As we inch further and further away from the 2012 fantasy baseball season, we want to revisit some of of predictions, then look ahead to the 2013 fantasy baseball season, which of course will ultimate bring us to Mr. Mike Trout.
As the 2012 season began I talked about 3 players, who are so old they were inching along themselves – Vernon Wells, Bobby Abreu, and Torii Hunter – guys who were set to receive significant time in the 2012 Angel’s outfield.
I said this about Vernon Wells:
He can’t play the field and he can’t get on base. I can’t emphasize enough how horrible a triple slash of .218/.251/.399 is. I’m not sure anyone in the history of the league has hit 20+ home runs with a slugging % below .400.
Wells only had 262 PA in 2012 and the one time I saw him play the field this season I had to gouge out my eyes. On top of that his SLG was again just above .400 at .403. I shouldn’t have to say it, but I will anyway: that’s a horrible return on $21 million dollars. At least he had a positive WAR of 0.5, just at replacement level.
Vernon Wells 2013 fantasy baseball outlook is much the same. He holds zero value for your team. The reality of his paycheck will get him at bats, making him a highly paid 4th outfielder, but fantasy-wise you are much better off looking at just about anyone else for your outfield.
My outlook for Bobby Abreu was similarly dire:
I like Bobby Abreu, always have. But he hit 8 home runs last season. Eight. With just 54 runs and an AVG that will hurt you, he’s not worth it.
Abreu was actually released by the Angels, only to be signed as a reserve by the Dodgers. He was then designated for assignment and agreed to a minor league contract by the Dodgers.
Abreu at one time got on base unlike anyone else, then would swipe 2nd and 3rd for good measure. Those days are long gone and – even if he can manage to stay in the game – he has zero fantasy baseball value in 2013.
Our projections were dead on for Torii Hunter:
Torii Hunter isn’t done. Yet. But his steals have dried up and he’s been mercifully moved to RF, because he hasn’t had the speed for CF in years. But he’ll get 20 home runs, plus knock in and score about 80. [But] do not overpay for the player that once was.
OK, he only got 16 home runs instead of 20, but he did hit .313, which is nice because average is more scarce than you realize in fantasy baseball. Being 37 years old, his home run numbers will continue to drop, but I actually like his counting stats because he’ll again get playing time. Feel free to look at him in the last couple rounds as a 4th outfielder on your 2013 fantasy baseball team.
The reason he’ll get playing time is that Hunter provided an veteran anchor on a new-look Angel’s outfield. Mike Trout has been the fantasy baseball story this year. [click to tweet this.] His was a season for the ages and word is that Torii Hunter has taken him under his wing and has been a stable mentor for him.
Mark Trumbo‘s second half slide is concerning, but early thinking has to be that he’s still a lock in left field with his 30 home run potential, coupled with Peter Bourjos‘ collapse. That puts Hunter securely in right to flank Mike Trout, the new Angel in the outfield.