Looking for a deep sleeper in fantasy baseball 2013? Try Brian Roberts.
Once upon a time one of baseball’s most electric second baseman, Roberts’ health has taken the form of a skydiver who forgot to pack a parachute these last few years. After lighting up the stat sheet with a career year in 2009, the 35-year-old second baseman has managed only 115 games since, a streak of injuries that reached its zenith last year when he managed a .182 average with five RBI in only 75 plate appearances.
Don’t let that scare you, though. He has all the tools of a great sleeper in 2013.
Before this recent barrage of injuries, Roberts had posted three straight seasons in which he played 150+ games, surpassing 700 plate appearances in each of those. That’s about as durable as durable gets, not to mention the fact that he hit .290 while averaging 12 home runs, 63 RBI, and 40 steals a year over that span.
If he stays healthy in 2013, Roberts could at least show remnants of his former self. He’s got to have some juice left in the tank after riding the DL for basically the last three years, and he’s done well this spring showing little to no ill effects from recent hip surgery.
At 35, another 40 or 50 steals might be out of the question, but 20 to 30 is well within reach, as are 10 home runs and 50 RBI perhaps. There’s certainly some downside, but for a guy going with the 260th pick—in other words, not even drafted sometimes—he could be an excellent sleeper at fantasy’s thinnest position.
2013 Projections: 140 GP / .260 avg / 8 HR / 50 RBI / 23 SB / 90 RS