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Adrian Gonzalez – FantasySP Blog

What’s wrong with the Red Sox?

 

For the first time since World War II, the Boston Red Sox have started the season 0-6. This comes to a shock given the hundreds of millions the club spent in the off season to an already formidable roster.

Need help at the corner? Sign free agent Adrian Gonzalez formerly of San Diego. Just entering his prime, Gonzalez’ swing is tailor made for the dimensions of Fenway. Gonzo posted terrific numbers in cavernous PETCO Park and  has BoSox fans salivating at the possibilities in bean  town. Short on speed and athleticism? Sign former Tampa Bay All-Star Carl Crawford. Crawford, arguably the most athletic player in the majors, seems a perfect fit in left field with the green monster to his back.

So what’s all the fuss? The talk shows are rampant with discussion as Boston stumbles out of the gate. Is it too much to overcome is the question I keep hearing. Are you kidding me? 156 games and six months of baseball remain. Baltimore leads the AL East and there start couldn’t have been better. Right behind are the Yankees, who are conveniently at Fenway for a three game series this weekend.

Bottom line, the Red Sox will be fine. I will go out on a limb and say they will win the American League pennant. Not just the AL East, they will be in the World Series! Boston is adjusting to the new superstar additions and the cold start could be attributed in part to the miserable weather during the Cleveland series. In the three game season opening series, they ran head first into a white hot Texas offense, arguably the best in baseball.  Jacoby Ellsbury, who endured an injury plagued 2010 campaign is working his way back into shape. A healthy Ellsbury, along with second baseman Dustin Pedroia and Crawford will create nightmares for opposing managers on the base paths.

There is plenty more to fuel the Boston offense. While they collectively slumped in week one, their lineup is so stocked with  hitters, don’t expect many slumps of this nature. With the addition of Gonzalez, Kevin Youkalis, the heart and soul of the Red Sox, slides over to third base. Need more left handed power for the short porch at Yankee Stadium and down the line in Fenway? How about a rejuventated David Ortiz at DH and a healthy JD Drew in right field.

Boston did make a substantial change replacing team captain Jason Varitek behind  the plate with Jarrod Saltamaccchia. Varitek is  still with the team, but this change was necessary and could be contributing to the slow start. Saltamacchia was a huge  prospect with Atlanta, and was the key to  the Braves rental of Mark Texeira, traded over from Texas several years ago.

Boston has a slump buster in the rotation in Jon Lester. He was masterful in Thursday’s loss at Cleveland and it most cases will have plenty of offensive support. Josh Beckett, John Lackey and Daisuke Matsuzaka round out the top of a rotation that can carry Boston deep into the post season. Jonathan Papelbon leads the bullpen, with Bobby Jenks now on board for insurance. Daniel Bard is a prototype setup reliever possessing 100 mph heat.

Red Sox nation should breath a collective sigh of relief, unless of course they get swept by the Yankees. Then, the meltdown will truly begin.

Matt Holliday, Josh Hamilton, Miguel Cabrera+: Consistent Mashers

Issue: For the careful fantasy player who wants bankable hitting production in HR, RBI, and R without damaging his team BA, where should he look?

Facts: Auction/Draft Prep Tools: Categories Leader Board Last 3 Seasons— Thirty-nine hitters with

60+HR

200+RBI

200+ R

.270+ BA.

Ranked below by BA.

Player PA HR RBI R BA
Albert Pujols 2041 126 369 339 .331
Matt Holliday 1968 77 300 296 .315
Josh Hamilton 1640 74 284 236 .315
Hanley Ramirez 1964 78 249 318 .314
Miguel Cabrera 2017 109 356 292 .314
Joey Votto 1781 86 281 257 .314
Manny Ramirez 1405 65 226 202 .311
Kevin Youkilis 1644 75 271 267 .308
Robinson Cano 2004 68 266 276 .304
Ryan Braun 2055 94 323 306 .303
Justin Morneau 1650 71 285 235 .300
Vladimir Guerrero 1650 71 256 227 .300
David Wright 2023 72 299 290 .297
Ryan Zimmerman 1762 72 242 246 .294
Troy Tulowitzki 1578 67 233 238 .294
Andre Ethier 1866 74 265 253 .289
Derrek Lee 1939 74 281 264 .286
Alex Rodriguez 1724 95 328 256 .286
Adrian Beltre 1730 61 223 212 .286
Mark Teixeira 2104 105 351 318 .285
Adrian Gonzalez 2073 107 319 280 .285
Torii Hunter 1760 66 258 235 .285
Chase Utley 1905 80 262 300 .284
Evan Longoria 1840 82 302 263 .283
Raul Ibanez 1908 73 286 253 .281
Lance Berkman 1708 68 244 235 .281
Aubrey Huff 1926 73 279 255 .280
Prince Fielder 2127 112 326 283 .279
Jayson Werth 1810 87 251 277 .279
Matt Kemp 1992 72 266 272 0.279
Paul Konerko 1766 89 261 223 0.279
Hunter Pence 1947 75 246 247 0.278
Aramis Ramirez 1494 67 259 204 0.278
Vernon Wells 1796 66 232 226 0.275
Jason Kubel 1677 69 273 215 0.274
Jason Bay 1709 73 267 262 0.273
Ryan Ludwick 1707 76 279 230 0.273
Corey Hart 1743 63 241 231 0.271
J.D. Drew 1541 65 200 232 0.270

 

Analysis: Let’s put our arms around these 39 by slotting them into recognizable types:

Usually Out Performs His Salary: Drew (not sexy).

Post-Injury Bounce Back: Bay, Utley, Morneau.

May Have A Production Bump In Him: Hart, Kubel, Wells, Manny.

Possible Slight Bargain: Ludwick, Fielder, Huff, Berkman, Teixeira, Lee, Vlad, Cabrerra, Holliday.

Probably Over-Priced: Aramis, Konerko, Kemp, Werth, Ibanez, Adrian G., Beltre, A-Rod, Wright, Braun, Cano, Votto, Hanley, Hamilton.

Get What You Pay For: Pence, Longoria, Hunter, Ethier, Tulo, Zimmerman, Youkilis, Pujols.

Projections:

Name AVG R RBI HR SB AB
Albert Pujols 0.318 110 114 39 10 571
Ryan Braun 0.293 105 108 35 16 624
Hanley Ramirez 0.302 105 84 24 30 591
Miguel Cabrera 0.304 99 119 34 4 595
Joey Votto 0.297 97 109 32 11 581
Adrian Gonzalez 0.306 103 105 33 1 583
Matt Holliday 0.304 95 99 25 13 585
Troy Tulowitzki 0.291 96 103 26 12 561
Alex Rodriguez 0.280 89 118 32 11 517
David Wright 0.289 96 95 24 20 597
Robinson Cano 0.306 92 94 25 4 613
Josh Hamilton 0.306 86 102 26 9 541
Mark Teixeira 0.276 101 114 33 2 582
Jayson Werth 0.278 99 90 27 17 568
Evan Longoria 0.280 96 100 28 11 601
Kevin Youkilis 0.298 97 98 24 6 522
Matt Kemp 0.275 91 85 24 26 612
Chase Utley 0.278 98 88 24 14 542
Prince Fielder 0.274 89 98 34 3 551
Adrian Beltre 0.293 82 89 25 8 582
Brandon Phillips 0.268 95 84 21 20 635
Ryan Zimmerman 0.286 92 90 26 3 593
Hunter Pence 0.272 88 86 25 15 633
Justin Morneau 0.289 85 96 25 1 527
Andre Ethier 0.283 87 89 25 4 583
Torii Hunter 0.274 84 90 21 15 563
Vladimir Guerrero 0.281 78 91 26 4 512
Corey Hart 0.271 81 82 22 13 540
Aramis Ramirez 0.270 75 100 24 2 510
Derrek Lee 0.281 78 85 23 3 513
Aubrey Huff 0.267 85 89 20 4 576
Vernon Wells 0.265 81 81 20 9 595
Jason Bay 0.248 83 85 24 10 522
Raul Ibanez 0.278 70 79 20 3 472
Jason Kubel 0.267 68 82 21 2 494
Ryan Ludwick 0.253 73 85 23 3 532
J.D. Drew 0.265 77 70 20 4 456
Lance Berkman 0.262 71 74 18 7 464
Manny Ramirez 0.276 66 71 19 2 416

What Does Playing In Boston Mean For Adrian Gonzalez?

From a Fantasy perspective the contrasts between the NL West and the AL East, as well as those between spacious PETCO Park and the lefty-friendly Fens, make the Adrian Gonzalez move one of the most intriguing in recent years.

Analysis: The automatic assumption is that moving from a pitcher’s park to a place where talented lefties seem to pepper balls off of the Green Monster at will means a significant spike in Gonzalez’s slash line. After crunching the numbers and going over the evidence, I cannot argue with that premise. Most detractors to this theory pull out the “AL East argument” right away and, although A-Gone will be up against some pretty tough opponents in his new division, the NL West has sported some of the best arms in the game as of late. Keep in mind that Gonzalez has also spent the majority of his career in lineups that were nothing short of offensively anemic. Now surrounded by an impressive cast of characters and playing in front of one of the most passionate fan bases in all of baseball, Adrian is poised to take Beantown by storm.

Projection: All signs are positive for A-Gone in Boston. He may get off to a slow start in Spring Training, as he is recovering from offseason shoulder surgery. However, everyone in Boston (including Gonzalez) has been exuding confidence that he’ll be ready for Opening Day. He may also be the center of attention for a few more weeks for contract-related issues, but a multi-year extension seems like a foregone conclusion at this point. All that aside, Adrian and the Red Sox seem like the perfect marriage for Fantasy owners. He may lose a few line drive home runs due to the height of The Monstah, but those can be made up by taking advantage of some of Fenway’s other cozy dimensions. Besides, those lasers off of the wall will just pad his doubles total even more. Take into consideration that 107 of his 168 career dingers have come on the road, and it becomes evident that a change of home venue instantly puts Gonzalez in perennial MVP contention. Look for 40+ home runs, 125+ RBI, and an OBP in the .415-.430 range this season. This is a player with the potential to produce like a top 5 pick, but may be obtainable somewhere within the 10th-15th pick range in some leagues.