This article is part of our The Z Files series.
I'm a maroon. Peter Kreutzer solicited Picks and Pans for his (returning) Fantasy Baseball Guide, and I kept procrastinating, figuring I'd send them tomorrow. Well, tomorrow never came. I feel badly, but Peter always recruits a who's who of the industry for the feature (my favorite of any of the magazines) so they'll be fine.
Instead, I'll share my picks and pans here. I likely wouldn't have sent all of these in, and the accompanying blurb would have been short and pithy. In full disclosure, a few are the RotoWire player outlooks I wrote. With that, here are my picks and pans.
Baez's move to Detroit is an under-the-radar great fit for his fantasy potential, assuming he makes a seamless transition. Comerica Park reduces strikeouts by eight percent while it helps hits. It also diminishes walks, but with Baez's already low BB rate, the drop is insignificant. Another benefit is Detroit demonstrated a penchant for running last season, finishing tied for the seventh-most steals in the league. Baez's lack of patience and high chase rate will continue to subject his numbers to the whims of Lady Luck, but there's profit potential if the market fails to account for the improved hitting environment.
Seager exhibited a big uptick in both groundball and flyball average exit velocity last season, indicating an increase in bat speed rather than him simply joining the launch angle revolution. It could be health or improved pitch recognition. Even so, based on