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Everyone eats. For me, I made a life out of it.
I've been slaving away in restaurants since I was twelve years old. More than half of my life as a matter of fact. Little sleep, lots of coffee and of course eating. In the end, it was worth it. I am now a very accomplished chef. Even had the chance to cook for some celebrities like Tia Carrerre (on right from Wayne’s World), NFL QB Matt McGloin and former first round pick Ki-Jana Carter.
Just because I leave the kitchen doesn’t mean I stop cooking. Sometimes with fantasy sports and sometimes with my fiancé. Although the latter is what truly matters in life, the former finds a way to suck me to my computer for late night sessions filled with BABIP, K/9 and on-base percentages. In the end, leading to many league championships.
After awakening from another late-night cram session I decided it was time for a change. I was missing the most important ingredient in my writing: myself. Forget the journalism degree. No more hard news. No more perfect gramma’. I just want to COOK. So from this point on, I am your Fantasy Chef, giving you the recipe for success in fantasy sports.
Today’s Special: Outfield ADP Report (Part II)
Every year the top players at each position are all you hear about. Who should I take with the fifth overall pick? Who are the top five players at the outfield position? Forget all that. That isn’t what wins you leagues.
Today we are going to be cookin’ up some outfielders that are currently holding an ADP of 200 or higher. This is where the value lies. It’s like going to your favorite sports bar on wing night. Not only are you getting cheap grub, but you’ll leave with a full stomach and hopefully a better buzz.
Looking back at some outfielders taken in the later rounds a season ago, there was some serious value to be found. Here’s a few:
Starling Marte (206.91 ADP)--Swiped 41 bags to finish seventh overall in stolen bases.
Alfonso Soriano (216.24 ADP)--Smashed 34 homers with first 100 RBI season since ’05.
Leonys Martin (316.51 ADP)--Sped his way to 36 steals which was 10th in all of baseball.
Domonic Brown (318.53 ADP)--Hit 23 home runs pre All-Star break (27 HR total).
Now that you see what we are servin’ up here, let’s dive into the main course.
Ben Revere, OF (PHI)--209.25 ADP--When you think of speedsters, Revere has to come to mind. He was on pace for his third straight 30-plus stolen base season before being derailed by a season-ending foot injury. If you are lookin’ for more than stolen bases and batting average out of Revere, forget it. In just over three full seasons, Revere has yet to go yard, but there is nothing wrong with that. Guys like Juan Pierre have made a career out of it. He is the perfect ingredient to pair with a slugger that will drain your batting average, without having to spend too much coin. And hitting atop the Phillies lineup is going to increase his runs scored production as well.
B.J. Upton, OF (ATL)--213.96 ADP-- Upton was an epic failure in ‘13, and his ADP is really feelin’ the aftermath. Finishing the year with a batting average of .184 and only nine homers forced a change to his approach at the plate. He has looked good through a few spring at-bats, but it really should be too hard to outperform last year’s totals. Upton reminds me of preparing Hollandaise Sauce. A few seconds too long on the stove could be the difference between greatness and disaster. As long as his tweak at the plates isn’t counterproductive, he is worth taking a shot on, considering he is only two seasons removed from 28 home runs and 36 steals.
Michael Brantley, OF (CLE)--221.69 ADP--Apparently only the Indians took notice to Brantley’s solid ’13 season, rewarding him with some serious coin this offseason. Why hasn’t his ADP caught up to his production? It’s simple. If you break down the recipe for his success, there isn’t any single ingredient that could stand alone. Good thing for Brantley a full course meal is much better than something off the everyday value menu. Give me double-digit home runs, 15-plus steals and a solid batting average to round out my outfield and I could make a masterpiece.
Josh Reddick, OF (OAK)--244.48 ADP--Where have the 32 home run seasons gone? Reddick came crashing down to earth in ’13, totaling only 12 home runs through 385 miserable at-bats. Following the season, it was reported that Reddick was bother by a wrist injury the entire season and for whatever reason thought it was a good idea to battle through the pain. Nagging injuries are similar to burnt taste buds. How the heck are you going to be able to know the quality the product you are putting on a table if you can’t taste it? Maybe this was the reason for Reddick’s increased GB/FB rate (0.44 in ’12, 0.58 in ’13), maybe not. At least that’s what I’m chalkin’ it up to. He is a prime candidate for a rebound as long as he stays healthy and works on that fly ball rate a pinch.
Peter Bourjos, OF (STL)--291.20 ADP--Probably my favorite target in the later rounds this year. Bourjos has the right ingredients to be a solid third or fourth outfielder in most formats, sprinkling not only the ability to get on-base at a high rate (.333 OBP in ’13), but the ability to convert his stolen base attempts at a high rate (0.76 career SB%) . Despite his season being shortened by both wrist and hamstring injuries, the Cardinals dealt for him this offseason. Let’s be real here. If the Cardinals thought his health would be an issue in 2014 they would have never traded for him. They are one of the best organizations in all of baseball. They know what they are doing. Mix that with Bourjos’ upside on the base paths (although in small sample size), there is no reason to believe he can’t steal 30-plus bags with a full season of at-bats. I’m in. Are you?
Michael Morse, OF (SF)--308.81 ADP--It is amazing how quickly a player can go from rags to riches. Morse is a great case of that. After a 31 home run ’11 campaign, Morse has mashed only 31 since, due to back-to-back seasons filled with injuries. It would have been nice to see him land in the American League to serve as a designated hitter, instead he signed with the Giants, who are in desperate need of production in the middle of their lineup. Defensively, Morse gives little to the Giants and is expected to lose at-bats later in games due to his lack of coverage in the outfield. If I had to equate Morse’s defensive abilities to the kitchen hierarchy, he would be stuck in the dish room scrubbing out stock pots. And that may be giving him a lot. Despite the loss of a few at-bats, there is still some upside now that he is at full health. At his current ADP, the juice is definitely worth the squeeze.
Dustin Ackley, OF (SEA)--337.77 ADP--Now entering his fourth season with the Mariners, Ackley has yet to live up to the hype. What it all his fault? No. Remember, he was a first basemen coming out of college. Then converted to second base and now roams the outfield. That is a lot to ask of a young player, and his struggles carried over to the batter’s box. His power has yet to translate to the big leagues, having recorded only 22 home runs through 1324 career plate appearances, leading to a 60.2 home run rate. His other asset was supposed to be his legs, but that has yet to show up, reaching double-digit steals only once since 2011. Although this seems like a recipe for disaster, a little seasoning and confidence could be just the ticket. There was a lot of pressure on him since he was drafted in ’09 and has failed mightily. But at the age of 26, there is still time to right the ship now that he appears to have finally found a permanent home in the outfield.
Until next time, study hard and eat plenty!
ADP Source: National Fantasy Baseball Championship
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