With nearly a month of baseball over with, we are starting to see a crop of surprise players that are staying hot and having us believe that big things are in store for them in 2011. However, it’s important to keep in mind that one month does not make a season. After April of 2010, Kosuke Fukudome was one of the hottest players in baseball with a wOBA (weighted on-base average) in the top 10 of all of baseball but big things were not in store for him unfortunately. So, while we may be excited by Russell Martin or Logan Morrison being up there now, the sample size is still small. Let’s peruse through last week’s 2011 WERTH roto values and see what interesting names popped up:
The various tabs in the Google Doc above contain the basic stats and then the WERTH totals (how many points in the standings the player contributed in that week for the season total) and WERTHy totals (how much they would have contributed if everyone got the same amount of playing time).
This past week was more about good pitching performances than hitting performances in comparison to earlier weeks of the season. Ryan Braun had the best hitting week with this multiple homeruns while Jose Bautista was right behind him and seems to be heating up. Some of the more surprising names from the best batting performances were Jed Lowrie, Juan Uribe, Casey Blake, Carlos Gomez, Ryan Raburn and Ike Davis.
As mentioned ad nasuem, Lowrie is worthy of a roster spot on all fantasy teams. Casey Blake is a nice bargain option for a very thin 3B position and is definitely worth a look (15 to 20 HR with a decent batting average is what to expect). Ike Davis might end up being a nice player but 1B is very deep unfortunately and his 20 HR and decent batting average are nice but are still below average for a 1B. Gomez might be on his way to a year similar to his 2008 campaign with 7 HR, 33 SB and a .258 average but don’t get overly excited and expect much more than that. However, one guy to be particularly excited about is Ryan Raburn with Detroit getting him regular starts at 2B too. Just as I mentioned Jed Lowrie last week, I think Raburn has similar potential for your fantasy teams and should be on your team in all leagues where he is 2B eligible.
From the pitching department, James Shields and his two complete games led the way. Daisuke Matsuzaka was right behind him, much to the confusion of those who wrote him off the week prior. From the group of surprise names, we see Brandon Beachy, Randy Wolf and Anibal Sanchez up towards the top as well.
Wolf and Beachy pitched two strong games but both had a BABIP well under .200 for the week which serves as a warning to not overreact about them. We all most likely know about Anibal’s near no-hitter and he’s a nice fantasy option on the year with his strikeout potential if you can tolerate his walks. After extremely bad and good starts, the expectation for Daisuke should be around a 4.50 ERA pitcher on the season but the worrisome part is that he seems to have lost his strikeout potential over the years and control continues to be a problem so I would stay away except for deep leagues.
Browse around the weekly rankings and see what other fun names are popping up over the week and the season thus far. If you have any comments or suggestions about these roto values, drop a line in the comments.