Each week, Collin Hager uses his HVaC Scoring System to let you know whom to start and drop this week in head-to-head fantasy baseball leagues. This week’s players to avoid:
Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons has been the most added position player over the last week in ESPN leagues, seeing an 18-point jump in ownership, but the numbers don’t back up such a surge. The position primarily requires speed and then a balance across the other four categories. Simmons quite simply is not that player and finds himself as the No. 17 shortstop in the HVaC rankings.
In 49 games as a rookie in 2012, it looked like Simmons was going to be able to hit. However, as pitchers adjusted, he has not been able to find ways to elevate his average and has spent the last two seasons at .248 and .259. The 17 home runs last season were likely an anomaly. He had not achieved double-digit home runs in any single season across all levels. He managed to do this by hitting far more fly balls than at any other point in his young career and producing an ISO well above his minor league numbers.
Simmons should find a way to hit for slightly more power than he has, but without the speed component he will struggle to produce for head-to-head owners. Leave this one be.
Aaron Hill, 2B, Diamondbacks
Through the same number of games as last season, Hill has produced half as many home runs and scored almost half as many runs. His projections the rest of the way put him as a negative outlier in runs scored and in H/PA, both of which are problems in the middle infield. Hill’s low ISO numbers also do not provide much upside in power. Drop him where you can.
Ben Revere, CF, Phillies
Here’s another case in which the HVaC says to buck the trend and not add the outfielder. Fact is, he only adds positive value in steals and H/PA, leaving three categories on the table — all of which find him greater than a deviation from the mean. Should those numbers be closer to neutral, he becomes an add. Until that point, he falls right around the 100 mark for outfielders and should stay on waivers.
Torii Hunter, RF, Tigers
Hunter has seen a 10-point jump in ownership the last seven days, but owners who are thinking about adding him should hold off. His ISO is at its highest level since 2010 while his strikeout rate has dropped below 14 percent … a level he has never reached at any point of his career. While his BABIP is lower than might be expected given his last several seasons, Hunter’s ability to perform at this rate should be questioned and is why he has dropped four spots in the HVaC in the last week.
Chris Young, RHP, Mariners
This seems like an easy one to avoid, but a 14-point rise in ownership means people are starting to take his numbers more seriously. Young’s strand rate of nearly 84 percent combined with an FIP nearly two runs above his ERA make for red flags. With a K/9 number of less than six, the one category he can control is too low to make an impact for most owners on a weekly basis.