Publishers Clearing House, the win-it-all sweepstakes for suckers. Bad budget allocation isn’t just for old people, fantasy baseball managers too can make bad investments. They get suckered in by junk mail and we get suckered in by Batting Average leader boards. Either way, if you see Ed McMahon’s or Ivan Rodriguez’s face in your mail box, throw it in the trash. We’ll take a look at some players with unsustainable BABIP numbers through the early going. Maybe we can get you to clear house of some players who are peaking in terms of trade value.
Austin Jackson league best .500 BABIP. Austin also leads the league in strike outs with 30 K in 79 AB. If there ever was a sell high candidate, it is a former Yankee prospect that is now a hot hitting lead off rookie who has wheels. Before the season started, I thought Jackson would hit .255. Maybe that was a little harsh, but we’ll see. There is definitely going to be a big crash in his AVG and a dip in his counting stats.
Scott Podsednik .436 BABIP (career .321) Scotty is showing a better eye at the plate this season, his BB% is up and his K% is down. He is hitting a lot of ground balls and line drives which will help maximize his AVG. So Podsednik is doing a lot of the right things, but that .436 BABIP will come down. He’s not as fast as he used to be, so even tho he is on pace to match his 60-70 steal days, the stolen bases will slow down when he isn’t getting on base as much. Because of the improvements he’s made in BB% & K% and the resurgence in his GB% & LD%, the best value you may get from Pods, is from letting him play for you. However, you never know what a Jacoby Ellsbury owner is thinking (those guys are crazy), so maybe you can Sell High on the well traveled Outfielder.
Cameron Maybin .404 BABIP (103 game career .368) Last season, in 176 AB, Maybin posted a .328 BABIP. Maybin doesn’t take many walks (7.7%) and he strikes out a lot (33.3%) so he will be prone to streaks. It won’t be long until the BABIP levels out and the the Ks look like a bigger issue. He is swinging at more pitches outside the zone this year (O-Swing% up 6.1% to 29.9%). However, Maybin is tied for 8th in the league with 15 Runs and is on pace to hit 9 HR and steal 27 bases. Now is the time to shop him around, before that .278 AVG falls with the rest of the counting stats.
Rickie Weeks .380 BABIP (career .304) Rickie has increased his BB% and GB% so his BABIP will likely be higher than the .304 career mark, but not to the tune of .380. Add in the fact that Rickie hasn’t played 130 games in a season due to knee and wrist injuries and you have a nice Sell High candidate. Rickie does have the potential to make his owners a tidy profit if he stays healthy, but that is a pretty big IF. The season could end for Rickie at any moment and his current 37 Yahoo Rank is a nice selling point. You may not want to wait for the cold streak if you want to eventually move him.
Top 10 BABIP (min 40 PA)
.500 Austin Jackson (career .500 BABIP)
.474 Martin Prado (.347)
.442 Ivan Rodriguez (.323)
.436 Scott Podsednik (.321)
.433 Geovany Soto (.311)
.424 Franklin Gutierrez (.326)
.417 Chase Headley (.344)
.417 David Freese (40 games, .400)
.417 Chris Dickerson (146 games, .376)
.414 Ramon Santiago (.285)
Other Notable Names
.409 Jason Bay (career .328 BABIP)
.408 Evan Longoria (.318)
.404 Michael Bourn (.335)
.400 Ryan Zimmerman (.316)
.400 Ryan Theriot (.323)
.400 James Loney (.318)
.397 Joe Mauer (.345)
.396 Justin Morneau (.290)
.396 Johnny Damon (.308)
.395 Manny Ramirez (.339)
.390 Elvis Andrus (163 games, .313)
.389 Adam LaRoche (.314)
.388 Carlos Gonzalez (189 games, .332)
.387 Brad Hawpe (.342)
.386 Casey Blake (.306)
.382 Christian Guzman (.306)
.375 Matt Wieters (114 games, .360)