Don’t cut your studs. The majority of the things I’m asked on a daily basis is whether you should give up on an underachieving guy who you drafted early. At the end of the season most of these guys will still have the same consistent numbers that they always put up each year. We still have a long 4 months left to go this season and a lot of things will change before then.
However, the term “huge second half” has been thrown around a lot lately and about way too many players. In my eyes guys like Albert Pujols and Dan will both rebound to have have nice seasons, but in two different ways.
Albert Pujols is the kind of guy who will have a huge second half and will completely rebound back to the numbers he always puts up. He’s already beginning to show that after hitting walk off home runs the last two days. Just this past week he hit .444 with 5 HR 10 RBI and even stole 2 bases. And just like that he’s back to .278 with 13 HR’s. That puts him just 2 average points under officially hitting for average. Expect him to put up plenty more huge .444 AVG weeks on his way to getting his AVG back over .300 for the season. When its all said and done he will still put up the typical year end numbers. This will be because of huge weeks like this that compensate for the bad weeks and level out his season.
Dan Uggla and guys like him will bounce back in a different way and be different from the Pujols situation. Instead of fully compensating for lost weeks and putting up numbers that equal prior seasons, some guys just progress back to the norm after a second half. Which means Uggla will bounce back and put up normal numbers in the second half. But at the end of the season his numbers will be lower than prior seasons because of the bad weeks he had. Unlike Pujols who makes up for those weeks, guys like Uggla never do. Uggla still has a ton of upside for a normal power hitting second half, but the year end numbers just won’t be there this year. Not every guy will have a “monster second half” where they compensate for their slump. Not every guy will put up the typical baseball card numbers at the end of the year. Guys like Pujols and Longoria will. Guys like Uggla and Dunn will not.
So this means that it is still a good idea to buy low on a guy like Uggla in preparation for his bounce back and normal second half. At the end of the year his numbers will show that he had a down season overall and next year he will fall in the draft. But since his second half numbers will be back to normal his final stat line will be misleading. These are the kind of guys you need to target in your draft the following year. That is split reading and sports psychology 201 and that’s what I excel in. It’s these sorts of situations that I can read and thus make correct predictions when it comes to fantasy.
Regardless though you need to hold on to guys that you invested high draft picks in. Chase Utley is a good example of that as he starting to heat up. After his 3 hit performance yesterday and his 3rd stolen base already he is starting to make managers regret trading him. If you bought him low then kudos to you. Keep watching for these sorts of situations and stay smart. Any player who was drafted in the first 6 rounds who is underachieving is worth a buy low risk.