Chris Davis: a starting fantasy 1B, just a great CI, or not even?
A step forward
The home run power - 30-plus, easily, maybe 40-plus in another, eventual breakthrough year? Money in the bank. His first full season is evidence that he's a capable major leaguer. Davis succeeded in Baltimore at least in part because he was out from under the weight of gross expectations (present or just perceived) that burdened him while he was a member of the Texas Rangers.
He could produce a .280 or .290 batting average in any season because he hits the ball so hard, but his poor control of the strike zone makes it virtually impossible for him to enjoy the kind of stretch that would allow him to do so. The risk isn't even so much in the negative effect his potentially low average could have on your BA column; you shouldn't be willing to pay for a .270 mark. It's the possibility, however minute, of a prolonged slump because of his flawed approach that results in a loss of playing time. Buck Showalter has a great deal of faith in his players and methods at this point, however, so fantasy owners can take a measure of confidence from that. If Davis were to get some time off because he was struggling, it would almost certainly be with the purpose of getting him back in the lineup.
You can probably win with Davis as your starting first baseman, in any format. You would be wise to mitigate the risk involved in doing so, of course.
Where is the fantasy value in this club's rag-tag rotation?
About Nicholas Minnix
Minnix is baseball editor and a fantasy football analyst at KFFL. He plays in LABR and Tout Wars and won the FSWA Baseball Industry Insiders League in 2010.
The University of Delaware alum is a regular guest on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio and Baltimore's WNST AM 1570.
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