A fan of the Yankees, Red Sox, and large sample sizes.
I have a much easier time coming up with players that won't do as well this year as last. Avoiding the letdowns has always been a strength of mine in fantasy leagues. I do well mostly because players I draft rarely flame out. If none of your players perform much below what you expect, you'll tend to do well. This is a list of overrated baseball players in general, not just fantasy players, however.
Mueller's always been a decent player. He's an above average fielder and had a few good offensive seasons with the Cubs and Giants, but nothing near what he did last year. Sure, Fenway helps, but I think it's much more likely that David Ortiz, Trot Nixon, and Jason Varitek duplicate last year's breakout seasons than Mueller.
I've mentioned Gonzalez before. His rate stats just don't back up the ERA he posted last year. Even if his skills improve, which is likely for a young pitcher, his ERA is will almost definitely be worse. He's not the pitcher people think he is.
He's a good young player that will likely have some All-Star type seasons. But fifteen good playoff games do not guarantee an awesome sophomore season. Counting on a 21 year old to be a stud is not often a good bet.
Joe Mauer's another highly touted prospect that I think will struggle this year, injury aside. His hitting style throughout the minors is a lot like Sean Burroughs - good average, but not a lot of power, and decent plate discipline. Expect a .270/.320/.380 year from Mauer.
He had a great start yesterday, but his 2003 season was overhyped due to a strong start. If two pitchers end with similar ERAs, their seasons were likely similar quality. But if one pitcher started strong and had his ERA slowly dift upward, his season is often seen as better than a pitcher that started poorly and slowly brought his ERA down. Willis isn't a bad pitcher, but don't expect a sub-4.00 ERA. Brandon Webb, on the other hand is a young pitcher that displayed good talent throughout the entire 2003 season.
Another pitcher that overacheived by a little, and got worked like an Iverson crossover dribble. A good pitcher, but he'll disappoint a lot of people this year.
The Orioles OF
Baltimore has a number of young outfielders who are all media darlings. They won't suck it up, but there's not a star among Luis Matos, Larry Bigbie, and Jay Gibbons. If I had to bet on the next Oriole star, it would be Jack Cust. Of course, he's only been given one AB so far this year.
To be Continued...
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