Two Years Later, Has R.A. Dickey Emerged As A Viable Fantasy Option?

At this time last year we were left wondering if R.A. Dickey could replicate his 2010 success and entrench himself as a viable fantasy option.  One year later, we have gotten our answer:

8 Wins
208.2 Innings
3.28 ERA
1.23 WHIP
134 Strikeouts (5.78 K/9)
54 Walks (2.33 BB/9)
.278 BABIP

It was impossible to draw conclusions off just his 2010 year, given the lack of a history  we had on Dickey.  While he’s been around for a long-time, he only recently re-established himself, now as a knuckleball pitcher.

However, given the 2011 numbers above, there are a few conclusions we can reach:

Dickey offers great control for a knuckleball pitcher, helping him become a source of WHIP
It’s hard to believe, but Dickey actually has proven to be a good source of WHIP for fantasy owners.  He has now posted BB/9 of 2.17 and 2.33 over the past few seasons.  That definitely gives him an advantage to posting good numbers, especially considering his realistic BABIP over the past two years (.276 & .278).  At this point, there’s no reason to think that this is going to change any time soon.

Dickey is not going to be a source of strikeouts
If he was, he would be an even better source of WHIP.  Unfortunately, we need to keep expectations in check.  While the knuckleball can be a tough pitch to hit, he has a tough time generating swings and misses.  This is the second straight year he’s been under 6.0 K/9 (he was at 5.37 in ’10).

Over the past two seasons he has struck out at least 9 batters twice (both in 2011).

Over that same span, he’s struck out 4 batters or less in a start 41 times.

Clearly, fantasy owners need to realize what they are going to get, and this is a definite strike against his potential value.

Dickey is a tough bet for wins
Pitching for the Mets, this is unfortunately going to be a constant trend and it hurt him badly in 2011.  Despite a solid ERA and WHIP, he just couldn’t get many victories.  Unless they strengthen their bullpen (and their offense), he’s doomed for a similar fate in 2012.

It’s great that he’s emerged as a viable option, but let’s be realistic.  He’s a backend spot starter, and nothing more.


Posted on by Rotoprofessor. This entry was posted in Player Analysis. Bookmark the permalink.




One Response to Two Years Later, Has R.A. Dickey Emerged As A Viable Fantasy Option?

  1. SimonJ - Trade Counsel says:

    Depending on your roster and IP limitations, you’re probably just as well putting out one or two decent setup men instead. The ERA and WHIP look nice but 4 Ks per start and a win every 4 starts really won’t cut it. 6 relievers logged at least 8 wins last year (plus Aceves who made 4 starts), and Dickey only logged 30 more Ks than guys like Clippard and Robertson.

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