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MLB Fantasy: Hype Vs. Logic In Selecting Keepers

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MLB Fantasy: Hype Vs. Logic In Selecting Keepers
(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

Over the past couple years, taking chances based purely on potential has become a trend in fantasy baseball. In rounds where players should take a guy like the Angel's Torii Hunter, they instead go for the Ranger's unproven Nelson Cruz. Is missing out on a solid five category guy worth taking a flier on a career minor leaguer who hasn't proven he can consistently rake at the big league level? I'm not so sure, but for two buddies in my keeper league, it'll certainly become a point of contention:

Evidence

A situation similar to this presented itself to me during this year's offseason. I had to choose five keepers on a pretty stacked team. I settled on the first four guys, but was tearing my hair out over that last spot. Do I take a chance on Texas' rookie masher Chris Davis or do I hold pat and stay with the game's most consistent slugger in Adam Dunn?

In my keeper league, we lose the round where the player was drafted for the first year. The second year, we use some kind of intense algorithm based on projected average draft position (ADP) and last year's round to figure out which round we'll be losing. It's retarded, but all you really need to know is that:

a) Adam Dunn is considered a 9th round pick.

b) Chris Davis was undrafted last year and is therefore considered a 23rd round pick.

From that standpoint, it makes sense to keep Davis. I'm not really losing a pick at all, and if I let Dunn go, there's a fairly good chance he could fall to me somewhere in the early part of the draft.

But what about the reason for this post? What about the degree of chance I'm taking by keeping Davis? Adam Dunn is the game's most consistent slugger, his stats more dependable than Alex Rodriguez, than Albert Pujols, and certainly Davis.

Do I give up this:

Check out those last four years.
Check out those last four years.

For this:

This might be risky...
This might be risky...

There is no doubt that Davis could have an eerily similar impact on fantasy teams as Dunn.  In his minor league career, Davis performed the duties of a pure slugger, crushing 73 homers with a .302 average among the three stops (A, AA, AAA) and through three seasons. If Davis' short time in Texas last year is any indication, the power will continue even if scouts believe the batting average will dwindle due to a semi-poor contact rate.

In the end, I took the chance that I gawk at others for making. I kept Davis. His upside, the fact that he's basically free, the fact that he plays in hitter-friendly Arlington; all of it made me go with my gut instead of logic. Did I make the right move or did I fall victim to the Chris Davis hype machine?

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