Forgot Log-in or  Password? |  Help  Not a member, Register Now!
      
Fantasy Football Today
Fantasy Football Today Blog
Gameday Inactives
2014 Draft Prep Guide
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Get Your Draft Board
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Scores
Fantasy Games
Playoff Challenge
Commissioner
Prize Leagues
Free
Office Pool Manager
Game Pick'em
Player Challenge
Fantasy Baseball Today
Fantasy Baseball Today Blog
2015 Draft Prep Guide
Mock Drafts
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Rankings
Projections
Schedules
Probable Pitchers
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injuries
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Message Boards
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Downloadable Draft Kit
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
No Fantasy Teams Found
 
 
 

2013 Draft Prep: Al Melchior's Busts

  •  

We all have players that we never, ever draft. For me, it's Alfonso Soriano, and it's because of my irrational fear that he will never live up to his draft value. If I had put that preconceived notion aside last season, I could have had a top 30 outfielder for a late-round pick.

Get your Custom Draft Kits!
Download your Draft Kit for Draft Day 2014 that's customized to your specific league scoring system, format and player pool!
Download your Draft Kit today!

The point in bringing up my aversion to Soriano is to provide a reminder that identifying busts is a process that has to be repeated every year. Someone may have been overrated once upon a time, but while the Fantasy world usually adjusts the changes in a player's actual value, sometimes we don't adjust to changes in perception.

While Soriano is no longer a bust, there are plenty of other players whose recent trends don't seem to justify their current level of popularity, at least as measured by average draft position. I have picked out 12 of these players. In some cases, there are warning signs of impending decline that aren't easily spotted from a scan of last season's Fantasy stats. Some players made this list, not because they are due for a decline, but rather because too many owners expect more improvement than their recent stats would suggest is coming.

Just because a player is a bust doesn't mean he is completely undraftable. It just means that you will probably need to give up too much on Draft Day to make the acquisition pay off. However, every league is different, so if yours is a Rotisserie league where Austin Jackson is still available after Alejandro De Aza and Chris Davis have come off the board, then Jackson should be a welcome addition to your roster, even though he is generally being overrated. That's just not how things are playing out in a typical CBSSports.com league.

Note: The numbers in parentheses reflect average draft position (ADP) on CBSSports.com, assuming a 12-team league.

Wilin Rosario, C, Rockies (Roto: Rd. 7, H2H: Rd. 11)

Rosario's power-driven rookie performance was completely legitimate, and it was good enough to make him a Top 5 catcher in Rotisserie and Top 10 in Head-to-Head. It's just that many owners seem to be expecting Rosario to take a big leap this season, especially in Head-to-Head, where he currently ranks seventh in ADP. Maybe, as a 24-year-old, Rosario can cut back on strikeouts, but it's hard to imagine him having a better power-hitting season than he did in 2012, when he blew away his level of production from his most recent minor league campaign at Double-A Tulsa. In points leagues, make sure both Monteros (Jesus and Miguel) are off the board before you use a pick on Rosario.

Mark Trumbo, 1B/OF, Angels (Roto: Rd. 7, H2H: Rd. 8)

What I just wrote about Rosario also goes for Trumbo. Rotisserie owners aren't going overboard for Trumbo, but his homer-happy approach only takes him so far in standard Head-to-Head formats. If he carries over the poor plate discipline that re-emerged during the second-half of last season, Trumbo could actually have a substantially worse season this year than last. Even in Roto leagues, you might get better value going for a player with a more well-rounded skill set like Desmond Jennings or Carlos Gomez, both of whom will at least provide steals.

Danny Espinosa, 2B/SS, Nationals (Roto: Rd. 15, H2H: Rd. 16)

Espinosa's combination of power and speed is tailor-made for Rotisserie, but owners in Roto and Head-to-Head formats alike are drafting the fourth-year player as a solid second base or shortstop option in standard mixed leagues. As a Top 12 second base option in both formats a year ago, it's understandable that owners would expect a similar level of production from him again, but a dropoff could be in store for 2013. Espinosa has yet to show that he can be even a decent contact hitter, and last season, he relied on a .193 BABIP on flyballs to muster a .247 overall batting average. The major league average flyball BABIP was just .131, so there's a good chance that Espinosa' batting average will dip, and that could mean fewer opportunities to steal bases and produce runs. Let someone else take the risk that he will maintain or improve on last season's stats.

Brett Lawrie, 3B, Blue Jays (Roto: Rd. 10, H2H: Rd. 11)

I do see the allure of going after Lawrie in the middle rounds, as owners are hoping he will recapture the magic of his 2011 rookie season. He was a much more aggressive hitter in his sophomore season, though, and the results were not particularly flattering. Maybe Lawrie can adjust, but even if he achieves markedly better power numbers, he may not have enough clout to keep up with Will Middlebrooks and Pedro Alvarez in Rotisserie value. His contact skills give him more of an edge in Head-to-Head, but again, his current draft position only makes sense if he has a significant rebound. Granted, Lawrie is far from the only unproven third baseman likely to be available in the middle rounds, but with so many promising young players at the position, there's no reason to reach for him either.

Josh Willingham, OF, Twins (Roto: Rd. 11, H2H: Rd. 12)

A career-high 145 games plus an unprecedented burst of home run power made for a career year for Willingham. Owners aren't drafting Willingham like the Top 15 outfielder that he was in 2012, but he is still going a little earlier than he needs to. He should hit roughly 30 home runs, but he could lose some run production unless he can repeat an unsually good line with runners in scoring position (.287/.424/.535). Willingham's power is legitimate, but it's not enough to elevate him above more well-rounded producers like Alejandro De Aza or Norichika Aoki.

B.J. Upton, OF, Braves (Roto: Rd. 7, H2H: Rd. 10)

Upton has become an increasingly impatient hitter, and it showed up in his .298 on-base percentage last season. That was also his OBP through Aug. 10 last season, and with just 10 home runs and a .378 slugging percentage at that point, there wasn't much upside to Upton's aggressive approach. Owners who stuck it out from mid-August on got a huge payoff, as Upton went bananas with 18 home runs over a 50-game span. While that hot finish could signal the beginning of a breakout, it could just as easily be a random hot streak. Given that Upton is already in his peak years and that he has a much longer history of moderate power and declining plate discipline, I feel safer assuming that we'll see the pre-August version of Upton in 2013.

Austin Jackson, OF, Tigers (Roto: Rd. 9, H2H: Rd. 11)

I actually buy into the power breakout that Jackson experiened last season, and he has clearly established himself as a 100-run scorer, yet I don't see him as a Top 30 outfielder in Rotisserie, as he is currently being drafted. Maybe some owners are expecting Jackson to take another big step forward, but it's hard to see him making more than incremental gains on his home run and strikeout rates, and he could even stand pat or regress slightly.

Tim Lincecum, SP, Giants (Roto: Rd. 12, H2H: Rd. 9)

After last season's meltdown, owners are no longer treating Lincecum like a staff ace, but they're also not leaving him outside of the Top 80 starting pitchers, even though that's where he finished in 2012. By drafting him among the Top 40 starters, owners are basically splitting the difference, and maybe that's where Lincecum will wind up. Then again, he has had three straight years of eroding command and efficiency, so counting on anything more than a marginal rebound may be too high of an expectation. Maybe he can return to being a Cy Young Award contender, but I'd rather use a pick in the early portion of the middle rounds on someone whose numbers are moving in the right direction.

Jon Lester, SP, Red Sox (Roto: Rd. 12, H2H: Rd. 8)

To his credit, Lester is having a fine spring, but then again, so did Francisco Liriano, Jake Westbrook and Blake Beavan a year ago, and those performnces didn't portend great things for the regular season. That trio had not been as dominant as Lester has been in his five Grapefruit League starts, but the bigger point is that spring stats are not always a harbinger of what is to come. The plunge in Lester's swinging strike rate over the last two seasons is still a concern, so owners investing a pick within the first half of the draft may not be happy with the return they get from the lefty.

Matt Harvey, SP, Mets (Roto: Rd. 14, H2H: Rd. 12)

With a double-digit K/9 rate and a sub-3.00 ERA in his first 10 major league starts, why not take a chance on Harvey in the middle rounds? Well, there are a few reasons. Even if Harvey can maintain a higher strikeout rate than he had in the minors -- which is a pretty big assumption to make -- walks could present a problem, and he is likely to be more homer-prone than he was last season. Also figuring that he won't strand 79 percent of his baserunners again, Harvey looks due for a fall for the coming season. While Harvey should be better than a mid-round option long-term, it's far from a lock that he'll provide that type of value this year.

Jarrod Parker, SP, Athletics (Roto: Rd. 18, H2H: Rd. 16)

Parker's strong finish in 2012 helped to boost his value in drafts this spring, but don't be too quick to dismiss the first four-plus months of his rookie season. According to Baseball-Reference.com, Parker threw only 61 percent of his pitches for strikes through the end of August, and if not for a highly favorable home run-to-flyball ratio, Parker's ERA could have easily come close to 4.00 instead of landing at 3.47. Though he was a highly-touted prospect, it's not as if Parker didn't have his struggles with command at times in the minors. Unless he can carry over his September success for the better part of a season, Parker may not prove to be a reliable standard mixed league option, at least not just yet.

Joel Hanrahan, RP, Red Sox (Roto: Rd. 13, H2H: Rd. 13)

Because of their limited innings, relievers' stats can be volatile from year to year, but last year's slippage in Hanrahan's walk and ground ball rates are particularly troubling. Struggles with control and keeping the ball down are not new to Hanrahan, and if he doesn't get back to his 2011 form (1.83 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, 2.1 BB/9, 54 percent ground ball rate), he could get punished, now that he no longer calls PNC Park home. Having Andrew Bailey in the wings as a potential replacement doesn't help to bolster Hanrahan's job security as the Red Sox's closer.

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us on Twitter @CBSFantasyBB or Al Melchior at @almelccbs . You can also e-mail us at fantasybaseball@cbsinteractive.com .

Get player news notifications, manage your team and check scores
- all updated in real time. Download the CBS Fantasy App.

  •  
 
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre
 
 
Player News
Astros 1B Chris Carter smacks 14th home run of season Monday
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(12:12 am ET) Astros first baseman Chris Carter connected off Brandon Finnegan in the fifth inning for his 14th home run of the season during Monday's 6-1 win over the Royals.

The solo shot was his only hit in four at-bats during the game. He also struck out twice.

Prior to Monday's win, Carter was hitting .182 with two home runs and six RBI in his last 11 games.


Astros' Jose Altuve hits seventh home run of season Monday
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(12:07 am ET) Astros second baseman Jose Altuve smacked his seventh home run of the season Monday to send the Astros to a 6-1 win over the Royals.

Altuve hit the solo shot off Joe Blanton in the third inning. It was his only hit in three at-bats during the contest. He also walked once.

Prior to Monday's contest, Altuve was hitting .250 with one home run and three RBI in his last 12 games.


Report: Padres calling up 2B Jedd Gyorko
by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(12:04 am ET) The Padres will bring up second baseman Jedd Gyorko from Triple-A Tacoma, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune

Gyorko played one inning for Tacoma before being sent to San Diego. The Padres are expected to make a disabled list move to correspond bringing Gyorko up. Before being demoted on June 10, Gyorko was hitting .210. 


Royals C Salvador Perez hits 13th home run of season Monday
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(12:03 am ET) Royals catcher Salvador Perez produced the only run of the game for the Royals during Monday's 6-1 loss to the Astros.

Perez hit his 13th home run of the season when he connected off Lance McCullers in the seventh inning. It was his only hit in four at-bats during the game.

Prior to Monday's contest, Perez was hitting .185 with two home runs and four RBI in his last seven games.


Dodgers P Mike Bolsinger exits game with flu-like symptoms
by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(6/29/2015) Dodgers pitcher Mike Bolsinger left Monday night's game against the Diamondbacks with flu-like symptoms, according to MLB.com. 

Bolsinger went four innings, allowed three hits and struck out four batters. Before feeling ill, he Bolsinger hadn't allowed a hit. He now has an ERA of 2.76 for the season. 


Royals SP Joe Blanton allows five runs in Monday's loss
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(6/29/2015) Royals pitcher Joe Blanton failed to get out of the third inning during Monday's start against the Indians, which the Royals lost 6-1.

Blanton surrendered five runs on five hits over 2 2/3 innings of work. He also struck out two and walked four during the outing. He gave up a solo home run to Jose Altuve in the third inning.

It was his first loss of the season. Monday's loss broke his two-game winning streak. Prior to Monday's outing, Blanton had given up a total of two runs over his last two starts.


Astros SP Lance McCullers allows one run in Monday's win
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(6/29/2015) Astros pitcher Lance McCullers only made one mistake during Monday's start, which the Astros won 6-1 over the Royals.

McCullers surrendered one run on four hits over seven innings of work. The one run came on a solo home run by Salvador Perez in the seventh inning. McCullers also struck out six and walked two during the outing. He is now 4-2 with a 2.19 ERA.

Monday's win was McCullers' first in his last three starts. He has now given up a total of two runs over his last 13 innings of work.


Brewers' Adam Lind drives in two runs Monday
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(6/29/2015) Brewers first baseman Adam Lind only had one hit in three at-bats Monday, but he drove in two runs during the 7-4 win over the Phillies.

Lind drove in one run when he hit a double off Sean O'Sullivan in the first inning, which scored Jonathan Lucroy. He also drove in a run on a sacrifice fly in the third inning.

Lind is now 13 for 41 with two home runs and eight RBI in his last 12 games.


Twins 2B Brian Dozier launches homer in loss
by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(6/29/2015) Twins second baseman Brian Dozier hit his 16th home run of the season in Monday night's 11-7 loss to the Reds. 

Dozier went yard on a three-run bomb in the fourth inning off of Reds pitcher Mike Leake. That was Dozier's only hit of the game as he finished 1 for 5 and struck out three times. That was Dozier's third home run over his past 10 games. 

He now has a slash line of .266/.340/.529.


Rockies pitcher Tyler Matzek working on control issues
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(6/29/2015) The Rockies sent pitcher Tyler Matzek home to deal with his control issues, reports MLB.com.

"We've been working so hard with him, we've gone through different steps to the point where we feel like he needs a blow," Rockies director of pitching operations Mark Wiley said Monday. "It's not a monster thing. We're just giving him some time off to regroup while we decide where we want to go and how we're going to attack it from here."

Matzek walked five and hit a batter during a start at Class A last week.

"We're working to get him to where the mechanical part of his game and the mental part of his game are working together," Wiley said. "I've had other guys in the past that we've done the same thing with. Sometimes you put so much on yourself because you're working so hard to come back that you need to get away."


 
 
 
Rankings