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Monday was probably the most welcome reprieve from fantasy baseball I’ve had in years. After a first half crapped upon and spoiled by my rosters’ inclusions of Jason Heyward, Jose Reyes, Yovani Gallardo (I sympathize, almost every commenter we have), and Andre EthierI was saved the Gom jabbar-caliber torture of merely looking at my roster—not setting it, not thinking about it, not watching my team suck giant Andy Dirks, but simply just seeing who’s on my roster. This week, I actually enjoyed a Monday night. I went out with friends, got a few cocktails, had some sushi, chitchatted about things that “actually matter” (FANTASY SPORTS MATTER, MOM! NO I’M NOT HUNGRY), and lived a social life untethered by the emotional and intellectual restraints of staring at stats and hoping for the best. But, despite my melodrama—similar to the past few sentences I just wrote—I’m right in contention in every league. So, pretty reader (hey ;)), let’s take a gander at some guys you might/won’t want for the rest of 2013 and for 2014, 2015, etc. IT’S FANTASY TIME AGAIN YAYYYYYY.

Dexter Fowler (188 ADP in 2013, will be around 100 next year)

Fowler’s got skillz, I think.

After being the #15 pre-2009 prospect according to Baseball America, Fowler pretty much spent four years sucking until 2012 came. Last year, at age 26, Dexter seemed to figure at least a few things out. Well, actually, he figured one thing out. Wait, well, maybe he just got stronger.

Really, the only major difference between Fowler in 2010—.260 BA, 6 homers, 13/20 SB—and 2013 Fowler is his power, which is improving his batting average and homer total. All those doubles that he used to hit are kind of, sort of now flying over the fence. He’s striking out and walking at the same rate he has his entire career, is still hitting too many fly-balls (you could argue this is good, considering his BAbip is high anyway… COORS), and is still a good-not-great base stealer. Last season, his .390 BAbip had fantasy drafters scrambling for the new “power/speed/average?!” on the block, but from my angle, all that promise stops there.

While 10 homers, 13 steals, and a .284 BA are pretty for 74 games, Fowler’s HR/FB rate is at a sickly high 9.3%—a number that can’t and obviously won’t sustain. Last year he was at 7.5%, a then-career high, when he hit 13 on the season — he has 10 now.

Also, and perhaps speaking to a guy who’s learned how to hit in a specific ballpark rather than physically filling out, Fowler’s home/road splits are gross. He’s at .336/.405/.526 while in Coors, and is .232/.358/.391 while away (though he oddly has five homers in Coors and five away). There are too many fickle numbers in Fowler’s underlying stats to imply continued improvement and that the “Fowler we’ve all been waiting for” is here to stay.  A lot of people expect that he’ll continue to break out and that he’s finally found the trick of his specific trade, but the lofty HR/FB rates and unsustainably high LD-rates imply Fowler was too hot to last in the first half. I’d sell now to guys desperate for a spark. He’ll be drafted higher than you got him for this year, but won’t live up to his perceived value going into next year.

Brandon Belt (227.6 2013 ADP, 210 in 2014)

Belt’s been a “what if” for a long time. After raking in the Minors for two years and getting the power-speed first baseman label (if that’s a thing) upon his call up to San Fran, Belt found himself in Bruce Bochy’s doghouse. Partly because of Aubrey Huff (LOL) he never got the chance to start full-time or to accrue steady at-bats, and was relegated to a platoon party for a long time. Fortunately, though, Belt was given the everyday role at first starting in 2013, as the roster was finally cleared up and Belt had finally begun to show some improvement in the spring. Unfortunately, though, there’s not been much production yet. Fortunately, I think it’s coming.

Belt’s boasting a 27% LD-rate in 2013 and finally has a regular HR/FB rate of 8.1%. He’s making more contact overall — he’s improved his contact on pitches out of the zone by 10.1%, his contact on pitches in the zone by 4.6%, and his contact on all pitches by 5.3%. Via regular at-bats, he’s improved his approach against lefties (though not against righties) and, with the better approach and more reps, will be a solid CI guy for the rest of this season. His stock probably won’t rise too much going into next year, so keeping him won’t net you much.

Oswaldo Arcia (N/A, 215 in 2014)

A 19% LD rate, 28% K rate, 0.81 GB/FB, 72.4% contact rate, and .343 BAbip don’t add up. You probably weren’t interested in him for this year, but unless his peripherals improve, he’s actually just as unexciting as his team, his pre-2013 prospect stock, and this entire paragraph.

Marcell Ozuna (N/A, 200)

Like… where is the power?

Ozuna doesn’t seem to care for walks and, like almost everyone in baseball today, has a propensity to strikeout too much, which, by the laws of relativism, might not be too much because others are doing it more. Is 100 strikeouts in a season good now? How far do I have to adjust to determine if a guy strikes out too much? The Braves are ruining baseball.

Ozuna’s one of those guys with that violent, raw power like Yoenis Cespedes. Oddly, he hasn’t shown it yet. Like, not even at all. After 24 homers in the FSL in a Jupiter park that favors pitching, Ozuna seemed to be the next Dayan Viciedo (yuck)—all pop and no average. Fortunately for Ozuna, a .337 BAbip has kept his average at .273  to float him until that reputed power comes around. He’s currently at a 3.1% HR/FB rate, but, when you watch him, he drives the ball to gaps and clearly has that rocket power that’ll eventually and naturally trend toward an increase in homers. He’s only making contact on 51.8% of the out-of-the-zone pitches he swings at, and he’s swinging at 35.6% of them, so expect an increase on his 21.6% strikeout rate.

Don’t give up on Ozuna’s power yet—and don’t for a while, even if it doesn’t improve this year—and I’d acquire him if I needed some cheap power on a light-hitting team down the stretch. His splits aren’t overly lopsided, and he’ll be super cheap, if you even have to pay for him at all. I’m expecting a power turnaround in the second half, and dudes dig the long ball, so he could be in the 200s going into next year, which is higher stock than the price you paid or will pay for him. PAGNOF?

The deadline looms… make suggestions for guys you want blurbs on in next week’s column.

Follow Terse on Twitter @TerseRazzball because he loves you. No, really… he loves you. Stop looking away. I love you.

 

 

From Around The Web

  1. Kevin says:
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    I’ve been planning on keeping Fowler in my 12 team mixed league. What do you think is the best I can get for him?

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Kevin: Yoenis winning that derby was the worst thing that could ahappened to you. I’d try to get Country Breakfast from a disgruntled owner. If you want more, let Fowler play a bit and hope he gets hot. People are suckers for power/speed and a guy in Colo

  2. shibboleth says:
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    Could you sound off if these keepers are good value for the round? Could keep up to 2 years in said round. 12 team OPS and QS league.

    29- Gerrit Cole
    20- Patrick Corbin
    16 – Anibal Sanchez
    15- Anthony Rendon
    14- Corey Kluber/ Tony Cingrani/ Erasmo Ramirez
    10- Pedro Alvarez or Kendrys Morales

    Feeling good about Sanchez, Alvarez, Corbin and Rendon (right?), but I don’t know enough about the rooks….

    Thanks as always & Happy Friday!

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @shibboleth: I like all of those except the round 14ers right now. If Erasmo performs like a stud like I expect him to, keep him there. Not Cingrani.

      • shibboleth says:
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        @Terse: Many thanks!

        • Terse

          Terse says:
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          @shibboleth: you got it buddy ole pal

  3. Shawn of the livid says:
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    Good read, thanks. Suggestions for next weeks column:

    Adam Eaton (or is he too new to the lineup as of now?)

    Starlin Castro

      • Shawn of the livid says:
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        @Terse: Maybe the heat is getting to me, I remember that article on Rizzo/Castro. I read it a few times! I actually traded puig/Myers for Castro/ Rizzo after reading it! Can’t believe I forgot that one!

        One more question, while we’re on the topic of things I should remember. I’m an everyday razzball reader and I CANNOT for the life of me remember what SAGNOF stands for. Fill me in?

        I look forward to the Eaton article (assuming you go with that)! Have a good weekend!

        • Terse

          Terse says:
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          @Shawn of the livid: HA don’t worry, it happens.

          SAGNOF is steals/saves ain’t got no face. Actually took me a while to figure it out. It also helped when I found this:
          http://razzball.com/fantasy-baseball-terms/

          go there and you’ll learn all the dumb/genius crap we talk about.

          And you too brah, stay cool

  4. Eric R says:
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    I need pitching and AVG. Have plenty of power. What do you think of this trade?

    Giving up: Bautista, Lind, Maholm
    Receiving: Rios, Rizzo, Minor

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Eric R: If that’s your situation, then yeah that’sa trade you should do

  5. future11 says:
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    Only have 1 spot available who would you rather have ROS? 5×5 league

    A-Rod or Yelich??

    Great article, need all the advice I can get!

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @future11: Indubitably A-rod

  6. Terse

    Terse says:
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    Indubitably A-rod

  7. Kobayashi Maru says:
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    Machado in a format where I can keep him for one season at $7, or indefinitely at $12, $17, $23 . . . Do you think he can stay ahead of the +$5 for a few seasons, or should I enjoy next years crazy $7 bargain?

    • Kobayashi Maru says:
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      @Kobayashi Maru: totally relevant, it’s a 12 team auction league with the standard $260 budget.

      • Terse

        Terse says:
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        @Kobayashi Maru: I’d give myself the opportunity to keep him indefnitely

  8. Eddie says:
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    Thanks for the run-down!, though it does little to buoy my hopes for Fowler. Another thing to note about that dude, just to further your case, is that 8 of his 10 dingers came in April. He’s been banged up some, but 2 homers in 2 and a half months is pretty damn boring! Still been better than what I paid for, as you say, but I’m hoping (probably unrealistically) that he has a better second half than last year.

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Eddie: Yeah he was really ripping in the beginning of the year. He’s never been a totally healthy guy, either, which also doesn’t bode well. thanks for the stat, and no prob!

  9. Jason says:
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    Who is the keeper…hey ward or cespedes.

    Also Jose Fernandez over a grienke type?

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Jason: I’d say Heyward, as he’s the healthier and younger of the two, thought not very healthy this year. Heyward’s killing me this year, it’s taking immense fortitude to write that I’d rather have him.

      JFer

  10. Chris says:
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    Hello Terse, Good afternoon. What do you think about this trade: My Jason Werth and Michael Bourn, for, Carl Crawford and Jason Heyward. Is the injury risk greater than the potential to be had? I am currently 2nd in my league. Thanks

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Chris: Good day, Chris

      If you’re in second and are doing just fine, I’d sit tight. Heyward ould plummet you straight to the crapper if he doesn’t rebound. The trade would have upside but isn’t worth the risk considering your position.

  11. Luis says:
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    Im in a 20 team Dynasty league, and Im playing for the future. Would Aaron Hicks, and a high draft pick, be good compensation for Chin Soo Choo?

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Luis: I don’t really buy Hicks. How high of a pick? How much will you be paying for Choo next year?

      • Luis says:
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        @Terse:

        I wouldn’t sell for anything less than a 1st rounder. In the type of Dynasty league I’m in, we don’t attach a number to the player. I’ve been reading up on Hicks and his good walk rate. Toolsy guy and he just needs to put it together. Which is the question for most of these prospects. I’m only considering it because I’m in rebuilding mode. I’ll try to hold out for a better package I guess?

        • Terse

          Terse says:
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          @Luis: The first-round pick obviously makes it nice and sweet. I’m not too high on Hicks, though, and I’d fish around for something better—I think you can get something better.

          If you wind up empty, though, then, considering you’re in rebuild, definitely do the deal.

          • Luis says:
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            @Terse:

            I’m working on trading Choo and Lackey for Profar. This would probably involve me giving up a high draft pick with the package.

  12. FrankGrimes says:
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    Nice job on the AMA bro

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @FrankGrimes: thanks a lot dude thanks for reading it

  13. No mas pantalones says:
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    Hey, having third base troubles. I have arenado, but he’s been kind of a bum lately…
    Available are Chavez, plouffe and Juan francisco…should I hang tough or move on one of the others.
    Thank you for all of your fantasy advice/expertise

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @No mas pantalones: no problem friend, i dont’ have any pants on either. I understand your frustration, but I’d sit tight; those guys suck.

  14. Yager says:
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    I need pitching, and I have two great second basemen in Pedroia and Carpenter. I was offered Price for Pedroia. Any other year I would accept it in my current position, but Price hasn’t been himself this year. What are your thought?

    Thanks!

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Yager: Price looked better than his 4 ER would imply. If you really ned the pitching, it’s not that crazy of a trade. You might be able to do better, though.

      • Yager says:
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        @Terse:

        Thanks for the reply! I have Cliff Lee, Strasburg, JoFer, Kluber, and a stashed Erasmo Ramirez in a twenty team league with innings cap. The reason I am in the pitching market is that only 4 more wins would net me 7 points, and 8 more wins 10 points. We have walks as a category as opposed to whip, and I am high in walks for the amount of innings I have logged. The conundrum is getting the wins I need without racking up the walks, which streaming doesn’t guarantee. Does Erasmo do this for me? Or is Price a better answer?

        • Terse

          Terse says:
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          @Yager: Yeah, you’ve got the right idea already. Price is the better answer.

          • Yager says:
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            @Terse:
            It is hard parting with Pedroia though! I shot the other owner a Choo for Price deal. Unlikely, but you never know with Choo hot and Price on the buy low.

            • Terse

              Terse says:
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              @Yager: Might as well, always exhaust all options before making your decision

              • Yager says:
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                @Terse:
                Thanks again, but he rejected Choo immediately.

                • Terse

                  Terse says:
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                  @Yager: gotta do what you gotta do to improve your team, no matter how much you love yourself some dustin

  15. The Guru

    The Guru says:
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    A “Dune” reference? *tip of the cap*

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @The Guru: I am Muad Dib.

  16. Scott says:
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    You aren’t very high on Arcia for next year? What about in an AL keeper? What kind of numbers do you think he puts up in 2014?

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Scott: He’s still striking out a bit too much and his HR/FB is a tad high for Target. Still young, though, so the pop could develop.

      12-14 homers and .255-.260, perhaps. No speed, obviously.

  17. charlie hustler says:
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    Running the risk that you will never see this, but here we go.

    AL ONLY.

    Arcia was probably promoted too early, and still put up +.700 OPS, and will probably be back this season. I went ahead and promoted him as I was frustrated with Cain and wanted another OF for depth. I stupidly dropped Scott for Lough, but all is not lost, as I have Trout and Bautista as my other OFs. I have Moss-Kipnis-Donaldson-Peralta with Pierzynski at catcher, with Yan Gomes as my fill-in. I’m holding onto Middlebrooks as well.

    ROS, hold onto Arcia, or buy into Colabello? I can drop my 5th reliever (can only deploy 4, with saves and holds in play) – right now it’s Benoit/Nelson for saves and Smith/Breslow with Yoervis Medina as #5 at the moment (I am also using Travis Blackley for holds as he’s starting-eligible).

    I could also make a large speculative bid at the Cuban that’s about to take the Reimold spot in the O’s lineup – Urrutia.

    So, hold onto Arcia’s upside or take a flyer on Colobella or Urrutia? I’m not dropping Middlebrooks because he has too much trade value in a league with a number of Red Sox fans.

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @charlie hustler: Of course I’ll see it. We always be respondin here in razzland.

      Forget Colabello. Urrutia’s hitting and is at least in the Bigs right now. Great lineup, too and a friendly ballpark. I’d take the speculative pick on Urrutia over Arcia—even Arcia is speculative still.

  18. chunk says:
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    kipnis/choo for cano? keeper

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @chunk: I like kipper’s side

  19. Rick says:
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    Hey man, whats the deal with this Urrutia guy thats gonna get a crack at Reimolds spot in BAL? Looking for some power help (HR’s & RBIs) my other options are Lawrie, Byrd, A-Rod, Uggla. Not really thrilled with these options but I need something. WHo do you like for a standard mixed 12 team?

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Rick: Hola. Urrutia’s pretty pedestrian—not much power, not much speed. I’d take my chances with Lawrie or ARod. Lawrie did homer last night, if that means anything at all, but it doesn’t.

  20. Stringer Bell says:
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    12-Team Mixed Keeper League. I can keep 3 of the following in the corresponding rounds next season. If two keepers are same round then one gets bumped up a round:

    Carlos Gomez – Round 6
    Manny Machado – Round 10
    Jose Altuve – Round 12
    Homer Bailey – Round 13
    Shelby Miller – Round 16
    Yasiel Puig – Round 17
    Oscar Taveras – Round 17
    Julio Teheran – Round 17
    Xander Bogaerts – Round 17

    Guy in last place looking to sell on this year. Thinking about offering him Puig/Miller for Adam Jones and Adrian Beltre (not keeper eligible) for a run at the title now.

    A. Would you make that deal?
    B. If yes, who would you keep? (Machado and…?)

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Stringer Bell: Yes, do that deal. Keep Machado, Taveras, Gomez.

  21. Thorbs says:
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    Great read, really timely for me as well —

    Been offered J-Up + 1 of LoMo/Fowler/Hardy/Gardner/Skaggs/Bradley Jr/pu-pu platter of other prospects for my Braun, might be able to squeeze out an extra pu-pu prospect or a pick along with one of the names above.

    It’s a keep-20 with 8 guys in the minors (OPS and BB counted as well, so Fowler would be a bit more valuable than normal), and I’m pursuing Trout as well thinking I could have a juggernaut OF for years to come of J-Up/Trout/Bruce/Choo/Martin.

    Would you pull the trigger on that, in light of what you think of Fowler? I’m of the same mind, where a .285-15-25 with good OBP is a more realistic projection for him over the next 3 years.

    • Terse

      Terse says:
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      @Thorbs: Thanks a lot bud. Unless you can get a good prospect from the poop poop platter, I think I’d sit tight and hope for Braun’s best down the 2013 stretch.

      If you can get Trout, get him, obviously. If you have any questions on that trade just shoot them my way.

      For now, though, I think I’d sit tight with Braun. I think he’ll continue to keep his innocent face on and appeal his suspension.

  22. Larry says:
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    Okay to offer Braun and prado for Stanton and Aybar in keeper?

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