An 8.16 ERA, 2.02 WHIP and six home runs surrendered. It has never looked so beautiful before.
You know, unless you actually own Homer Bailey, of course.
However, if you don’t own Bailey, now makes for the perfect opportunity to acquire a top-20 fantasy pitcher at a discounted price. That’s right, folks. It’s time to buy low on Homer Bailey while you still can. The Reds pitcher is clearly off to a very slow start, frustrating fantasy owners everywhere. But, if you are in need of pitching, use this as an opportunity to sucker your opponent into dealing one of the better pitchers in fantasy.
In 2013, Bailey won 11 games and was a strong strikeout guy, fanning 199 batters on the year, sporting a solid K/9 of 8.57. And at age 27, he continues to show growth, too, as his strikeout-to-walk ratio has improved in every one of his seasons in the majors. His whiff rate has also gone up in each of the past five years, while his ground ball rate has increased in each of his last two campaigns. A guy who can strikeout about eight batters per game AND induce plenty of groundballs? Sounds like a pretty good pitcher to me. That’s why I see the start of the 2014 season as an anomaly. For his career, Bailey is barely allowing a home run per nine innings and is sporting a fly ball percentage of 35.5, compared to a 43.7 ground ball percentage. This is mostly a ground ball pitcher, folks, so the six home runs he has allowed already are definitely an outlier. And besides, he is still striking out a ton of batters, sporting a K/9 over 10, posting 17 strikeouts.
Bailey is going to be absolutely fine, folks. He’s faced a very good Cardinals lineup and then an odd game against the Pirates in which the two teams combined for 10 home runs. The Reds lineup is starting to get it together, which can only help Bailey’s fantasy prospects, too. Get him on the cheap and reap the benefits.