2013 Fantasy Baseball Buy Low Candidates – Rotoprofessor’s Hitters Edition

Apr 25, 2013


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By Eric Stashin, Rotoprofessor
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Just because someone has struggled over the first few weeks of the season doesn’t mean that they are a buy low candidate.  Maybe we don’t expect much from them or maybe there’s no chance that you can actually get them at a discount.  With that in mind, let’s take a look at three potential buy low hitters:
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Brandon Belt – San Francisco Giants – First Baseman
We have long heard about the potential upside of Brandon Belt, but how long should fantasy owners (or more importantly how long will the Giants) wait for him to realize it? While your format may determine the length of your leash, frustrations continue to grow.
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Amazingly he continues to falter against right-handed pitching, hitting .192 with 1 HR in 52 AB this season. As a left-handed hitter, that’s not the way to generate more playing time. However, before we get all worked up about the numbers we have to realize that there has been some bad luck involved.
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He actually has hit the ball exceptionally hard, with a 25.6% line drive rate vs. RHP (30.8% overall), yet has little to show for it (.214 BABIP vs. RHP, .275 overall). If he continues hitting the ball like this we have to think that the results will soon come. With a 25.6% line drive rate vs. RHP in 2012, we have no reason to think anything is going to change.
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While Brett Pill is thriving at Triple-A (.367 with 4 HR), Belt should still have a little rope and he potential is still there for him to thrive. Now is probably the best time to try and scoop him up, since owners everywhere are growing more and more frustrated by his performance.
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Jason Heyward – Atlanta Braves – Outfielder
It is hard to imagine being able to buy him that low, but now is the perfect time to kick the tires and see what you may be able to get him for. He has been awful to start the season (.121 with 2 HR in 58 AB) and now is out for a few weeks due to an appendectomy.
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While he has struggled with a .114 BABIP, he also has seemingly been swinging for the fences a bit (52.2% line drive rate). Maybe a little time off is just what he needs to get things straightened out, but time will tell.
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You may not be able to get much of a discount, but the upside definitely makes it worth at least exploring.
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Ike Davis – New York Mets – First Baseman
For the second straight season Davis has gotten off to a horrific start, hitting .169 with 3 HR (with two of the home runs coming in a recent game). The problem is that he just isn’t making enough contact (30.1% strikeout rate) and isn’t getting much luck (.200 BABIP), because he is hitting the ball hard (23.3% line drive rate) and isn’t swinging for the fences (34.9% fly ball rate).
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Can he correct the contact issues? With a career 23.6% strikeout rate one would think so. You would think the luck would take care of itself and the Mets proved last season that they are willing to stick with him due to his defense.
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With the Mets facing a string of left-handed pitchers, it is easy to imagine Davis’ struggles continuing. That makes now the perfect time to grab Davis and stats hm on your bench. Just like last season, the power is there and we should remain confident that he will turn it around.
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What are your thoughts of these three players?  Are you buying any of them?  Is there anyone else you are targeting?
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