Fantasy Fallout: Jaime Garcia, Despite Being In Atlanta, Still Has Appeal

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

The Atlanta Braves are stock piling veteran starting pitchers.  On the surface it doesn’t seem to make sense, as a rebuilding franchise, but it’s really not an unreasonable maneuver.  Sure it’s a bit of a surprise that they’ve added three starters (Bartolo Colon, R.A. Dickey and now Jaime Garcia), but the trio should help to mentor the team’s stockpile of young pitchers while also allowing them to gain much needed experience at Triple-A.

Garcia is the latest to be acquired, as the team traded a trio of prospects (RHP Chris Ellis, RHP John Gant & INF Luke Dykstra) in exhange.  The biggest issue hanging over Garcia has often been his health, not his ability to produce.  Last season was actually the first time he eclipsed 130 innings since 2011, showing you the problems he’s had.  Of course while the innings were nice the results were actually relatively underwhelming:

171.2 IP
10 Win
4.67 ERA
1.37 WHIP
150 Strikeouts (7.86 K/9)
57 Walks (2.99 BB/9)
56.7% Groundball Rate
.305 BABIP Read more

2017 Sleeper Spotlight: Could The Returning Eric Thames Make An Impact?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Eric Thames has spent the past three seasons playing in the KBO, putting up some gaudy numbers (.348 with 124 HR, 379 RBI and 64 SB over 388 games).  It would be easy to get excited, but we also can’t forget that the KBO is the same league that Byung-ho Park called home and we all know how his transition went.  Obviously the Brewers thought enough of Thames to give him a three year, $15 million contract, as well as cut ties with Chris Carter to open up a roster spot.  Is there hope for him to deliver or is he safe to ignore for fantasy owners?

Remember Thames did have success in the minor leagues, including hitting 27 HR at Double-A back in 2010.  The number that jumps out at you is his 21.1% strikeout rate at the time, so while he was mashing the ball in Korea was he able to improve in that regard?  Here are the numbers:

  • 2014 – 19.26%
  • 2015 – 15.29%
  • 2016 – 19.66%

Read more

Buy ‘Em or Deny ‘Em: Could Edinson Volquez Become Fantasy Relevant In 2017?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

There was a time that Edinson Volquez appeared to be a viable fantasy option, including as recently as 2015 when he posted a 3.55 ERA for the Kansas City Royals.  However the numbers certainly fell off a cliff in 2016:

189.1 IP
10 Win
5.37 ERA
1.55 WHIP
139 Strikeouts (6.61 K/9)
76 Walks (3.61 BB/9)
51.2% Groundball Rate
.319 BABIP

Despite his overall struggles he was still able to land a two year, $22 million contract with the Miami Marlins.  There’s no question that he should provide veteran leadership as well as eat some innings, but can the move back the NL and a favorable home ballpark help put him back on fantasy maps? Read more

2017 Projection: Is A Rebound Season In Bryce Harper’s Future?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

We haven’t yet released our initial outfielder rankings, something that will happen before the end of the year, but one of the biggest questions is going to be where Bryce Harper fits.  Once considered for the top spot (along with Mike Trout), a poor 2016 campaign appears to have him ticketed down the rankings.  He’ll surely be behind Mookie Betts, but is that how far he falls or will others pass him by?  Let’s take a look, but first the 2016 numbers:

506 At Bats
.243 Batting Average (123 Hits)
24 Home Runs
86 RBI
84 Runs
21 Stolen Bases
.373 On Base Percentage
.441 Slugging Percentage
.264 Batting Average on Balls in Play

Obviously the big questions come in the average and home run departments.  It was the first time he hit below .270 in a season and was coming off a 2015 campaign that saw him launch 42 HR (along with 38 doubles and 1 triple).  Considering he had just 24 doubles and 2 triples in 2016, there’s obviously reason for concern. Read more

Pre-Order The Rotoprofessor 2017 Fantasy Baseball Draft Guide Today!!

It’s that time of year again! Sure football season is in full swing and the World Series is kicking off, but it’s never too early to start planning for 2017. As a loyal Rotoprofessor reader/supporter, we wanted to give you the first opportunity to reserve your copy our 2017 Fantasy Baseball Draft Guide!

The price will be increasing this year to a whole $7.00 (I know, inflation). As a special, if you pre-order the guide today it will be yours for just $5.50!  This may be the best value you get to help prepare for your fantasy baseball season, so make sure to take advantage of it.

For those who have never experienced the guide, it is delivered through e-mail as an Excel spreadsheet and also includes:

  • Over 500 player projections (including some of the top prospects in the game)
  • Top 400 Overall
  • 2-page cheat sheet, perfect to take to your draft
  • The Rotoprofessor Staff’s quick take on every player projected
  • Expanded Rankings (i.e. Top 30 Catchers, Top 125 Starting Pitchers)
  • Top 50 rankings for Corner Infielders & Middle Infielders
  • Projected lineups and rotations
  • Top 50 Prospects for 2017 (Prospects who can make impact in ’17)
  • Top 5 Prospects for 2017 by team (Prospects who can make impact in ’17)
  • Top 40 “New” Dynasty Prospects
  • Auction Values (including NL/AL-Only)
  • Multiple Position Eligibility Chart
  • Closer Chart
  • Top 25 Sleepers for 2017
  • 15 Players Likely to be Overdrafted in 2017

Unlike paper guides our version will be updated every two-to-three weeks, helping you stay as prepared as possible.  The first draft was released on January 16, 2017 and the updates will begin after that.  I want to thank you all for supporting Rotoprofessor and make sure to reserve your copy of the 2017 Fantasy Baseball Draft Guide today!

Extremely Early 2017 Rankings: Top 10 Catchers

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

We all know that catchers tend to be power first options, so a catcher who has the potential to hit for a strong average has value because it’s harder to find.  How about a catcher with the ability to steal a few bases?  Those are nearly impossible, but even rarer is a catcher with the potential to hit for average and power while also chipping in speed.  Keep that in mind as you look at these rankings (keep in mind these will also be expanded as we grow closer to draft day as well):

1. Buster Posey – San Francisco Giants
2. Jonathan Lucroy – Texas Rangers
3. Gary Sanchez – New York Yankees
4. J.T. Realmuto – Miami Marlins
5. Willson Contreras – Chicago Cubs
6. Salvador Perez – Kansas City Royals
7. Evan Gattis – Houston Astros
8. Brian McCann – Houston Astros
9. Russell Martin – Toronto Blue Jays
10. Yasmani Grandal – Los Angeles Dodgers Read more