More and more fantasy managers are wising up and dropping B.J. Upton in their baseball leagues. After being traded in round five of most leagues, B.J. is currently only owned in 79% of leagues. You might be tempted to snatch him up based on his impressive 2012 season totals. In fact, Yahoo! recently published an article where fantasy baseball experts Dalton Del Don, Scott Pianowski, and Brad Evans all advocated people pick up him in anticipation for a second half resurgence. This is nonsense. There are many reasons why you should not pick up B.J.
Pianowski points to Upton’s numbers in the second half of last season as proof that he could be in for a rebound. It is true Upton clubbed 24 home runs in the second half of last year, but his average was still a lowly .244. And what about his second half stats in seasons past? His numbers actually got worse in the second half of 2011, 2009, 2008…well you get the picture. Upton isn’t better in the second half. Last season was just a fluke.
The article further says hitting coach Greg Walker has apparently diagnosed B.J.’s problem and is working to correct it. Yeah that’s why he is 0-10 with seven strikeouts in his last three games, right?
There are no signs of a turnaround here, folks. Even if there were, B.J. Upton is a career .250 hitter. What is the best that fantasy managers can hope for at this point? A sub-.250 batting average with 15 or maybe 20 homers and 15 steals on the season? If that’s the case, why not just go pick up Nate McLouth (available in 24% of leagues) who is on pace for 15 homers with 60 steals and currently has a .293 batting average? He’s more widely available and has more potential.
Or how about Nick Markakis (available in 18% of leagues) who is on pace for 18+ home runs with an average right around .300? True he has zero stolen bases thus far, but let’s not forget he also stole 12 bags back in 2011.
If you have your heart set on buying into someone playing poorly who might rebound, why not pick up Michael Morse (available in 29% of leagues)? Despite being a career .294 hitter, Morse is currently batting just .254. At least his power is still there, though. He has 11 home runs in 45 games. See how easy it is to find a power outfielder without locking in to a horrible average? Best case scenario, B.J. still sucks compared many other players you could pick up right this very moment.
I’d steer clear of B.J. He is pretty much useless in fantasy now.