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I’d like to begin this OBP roundup by mentioning one of my favorite points that’s been discussed in the comments before: OBP and OPS are worth looking at in leagues that don’t use them. For example, if a player has a high OBP, then he has a greater likelihood of getting runs relative to a player with a lower OBP. The same goes for OPS or slugging, either of which can be a proxy for players who get homers, extra base hits, and rbis. These stats obviously have more value in leagues that use them, but they should be given attention in leagues that do not include them because they suggest which players have more value and are likely to retain their value over the course of the season. Anyway, time for a good ol’ fashioned OBP roundup:

Luis Valbuena continues to rank among the league leaders in OBP, currently sitting at .394, alongside Giancarlo Stanton and Shin-Soo Choo. He’s in the Cubs lineup most days and that should continue for the next couple months since the Cubs don’t have a better option on their current squad. That could eventually change when some minor league players begin to surface in the big leagues, but his spot is safe right now.

I feel like I need to mention Joey Votto again since he finally appears to be healthy. It’s amusing that a .409 OBP is considered a down year for him. I’m not worried about him and I expect his production to improve as the season progresses. A line near last season’s .305/.435/.491 going forward should be attainable.

Corey Dickerson should absolutely be owned in more leagues, especially with Michael Cuddyer going to the DL again. Speaking of injury, I’d recommend grabbing Stephen Drew if he is able to avoid the DL with his latest minor injury. He could provide a solid middle infield bat and I’d take him ahead of Brad Miller at this point.

About a month and a half ago, I said that Carlos Ruiz‘s “current .416 OBP isn’t as much of a fluke as it would seem, considering the several ~.380 OBP years he had prior to 2013.” Since then, it’s dropped to .390, which is still fantastic and he should be able to maintain it around there. On a different note, I was in D.C. a week and a half ago and ended up at the Nationals/Phillies game. It was my first time at a Nationals game and, for whatever reason, I was captivated by the age of the Phillies roster. I knew they were old, but sometimes things don’t process until you see them in person. Although the Yankees are probably still well ahead of them in that area… I guess my other observation was that Domonic Brown sadly looked lost at the plate. I never expected him to be elite, but I certainly expected more than his abysmal performance this year.

A month ago, I said, “Dexter Fowler continues to post a solid OBP. He’s still available in a lot of leagues, so he could be worth an add, especially in leagues without slugging.” He’s still somehow owned in less than half of ESPN leagues, despite him improving his slugging while maintaining his .393 OBP. As an aside, I’ll be on the road (again) this weekend so I may be slow to respond to comments. Feel free to chime in to help answer any questions from other commenters.

You can find Tom Jacks on Twitter @votetomjacks. He spends far too much time praying for the Cubs, planning his next concert, and wondering if there’s an instrument that could ever rival the theremin (there isn’t).

  1. Matt says:
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    Shin Soo Choo is a prime example. I play in a 6 offensive category league that includes OPS and I own typical OPS king Choo. He is well documented to be in an AWFUL slump right now. Every fantasy expert has him as a buy low guy right now. But if you compare his OPS to someone like Robinson Cano, they are virtually the same. Choo is hitting .080 points lower…

    • Tom Jacks

      Tom Jacks says:
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      @Matt: Yup, completely agree. He’s a great example.

    • Eddy says:
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      @Matt:

      I’m actually trading away Choo in OBP leagues, where he still has some semblance of value. He’s barely getting any stats.

      Choo and Dexter Fowler are pretty much the same player so far. Their stats are eerily similar.

  2. Raftman says:
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    10 Team H2H Yahoo league (I hate Yahoo). Trade my Dee Gordon for his Zack Wheeler? Have Castro/Dozier and Gordon is on a “Can’t Cut List” so it would be the only way to unload him. SBs don’t count…

    • troy says:
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      @Raftman: yahoo isn’t the problem ur crappie settings are… sb don’t count. What a horrible league. Why even own gordon in the first place lol. Never should of drafted him

      • raftman says:
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        @troy: damn. No need to be a jerk. Not the commish so have no control over crappy settings. Didn’t draft him…picked him up as a injury replacement.

    • Tom Jacks

      Tom Jacks says:
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      @Raftman: That trade looks good to me.

  3. troy says:
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    Ike davis is a guy who flied under the rear in obp. Guys having a sub par season but in a obp league guy has some solid value. Same with a Brandon Crawford or Colton Wong type. Anyway to my question. What’s ur opinion of rutledge ros? Think they actually let him play for a extended period of time? Guy has some skills

    • Tom Jacks

      Tom Jacks says:
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      @troy: I think he’s worth a shot given his power potential, but I always worry about his historical lack of walks.

  4. Swfcdan says:
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    What is going on with Ryan Brauns OBP, doesnt seem to be walking at all anymore. David Wrights another thats underperformed in that area (and every other area). Expect these guys to rebound much?

    Valbuenas OBP is nice, but you cant own him in shallower leagues because he offers absolutely nothing else.

    • Tom Jacks

      Tom Jacks says:
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      @Swfcdan: Both Braun and Wright are tough cases. I think Braun has a better chance to rebound since Wright has been declining for awhile now, but I don’t expect either to fully rebound.

      Valbuena is more of an MI in 12 teamers or deeper that use OBP.

      • Swfcdan says:
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        @Tom Jacks: Guess Braun and Wright should both be part of a team nicknamed ‘The Walking Dead’.

        Got much faith in Krush Davis maintaining his improved walk rate recently and at least putting up an average .340OBP? He killed me intially this season, but after cutting him and picking him up again, he looks like a different player.

        • Tom Jacks

          Tom Jacks says:
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          @Swfcdan: Haha that’s fitting for them.

          I actually am hopeful for Davis and think he’ll maintain an obp somewhere around there.

  5. spm7189 says:
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    My league isn’t specifically an OBP/OPS league; rather, we have a sixth batting category for BB. What kind of trade value does Choo have in a league like this, especially in terms of pitching in return?

    • Tom Jacks

      Tom Jacks says:
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      @spm7189: That gives him a nice bump. At worst, you should be able to get a top 15 pitcher.

  6. Von Trier says:
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    Could you rank Fowler, Blackmon, Gregory Polanco in a wOBA league? Grey keeps calling for Blackon’s demise and I cant decide who, if anyone, to target as a replacement.

    • Tom Jacks

      Tom Jacks says:
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      @Von Trier: I’d have them Polanco, Fowler, and then Blackmon last, since he’s actually been declining for awhile since his hot start.

  7. Bye Felicia says:
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    I’m in love with Greg Polanco……that’s all

  8. Not a question at all, I just wanted to say did anybody see the top of the Pirates lineup last night,

    WOW, Polanco, Marte and Cutc,h they had some solid counting stats, 11 hits or something between the 3 and some other good stuff…WOW, they hit and get on base regularly, Pedro Alvarez could have a monster 2nd half..cheers

    • Tom Jacks

      Tom Jacks says:
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      @Malicious Phenom: Yeah they’re definitely a good, young team.

      • @Tom Jacks:
        I think in the next few years or so we could see a Pirates-Astros World Series..

        • Tom Jacks

          Tom Jacks says:
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          @Malicious Phenom: Yeah that wouldn’t be too surprising. The Pirates already seem to be a regular playoff hopeful.

  9. Steve says:
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    Morales or Arcia ROS??
    Thx

  10. SDB says:
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    Hey Tom,

    Do you think M.Wacha and J.Lowrie is a fair offer for D.Pedroia? Too much, too little?
    14-team league.

    Thanks.

    • Tom Jacks

      Tom Jacks says:
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      @SDB: Hey SDB – that seems pretty fair to me.

  11. Anthony Gayton says:
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    My Choo for his Alex Gordon? My patience on Choo is waning..

    Thanks!

    • Tom Jacks

      Tom Jacks says:
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      @Anthony Gayton: It’s ok, but I would still prefer Choo.

  12. gordon shumway says:
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    Hi Tom,

    I’m still trying to make up for my dropping gyorko as my 2b. I had wong in there for a bit but just dropped him for la stella… someone just dropped valbuena and rutelege is there as well. In an obp and slg league where I have power out the wazoo and would primarily like someone to help with the two percentage stats, who do you think will provide the best return for the season?

    • Tom Jacks

      Tom Jacks says:
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      @gordon shumway: I’d go with Rutledge since he has the higher upside in an ops league.

      • gordon shumway says:
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        @Tom Jacks: cool, thanks Tom!

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