Michael Morse is tearing it up. In 64 at-bats between spring training and the wee first days of the 2013 season, the Seattle Mariners OF has 11 home runs. He’s got three doubles, seven walks, and 19 RBI. In those at-bats, he’s gotten on base 30 times. Michael Morse, the sunglassed Superman.
And that’s my point; everyone calm down. And if you’re one of those already calm, then good. And if you’re one of those who’s already calm and there’s a person in your league who’s not, even better. Sell high if you’d like.
We know Morse is raking, and we know it’s not going to last. But there is a question to be posed: Well, we know he can’t sustain this, but what can we tell from Morse’s hot start?
Some of you might remember a similar start from Morse in 2011. In spring training that year, Morse hit nine homers, just like this year, in 66 at-bats. He walked seven times, batted .364, and had a 1.239 OPS. He was just as hot then as he is now. And what was the result? Morse hit 31 homers, drove in 95, and batted just over .300 in his only full MLB season.
Last year, Morse’s peripherals declined a bit — not drastically — but you can partly blame that on a lingering back injury that forced him to start the season on the DL. His HR% and BB% declined, but his SO% remained roughly the same which, like I mentioned in my piece about Peter Bourjos, is a good indicator that the skills haven’t eroded but that an injury was plaguing his ability to drive the ball. Back injuries are known to do that.
The guy is legit, and only because the Washington Nationals are even more legit did they let Morse go.
Don’t expect Morse’s current 26.7 HR% (LOL) to stick, and don’t expect it to stick even remotely anywhere near there, but I think a result in the middle of his 2011 and 2012 results is a reasonable expectation assuming he can stay healthy. If he does, 25 homers and a .290 batting average from a guy with a 145.1 Average Draft Position (ESPN leagues) is great value, especially if you can flip him around to some owner who’s completely bought-in on the hype.
Follow your new Rant Sports fantasy columnist, Nick Tom, @NickTomFB. He adores da Twitta, and is always willing to answer questions and mess around. Plus, it makes him more popular.