SP, TEX – Shoulder, no timetable for return.
Jurickson Profar, 2B, TEX – Shoulder surgery, out for the season.
Ike Davis, 1B/DH, OAK – Strained quad, expected return early June.
Sean Doolittle, RP, OAK – Shoulder, no timetable for return.
Coco Crisp, OF, OAK – Neck, no timetable for return.
Jarrod Parker, SP, OAK – Broken elbow, expected to miss entire season.
Scott Kazmir, SP, OAK – Shoulder, will miss next start.
Drew Pomeranz, SP, OAK – Sore Shoulder, expected return late June.
Eric O’flaherty, RP, OAK – Shoulder inflamation, nearing a return.
Hisashi Iwakuma, SP, SEA – Lat strain, expected return late June.
James Paxton, SP, SEA – Finger, no timetable for return.
Tom Wilhelmsen, RP, SEA – Hyperextended elbow, expected return mid May.
Bill of Orlando comments: The Angels got ripped off with Josh Hamilton’s deal…TWICE!
Great comment Bill!
Remember to send questions to [twitter-follow screen_name=’theCiccone’] or firstname.lastname@example.org to be featured in future columns.
I will begin covering the NL West next week, there will be no AL West. I am going to be alternating weeks as MLFS transitions into cultism…um, I mean football season.
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