San Francisco Giants outfielder Randy Winn has had a great month of May. The 32-year-old veteran put together a 20-game hitting streak while hitting .347 with two home runs and nine RBI for the month. Fantasy owners shouldn't and haven't been quick to add the veteran of nine seasons, however. His recent success has received the attention of fantasy owners, but not many have seemed willing to pull the trigger by adding him to their roster. Fantasy owners have reason to be skeptical.
After a 2005 trade brought over Winn from the Seattle Mariners for backup catcher Yorvit Torrealba and minor league pitcher Jesse Foppert, he made Giants fans everywhere take notice. The newly acquired Winn hit .359 with 14 home runs and 26 RBI in just 58 games with the Giants.
That performance led to the Giants reaching an agreement with Winn on a three-year, $23.3 million contract extension through the 2009 season; with the team's full intention on plugging him into the leadoff spot.
Winn began this season batting eighth, having been demoted from the leadoff role after the Giants acquired outfielder Dave Roberts in the offseason. Roberts also took over center field, forcing Winn to right field. Roberts was acquired in part because of the performance Winn had in 2006. After signing the big contract extension, Winn hit a mere .262 with just 11 home runs in 149 games. That performance left Giants fans asking if this was the same player that almost single-handedly brought them to contend for the National League Wild Card a season earlier.
His start to the 2007 season, along with Roberts' injury and the struggles of shortstop Omar Vizquel at the plate, has Winn back atop the Giants' order. Winn is a switch-hitter who has been eating up left-handed pitching, batting .423 with two home runs. The road has also been friendly to Winn this season; he's batting .395 with three home runs away from home.
Though Winn has had a great month, he is still available in 95 percent of fantasy leagues polled; that has to say something. The power needs to be there for Winn to be a successful addition to any fantasy lineup, because he doesn't steal bases very frequently. He showed that he could provide power after the 2005 trade to the Giants, but three home runs after two months this season isn't going to cut it.
It is obvious people aren't jumping on the Winn bandwagon, and it is deserved. Once Roberts returns from the disabled list in two weeks or so, it is safe to assume Roberts will regain his leadoff spot. If Winn can be consistent, we would definitely recommend adding him. He can come in and fill an injury void, or if monitored closely, be played exclusively on the road against lefties. Winn doesn't have a lot offer beyond average, but fantasy owners can definitely ride his hot streak.
About Richard Garcia
Garcia served as a managing editor for KFFL. Prior to his time with KFFL, Richard worked in managerial roles with both Frito-Lay Inc. and UPS. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in public relations from California State Polytechnic University-Pomona and fulfilled his internship requirements with the Los Angeles Kings Hockey organization in 2001.
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