34-Year-Old Outfielder – Free Agent
2014 Fantasy Baseball Outlook
There was no outlook written for Austin Kearns in 2014. Check out the latest news below for more on his current fantasy value.
Austin Kearns Contract Information:
Signed a one-year, $1.3 million (plus incentives) deal with the Indians in December 2010.
Kearns (personal) is not expected to return to the Marlins this season, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reports.
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|2006 (Multiple Teams)||26||MAJ||CIN/WAS||150||629||537||86||142||59||33||2||24||86||9||4||76||135||1||5||10||.264||.363||.467||.830|
|2010 (Multiple Teams)||30||MAJ||NYY/CLE||120||461||403||55||106||32||21||1||10||49||4||1||46||116||0||2||10||.263||.351||.395||.746|
|Career (View All)||1125||4,179||3,606||522||914||321||187||13||121||494||33||21||475||898||3||20||75||.253||.351||.413||.764|
Austin Kearns: MLB Games Played By Position
Austin Kearns Split Stats (View Full Split Stats)
|Year||Age||Lg||Tm||PA||AB||Walk Rate||Strikeout Rate||BB/K Ratio||Contact Rate||BABIP||Isolated Power|
|2006 (Multiple Teams)||26||MAJ||CIN/WAS||629||537||12.1%||21.5%||0.56||75%||.312||.203|
|2010 (Multiple Teams)||30||MAJ||NYY/CLE||461||403||10%||25.2%||0.40||71%||.347||.132|
Austin Kearns: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
There was no outlook written for Austin Kearns.
Kearns functioned as primarily a bench player in 2012, garnering just 147 at-bats for the Marlins. He popped four home runs and drove in 16 RBI while batting .245 with 21 runs scored and a pair of stolen bases. The owner of an unexciting .254/.351/.415 slash line over his career, Kearns has topped 175 at-bats just once over his past four seasons and remains little more than a bench player with limited upside at this point.
The Yankees acquired Kearns in late July, but he hit just .235 in the Bronx and was rarely used down the stretch. On the plus side, his .395 SLG was improved over his final two miserable years in Washington, though it seems unlikely that he's ever going to recapture the power he flashed during his 24-homer campaign in 2006. Kearns will likely fill a part-time outfield role after signing again with the Indians.
If you thought Kearns' numbers had bottomed out in 2008, you were wrong. The Nationals paid him $1 million this offseason to buy out his contract and make him go away. He signed a minor league contract with Cleveland and will try to win a reserve role this spring, but he's more likely to spend most of the season at Triple-A. He's also coming back from thumb surgery that ended his season in August.
It's truly incredible, and typical of general manager Jim Bowden's irrational loyalty to "his" players, that the Nationals gave Kearns over 300 at-bats as a corner outfielder in the majors despite a .313 SLG. There is no reason whatsoever for him to be anything more than a guy trying to hang onto a major league bench job, and with the acquisition of Josh Willingham that would seem to be his situation heading into the spring.
Although he hit 16 home runs Kearns posted a career-worst .411 SLG in 2007, and no player will be happier to get out of RFK Stadium's less-than-cozy confines. He'll turn 28 this season and there still could be some upside here, but at this point it seems like it's time to acknowledge than Kearns will never be the star he was expected to be and instead just a solid all-around player.
Stolen from the Reds in a deal that saw the likes of Royce Clayton go the other way, Kearns had an up-and-down start to his Nationals career, seeing his power slip but his walk rate shoot through the roof. The hope remains that at some point Kearns will combine the various skills he's flashed over the years into one All-Star package, but until he does you shouldn't count on him to see more than modest gains on what was, still, a career season for him in 2006.
This will be the third season in a row that we'll be calling Kearns a good buy-low candidate, but we have good reason for our optimism, perhaps more so than in other seasons. He's injury-free, doesn't have any competition for a starting job and didn't have to deal with a potential position change this offseason. Kearns turns just 26 in May, so while it seems like he's struggled forever, he's still young enough to recapture the potential displayed by his promising rookie season in 2002.
The Reds have five players (Adam Dunn, Kearns, Griffey, Wily Mo Pena and Sean Casey) for four spots, and they signed Joe Randa to fill their third-base vacancy, rather than experiment with Kearns there. Normally Kearns would be a perfect "buy-low" candidate this spring, but the crowded outfield adds an element of risk. A strong spring lessened that risk, and it now appears that he'll be the starter most often in right field. If Griffey doesn't get hurt, however, Pena will remain a threat.
Kearns suffered a shoulder injury May 21 when he slid headfirst into home plate on a wild pitch, colliding with Braves pitcher Ray King as he covered home. The injury turned out to be far more serious than originally diagnosed, as Kearns tried to play through it for about two months unsuccessfully. His injury will be the most recent example of for those who advocate against headfirst slides. He finally had surgery in August, and is expected to be 100 percent for the start of spring training. There's a reasonable possibility that he'll come undervalued in 2004, with fantasy owners focusing on the mediocre numbers he posted after the injury.
What's not to like here? Kearns may have finished third in the NL Rookie of the Year balloting, but only Mark Prior might have a higher upside than Kearns from this rookie class. If the Reds can somehow coax 145 games from Ken Griffey Jr., their outfield looks extraordinarily imposing. Kearns' 24 doubles indicate that there might be a power outburst in 2003. Thirty homers are within reach.