Thursday, August 9, 2012

Giants and Marlins Fantasy Baseball Expectations

Last night, two teams exploded for double digit shutouts: San Francisco Giants 15-0 over the Cardinals and Miami Marlins 13-0 over the Mets.

Lets take a closer look at each of those offenses trending in different directions.....

San Francisco Giants

Kung Fu Panda, Cain, Melky and Posey

The Giants entered last night's game 20th in the MLB in runs scored at 4.1 runs/game with an OPS of .709. However, since the all-star break, this vastly improved offense is actually 3rd in the MLB at 5.3 runs/game with an OPS of .748. This is despite the fact that since the all-star break they have played more than half their games at AT&T Park one of the worst hitter's ballparks in the league. Trade deadline acquisitions of Hunter Pence and Marco Scutaro as well as the impending return of Pablo Sandoval, the Giants offense is now a very attractive one in fantasy leagues. (For analysis of Hunter Pence and Pablo Sandoval I touched on them in other articles so wont discuss them here...)

Buster Posey is having a great year, batting .309 with 18 HRs and 73 RBI. Since the all-star break, his numbers are insane (.448/13/8/30/0 in only 25 games, #2 on the ESPN player rater in the last month). This is a great hot streak but I would be surprised if he has 8 HRs and 30 RBI the rest of the way. I would sell high in redraft leagues (but I think he can maintain top 50 value going forward).

Melky Cabrera is having a MVP caliber year batting .355/80/11/57/12. Sure the batting average is unsustainable, but Melky is a legit .300 hitter and with the improved offense, I expect the runs and RBI to continue to flow in. Top 30 player going forward, he will continue to help in all 5 fantasy categories.

Marco Scutaro had a monster game last night going 3-6 with a HR and 7 RBI (36 RBI in 107 games befoer last night). Still only the 14th best SS on the ESPN player rater, Scutaro doesn't have much power or speed, but will hit for a decent average and especially if he sticks at the top of the order will score a bunch of runs. But would I be shocked if he doesnt have 7 RBIs the rest of the season? Ok, maybe a little, but you get the point. If you can get top 10 SS value, don't think twice! Sell!

Miami Marlins

Giancarlo "Mike" Stanton can celebrate after last night's 2HR night

Even with last night explosion, the Miami Marlins are 29th of 30 MLB teams scoring 3.8 runs/game with an OPS of .695, 23rd in the league. With the Marlins selling off Hanley Ramirez and Omar Infante, and Emilio Bonifacio's thumb injury, the Marlins have been starting Nick Green, Bryan Peterson (he's even leading off with a .286 on base percentage) and Donovan Solano, guys that should be in AAA. But not all is lost in Miami.

Giancarlo Stanton may have the best raw power in the MLB, as shown last night with his two HR blasts. He has 21 HRs already in only 82 games this year (just returned from missing a month after knee surgery). Stanton is a great target for keeper leagues, but the price should be sky high after last night's performance. Expect Stanton to maintain his per game performance so unless you get blown away by an offer, stay the course.

Emilio Bonifacio aggrevated his thumb injury last week and while originally it looked like he would be out a while, and perhaps even the rest of the year, he should return when first eligible on August 19th. If he was dropped pick him up since he is a game changer due to his speed.

Justin Ruggiano didn't start playing everyday until July and since then has been extremely valuable batting .326 with 14 runs, 6 HRs, 14 RBI and 8 steals. He was dropped in a bunch of leagues after back spasms knocked him out of the lineup for 5 games last week, but has since returned and is continuing to produce. Feel free to ride him while he's hot, but he has a BABIP of .425 and his HR/FB rate of 18.6% so a regressino is coming, if you can sell high, pull the trigger!

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