See-Through Statistics
Welcome to the Patriot Act, where you’re heavily radiated with no probable cause.

With the extension of the unconstitutional Patriot Act (of which Obama promised to axe during his campaign), I thought I’d use my very own x-ray vision for the good of the fantasy baseball nation. There wasn’t much action with the MLB short day, besides Jay Bruce hitting another HR (this song is dedicated to you Brucie), so I’ll stop peering through the clothing of the female population and focus my sights on see-through statistics. These are the ultimate Buy/Sell targets and candidates. Practical advice only.

You’re the best… around… nothing… OK, so I’m basically just going to sift through the leaders and bleeders of BABIP and HR/FB% and pick out those who don’t belong. These two stats heavily affect Batting Average and Home Runs. Let’s highlight those who have benefited or been limited by “luck”.

Lance Berkman -Sell- Fat Elvis cannot maintain his 24.4% HR/FB%. Not going to happen. He’s 35-years ancient and hasn’t topped 17.5% since 2007. Also his BABIP is 30 points above his career norm. All this while hitting in one of the more extreme pitcher parks in baseball. This one is obvious, but you may be able to find a believer. If no one is a believer, solo out the guy who traded away Mark Teixeira after picking up Eric Hosmer. He needs a new First Baseman.

Howie Kendrick -Sell- Little Howie just hit the Disabled List so you may have to hold off on this sell job for a few weeks. The little rug rat sits among the league leaders in HR/FB% at the moment. He’s currently enjoying the lamentation of women with the barbarians of the league. His 22.6% HR/FB% is only 14% higher than his career average, that’s it. His BABIP is only 45 points above his career average, that’s all. Should I mention Howie is striking out at a career high rate? Again, Howie is hurting, but he does have a Top 50 rank sitting pretty next to his name. Might as well try.

Russell Martin -Sell- Rusty’s HR/FB% is about twice the level it should be. Martin’s career average sits at 9.6%, but he’s pushing a 20% HR/FB% at the moment. His nine home runs should be cut in half, exactly. Four and a half home runs. Four home runs and a Jeffrey Mayer. Someone just lost Buster Posey, take advantage of that person the way you take advantage of a hot chick who was just dumped by her boyfriend. Compliments, consoling words, sweet talk, rags with chemicals, roofies; whatever works.

Alex Avila -Sell- Watch out Russell Martin owners, those who have a piece of Alex Avila will be competing with you for the rights to rape those who lost Buster Posey. Bob Avila is handy with the ash/maple, he’s hitting .292 with 8 HR (give or take whatever he did today). The only problem is he’s striking out at nearly a 30% rate. He’s whiffing more than me after I fart. Catchers are not known for a .341 BABIP or a HR/FB percentage pushing 18%. There will be regression.

Matt Joyce -Sell- Happy happy Joyce Joyce should be happy, his .418 BABIP is over 100 points higher than his career average. His MLB time has been limited, but even his minor league BABIP numbers sat around .315. His .308 career BABIP is right where it should be. Joyce can’t hit Lefties and doesn’t get much playing time against them (15 games, 21 AB). I still stand by my earlier comments that Allen Craig is a better hitter. Craig just gained 2B eligibility by the way. Joyce is ranked as the 15th best player at Yahoo! and Brad Evans wrote a love letter about him not long ago. Sell! Sell! Sell!

Asdrubal Cabrera – Sell- I’m going to do something you’ve never seen before. I’m going to write something about Asdrubal Cabrera without making fun of his name. However, I may poke fun at those who believe in the power surge of Cabrera. His HR/FB% numbers from 2007 to present day time: 6.3%, 6.7%, 4.7%, 3.0% and 16.1%. Is there one specific number that stands out? Yeah. He’s a shortstop and his 10 HR are a bit of a fluke. Only one of those HR are literally lucky [HitTracker], but I’m fairly certain that number will fall below 9%. Asdrubal is ranked No. 7 (overall), Alexei Ramirez is No. 95. That is a heist waiting to be pulled. I’d take Yunel Escobar in a package deal, but I’d want some change back with those ranks.

Alex Rios – Buy- Rios has a 20% LD% and a .213 BABIP. Wow. He’s been less fortunate than a small, defenseless country that found out they live on a large supply of oil. The powers that be have kept Rios off the bases (.206 AVG, .265 OBP) so he hasn’t had a chance to pull off any thievery. By seasons end he should be good for 15 HR and 25 to 30 SB. He’s actually pushing what would be a career best in K% (12.2%, career average is 17.9%) so he’s doing what he needs to do. The results just haven’t shown up… yet.

Chone Figgins -Buy- This is more of a Buy Low suggestion, maybe Buy Very Low. He’s not striking out (11.5%, 17% career K%), but the Line Drives aren’t quit on par with his normal self. His 17% LD% is nearly 6% lower than his norm. Still, the .222 BABIP is a bit unlucky. Chone had a slow start last season too so I’m assuming he’ll get out of the funk, eventually. He’s still Chone Figgins though. The power is basically nonexistent, but it’s always nice to plug in 40 SB at 2B or MI.

Brian Roberts -Buy- Brian Bobs a buy? Sure, I guess. He’s been unlucky, try to sneak in at discount rates. He’s lacing Line Drives (22.5% LD%), but the BABIP hasn’t followed suit (.236). His BABIP should be 80 points higher. Despite not getting on base as much as he should be, he still has 6 SB (against only one CS). The speed is still there. He’s an injury risk, just keep that in mind.

Nick Markakis -Buy- Ughhh I’d suggest this move in deeper leagues, think 15 teams – 5 OF type leagues. I’m going to send out a low ball offer for Markakis in my Blog Wars league, but it may be an offer that some would find insulting. And that’s only because I need help in the OF. Markakis continues to disappoint in the power department, but he is pushing what would be career bests in K% (12.7%) and LD% (21.6%). The .276 BABIP is 50 points below his career average. Maybe he’ll hit only 12 to 15 SB, but it looks like he’ll reach double digit HR and hit .300.

Aramis Ramirez -Buy- ARam is past his ’10 problems that included massive spikes in K% and FB% and a regression in LD%. His swing was off last year, but it’s pretty much fine now. The K% is very low (13%) and the LD% and FB% have normalized. The only issue is the HR/FB% which sits at a paltry 1.6%. His career average for HR/FB% is 13.1% and it’s been a very consistent number for him in the past. The power numbers will eventually come back and ARam will be back to his normal self. Maybe you can find an owner who thinks his lack of power is related to his thumb injury from last season.

Nick Swisher -Buy- Swisher has been the victim of bad luck in both his BABIP and HR/FB%. He’s double dipping. Swisher is pushing a what would be career high LD% (23%, 4% higher than his norm), but the BABIP is down 30 points. His HR/FB%, which usually sits close to 15%, is hovering at 4%. Things will turn around for Swisher, there’s little doubt of that. Toss an offer out there, the worst that can happen is someone says no.

Alright, that’s enough. I’m becoming disgusted with myself after promoting Figgins, Roberts and Markakis. Maybe I’ll get into some pitching action tomorrow, maybe not. We’ll see. Do with this what you will. If there is anyone else worth talking about, let’s make it happen in the comment section. If you want to talk about me smelling my own farts, we can do that too. That’s cool.