By Adam McGill
Every fantasy season, there are hundreds of articles about sleepers to grab, but there are not many written about guys to avoid. It is just as important to know whom not to grab, as it is to know whom to target. Below is my latest fantasy baseball article on guys to let the other guys grab:
5. OF Cameron Maybin, SD – Maybin got his first 500–at-bat season in 2011, and it was not nearly as impressive as it is being hyped up to be. Maybin hit a subpar .264 batting average with only 9 home runs and 40 RBI. He did manage to steal 40 bases, but the fact that he only scored 80 runs shows that he is not the smartest base runner. Maybin is a one-dimension player, who is barely worth a roster spot in deeper roto-leagues. He is being drafted far too high based on name recognition, but the kid has yet to put together anything close to a respectable fantasy season.
4. SP Phil Hughes, NYY – Hughes may have posted a 5-0 record when he returned from heavy arm fatigue, but his ERA was an embarrassing 5.79 and a 1.49 WHIP. The Yankees seem content on him still starting, which evident by them shipping A. J. Burnett to Pittsburgh, as Hughes is likely to hold down the fifth spot in the team’s rotation. However, the team still has Freddy Garcia fighting for the same rotation spot, making Hughes’ miracle come back that much more difficult. He is one pitcher in pinstripes to avoid this year, at least until he has one more successful season without missing time with a tired arm.
3. SP Roy Oswalt, FA – It is not often that a pitcher such as Oswalt goes this long without being signed by a team. However, if no team has made a significant offer to the veteran, there must be something that we are not privy to. Oswalt will still be called out early in drafts this spring, regardless of whether he is signed to a MLB team or not. He will not be worth the heavy price tag until he actually throws a pitch this spring for a team, so do not be the one who overpays for a guy who could potentially sit at home all year.
2. SP Zach Greinke, MIL – The 2009 Cy Young Award winner has seriously struggled at times over the last two years. Last season he was able to get his ERA back under 4.00 (3.83), which was much better than his erratic 2010 season where his ERA was an awful 4.17. Fantasy owners are still drafting him high in all leagues, but they seem to be overlooking that he just lost his best insurance policy, first baseman Prince Fielder. Greinke will have much less room for error in 2012 and is bound to have a couple more tallies in the loss column when the season is all said in done.
1. OF Carl Crawford, BOS – The new $100 million man was severely disappointing in his first season in Boston, but then again so was the entire team. Crawford is still experiencing swelling in his surgically repaired wrist, and it appears that the speedster still will not be ready for opening day. Crawford will still get drafted in the third or fourth round, but considering his age and injury concerns he should be avoided at all costs.