July 2, 2013 posted by Chuck Anderson

Added and Dropped: Fantasy Baseball’s Black Knight

Added and Dropped:  Fantasy Baseball’s Black Knight
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Is a classic Monty Python reference too dated for this audience?  Kenny from South Park or Heihachi Mishima from the Tekken franchise are more recent examples of characters thought to be dead and buried only to resurface again and again.  Fantasy baseball’s equivalent has to be Raul Ibanez who is riding a June power surge.  Three young players just establishing themselves in the majors join him on this week’s added list.




Raul Ibanez:  He hit ten home runs while playing every game in June as Seattle continues to get strong performances out of veteran bats.  He is undaunted by Safeco field and posted a .359 ISO at home.  Season long success is unlikely for Ibanez as there are several questionable statistical markers.  He has a career high 25.3% HR/FB ratio and his 10.2% infield hit rate is a professional best as well.  He is striking out more, the result of missing more pitches in the zone.


Drop for him:  Josh Willingham, Andre Ethier, Mike Carp

Don’t drop for him:  Kyle Blanks, Josh Reddick, Nick Swisher


Leonys Martin:  He had already won the center field job when Craig Gentry broke his hand.  Martin played right the last four times Nelson Cruz took a day off too.  He is pushing a professional high with sixteen steals. The good news is that he’s only been caught stealing twice and he should keep running for the rest of year.  He is showing respectable power, but his 2.08 GB/FB caps the upside.  Considering his speed and ground ball rate his .347 BABIP could be legit.


Drop for him:  Brandon Moss, Michael Brantley, Nate Schierholtz

Don’t drop for him:  Norichika Aoki, B.J. Upton, Alfonso Soriano


Nick Franklin:  It was a very impressive first month for the new Mariner second baseman.  He has a .363 OBP and a 0.63 BB/K.  His .188 ISO is a high water mark for Franlkin above Single-A. It’s not a likely feat considering he played in the California League and the PCL.  He is collecting home runs and steals above his expected pace, but appears to have solid hitting habits that should limit any slumps.


Drop for him:  Omar Infante, Marco Scutaro, Martin Prado

Don’t drop for him:  Aaron Hill, Alexei Ramirez, Starlin Castro


Andrew Cashner:  Streaming him Sunday against Miami was like shooting fish in a barrel and he responded with a fifth consecutive quality start bringing his ERA down to 3.31.  His 6.04 K/9 is a steep drop from last year’s 10.10.  The velocity on all his pitches and their whiff rates are way down.  Also decreasing are his line drive rate and HR/FB.  Do we chalk up the weaker contact to luck or better command?  He is worth owning in twelve team mixed leagues for his present results and the possibility that he starts striking out more hitters.


Drop for him:  Josh Johnson, Tim Hudson, Yovani Gallardo

Don’t drop for him:  John Lackey, Matt Garza, Homer Bailey


Matt Joyce, OF, Tampa Bay Rays

Matt Joyce, OF, Tampa Bay Rays



Matt Joyce:  Many picked him up at the tail end of a hot May.  Joyce gave those owners a .211/.290/.389 line in June.  His BABIP dropped 50 points in the month but he also doubled his strikeout rate.  Still, he is maintaining stable contact and batted ball rates and has a career low .247 BABIP.  Hold on or look to pick him up.


Drop him for:  Daniel Nava, Dexter Fowler, Gerardo Parra

Don’t drop him for:  Colby Rasmus, Jayson Werth, Leonys Martin


Rex Brothers:  He ceded the ninth inning to returning closer Rafael Betancourt, but still boasts elite ratios.  He needs to walk fewer than 4.46 batters per nine before he can be called one of the best middle relievers in the league.  xFIP, tERA, and SIERA are all north of 3.00.  Expect his 3.6% HR/FB to normalize and bring his ERA in line with the indicators.


Drop him for:  Francisco Rodriguez, J.J. Putz, Trevor Rosenthal

Don’t drop him for:  Andrew Bailey, Vinne Pestano, Carter Capps


Juan Pierre:  Sunday marked the sixth game in the last ten that he did not start. Additionally, his skills are slipping.  He has a career worst BB/K and has been caught stealing six times.  He was thrown out seven all last season.  Also, what fantasy team can survive with a starter providing eight RBI through half the year?  He is on the trading block, but not at the top of any contender’s wish list.


Drop him for:  Rajai Davis, Justin Ruggiano, Drew Stubbs

Don’t drop him for:  Zoilo Almonte, Tyler Colvin, Chris Young


Andrelton Simmons:  He hit .225/.268/.267 in June.  He ran more but was caught three times in seven attempts.  He is fourteenth out of twenty qualified shortstops with a 67 wRC+.  His BABIP is only .248 but his 20.2% popup rate is fifth highest in the league.  Conversely, his 17.0% line drive rate is 142nd out of 161.


Drop him for:  Zack Cozart, Mike Aviles, Nick Franklin

Don’t drop him for:  Brandon Crawford, Danny Espinosa, Maicer Izturis




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