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Nick Kappel's MLB Fantasy Focus: Second Half Studs

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Nick Kappel's MLB Fantasy Focus: Second Half Studs
(Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)
Original Article: Baseball Reflections
The All-Star Break has come and gone, and the dog days of summer are upon us.
In some leagues, only six weeks of regular season play remain, meaning now is the time to make your playoff push. Every piece of information is important, and if history is any indicator, these eight batters are likely to dominate the opposition in the second half of the season…

Jimmy Rollins
Rollins has frustrated fantasy owners more than any other player in 2009, but there is reason for hope. If you read the May 18 edition of Fantasy Focus, you know that in the past, J-Roll’s production increases progressively each month of the season. Combine that tidbit with his .357 (20-for-56) start to July, and you too will believe Rollins can help your team’s playoff run.
Check out Rollins’ first half/second half splits. After the ASB, Rollins averages a HR every 37.7 at-bats, opposed to one out of every 47.1 at-bats before the ASB. In addition, he bats 22 points higher following the mid-season classic.
 
AB
R
HR
RBI
SB
AVG/OBP/SLG
PRE-ASB
3205
485
68
311
161
.265/.317/.414
POST-ASB
2413
411
64
267
150
.287/.347/.464

Mark Teixeira
Teixeira’s overall stat line, (21 HR and 63 RBI at the ASB) is impressive. However, only five long balls have come since the end of May. History tells us that the power outage wont last long, as Teixeira averages one HR every 15 at-bats following the ASB, meaning 15-20 more dingers are yet to come.

 

AB

HR

RBI

AVG/OBP/SLG

PRE-ASB

2123

116

386

.277/.368/.515

POST-ASB

1622

108

353

.303/.390/.574


David Wright
Wright’s lack of power in 2009 is somewhat concerning. Prior to this season, Wright averaged a HR ever 20.4 at-bats. This season, he’s hitting one out just once every 66.8 at-bats. While the new home ballpark may be a factor, history points to an increase in power following the ASB.
Not only has Wright historically batted 26 points higher following the ASB, but his greatest power numbers come in the months of August and September.

 

AB

HR

RBI

AVG/OBP/SLG

PRE-ASB

1665

69

283

.299/.384/.503

POST-ASB

1312

66

250

.325/.400/.553


Ryan Howard
Howard’s second half splits are sick. In just over 1,000 at-bats post-ASB, Howard has batted 47 points higher than in his 1,300 at-bats pre-ASB.
What’s even more incredible is that Howard averages one HR every 11 at-bats in the second half, or roughly one long ball every third game. If that total holds true, Howard is due for 25 dingers in the final two and a half months.

 

AB

HR

RBI

AVG/OBP/SLG

PRE-ASB

1329

102

300

.255/.342/.537

POST-ASB

1073

97

266

.302/.414/.637


David Ortiz
Big Papi is finally flashing some power, with 11 of his 12 HR coming since the start of June. History tells us the second half should bring more long balls off the bat of Ortiz, as he averages one HR every 15.1 at-bats post-ASB.

 

AB

HR

RBI

AVG/OBP/SLG

PRE-ASB

2551

144

527

.282/.371/.534

POST-ASB

2373

157

489

.284/.386/.559


Aubrey Huff
Aubrey Huff’s second half splits are quite astonishing. In 427 less at-bats following the mid-season classic, Huff has blasted 15 more HR and has nearly matched his first half RBI total. On top of that, he historically bats 31 points higher after the ASB, making him a great guy to have on your team down the stretch.

 

AB

HR

RBI

AVG/OBP/SLG

PRE-ASB

2574

92

363

.271/.331/.445

POST-ASB

2147

107

360

.302/.357/.519


Robinson Cano
Robinson Cano is well known as one of the better second half performers, but I was shocked to learn just how much better he plays following the ASB.
Pre-ASB, Cano averages one HR every 43.5 at-bats, opposed to one every 26.2 at-bats in the second half; which is quite a large difference. History also tells us that Cano hits 40 points higher following the ASB. If this holds true, Cano will bat .350 in the final two and a half months.
  AB HR RBI AVG/OBP/SLG
PRE-ASB 1524 35 180 .287/.321/.433
POST-ASB 1051 40 175 .327/.358/.526

Carlos Pena
Judging by Pena’s career second half splits, he hits one HR every fourth game. This means he’s got a real good shot at another 40-HR campaign this season. It’s also important to note that Pena hits 22 points higher in the second half. This fact, combined with his current .264 BABIP leads me to believe it is possible for Pena to finish the season with a .260 average.
  AB HR RBI AVG/OBP/SLG
PRE-ASB 1532 87 261 .238/.343/.467
POST-ASB 1444 100 263 .260/.370/.534

Check back next week for my list of second half pitching studs!
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