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Fantasy Baseball Round Table: How underachievers will finish 2013

By Todd Zola, MastersBall.com

Today we finish what we started last week and review the second half prospects for some current underachievers.

AL UNDERACHIEVING HITTER MOST LIKELY TO CONTINUE DEPRESSED LEVEL OF PLAY

Todd Zola: Paul Konerko - He's bounced back before but it looks like Father Time has finally caught up to Paulie K.

Nicholas Minnix: Josh Hamilton - He was stinking for a while prior to this season. Numbers may improve, but not enough to satisfy anyone.

Chicago Cubs SS Starlin Castro
Starlin's star on rise?

Tim Heaney: Josh Hamilton - Hard to bank on a guy with a contact rate below 70 percent, even though I acknowledge he could go on one of his tears. We're seeing a decline in bat speed and thump, and he doesn't have a favorable home park to lean on this time.

Lawr Michaels: Josh Hamilton - Worn out his strike zone welcome.

Ryan Carey: Melky Cabrera - No PED's, no power and less speed. He is back to being the average talent he was before and a second possible suspension looms.

AL UNDERACHIEVING PITCHER MOST LIKELY TO CONTINUE DEPRESSED LEVEL OF PLAY

TZ: Justin Verlander - Yeah, he flirted with the no-no last start before the ASB but all those innings have finally caught up.

NM: R.A. Dickey - The magic has worn off the knuckler, I guess. Rogers Centre reportedly partly to blame. I agree on Verlander, too.

TH: Amazing how Jon Lester has fallen to enter this category after the start he got to this season. He's still nibbling too much, and I don't think it's going to be easily correctible. R.A. Dickey's dancing knuckler will continue to frustrate him, as well, but I'd rather take my chances with him now that he's had time to work with his backstops.

LM: Joe Blanton - Truth is he was never that good in the first place.

RC: R.A. Dickey - Unless he gets traded back to the NL, those ratios will remain a drag.

AL UNDERACHIEVING HITTER MOST LIKELY TO BOUNCE BACK

TZ: Michael Saunders - Perhaps wishful thinking on my part but with Franklin Gutierrez still out, the opportunity should be there and Saunders has full-season 20/20 potential.

NM: Yoenis Cespedes - Has nothing to do with the Home Run Derby, just think it won't hurt if he's, well, not. Of course, always the chance that he is again.

TH: Yoenis Cespedes - Talk about a wake-up call. Guy's just too naturally talented to fade away. He was hobbled for much of the first half and should start to play more smoothly if he can stay healthy.

LM: Yoenis Cespedes - Streaky, and all things considered, his numbers are not that bad. Hot on the heels of his Home Run Derby performance, Yo is ready to get hot and pick up some offensive Oakland slack.

RC: Brett Lawrie - Love the talent and the move to second base. That lineup offers the perfect setting to start to salvage a fantasy season.

AL UNDERACHIEVING PITCHER MOST LIKELY TO BOUNCE BACK

TZ: Jon Lester - Perhaps it's a homer pick but I think we have a stretch of the old Lester on the way.

NM: CC Sabathia - He's healthy, gets a chance to recharge, velocity has climbed in the last month or two. That's just what he does, after the break. Sorry, seems like a cop-out, easy answer.

TH: CC Sabathia - Typically turns things around this time of season. His fastball's giddy-up has gradually sneaked back into legitimacy.

LM: Bud Norris - Not really underachieving, but also rumored in trade rumors, and seriously talented, a trade to a contending team will really boost his value.

RC: Fernando Rodney - After looking like he might lose the job in June, he's back and starting to show signs of last year's dominance.

NL UNDERACHIEVING HITTER MOST LIKELY TO CONTINUE DEPRESSED LEVEL OF PLAY

TZ: Rickie Weeks - A second half resurgence, especially in power, helped save Weeks' season last year -- it's not happening again. K's up, power and speed down.

NM: B.J. Upton - Or is it Jason Heyward? I don't know, they both make contact too inconsistently or infrequently for me.

Milwaukee Brewers SP Yovani Gallardo
Gallardo: better 2nd half coming?

TH: Any Braves outfielder not named Justin Upton, but even he's close to this category if not for the power.

LM: Darwin Barney - See Joe Blanton.

RC: B.J. Upton - I think it's close between him and Rickie Weeks, but Upton really looks like he needs a change of scenery.

NL UNDERACHIEVING PITCHER MOST LIKELY TO CONTINUE DEPRESSED LEVEL OF PLAY

TZ: Dan Haren - Haren may tease against weaker offenses but he'll get smoked by teams that can hit.

NM: Matt Cain - He just concerns me. Is he injured? Maybe not, but he's too good to struggle for this long and have such a variety of potentially worrisome signs.

TH: Kris Medlen - We're finding out just how ridiculous his 2012 stretch was. Matt Cain's potential health issues would've had me include him here, but it seems that many have forgotten how average, or worse, Medlen has been this year.

LM: Matt Cain - Regression -- and maybe too many perfect game pitches, meaning look out Tim Lincecum too -- will haunt him the rest of the year.

RC: Ian Kennedy - I am starting to lose faith that Kennedy is going to get back on track. He's walking too many hitters and giving up too many homers for a return to form.

NL UNDERACHIEVING HITTER MOST LIKELY TO BOUNCE BACK

TZ: Justin Upton - One more chance and then you are dead to me.

NM: Starlin Castro - His July numbers make this look like an easy answer. It is, even without the July numbers.

TH: Starlin Castro: Come on, you should've known I'd pick him. But they're retooled his swing, and the results are showing.

LM: Ryan Zimmerman - Maybe I am just hoping or wishing, but he is streaky, and last year's second half was off the charts. No reason he can't repeat.

RC: Martin Prado - He's a better hitter than his .253 average would indicate, and if he can work his way back up to the top of the 'Zona lineup, then maybe he can start running again. One stolen base? Come on.

NL UNDERACHIEVING PITCHER MOST LIKELY TO BOUNCE BACK

TZ: Yovani Gallardo - Dude, just stop walking guys!

NM: Cole Hamels - Cliff Lee 2012 redux, kind of. Not the wins, which don't matter, just the problems with leaving too many pitches out over the plate, or up, a problem that was really more of a midseason one for Lee.

TH: Cole Hamels' peripherals say he has to ... right?

LM: Yovani Gallardo - Good peripherals, good second half team suggests better times ahead.

RC: Edwin Jackson - Call this a gut call here, but he has come back to life his last three starts and could find himself moving to a better situation at the deadline.



 


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