Posts Tagged ‘yu darvish’

By David Kerr

We are just over a week into the 2013 season and there has been plenty of craziness already. Yu Darvish almost threw a perfect game, Justin Upton, Chris Davis, and Michael Morse have been killing the ball, and Roy Halladay’s spring training struggles have carried over into the regular season. Over the next two days, I want to take a look at six guys and their performances to date, followed by a recommendation for the rest of the season. First the guys that have started hot.

Justin Upton

Justin Upton has been the hottest hitter from a power standpoint in the National League since the start of the season. He already has six home runs and if this type of production keeps up, he could easily finish April with ten or more. Upton is a guy that everyone has always been waiting on to break out. I believe that truly happens this year. He’s going to drive in the most runs of his career and will finish with his highest average to date. Who knows how many home runs he will hit, but 40 isn’t out of the realm of possibility.

Recommendation: HOLD or BUY. This will be Upton’s career year to date. You will want to be along for this ride. His value is high right now, but if he cools down for a short period, pounce and don’t look back.

Chris Davis

Chris Davis played out of his mind over the first four games of the season, hitting four homers and driving in 16 runs. That will easily be his best week of the season. Davis is a streaky hitter that strikes out a ton. He’s prone to slumps and will definitely go through his fair share this season. With that said, he should have no problem hitting 30 home runs again. He has one of the best power bats in the game. If I owned him and could turn him into an injured Freddie Freeman, I’d do it in a heartbeat.

Recommendation: SELL.

Clay Buchholz

Carrying over from his strong spring, Clay Buchholz has looked sharp in his first two starts of the season. He sports a 0.64 ERA to go along with 12 strikeouts in 14 innings pitched. Can he sustain? I’m skeptical. Since his breakout of 2010, he’s been often injured or under-performing. To date his batting average against is .184. That is 66 points lower than his career BAA number of .250. There is no way that will continue. Buchholz has also stranded every runner he’s allowed on base this year. His only run allowed was from a home run. Once these numbers even out, everything will be going up, except of course, the strikeouts. I’d look to move him.

Recommendation: SELL. If you could trade Buchholz for a starter such as Brandon Morrow, Ian Kennedy, or Doug Fister, I’d pull the trigger immediately. He may have his best season since 2010, but I’d rather invest in a starting pitcher that I know will put up good numbers.

I’ll be back tomorrow with three players that have started ice cold and my recommendations for them for the rest of the year.

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By David Kerr

Six Earned Runs. Eleven hits. Four walks. Hey, at least he almost made it through the 7th inning. This, folks, was the latest Yu Darvish debacle.

Since June 2, Darvish has posted an awful 5.67 ERA. His WHIP in that time period is 1.45. On a positive note, he did make it through 5 innings in each of those starts and also made it through 7 plus innings on five different occasions in that span. He’s had a K/9 of 10.8 (88 K’s in 73 IP) in that time and that makes the brutal ERA and WHIP a little bit easier to swallow. Still though, the negatives outweigh the positives here.

His BABIP from the beginning of June until now is .321. That’s just a tick higher than his season BABIP of .312, which is only .23 higher than the league average of .289. Pitchers with similar BABIP’s this year are Cliff Lee, Stephen Strasburg, and Zack Greinke (Strasburg and Greinke’s are higher). Yu Darvish’s main undoing this season is the fact that he allows so many base runners, mainly through Walks. He has a very poor BB/9 of 4.97, which is 1.48 higher than the league average is 3.49. Another factor that plays into Yu’s poor play as of late is his high workload mixed with only four days of rest in between starts. In Japan, he pitched every sixth day as opposed to every fifth day in the Majors. It is clear that Darvish is wearing down and that fact alone tells me to stay away because there won’t be a huge rebound.

So, the question is what should you do with Yu? I think this boils down to the size of your league and the size of your roster. If you’re in a 10 team league, dump him. Wins, which Darvish has 11 of, are the least valuable fantasy statistic that a pitcher brings to the table. You can chase Wins towards the end, if need be. Now is the time to stabilize your ERA and WHIP with good solid outings. Receiving those from Darvish would be a blessing because it isn’t going to happen very often. At the end of the day, Yu Darvish is going to get you a lot of strikeouts, but be a liability everywhere else. I’d drop him in 12 team mixed unless you have extremely deep rosters where you can stash him in hopes that he turns it around. Those of you in 14 team mixed leagues and deeper should hang on at least another start or two for the same reason. I don’t have high hopes, but stranger things have happened. AL-Only teams don’t have much of a choice but to grit their teeth and hope for the best. I can’t see there being many better options out there.

Pitchers that issue so many Walks are pitchers that I tend to stay away from. Sure, the strikeouts are nice, but you’re going to be nervous every time they take the mound (think Max Scherzer). I’m not touching Darvish from here on out and unless you’re in a deep league, I’d advise you to do the same. It isn’t worth the headache.

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