I’m Buzzkill Aldrin this preseason, huh? Just call me Killjoy McAvoy! Don’t hate the player, hate the game, or in this case, watch as I hate players that play the game. First, I call Miguel Sano overrated, and now the other supremely hyped 2nd year guy, Kyle Schwarber. I may as well just say Carlos Correa has gout and call it a day. You know, not a lot of ‘perts would call Sano and Schwarber overrated, so if nothing else I’m getting an A in Balls. Potentially, an F in Smarts. But maybe I’ll get a C in Being Aware of My Lack of Smarts, which gives me a C overall and passes me through to the next grade. I’m not getting placed in any AP classes next year though. I’m hanging out the window with my grade A Balls and letting everyone know that I have a problem where everyone else has none. At first, I was shocked that so many people were on board with Sano and Schwarber, but, once I saw everyone was on board, it was only natural that every everyone was on board. I mean, what is fantasy prognosticating without repeating back to you exactly what everyone else is saying, right? This is one of ESPN’s rare qualities. Everyone says Kyle Schwarber is good? Great, he’s good; now, let’s move on so we can get out of here by lunch. Member that time they did a video of their rankings summit? Ten minutes of Cockcroft rolling his eyes, five minutes of Karabell getting his makeup touched up, fifteen minutes of Berry hitting on Karabell, thinking he was a girl. Good times! I understand the urge to be positive on Schwarber. He hits the ball a long way. He is exciting. But, alas…. Anyway, what makes Kyle Schwarber overrated for 2016 fantasy baseball?
Here’s what I said in the top 20 catchers for 2016 fantasy baseball, “In Triple-A, he had a 34.3% strikeout percentage, then came up to the majors and had a 28.2% rate. Normally, guys don’t hit above .250 with that kind of rate and neutral luck, and he hit .246 last year. His plate discipline isn’t off the charts bad, but his contact rate is awful. He doesn’t hit a ton of pitches he swings at. If he qualified last year, he would’ve been the 4th worst player for contact rate. From June through September/October, here’s his batting averages: .364, .302, .221, .208. Shorthand of what was being said on pitching mounds in June, “We can’t get this guy out.” Shorthand in September, “Just throw him some offspeed crap in the zone.” He could make adjustments this year, but I wouldn’t go near him to find out.” And that’s me quoting me! Further (oh, snap, Grey’s going further!), what do you think Joe Maddon is going to do with Jorge Soler, Javier Baez, Matt Szczur, Arismendy Alcantara, and Kris Negron? Just let them all sit on the bench? Negron, please! Most of Schwarber’s replacements last year weren’t good and Maddon still sat Schwarber against lefties. I felt Schwarber was overrated prior to Fowler re-signing with the Cubs, but now there’s no way I’d go anywhere near Schwarber. As I said in my update on the top 60 outfielders, Soler is the odd man out, and could be traded, but A) If Soler is traded, it should help Soler, but Schwarber will still be in a platoon. B) Schwarber will be platooned no matter what. C) There’s no C. D) Read A and B again! Suddenly, a manager that does nothing but platoon everyone is not going to platoon the one player in his lineup that most calls for a platoon? Maddon might play Bryant in the outfield once a week and sit Schwarber. Maddon might sit Schwarber and start Baez or Szczur just because he wants to play a Z for ten points. Schwarber won’t catch more than a handful of games all year, if that many. Unless Antonio Alfonseca is reading this, a handful is five! Anyone that has watched Maddon for an Urban Dictionary minute knows he likes to mix it up more than Kid Capri. Schwarber will be lucky to get 500 ABs. If Schwarber struggles due to Ks and Soler is hitting? Schwarber is quickly going to be the odd man out. Maddon is the headmaster at the School of Hard Knocks, and if you’re not hitting hard knocks, you’re getting schooled. Schwarber could absolutely bomb out…or he could hit bombs out. He does have that huge power; I’m not denying that, but for his current price, I’m not going anywhere near him in drafts.