Buy & Sell: Batters – Week 4 – Veterans Edition
Mark Teixeira, 1B (NYY) – Tex is a notoriously slow starter, but the owner in your league may not know that. He is a career .236/.341/.422 in the month of April. From May through September, his numbers climb considerably and are more in line with his career average and remain steady throughout the rest of the season with an exception in slugging in August and September. But the number that strikes me the most is Tex’s .235 BABIP which is .59 points below his career BABIP. Tex has also only been hitting a line drive in 15% of his at bats, 5% lower than his career. I believe he has been very unlucky as noted by his BABIP and I believe he will start driving the ball throughout the season. This may be the time you can buy low on Tex. Feel the owner out and go grab him.
Shane Victorino, OF (Phi) – I don’t hide the fact that I’m a huge fan of the flyin’ Hawaiian, and although he’s gotten off to a slow start in 2012, I would be more inclined to go out and take him away from his current owner and reap the benefits. Victorino is another slow starter who averages .252/.312./.387 for his career in the month of April. Granted, it’s even worse this year than in his career, but he is at least helping you in the SB category with 7 steals to date. Victorino is another player you can point towards his low BABIP for being unlucky to start the 2012 season (.222 in 2012/.297 for his career) which makes me believe that will right itself and he’ll start performing more towards his career numbers which is of a #2 fantasy outfielder.
Jay Bruce, OF (Cin) – You want a perfect sell high candidate? Jay Bruce is it. This may not be a popular pick for a player to sell this week; after all, Bruce has hit a homerun in 4 straight games. But as I’ve stated in the pre-season, Bruce is a player that can carry your team for one month and then kill for another 3. He helped carry a fantasy team in the first week of the fantasy season, slugging 3 homeruns out the gate, but then killed his owners in the next two weeks hitting only 3 extra base hits, all doubles, and no homeruns, driving in a total of 2 RBI, and saw his average dip down to .181, finally settling at .233 on Sunday April 22. That’s what he does when he doesn’t go off on a tear. It’s all or (absolutely) nothing for Bruce. Now is the time to sell while his value is back up. Reach for the stars with him if you want to get the best possible return.
Matt Holliday, OF (StL) – Holliday has always been one of my favorites, a staple for many of my fantasy baseball teams. I love his energy and how hard he plays. But I’m not in fantasy baseball to draft guys that are tough ball players, I’m here to own players who put up numbers. Holliday missed 38 games last season which resulted in a decline in some of his numbers. But Holliday was still getting drafted too early for my liking this year, and I figured his numbers would take a hit with Pujols now leaving and with Berkman’s numbers to take a hit. Holliday is notorious for getting off to slow starts, and I do believe the numbers will improve across the board, but I’m not certain Holliday is that elite player anymore. You can wait a couple weeks and hope his numbers improve before selling him off to another team, but if you can get a decent return for Holliday, I suggest trading him now.
Paul Goldschmidt, 1B (Ari) – I know, I know, he’s not a veteran, but I needed to point Goldschmidt out in this article. I’m usually one who is prone (to a fault) for keeping young players too long and not letting them go for a player that can actually help my team (I fear losing them and another team picking them up as he gets hot). But Goldschmidt is losing playing time and if there is a player out on the waiver wire that can help you, you need to drop him. He has a ton of potential, but potential will only go so far in fantasy baseball. Time to cut bait.