Diary of a Fantasy Baseball Madman: Don't Let Me Down

by MastersBall.com on June 24, 2013 @ 09:50:00 PDT

 


By Zach Steinhorn

Saturday, June 22 -- 12:45 PM

I'm an optimist. I'm patient. But I'm also very hard on myself. When it comes to managing my fantasy teams, this could be a problem. On one hand, I try to convince myself to stay the course with my struggling players. Surely, they are bound to turn things around. On the other hand, cutting ties might be the smarter move.

Let's face it. I screwed up. This guy who I thought was in store for a strong season is in fact one of the biggest busts of the year. How dumb was I to make such a blunder? On one hand, I want to pat myself on the back for drafting Jhonny Peralta as my starting MI in Mixed Tout and picking up Daniel Nava for a mere $1 in FAAB. But for now, let's forget about that. Let's focus on the draft day mistakes. And there were plenty of them. I know, I know, the season isn't even halfway complete, so there's still time for these underachievers to get their acts together. But there's a reason why I'm in the middle of the pack in the standings and not near the top. And these guys are to blame.

Jason Kubel

What I expected: .260 AVG, 25 HR, 85 RBI, 70 R

What he's on pace for: .273 AVG, 9 HR, 49 RBI, 36 R

Arizona Diamondbacks SP Ian Kennedy
Kennedy entered 2013 deceptively

I wrote about Kubel last week but this bothers me so much that it bears repeating. Why is he all of a sudden a platoon player? Yeah, he struggles a bit versus left-handed pitching, but it's not like he can't hit them at all. In 184 at-bats against southpaws last year, Kubel managed to launch a respectable seven homers to go along with 35 RBIs and a .446 slugging percentage. Not awful by any means. At least not so awful to the point where Kubel deserves to be benched against all left-handers. Only 20 of his 139 at-bats this year have come versus lefties. That's a little extreme, don't you think? If Kirk Gibson continues to follow this formula, Kubel's end of season counting stats will be terrible, certainly not #3 OF worthy.

Cody Ross

What I expected: .265 AVG, 25 HR, 80 RBI, 70 R

What he's on pace for: .251 AVG, 7 HR, 44 RBI, 42 R

In other words, I expected Ross to be pretty much a clone of Kubel, though I probably should have anticipated that the two might hurt each other's value. I had targeted Ross as a cheap source of power, figuring that a move to hitter-friendly Chase Field would easily result in a 25-HR season. Not quite. Ross didn't hit his first home run until May 6 and would be lucky to finish with 15. But in a deep mixed league like Tout, I still don't see him as waiver wire material, so all I can do for the time being is wait and hope.

Denard Span

What I expected: .280 AVG, 6 HR, 55 RBI, 85 R, 22 SB

What he's on pace for: .255 AVG, 0 HR, 39 RBI, 61 R, 18 SB

Snagging Span for the bargain basement price of $5 was one of my best moves of the draft. Or, so I thought. Hitting atop a powerful Nationals' lineup, the 29-year-old outfielder, still in the prime of his career, would enjoy his best season to date. He would score a boatload of runs, hit for a nice average and steal a decent number of bases. In fact, Span publicly stated back in spring training that he would make a conscious effort to run more. Well, stolen bases is about the only area where he's coming close to meeting my expectations.

I'm currently near the bottom of the league in runs scored, and Span's utter lack of production in that department is hurting me big time. Washington's offense on the whole is underperforming, and since runs is heavily tied to the players batting behind you, Span doesn't deserve all the blame. But a leadoff hitter simply cannot have a .310 OBP. If Span continues to have such a tough time getting on base, I wouldn't be surprised to see the Nats move him out of their leadoff spot. What a mess!

Ian Kennedy

What I expected: 14 Wins, 3.70 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 185 K

What he's on pace for: 7 Wins, 5.21 ERA, 1.31 WHIP, 162 K

I don't know, maybe my expectations were completely unrealistic. But I wasn't the only one who liked Kennedy a lot heading into the season and felt that he was a virtual lock to improve upon last year's decent but not great stat line. Instead, he's allowed the home run ball, his chief nemesis throughout his young big league career, to ruin his season, as he's served up 14 homers in 14 starts. And even his once superb K/BB isn't as high as it's been in years past. Perhaps Kennedy's 10-game suspension for his role in that ugly Diamondbacks-Dodgers brawl will give him some time to not only think about his on-field behavior but also his on-field performance. The good news is that he's coming off one of his best outings of the season.

I told you I'm an optimist!

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