March 10, 2017
Fantasy Players to Avoid
Craig Kimbrel, Boston Red Sox
Kimbrel walked more than five hitters per nine innings last year. Five! Maybe that one can be chalked up to his injury -- he walked almost seven hitters per nine upon returning -- but it had hovered above 4.0 BB/9 even prior to his stint on the disabled list. Ironically, Kimbrel threw more first-pitch strikes than ever before, and it's not even close; you'd think that'd portend better control. Yet he threw fewer pitches in the zone than ever before -- a stark contrast. Combine that with the fact he kept leaving pitches up in the zone, and it all may be enough evidence to suggest he's losing it a bit. His velocity dipped ever so slightly last year, making me wonder if he reached back a bit extra to maintain his velocity at the expense of control.
If that's true, then something's gotta give. If not -- even if all this fretting is for naught -- I think I'd rather wait for any of the half-dozen very talented relievers that have followed Kimbrel off draft boards. –Alex Chamberlain
David Robertson, Chicago White Sox
This year, however, I don’t think the price matches the value he’s going to put up. Part of the issue is the team for which he plays. The White Sox aren’t going to win many games in 2017, meaning there won’t be many save chances. Obviously, Robertson has been a part of many trade rumors, but that worries me too. The Nationals have been the most popular trade destination for the righty, but landing there is no guarantee. There’s a chance someone like the Dodgers could deal for him and put him in a set-up role, severely dinging his fantasy value.