Zach’s Postseason Musings (10/7)
***NOTE: If you haven’t already, make sure to subscribe to this blog by hitting the Follow button on the right panel. You will then get an e-mail as soon as each new post goes up.
Throughout the postseason, I’ll be sharing my fantasy-angled thoughts on the notable performers in each game. It’s never too early to start thinking about next season, and being that a particularly strong or particularly weak postseason performance tends to have an impact (although it really shouldn’t) on ADP for the following year, it’s important to decide whether or not you will be targeting a certain player taking into account that his draft day price might be skewed, either negatively or positively, based on his October production.
Let’s get started.
AL Wild Card Game – Astros @ Yankees
Dallas Keuchel (6 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 K, W) clearly had no trouble pitching on short rest, though the Yankee lineup has been in such a funk lately that it’s hard to say if he would have been nearly as effective against any other playoff team. Regardless, he will probably win the AL Cy Young award and deserves a ton of credit for an outstanding season. Still, I’m not quite ready to place him in that fantasy ace tier until he puts together one more 200-strikeout season. Note that his K/9 in the first half was only 7.5 compared to a 9.7 K/9 following the All-Star break. Will Keuchel be just as dominant next season? Possibly. But his lack of an ace-level track record combined with an expected ace-level price tag is why he won’t be on any of my 2016 fantasy squads.
Masahiro Tanaka (5 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 3 K, L) hasn’t been the same pitcher since last year’s injury, and chances are he will eventually need Tommy John surgery. Whether that day will come next season or 2-3 years down the road is anyone’s guess, but I don’t want to be the owner with Tanaka on my roster when that day does come. Yeah, you’ll be able to draft him at a discount due to the injury concerns and his inconsistent performance this season, but I’d rather avoid this situation entirely.
Carlos Gomez (1-for-3, solo HR) was a major disappointment this season but injuries played a key role, as he was limited to just 115 games. In fact, if we project his stats over a full season, we get 17 homers, 24 steals and 86 runs. While those numbers do fall short of what we have come to expect from Gomez, they are still solid, and it’s likely that he was playing hurt all year. This is a guy who still has 20 HR/40 SB potential, and he should be available next year at a considerable discount. I’ll be a buyer.
Colby Rasmus (1-for-3, solo HR) continues to be one of the more frustrating players to own in fantasy due to his streaky hitting and consistently mediocre batting averages, but he rather quietly had a decent year this season in tallying a single-season high of 25 home runs. Rasmus almost always takes a seat versus lefty pitchers, but in deeper mixed leagues, especially those that allow daily lineup changes, he carries some appeal as a late-round pick.