Is It Ditch Time: Should Fantasy Owners Cut Bait With Gregory Polanco?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Gregory Polanco got off to a decent start, especially in the power department with 5 HR over his first 11 games.  For a long time that helped to mask the deficiencies, but as the poor numbers have piled up in the subsequent 37 games owners are starting to grow frustrated.  Overall he’s hitting .201 with 8 HR and 3 SB, and when you look at the batted ball profile the issue is obvious:

Year
Line Drive Rate
Groundball Rate
Fly Ball Rate
Pop-Up Rate
201720.3%42.2%37.5%10.0%
201814.5%32.8%52.7%14.5%

Polanco is clearly swinging for the fences, and it’s been even worse in May (57.9%).  That approach has led to more swings and misses (10.9% SwStr%) and he’s been more aggressive (29.8% O-Swing%, though this isn’t a bad number).  You put those two things together and there’s no questioning why his average has plummeted.  The real question is if he can correct it?

You would think so, given his experience, but when you get into this approach it’s very easy to watch it torpedo your season.  The upside is still there, and we can’t ignore that he’s only two years removed from a 22 HR/17 SB campaign for the Pirates.  You aren’t going to find that on the waiver wire, and even with his current batted ball profile we’d expect him to improve upon his .228 BABIP (he owns a 33.6% Hard%).

Would we sit him down until he shows signs of turning things around?  Absolutely, but we wouldn’t cut bait and move on completely.  There’s simply too much upside that it could ultimately burn you.

Fantasy “Ditch” Guidelines:

  • 10 Team League – Only owners in this shallow of a league could consider dropping him (though we still wouldn’t recommend it)
  • 12 Team League – Hold
  • 14+ Team League – Hold
  • NL-Only League – Hold
  • Keeper/Dynasty – Hold

Source – Fangraphs

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6 comments

  1. Joel says:

    He’s killing me. I was really relying on him to help in stolen bases. I picked up mallex to help and thinking of trading maneae and pollanco for Soler. Thoughts

    • Rotoprofessor says:

      That would be a big time overpay for Soler. I have no problem with the package, but I’d be shooting for more “certainty” and a bit higher

  2. Duke Slugger says:

    Camargo or Difo long term?

  3. NK says:

    Pts league, K-1, would you take Lamb or Beltre off waivers over Aguilar? Or Polanco ovet Desmond? What do you expect to see out of Lamb power wise ROS?

    Thanks as always

    • Rotoprofessor says:

      If those guys are on the wire, I’d ride Aguilar a little longer before dumping him. As for Polanco/Desmond, I’d prefer Polanco’s upside.

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