It’s been awhile since we’ve done one of these. Let’s get right to it and take a look at some shortstop performances over the past two weeks.
He’s actually steadily improved every month, but even his improvements were still far less than we’ve come to expect from Ramirez. His wOBA by month are .245, .312, .324, .516. Needless to say, July has been pretty kind to him. In his 61 plate appearances this month he’s hitting .392/.492/.706 with 4 HR, 17 RBI, and 7 K to 10 BB. The four home runs tie his high for a month this year and the 17 RBI are already eight more than he had back in April. It’s only been 61 plate appearances but it looks like Ramirez may finally be turning the corner we’ve all been waiting for. For all of us who have stuck by him this entire season I sure hope that’s the case.
His month of June was actually pretty amazing. He hit .297 in 105 plate appearances, but only managed a .681 OPS. He was the definition of an empty batting average. So far his July is pretty amazing as well. In his 42 plate appearances he has a 0.0% walk rate and 0.0% strikeout rate. Somehow he’s been able to run into two homers and banged out three doubles, giving him one less extra base hit than he had in June. He’s never hit for much power over his career, but has been able to maintain a decent enough average to retain value in deeper mixed or NL only leagues. He’s currently hitting .314 and is available in 93% of Yahoo! leagues.
When Castro isn’t hitting for average he provides very little to your lineup. He doesn’t hit for any power and doesn’t walk enough to pick up any steals. This month he’s hit just .236 with zero steals and zero home runs. His strikeout rate has ballooned to 21.4% in 56 plate appearances. For someone that is owned in 91% of leagues you need better production out of him. If someone like Keppinger is available in your league you may be better off adding him until Castro can get back to his normal self.
They’re having shortstop issues on the south side of Chicago as well. Ramirez has been falling since June, putting up a .265/.311/.343 triple slash line with 1 HR and 11 RBI that month. That was after a hot May in which he posted a .389 wOBA. Unfortunately for him, he seems to have carried over the woes of June into July. He’s hitting .217 in the month, and while he does have two home runs his OBP is a horrible .265. The worst part about his season has been the lack of stolen bases. Ramirez had averaged 13 in his first three seasons but has only three so far, meaning he’s unlikely to reach double digits which severely damages his fantasy worth.