Looking at the 15 Worst BABIP

Eric StashinSenior Writer IApril 29, 2009

KISSIMMEE, FL - FEBRUARY 21:  Infielder Lance Berkman #17 of the Houston Astros poses during photo day at Atros spring training complex on February 21, 2009 in Kissimmee, Florida.  (Photo by Marc Serota/Getty Images)

Today, let’s take a look at the hitters with the fifteen worst Batting Average on Balls in Play (BABIP) through Monday’s games and the prospects on if they are potentially good buy low candidates or if they are not worth gambling on:

  • Edwin Encarnacion - Cincinnati Reds - .163
  • Lance Berkman - Houston Astros - .167
  • Troy Tulowitzki - Colorado Rockies - .176
  • Carlos Quentin - Chicago White Sox - .184
  • Jason Varitek - Boston Red Sox - .184
  • Brandon Phillips - Cincinnati Reds - .189
  • J.J. Hardy - Milwaukee Brewers - .191
  • Jason Kendall - Milwaukee Brewers - .200
  • Kelly Johnson - Atlanta Braves - .204
  • Ken Griffey Jr. - Seattle Mariners - .205
  • Emmanuel Burriss - San Francisco Giants - .208
  • Jimmy Rollins - Philadelphia Phillies - .210
  • Alexei Ramirez - Chicago White Sox - .212
  • Conor Jackson - Arizona Diamondbacks - .212
  • Brian Giles - San Diego Padres - .212

There’s a group of these players where their owners are not likely going to be willing to sell low on.  Lance Berkman, Carlos Quentin, Brandon Phillips, Jimmy Rollins, and Alexei Ramirez are probably not even worth targeting.

They were all early round draft picks and it would be hard to imagine their owners simply giving up on them for pennies on the dollar this early in the season.

Edwin Encarnacion hit the DL yesterday, so he’s just not worth considering owning at this point.

Jason Varitek and Jason Kendall - These catchers only had value in deeper, two-catcher formats to begin with.  Bad luck or not, how much do we really expect out of them?  Don’t even bother.

Ken Griffey Jr. and Brian Giles - These are two veterans who fall into the “dime a dozen” category.  They only have value in five outfielder formats to begin with, and even then they are not worth acquiring.  You can find someone equally accomplished on the waiver wire.

Kelly Johnson and Conor Jackson - I’ve spoken about both of these players previously and nothing has changed.  They just don’t offer the upside potential in any specific category, outside of maybe average.  For me they are worst-case scenario options, and while they are struggling it’s just not worth it.

Troy Tulowitzki was terrible in the first half last season, hitting .166 prior to the All-Star Break and .327 after it.  He’s a player that has proven how good he could he can be, and if someone in your league has had enough of him I would not hesitate to pull the trigger if you can get him on the cheap.

J.J. Hardy is another player worth grabbing if possible.  Hitting .179 this season, over the past two years he’s hit .277 and .283, respectively.  That’s not to mention his power potential, so he’s a player worth waiting on.

Emmanuel Burriss is a real wild card.  He has definite value as the everyday 2B for the San Francisco Giants.  It’s extremely hard to imagine a player with that much speed hitting so poorly, especially with nearly 65 percent of his batted balls being put on the ground.  Look for him to bounce back in a big way sooner or later. 

Chances are he is not owned in your league (unless you are in a deeper format), so I’d monitor him closely.  As soon as he shows signs of righting the ship, I’d pounce on him if you are in need of speed.

What do you think of these options?  Anyone you have been able to acquire?  Anyone you’ve already given up on?