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June 18, 2014

Fantasy Freestyle

Checking in on Cinderella: Hitters

by J.P. Breen


In covering fantasy baseball for the past couple of years, I’ve noticed that one of the biggest struggles for fantasy owners is evaluating players who enjoyed surprisingly good starts. Some owners wait out the subsequent rough patch because they’re convinced the good times will return. More often, though, the decline in performance goes relatively unnoticed because it is masked by the torrid start to the season. That is, the overall statistics for a player can seem palatable, while that guy is actually an anchor that drags the whole team down the standings for weeks before the downturn in performance becomes obvious in the seasonal numbers.

This article aims to cut through the fog of early-season overperformance in an attempt to determine whether a guy still has fantasy value. After all, a pumpkin can be transformed into a beautiful carriage for a while, but it’s only temporary. Its real identity eventually shines through, and ultimately, it is what we thought it was: an unattractive orange gourd that we pretend to care about for a few weeks around the end of October (note: this is ignoring the revelation that is pumpkin pie, which I’m throwing a comfortable 70 on and won’t listen to any arguments to the contrary).

However, not all surprise fantasy stories shrink back into irrelevance. Some players continue to buck their preseason expectations and actually maintain above-average performance across the board. In many ways, that’s just as notable as the guys who suddenly fall off a cliff.

The trick is determining whether a guy has already turned back into a pumpkin, or if he’s one of the handful of pop-up guys who manages to maintain his unexpected performance throughout the course of the season. We’re hoping to make that cursory distinction in this space. We’ll do position players this week and jump 60-feet, six-inches away to the pitcher’s mound next week.

2B Dee Gordon -- Los Angeles Dodgers

PA

AVG

OPS

R

HR

SB

BB%

K%

BABIP

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<< Previous Article
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: A D... (06/18)
<< Previous Column
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: A D... (06/18)
Next Column >>
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Tra... (06/19)
Next Article >>
Fantasy Article Dynasty Dynamics: Prog... (06/18)

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