Archive for Player Analysis

Buy ‘Em or Deny ‘Em: Does Jay Bruce Still Hold Any Value?

by Ray Kuhn

To say things have gotten bleak for Jay Bruce would be an understatement. Since acquiring him at the trade deadline, the Mets have been forced to sit the outfielder multiple times as he attempts to find his groove. It hasn’t happened yet, and on Tuesday Eric Campbell pinch hit for him in the eighth inning.

Bruce was then given another day on Wednesday, but he did enter the game as a pinch hitter. It shouldn’t be surprising that the result was the same as it has been for the past two months; another strikeout. While he was not in the lineup again on Thursday or Friday, the Mets are giving him every opportunity to work through his struggles.

With a little over week left in the regular season and the Mets fighting for a playoff spot, there is no more time left. New York simply cannot afford to be patient any longer. If you are in a dynasty or long term keeper league, then unfortunately Bruce is too good of a player to cut lose.  In single season leagues you should try to find the hot hand. Read more

Potential Final Week 2-Start Fliers: Who’s Worth The Gamble?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

The final week of the season is always difficult to maneuver when setting your pitching, as there are several factors that could influence your decisions:

  • Innings limits
  • Contenders shutting down/limiting their starters to preserve them for the playoffs
  • Any minor ailment leading to a shutdown

Of course, we are all also trying to maximize our innings/starts, as we try to grab any point possible.  With that in mind, here are a few risky starters who are currently lined up to make two starts and are worth considering for proactive adds:

 

Mike Clevinger – Cleveland Indians
at Detroit, at Kansas City

The Indian’s rotation is banged up, which has led to Clevinger returning.  They are going to want to rest the players who are healthy, so there’s little reason to think that he won’t get to make both of these starts (especially since innings also aren’t an issue). Read more

Buy ‘Em or Deny ‘Em: Are Ryon Healy & Brandon Drury Worth Using Over The Final Two Weeks?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

This is the time of year where the relatively unknown player could prove to be a difference maker and simply riding the hot hand is the strategy worth taking.  Let’s take a look at two of the hottest players in baseball, who surprisingly are likely available on your waiver wire (ownership numbers and all statistics are through Saturday), and try to determine if they are worth grabbing for the final two weeks:

 

Ryon Healy – Oakland A’s
ESPN – 17.7%, CBS Sports – 24%, Yahoo! – 19%

He’s hitting .311 with 10 HR and 29 RBI over 225 PA since being promoted to the Majors.  He’s been even better lately, hitting .448 with 2 HR and 7 RBI over the past week, but is there any chance he maintains this type of performance?

Overall he has benefited from some luck (.350 BABIP, 20.0% line drive rate), and he also has been chasing outside the strike zone a bit too much (34.1% O-Swing%).  While the latter hasn’t led to strikeouts, yet, would it really be a surprise if it did?  You have to think that teams will start feeding him more breaking balls (15.11% Whiff%) and offspeed pitches (15.84% Whiff%), to see if he can make the necessary adjustments (of course he is hitting .462 off changeups, but that’s courtesy of a .409 BABIP). Read more

Despite The 2nd Half Struggles, There’s Reason To Believe In Wil Myers

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Wil Myers was among the best players in baseball prior to the All-Star Break, but in the second half he’s fallen flat.  Maybe we want to argue that a regression was inevitable, but could anyone have predicted this type of a fall off:

  • First Half – .286, 19 HR, 60 RBI, 61 R, 15 SB
  • Second Half – .210, 5 HR, 21 RBI, 27 R, 10 SB

Now the question we have to ask is which is the real Wil Myers?

 

Power
Playing half his games in San Diego it isn’t a surprise that he’s regressed, but it’s been an across the board disappointment.  The 20.2% HR/FB has fallen to 13.5% (for his career he owns a 14.2% mark), but it’s the regression in his other skills that is concerning:

  • Groundballs – 43.6% to 50.7%
  • Fly Balls – 35.6% to 27.6%
  • Popups – 3.2% to 8.1%

Read more

The Ditch List: Is It Time To Cut Bait On Julio Urias Or Jose Berrios?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

There are two issues fantasy owners need to maneuver around in September:

  1. Minor injuries that ultimately end a player’s season
  2. Young players being shut down

Let’s take a look at two of the most talked about rookie starters in the game and see how their team’s plan on handling them in the immediate future (and whether or not they have value over the final few weeks):

 

Julio Urias – Los Angeles Dodgers
According to Andy McCullogh (via Twitter):

The Dodgers expect to move Julio Urias to the bullpen after this start.”

This is a song we’ve heard before, only to see the Dodgers ultimately reverse course and reinsert Urias into the rotation.  That said, it’s fair to wonder if this time things truly will be different.  Entering yesterday’s start he had already thrown 113.1 innings, after totaling 80.1 innings in ’15 and having never thrown more than 87.2 innings in a professional season. Read more

Diving Deep: Could Mallex Smith Be A Difference Maker Down The Stretch?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

It is easy to forget about the Braves’ Mallex Smith, who was thought to be lost for the year with a broken thumb. However he’s been rehabbing and playing in minor league games, making his return to the Majors inevitable. Can he be a difference maker over the final few weeks of the season?

The first question is going to be playing time. Currently the Braves are utilizing an outfield of:

  • Ender Inciarte
  • \Matt Kemp
  • Nick Markakis

Kemp has helped revitalize the Braves offense while Inciarte has been on fire of late. That would leave Markakis’ spot in the lineup, where Smith could potentially steal AB. The team does have a lot of money invested in Markakis for the next few seasons, but he’s also been fairly unproductive this season (.268 with 10 HR) and they know what he is and what he can do. Smith has a chance to be a fixture atop the batting order as soon as 2017, so it makes sense to get him AB and see how he handles MLB pitching. Read more