It’s Time to Drop These Top 5 Underperforming Fantasy Baseball Players
Bobby McMann of RotoExperts.com checks in on some underperforming Fantasy Baseball players and gives you the thumbs up to cut them!
It is time to sharpen the axe. With more than one-third of the Fantasy Baseball season gone by, chopping underperforming players is necessary. Of course, players can get off to very slow starts, and you don’t want to give up on anyone too early only to watch them tear up the league on someone else’s roster. At the same time, you cannot sit around much longer and allow underperforming players sink your chances for a championship. Today we’ll look at five players that you need to consider moving on from. It is never an easy thing to do, especially with younger players that have shown glimpses of potential in the past. Take Michael Pineda for example. There was talk that he could be sent to the bullpen or the minors if he did not start to turn things around. In fact, he might have made this list had it not been for an encouraging performance on Thursday in Detroit.
- Billy Hamilton, OF, Reds - There was one reason you drafted Hamilton and that was to dominate the stolen base category. Up until last week, he delivered a paltry eight steals in 42 games. He’s been heating up of late, thanks to a trip to Coors Field. He has five thefts over the last week, which gives him the fourth-most in the majors despite his struggles. The issue with Hamilton has always been an inability to get on base consistently. While he has stolen 56 and 57 bases over the past two seasons, he has been a drain on your average and really has not offered anything in the power categories. If you play in a roto league and need the speed, you might have to suffer through the low numbers in every other offensive category. Given his recent hot streak, why not try to shop him around to another owner who needs speed? He still has name value and perceived upside despite a lack of improvement over the past two years. In shallow and head-to-head formats, he can be cut outright. If you are desperate for speed, take a look at Rajai Davis or Melvin Upton Jr., who may very well be available on your league’s waiver wire. In long-term formats, you may as well stick with Hamilton on your bench and see if he can continue his strong play. He needs to build his value back up after being an extremely trendy pick two years ago. Stealing 60 bases over the next four months would be a good start.
- Yasmany Tomas, 3B/OF, Diamondbacks - Billed as a power prospect from Cuba on the heels of a monster Jose Abreu debut, expectations were high for Tomas in 2015. While he slugged just nine homers in 406 at-bats, he held his own at the dish and with a year under his belt, improvement in the power department was expected this season. After a promising spurt of strength in mid-April during which he hit five HRs in 10 games, Tomas has one long ball in his last 27 contests. I still believe in the long-term potential for Tomas to be a 25 HR hitter from the five or six-hole, with the ability to deliver plenty of RBIs and an average that won’t hurt you. However, questionable plate discipline has plagued him. For season-long formats, it is time to move on from Tomas and grab someone that can give you more reliable power right now. Adam Duvall is available in roughly half of all leagues and would make an excellent replacement for the frustrating Tomas. If you can stomach the low batting average, Khris Davis and Chris Carter could each slug 30 HRs this season as well.
- Rick Porcello, SP, Red Sox - On the surface, Porcello is having a nice season, including the best strikeout rate he’s ever had. Digging a little deeper, he has a 5.11 ERA since April ended and no more than five strikeouts in any one outing. Looking at his career numbers, he has only had an ERA below 3.96 once, back in 2014. Even if he can keep piling up the strikeouts, Porcello is a mediocre at best Fantasy option. If you were fooled into thinking he was breaking out during his April hot streak, there is still time to save face. You can always try to trade him, but his track record suggests you will have a hard time. It is time to look at other options for your starting staff. Look at Archie Bradley, formerly the best pitching prospect in baseball. He has turned in back to back strong outings and offers considerably more upside than Porcello.
- Elvis Andrus, SS, Rangers - Shortstop is not the easiest position to fill, but you can do better than Andrus. He is the type of player that does just enough to stay off the waiver wire, but not enough to be on anyone’s roster for a given period of time. Despite a career high seven HRs and respectable 62 RBIs in 2015, Andrus saw his average decline for the fourth consecutive season and he scored just 69 Runs. After starting off his career with three straight 30-plus stolen base seasons, he has just one such year in his last four. To his credit, he does do a little bit of everything, and deeper formats might not have many better options. When he was putting up decent numbers in his early 20s, there was always the potential that he could develop into more. Now we know that he is what he is. Eduardo Nunez is playing like a better version of Andrus right now, and Eugenio Suarez is an option if you crave more power from the SS position. Plus, if you cut Andrus, there is a decent chance he’ll be on the waiver wire if your alternative option does not end up working out.
- Jered Weaver, SP, Angels - If you are still clinging onto Weaver, you are hopefully in an AL-only or 20-team league at this point. That is your only excuse. If you are not, you are putting way too much value in his name and previous accomplishments. The peripherals have been showing a decline for a few years now and he has managed to outpitch them for quite some time. Last year, he had an ERA above 4.00 for the first time since 2008, and his strikeout rate was a pathetic 5.1 K/9. If it was not clearly obvious before, it is time to cut bait on Weaver because he is not getting any better. If you are digging that deep, you can look at a number of different players and there is no need to stay committed if it does not work out. Jon Gray has strung together back to back strong outings and Eduardo Rodriguez could be in the Red Sox rotation for good if he pitches like he did in the minors.
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