Pirates4Life wrote:Two of the most undervalued players I've seen are Nick Swisher and Kelly Johnson.
Swisher hit 35 HRs in Oakland a couple years ago and had a down year last year. But now he's in one of the best HR parks in baseball and he'll be protected by Thome, Konerko, and Dye in a much, MUCH better lineup. Better pitches to hit, more runs being scored, and lots of potential to be a huge steal for where he's being drafted. I won't be suprised when he ends up with a batting average around .275 with an OBP over .400, and I'll be shocked if his power doesn't at least return to where it was in 2006.
And I love Kelly Johnson too. With full-time duty, he's got a shot to be a top 5 2B hitting leadoff in that lineup. 20+ HRs, double digit steals, a batting average near .280 and an OBP 100 points higher. And he's only going to get better now that he doesn't have to learn how to play 2B anymore.
Johnson and Swisher definitely have the OBP going for them, but for good 'ol 5x5, there is still plenty of reason for concern, which is why they aren't valued higher.
Afer the All-star break, Johnson hit just .262 and stole only 2 bases. Project that over a full season, and you aren't looking at a very good fantasy player. So the question remains is which half is legit and what will you get out of him in 2008? Lets face it, Johnson has had one good half of a season, and that just isn't enough to confidently pick him as a "top 5 2B".
As for Swisher, he was just not good last year. Plain and simple. The guy hit for a low average and 22 homeruns, which just won't cut it in fantasy baseball with a guy that doesn't steal bases. You are predicting .275/.400 when he has never reached those numbers before... in fact his career line is .251/.361. His low average is a big liability and has to be made up for with high average guys, sort of like an Adam Dunn lite. As for calling last year a "down year" for Swisher, I don't know how you can come to that result when he has hit 21 HR, 35 HR, and then 22 HR. Looking at that, the 35 HR is the aberration. What it boils down to me, is the fact that he is really a .250 hitter who has never reached a slugging of .500 or higher. That is just plain ugly. If the league doesn't count BB's or OBP, I don't want that kind of liability on my team. For 5x5, I don't like what I've seen so far, and a change of scenery just isn't enough for me to have the kind of outlook on him that you have.