Just one month ago, every major league clubhouse had dreams of October glory, and every fantasy baseball lineup had championship aspirations.
Even at this point, owners allow themselves to cling to hope, arguing that the small sample size is not enough to bail on preseason plans. But there are a few exceptions.
Early-season values, which hinge most heavily on early-season performances, are often shaky before the season starts. A bad April is enough to greatly discount older players coming off uncharacteristically bad years—those who owners hoped would rebound.
Early results can also be very revealing for prospects who get the call to start the season with the big club.
For most players, one bad month is not enough for owners to lose hope, but the players represented in the coming slides are simply not who owners thought (or hoped) they would be.