A look at how well you've done if you followed some of J.P.'s preseason recommendations.
As we near the All-Star break, I thought it would be useful to critique myself and my fantasy advice throughout the year. This allows me to own up to mistaken guidance or faulty analysis, while also celebrating my own home runs. In other words, this article hopes to be the “accountability” for which people crave.
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The soft-tossing right-hander has gotten back on track after a terrible April.
It’s no big secret that I am a huge supporter of Kyle Hendricks. Though I have a very strong hold on my affinity for him and his pitching style, others remain quite vigilant when it comes to Hendricks. This is completely understandable, given the fact that he has been said to not have anything more than fringe-average stuff to bring to the table every five days, but it’s been working for him. And though he has a few wrinkles to iron out, his wrinkles aren’t any more serious or damaging than previous pitchers’ wrinkles have been—he’s managed to hold onto his roster spot longer than the likes of Travis Wood and Edwin Jackson.
Hendricks finished his 2014 season on an absolute tear, with a 2.46 ERA in 13 games over 80 innings pitched. He had just a 1.08 WHIP on the season and an impressive 3.32 FIP. This left fans and critics alike wondering if he would be able to repeat this type of performance in 2015, his first full season with a permanent spot in the rotation.
For those diehards who religiously follow the minor leagues, devouring the wonderful BP top-10 prospect lists and Monday Ten Packs, we’re always cautioned to be careful of player comps. Such comps place unrealistic expectations on player development and don’t allow for minor leaguers to carve out their own niche. They categorize and label guys in a way that’s not always productive and is sometimes unfair.
I do believe statistical comps can be useful for fresh-faced major leaguers, though, in terms of fantasy baseball. Minor-league scouting reports paint a picture of what a player could become if everything clicks; however, it’s always important to take a step back from the painting and consider where it fits in the larger fantasy landscape. That is to say, statistically, what type of player could [Player X] become and what does that look like for fantasy owners.
These four pitchers have numbers on their side, but there are reasons to doubt their future fantasy value.
With the position players over and done with, it’s time to start taking stock of the pitchers. I’m going to kick us off with some National League starters that would deceive the box-score scout and might be receiving a bit too much hype. As always, this doesn’t disqualify them from prospect status so much as it is a reality check on the type of prospects they truly are. While you might think that starting pitching would provide a deep reservoir of names to pull from on a project like this, it turns out that like the author, it was actually shallow and disappointing. Rather than forcefeed you a fifth name, below are four prospects who we deemed less than the sum of their stats.
Once again, the BP Prospect Team has gone above and beyond in responding to inquiries on players, and the information they provide is invaluable. It allows us to give a lot of depth and history to the players mentioned, and that’s important in an industry that focuses so much on the present.
Paul breaks down six pitchers who have succeeded in the upper minors and might provide fantasy value down the stretch.
For the third straight week now the Sporer Report has an eye on September. This time around, I’ve got six potential National League September call-ups, all pitchers, who could bring solid value down the stretch. This is some deep speculation, so keep that in mind when deciding whether or not to take the plunge. The recent news in Queens takes some punch out of a couple of these, but you’ll have to trust that they made my list last week when I compiled both the AL and NL lists.
Those of you in 10- and 12-team mixers likely don’t need to pounce just yet and in fact shouldn’t pounce just yet unless you’ve got remarkably deep rosters. Instead, use this as a cheatsheet of who to keep tabs on as we now sit just four days from September 1. Those of you in deeper leagues might find a few of these guys already rostered, but most should be available, and if you have the roster space, then you should consider getting the jump on your league mates. These are ranked in order of potential impact which accounts for the likelihood that they even get the call.
BP's in-house guru takes his shot at projecting how team's top picks go next week.
1. Washington Nationals: This is now a no-brainer. Over the course of the spring, we've slowly gone from "Will they take Harper?" to "Will they sign Haper?" to "How much will they pay Harper?" He's going No. 1, and you could even end up seeing a creative deal that, on paper, gets him more than Stephen Strasburg received.
Kevin has all the information on the first-rounders who signed, and those who haven't yet.
Sunday's piece on the draft generated a whirlwind of email responses, many of them looking for specific information about a specific pick. Here's a broader look at where the first-round selections are at, both signed and unsigned. Again, as I wrote on Sunday, despite the 13 first-round picks who remain unsigned, and despite the deadline looming at just over a week away, most within the industry feel that all 30 picks will be professionals when we wake up on August 16.