This article will look at the most added players over the last seven days according to ESPN’s calculations (the percentages are current up to Tuesday night).
This exercise should be able to allow us to see if some recently successful performances have been authentic or fraudulent.
While it may be justifiable to react and pick up several of these recent risers, there are some other players on this list that should be disregarded like the 1995 sixty-five inch Mitsubishi television that is currently in my room, weighs more than I would like to think about, and is currently inoperable for one reason or another. Just like my inability to move this behemoth of a television out of my living quarters, Fantasy owners should dissuade their motivation from action, and not pick up certain players on this list despite their recent, larger than life performances.
Most Added Players:
10. Justin Morneau: +26.1% (79% Owned)
9. Mitch Moreland: +30.3% (36.9% Owned)
Owned in fewer leagues than Albert Pujols, Billy Butler, and Lance Berkman, Mitch Moreland is also ranked higher than the aforementioned first basemen on ESPN’s player rater. If Moreland is able to avoid the injuries that derailed his playing time last year, he should be able to continue the production he has had in 2013.
While Moreland’s BABIP is a little high—nothing inflated enough to be worried about—his HR/FB ratio suggests that his power production can be sustained, if not improved upon from last year, because of his surge in FB% (42.9% this year, compared to 37.7% last year).
8. Scott Kazmir: +30.3% (30.6% Owned)
Kazmir consistently averaged 92 mph on his fastball until 2010, but soon after that time his skillset declined to the point that he only averaged 88 mph on his fourseam in 2011. So far this year, Kazmir has averaged 92 mph on his fastball and has regained his velocity and effectiveness.
7. James Loney: +30.8% (43.7% Owned)
As we discussed last week, Loney currently has the third largest differential between his 2013 BABIP and his career BABIP among qualified players this year.
Loney’s BABIP has largely increased because of his line drive rate. But, as Matt Klaassen discussed on Monday, since batted ball data has been recorded in 2002, no qualified hitter has ever ended a season with a line drive rate as high as Loney’s 34%.
6. Andrelton Simmons: +31.8% (92.8% Owned)
5. Travis Wood: +33.4% (69.2% Owned)
When I looked at Travis Wood’s player page to get a definitive look at his numbers, I literally rolled my eyes. Wood is striking out less batters than he ever has before (6.08 K/9), has a more than generous .186 BABIP, and even more opportunistic 6.1% HR/FB ratio. Look for Wood to regress, and save your waiver dollars for someone worth your time.
4. Brian McCann: +43.6% (92.1% Owned)
3. Junichi Tazawa: +52.9% (54.3% Owned)
2. Kelly Johnson: +58.3% (77.6% Owned)
Johnson’s 14.7% HR/FB is consistent with his production over the last three years, and after last year when his fly ball percentage dipped to an unprecedented 33.7%, his FB% this year is back up to 46.6% and indicates that Johnson has made an adjustment with his approach at the plate. The average may come down, but the power that Johnson has showed this year is legit.
1. Heath Bell: +65.3% (67.4% Owned)
Over the last two seasons, Heath Bell’s fastball has become very hittable. PITCHf/x data shows that Bell’s fastball has gone from 15 runs above average in 2011, to -4.3 in 2012, and -2.5 this year. It’s clear that Bell does not have the same velocity and movement on his fastball that he used to, so it is only a matter of time before he pitches his way out of the closers role he has found himself in.
The Diamondbacks chose to put Bell in the closers role because he had experience in that capacity, but past experience does not always correlate to current ability. Bell is the most added player in Fantasy Baseball because of the position scarcity at closer, but before long David Hernandez, who will most likely take over the closers role once Bell falters, will be the most added player.
Devon Jordan is obsessed with statistical analysis, non-fiction literature, and electronic music. If you enjoyed him here, follow him on his Twitter feed.