Burning Fantasy Baseball Questions: San Diego Padres
Chase Headley: Where did that come from?
One of fantasy's biggest surprises came from an age-28 season by a skills 'tweener with four previous campaigns under his belt. It was a textbook occasion to arrive.
That makes sense until you look at that 21.4 HR/FB; he hadn't posted one higher than 10.7, which came in his first extended work (2008). Over the final three months, he posted a .300-23-77 line in 320 at-bats. That was a little too hot; errant gusts alert.
The switch-hitter likes going to left field, the more favorable sector for leaving this yard, regardless of which side from which he's shooting rawhide. The changes to PETCO Park (we'll get to that in a bit) contend he could keep a significant portion of the 31 homers, also, because they should aid his more powerful side, when he bats from the left.
But - spoiler alert - his ambience is hardly Arlington. And despite Headley's late-season fly-ball increase, that homer pace is unsustainable, especially by an unfinished plate product who posted a 48.5 grounder rate on the year. Oh, and do you want to count on a Padres hitter recording something close to 115 RBIs and 95 plate crossings again?
His profile has enough of a foundation that at some point, even his diminished dinger total - low 20s, tops - will look better than whatever's left at the hot corner. However, this position class is quite deep, and many will believe he's worth a pick in the elite class of hot cornermen. He'll more than likely use this year to learn how to deal with regression instead of following through on an expensive investment.
About Tim Heaney
Tim's work has been featured by USA Today/Sports Weekly, among numerous publications, and recognized as a finalist in FSWA's awards. The Boston University alum competes in Tout Wars and LABR and has won numerous industry leagues in both baseball and football.
During baseball and football season, he's on The Reality Check with Glenn Clark every Wednesday on 1570 AM WNST in Baltimore. He hits the airwaves every Thursday at 9:30 a.m. ET on Sirius XM Fantasy Sports Radio, where he often crashes other shows, as well.
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