You just endure a break up? My apologies. But also… congratulations, you’re free! Two opposing notions can be equally true and appropriate. The bottom line is you need a rebound, and now that you have to pay all the utilities solo, a cheaper option is best. So hit up your ex-ex-ex, or just stick with the acronym form of the same. Either way, don’t waste more than a couple of hours, because it’s August and that means it’s crunch time for fantasy baseball. While your standings and players end-of-year stats may represent a full season’s work, all that you can control from this point forward is which players’ points you pile up. In basketball, they call the end of a blowout “garbage time” because it allows the scrubs to come in and pile up stats. That’s the focus of this post. We’re going to focus on waiver wire guys who should be able to help you rest of season despite the fact that up to this point in time they’ve been essentially unrosterable.
While it’s been extensively covered that points leagues can vary, one of the most constant correlations in points leagues is that batting average tends to be a higher corollary than other explanative stats (those we use in fantasy). And one of the best ways to predict batting average progression or regression is by analyzing BABIP (batting average on balls in play) compared to expected BABIP. Expected BABIP, or xBABIP, is figured using GB%, FB%, LD% as well as IFFB%, IFH% and HR/FB%. We have a great tool to analyze this here at Razzball and we call it by the extremely fancy name of Razzball Fantasy Baseball BABIP vs. AVG Comparison. Hey, they can’t all have suave names like Stream-O-Nator or HitterTron. Here are some cheapo’s I like rest of season ranked by our fancily named tool.
Jedd Gyorko has been an absolute disaster thus far in 2014. Hopefully, you avoided drafting the jerk. He went on the disgraceful list literally and figuratively but he’s back and seems intent on salvaging some self-respect. He’s been back for 4 games now and holds a line of 7-14 with 2 HRs and 6 RBI. We all know he’s better than what he’s shown but he also has the 9th largest gap in BABIP and xBABIP at .068. That translates to an expected AVG increase of .050 points which seems tough to achieve, but he’s currently stoking it to a tune of .183 so it seems likely. Swoop him quick. He also should have 2B and 3B eligibility in most leagues so his versatility is immensely useful at scarce positions.
Mark Trumbo actually tops the list as he comes in at #6 overall in BABIP differential. He surely was drafted in 100% of leagues but after 3 months on the DL and a slow start upon his return he should be available in many leagues. His power is legit and he’s currently only hitting .189. With his BABIP expected to be .076 higher than it currently stands, he should be able to greatly increase his average. The rest of his lineup has under performed as well with the exception of Goldy so there are plenty of opportunities for him to not only get hits and HRs, but contribute solidly in R and RBI as well.
Allen Craig not only just got traded to a nice hitters park that affords RHBs to hit pop up doubles to left field, but he also is looking at an expected AVG increase of about .030 due to his depressed BABIP. Despite the Red Sox “selling” at the deadline, they seemingly have improved their hitting lineup by adding Cespedes (and by subtraction, Middlebrooks) in addition to Craig.
J.P. Arencibia is not normally a good choice for points leagues unless they heavily reward power and don’t penalize for Ks. However, in a “short season” that we have on our hands from here until October, his expected regression to the mean should benefit you. He’s #14 on the list supported by a xBABIP .062 higher than he’s put together so far. He’s got immense power and should qualify at catcher for ya to boot.
Robbie Grossman is not normally worthy of rostering but his recent mini hot streak alludes to what his xBABIP suggests—that he should bolster some numbers. I don’t actually recommend holding him for the rest of season unless he continues to produce, but he can be a nice addition to win you your next matchup or two. His BABIP sits .053 below his expected.
Kendrys Morales was just recently reacquired by the Mariners, and, although Safeco tends to suppress hitters statistics I also think that he just never felt comfy with the Twinkies. He’s back in a familiar environment on a team that has a legitimate shot at the playoffs and a lineup that can actually produce a bit around him. He also is expected to have a BABIP .045 higher than he’s carrying so far this year and there’s plenty of room to drop some singles and doubles in the spacious confines of his renewed home park.
Thanks for tuning in again points leaguers. By all means, let me know what you’d like to have me feature in next week’s post. I aim to please when I care to aim.