Can Travis Hafner Provide for Fantasy Baseball Teams?
Can he keep it up?
The first thing to be concerned with Hafner is his health. He has played in fewer than 95 games in four of the past five seasons. His high water mark during that span was 118 games. Obviously his inability to stay in the lineup has taken its toll on his numbers.
Hafner’s batting average has been .280 or lower in those five years and his 1.131 OPS is higher than he finished any previous season with.
There was a time, from 2004-07, when Pronk averaged 31.8 home runs and 108.5 RBI. That was a lifetime ago in terms of a baseball career.
He’s simply not that guy anymore.
But that doesn’t mean Hafner doesn’t have fantasy value anymore. He is destroying right-handed pitching to the tune of a .341 batting average and a 1.206 OPS. Throughout his career he is .288 and .929 against righties and .256 and .885 against southpaws.
Hafner is hitting well on the road (.308, 1.015), but he’s killing it at Yankee Stadium (.333, 1.274). That shouldn’t be a surprise as Yankee Stadium is conducive to left-handed batters.
In 14 career games at Yankee Stadium, Pronk has four home runs. Despite his .267 batting average, his OPS is .953 in “The House That Jeter Built."
The best way to use Hafner is to pick your spots. Use him when he’s playing at home or facing a right-handed pitcher. Just be prepared to make a move if he succumbs to another injury.
He should be readily available in most leagues and isn’t a big risk to get snatched up if you plug him in your lineup and then dump him.
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