Tuesday, July 27, 2010
All’s bad that ends bad(ly)Posted by Paul Singman at 5:47am
There are just two more months of regular season play left before the season will be over, until the fantasy champions will be crowned. After then will come the void of the offseason, over which fantasy football will have to suffice but won't compare.
The truth is that it's impossible to say for sure which players will perform well and which ones will not, since two months is a short enough time for fluky events to have significance. If you can remember some of the players who had ridiculously bad or good numbers at the end of May, then you will understand that anything can happen from now till the end of September.
Still, some players are more likely to play better than others, and some players are likely candidates to perform worse than they have this season to date. With that in mind, here's a few players who, if traded, should fetch in return a player more likely to perform better over the next two months.
|Jackson wathcing one of his two infield pop-ups this season. (Icon/SMI)|
Austin Jackson: Amazingly his BABIP has risen—from .415 to .436—since I noted its unreasonableness in mid-July. Unsurprisingly Jackson has run hot over that 10-game stretch, collecting 20 hits and raising his average up to .318. Jackson can definitely sustain a uniquely high BABIP, but even he of many line drives and blinding speed should not be missing fielders this often.
When assuming a still high yet more earthly line drive rate and BABIP he projects to be more of a .280 hitter than a .320 one. If you need his steals, I suggest hanging onto him but otherwise see if you can flip him for a hitter less dependent on maintaining the unmaintainable.
Phil Hughes: The Phil Hughes who is currently pitching for the Yankees is barely within shouting distance of the Phil Hughes who started the season 5-0 with a 1.38 ERA. Why he cannot strike batters out anymore or avoid batters making solid contact I am unsure, and at the moment he shouldn't be started in most mixed formats. Most damaging are the innings limits the Yanks are certain to enforce upon their young hurler, stripping him of his most valuable fantasy asset—his penchant for wins—by pulling him out of games earlier.
With those issues coupled together, Hughes is someone you will probably rather see on someone else's team in the coming months.
Trevor Cahill: If you took a leap of faith on this sinkerballer so far you have been handsomely rewarded with a 3.15 ERA and a surprising nine wins. Cahill's season isn't likely to end as prettily as it began however, with a string of tough matchups ahead of him starting with the Rangers tomorrow. Cahill has been striking out fewer batters of late, and I wouldn't be surprised if more of those balls in play become hits.
The Oakland offense is doing its best act to look respectable, but it should not help Trevor out much in getting more wins. A low strikeout pitcher with a mid-four ERA and little chance of getting wins doesn't look so attractive now, does it? Don't be fooled by the mirage.
Tyler Colvin: Colvin has been an integral part of the rookie parade that is currently sweeping the majors, by blasting 15 home runs in his inaugural season. That much power is, however, out of line with what he accomplished in the minors, so even though it is possible Colvin remains hot and hits 10 more home runs this year, it's also very possible he contributes only a few more. With poor contact skills, Colvin is batting just .261, and that is with the home runs inflating it a little.
A lot of hitters can provide mild pop with a .250s average, so I feel it's worth investigating if another owner is intrigued by this young Cubbie and willing to part with a more proven commodity.
Paul has been managing fantasy baseball teams for many seasons and writing for THT Fantasy over the past three years. He is currently a student at UPenn welcomes readers' thoughts at his email here or in the comments below.