Instead of laughing at my usual quirky remark, please use this time to observe a moment of silence. Thanks.
• Don’t be surprised if Michael Brantley receives a load of hype from pundits this offseason. The left-hander will be entering his age-26 season, and because he stands 6’2”, there’s a chance he could develop a little more power and reach double-digit homers. While you should be targeting Brantley towards the second half of drafts next year, don’t expect him to be a breakout star. Best case scenario, he’ll hit .300 with 10 homers and 20 steals, and while that’s pretty good, it’s more likely he’ll hit .290 with 7 homers and 15 steals. Numbers you want, but not numbers you want to pay for.
• Jemile Weeks made some of us look really silly this year, and now the switch-hitter is back in the big leagues following the end of the season for Oakland’s Triple-A affiliate in Sacramento. Weeks’ big problem was his BABIP, and if he can find a happy medium between this season’s .254 mark and last season’s .350, he’ll be a .260 hitter with speed on the base paths and a solid BB%. I’ll be looking to grab Jemile late in OBP leagues as a middle-infield candidate.
• Stephen Strasburg’s BABIP somehow made it up to .311 this year, but who cares when the resulting WHIP is 1.15? Just think about that when you’re preparing your rankings for next year: If Strasburg gives up hits on balls in play at just a league average rate, his WHIP could drop a couple of points. Incredible.
• Josh Donaldson has been crushing the ball over the past month, and that’s not the only thing interesting about his stretch. Donaldson’s strikeout rate has been 5% lower than his season rate, and his walk rate is up, too. Donaldson will likely compete with Scott Sizemore (et. al) in spring for the job manning the hot corner, and I’m starting to believe he has the most fantasy upside of the group.
• Everth Cabrera is somewhat of a fantasy nightmare, what with his massive speed and nice BB% counteracted by a horrific K%. I expect he’ll start the season as the Padres’ shortstop in 2013, so you’ll certainly have to keep an eye on this burner.
For those of you who play daily fantasy games like FanGraphs: The Game, or just like to stream players, here are a couple matchups you may be able to exploit.
A Pitcher for Today: Jhoulys Chacin vs SFG
Chacin may be at home, but he’ll still throw a decent start.