We are almost through April and most fantasy baseball owners fall in two categories. There are those owners that have gotten off to a good start and feel pretty comfortable about their teams. Maybe almost too comfortable. Then there are the “OH-MY-GOD-WHAT-HAVE-I-DONE!!!!” owners. You know who you are. I feel ya. I do. Hell, I’ve been there. Something has gone astray. You didn’t draft well or you had a minor Jerry Maguire freak-out moment and then proceeded to make a bad trade. This stuff happens to everyone, so how do you start to right the ship? There are some moves that you can make that to either stop the bleeding or to continue a fast start.
Below are a list of names of affordable players that have their best hitting month in May. There are some parameters regarding this list. These players below have at least 200 at bats in May. I felt like the sample size for younger players was just too small to make a correct prediction. Also, these guys are affordable. Say it all together now: AFFORDABLE! I’m listing these guys because you don’t have to break the bank to get them on your team. There is no Joey Votto or Andrew McCutchen here. Granted they both rake in May, but what good are they if you blow your load trading for them. No, these are guys that might not make your season, but they are players that just lllllllloooove May. Next to each name are each player’s career stats in May and then a couple of sentences to make it look like I know what I’m talking about. Got it? Ok. Let’s do this.
Angel Pagan – OF – SF (326 AB, .344 AVG, 56 Runs)
Pagan’s first and second half splits are about as even as they can get. He bats .283 in the first half and .278 after the All-Star break. His stolen base numbers are about the same as well as RBI and HR. But in the first half he does most of his damage in May. Crazy Horse hits .344 in May which is by far his best month (he also hits .291 in August). Granted Pagan has nearly twice as many as bats in the 2nd half as he does in the first, but there is no denying his fondness for May. He has also stolen 26 bases in May which is only second to the 29 he has swiped in August (where he has 175 more ABs).
Hunter Pence – OF – SF (648 AB, .330, 100 R, 29 HR, 105 RBI, 14 SB)
Another Giant outfielder that heats up in May. Now he might not be as affordable as say his teammate Pagan, but he certainly won’t demand too much unless you are trying to trade with some poor bastard that loves the Giants and asks for WAY more than he’s worth. (Sorry, bitter-trade-face.) Anyhow, May is the only month that Pence hits over .300 (.330 to be exact), but it’s also the month in which he’s scored the most runs, hits for more RBIs, and steals the most bases. His 29 long balls in May are tied with August as the most also.
Matt Joyce – OF – TB (228 AB, .320 AVG, 49 Runs, 17 HR, 51 RBI)
Matt Joyce, really? I know it’s crazy, but it’s true. (Great, now I have the theme song from Arthur stuck in my head. Everyone now! “If you get caught between the moon and New York City….” And not the new Arthur. The Dudley Moore one. Much better.) Chances are in a shallow league Joyce is available, in deeper leagues you could probably get him for pocket lint. Joyce is really only good in May, actually. In 228 AB, he has a career average of .320 (well above his all time career mark of .253) with an OPS of 1.020. He reaches base as a higher clip and goes deep more in May than in any other month. Now I am not going to sit here and tell you that Matt Joyce is single-handedly going to lift your team, but during May he sure as hell won’t hurt it.
Jeff Keppinger - 1B,2B,3B,CI,MI – CWS (251 AB, .315 AVG)
The crafty veteran is probably on people’s radars because of his position eligibility so his asking price might be a little higher, but I would put him as a player you throw in during a trade if you are already dealing. He hits for average pretty much all year and is a good source for runs. In May he turns it out, but in a deceiving way. While he hits .315 during that month, what is interesting is that most of his work in May did come from his 2010 season in which he had 108 plate appearances; he hasn’t reached 40 the past two years, however, he still hit for .389 and .333 respectively. You might be able to get him for cents on the dollar as he is ice cold to start this season.
Jason Bay – OF – SEA (794 AB, .298 AVG, 143 Runs, 48 HR, 155 RBI)
Remember him? There MAY not be a spot for him (see what I did there?) in Seattle’s outfield, but he has performed historically well in May. He has a .298 month average and has hit more homeruns than in any other month. If he gets some playing time, he should take advantage. You can find him on your local waiver wire.
Then there are some players that haven’t reached that 200 at-bat level in May. They might be a little more risky since the sample size is smaller, but they are worth noting. These are their May stats only.
Michael Morse – OF – SEA (80 AB, .388 AVG) A very small sample size and he’s already started the season on a tear, but it’s worth noting anyway.
Jonathon LuCroy – C – MIL (179 AB, .346 AVG, 42 RBI, 8 HR) Dude loves May. And he loves Pirates. Peglegs and parrots. The Rajun Cajun bats .356 in 101 Abs against Pittsburgh. Oh by the way, both teams meet 8 times in May. Arrrrrrrrrrrrrggg.
Jon Jay – OF – STL (160 AB, .338 AVG) He does have a higher OBP in July. No power but should get on, and batting 2nd for the Cards.