Don’t get fooled by Houston Astros jerseys these tempting picks: Dee Gordon and Justin Verlander are among the early selections to avoid.
The definition of sleeper may have changed over the years, but bust means today what it did 10 and 20 years ago, and what it will 10 and 20 years in the future. There are two types of busts. Those that completely flop, and those that play well enough, but don’t come close to justifying their draft-day price tag. We’ll feature both types in our look at AL busts for the 2018 season.
Two notes before we get going. A player discount jerseys needs to be a high- or middle-round pick to bust. No one cares if your 14th-rounder falls flat on his face. Given that, we set an average draft position cutoff of 100 to qualify as a bust. Pick No. 100 comes in the ninth round of a 12-team league, eighth round of a 14-teamer, and seventh round of a 15-teamer. Second, given that the potential bust pool is much shallower than that of sleepers or breakouts, there will be fewer players in these columns than those ones.
Stolen bases are at a premium across the Justin Verlander jerseys league, with teams collectively running less often than ever before. Gordon has swiped 64, 58 and 60 bases in his last three healthy seasons, and is sure to push that mark again this year. He singlehandedly makes his fantasy teams a league-leader in steals.
And yet, his strength has made him significantly overvalued in fantasy leagues. Gordon will likely give you a plus-batting average as well, but he’s a drag on OBP and, as we’ve discussed before, everyone should be playing in OBP leagues. The run-scoring upside he had last year is gone. Seattle’s offense is nothing to sneeze at, but he won’t have a trio behind him that matches up to Christian Yelich, Giancarlo Stanton and Marcell Ozuna. In OBP leagues, he’s a one-category player, a slightly better version of Billy Hamilton. You’re really going to take someone like that over Noah Syndergaard or Alex Bregman or Brian Dozier?
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