Archive for Player Comparison

Bounce Back or Bust: Could Jason Castro Be A Viable Option In 2015?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

After breaking out in 2013, with a line of .276 with 18 HR and 56 RBI over 491 PA, a lot was expected of Jason Castro in 2014. Always a player who hit the ball hard (25.2% line drive rate), there was a lot to like. Unfortunately we witnessed a regression across the board:

465 At Bats
.222 Batting Average (103 Hits)
14 Home Runs
56 RBI
43 Runs
1 Stolen Bases
.286 On Base Percentage
.366 Slugging Percentage
.294 Batting Average on Balls in Play

The first thing to note is his big drop in average. His strikeout number wasn’t great in 2013 (26.5%), but it jumped to 29.5% last season. In fact he didn’t have a month below 27% all season, and hasn’t since June 2013. In other words, expecting a major change is a mistake. Read more

Rest of Season: Dustin Pedroia vs. Anthony Rendon

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Prior to the season this would’ve been a ridiculous debate, as Pedroia was widely viewed as a Top 5 option at his position. However, at this stage you could likely make an argument either way (all stats are through Saturday):

  • Pedroia – .266, 4 HR, 27 RBI, 41 R, 2 SB
  • Rendon – .274, 11 HR, 42 RBI, 45 R, 5 SB

There’s little question that Rendon has been the better player, thus far, but can he maintain it? Is he the better option over the rest of the season?  Let’s take a look:


The question is, what’s exactly happened? A .300 career hitter, his drop in average has been due to poor luck more than anything. While his strikeouts are up, would a 12.0% mark really concern anyone? The problem is in his BABIP, which currently sits at .293. Considering he actually owns a career best 24.2% line drive rate, expecting an improvement should be easy. Making it even easier is the fact that he’s had a mark of 23.4% or better in each month.

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Fantasy Throwdown: Danny Salazar vs. Noah Syndergaard: Which Young Starter Is A Better Dynasty Target?

The latest Fantasy Throwdown takes a little bit of a different twist, as we go dynasty!  Which pitcher would be a better investment for the long-term, the Indians’ Danny Salazar or the Mets’ Noah Syndergaard?  Let’s take a look at the arguments:


Will Overton – In Favor Of Danny Salazar
In a dynasty league the prospect we haven’t seen is almost always more enticing than the prospect we have. It’s that element of the unknown that appeals to us, because we can imagine someone to be as good as we want if we’ve never seen him in the big leagues. I like Noah Syndergaard, don’t get me wrong, but I’m going to side with the young guy who has been to the majors and excelled.

Danny Salazar went from Double-A to the Major Leagues last season and showed himself very capable of being a top of the rotation pitcher. He struck out well over 11 batters per nine last year and coupled it with an excellent walk rate of less than three per nine.

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Fantasy Throwdown: Elvis Andrus vs. Everth Cabrera: Which Stolen Base Threat Should You Target?

When you are looking for a shortstop, you could easily find yourself trying to decide between two “pure” speed options in Elvis Andrus and Everth Cabrera.  Who is actually the better draft day investment?  Let’s see what the Rotoprofessor writers think:

Will Overton – The Case For Elvis Andrus
I think there is a common misconception out there that Everth Cabrera is a younger, still budding player, unlike Elvis Andrus. The fact is that they both came in the league as rookies in 2009 and Cabrera is actually two years older. I think people are souring a bit on Andrus because he hasn’t progressed as far as some expected, but he’s still clearly a better player than Cabrera for fantasy purposes.

Andrus has never hit below .265 in his five seasons in the Majors. Cabrera is a lifetime .252 hitter. He clearly made progress last year reaching .283, but one year doesn’t trump five years of consistency.

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Fantasy Throwdown: Manny Machado vs. Xander Bogaerts: Which Youngster Offers The Best Fantasy Upside?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Last season Manny Machado burst onto the scene after getting his first taste of the Majors in 2012, entrenching himself as one of the elite young players in the game.  While Xander Bogaerts didn’t get quite as long of a look in his debut season, he’s primed to open 2014 as a starter and has the talent to quickly emerge as one of the elite in the game himself.

The question is, which is the player fantasy owners should be targeting both for 2014 and over the long-term?  Let’s take a look:


Batting Average:
Machado – In his first full season in the Majors Machado hit .283 courtesy of a 15.9% strikeout rate, 20.6% line drive rate and .322 BABIP.  There’s nothing unrealistic in those numbers and there is potential growth for more.  For instance, look at his line drive split between the first and second half:

  • First Half – 23.6%
  • Second Half – 16.0%

He did hit just .268 at Double-A in 2012, but that was also as a 19-year old.  The fact that he posted a 15.4% strikeout rate that season is a good sign and the potential is there to continue to develop in the average department assuming he can improve on his pop up rate (15.8%).  Given the makeup, it appears like .280 is his floor.

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Fantasy Throwdown: Shelby Miller vs. Julio Teheran: Which Young Starter Is A Better Bet For 2014?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

The Cardinals’ Shelby Miller and the Braves’ Julio Teheran had surprisingly similar numbers in 2013:

  • Miller – 3.06 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, 8.78 K/9, 2.96 BB/9
  • Teheran – 3.20 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, 8.24 K/9, 2.18 BB/9

Throw in that they pitch for two of the best teams in the NL and the difference between them seems razor thin. So which youngster offers the better pick for 2014? Let’s take a look:

Earned Run Average
Interestingly enough, both pitchers benefited from elevated strand rates in 2013:

  • Miller – 80.1%
  • Teheran – 80.9%

They also both posted line drive rates over 20%, so there’s no difference there. The biggest thing? Miller had a stark split (1.75 home/4.57 road) as compared to Teheran who was consistent regardless of where he pitched (3.04/3.38).

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