One pitcher to avoid at all costs during 2014 fantasy baseball drafts is SP Bartolo Colon. Colon recently signed with the New York Mets, and while the move over to the National League occasionally helps pitchers, this is one instance that is could actually hurt the veteran’s fantasy numbers.
Colon shockingly finished last year with an incredible 18-6 record with a career-best 2.65 ERA. He also threw a meager 29 walks threw 190.1 innings and his 1.17 WHIP is far below his 1.31 career number. It was a masterful season for a guy that was sitting on the wavier wire in most formats and the career-season seemingly revitalized the journeyman’s fantasy value.
However, Colon is simply not worth the risk this fantasy season.
The hurler will be turning 41 years old in May and it is hard to imagine the 15-year-pro pitching another 190-plus innings in 2014. His 30 starts last year was the Dominican’s most trips to the bump since 2005, when he started 33 games with the Los Angeles Angels. He has always battled injuries throughout his career and the likelihood of him ending up on the shelf at some point this year is fairly high.
Even worse, Colon will unfortunately be asked to be New York’s number one pitcher to start the season, with Matt Harvey on the shelf following Tommy John surgery, and that kind of responsibility is too much for the aging pitcher. He simply can’t compete against the other aces in the league at this point in his career and it will show early on.
The super-veteran also lives off his fastball, as he threw it 85.5% of the time last season. Colon is consistently losing velocity on his heater by the year, though, and it will start to flatten out before too long. It is only a mater of time until hitters start to track the veteran’s only pitch and the fireballer starts to see his ERA climb back over 4.00.
Probably the worst aspect to signing with the Mets was the team’s utter lack of offensive talent. They have finished near the bottom of the NL East in runs scored for years now and the team won’t give Colon much run support down the stretch. Sure, the team added OF Curtis Granderson in the off-season, but one 30-plus year old bat can only do so much. The Mets will still be one of the worst teams in the NL and the lack of wins will hinder Colon’s fantasy value all season long.
Colon is worth adding as a sixth starter this year, but he shouldn’t be drafted as a starter under any circumstance. He is too old and not worth the gamble anymore, so let someone else take a shot on Jabba the Hutt.