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Monday, November 10, 2014

2015 FANTASY BASEBALL DRAFT BUST: MICHAEL CUDDYER OUTFIELER NEW YORK METS

                                        Michael Cuddyer

The ink is barely dry on the first sizable contract of the MLB Hot Stove Season but that makes it the perfect time to post our first feature for the 2015 season.  With that in mind, let's take a closer look at the free agent signing by the New York Mets of outfielder Michael Cuddyer to a two-year deal worth $20 million and what this will do to his 2015 fantasy baseball value.

Sometimes projecting a player's stats can be a fairly simple process.  Cuddyer is one such player as he moves from one of the best hitting ballparks in the game in Coors Field to one of the worst in Citi Field.  That alone will be a major negative for Cuddyer and almost certainly will negatively impact his numbers.  A similar case is Cuddyer's new teammate in the New York Mets outfield in the form of Curtis Granderson.  The Mets of course signed Granderson last offseason to a four-year deal worth $60 million to leave the crosstown Yankees and their launching pad of a ballpark.  Whereas Granderson was a two-time 40-home run hitter with the Yankees, he struggled to clear even the 20 mark in his first season with the Mets in 2014 and saw his batting average plummet terribly.  While Cuddyer's average won't fall as badly as Granderson's due to the fact he doesn't strike out as much, he surely won't be the .330 guy he was the last two seasons with the Colorado Rockies.  Before he signed with the Rockies as a free agent two years ago, Cuddyer was generally a .280 hitter during his long stint with the Minnesota Twins/  With Target Field and Citi Field being pretty similar in their ability to buttress home runs and offensive numbers, Cuddyer won't come anywhere near .330 and in all likeliehood will be back to his old .280 mark.  In addition, Cuddyer's power will take a hit as well which is obvious considering the ballpark move he is making.  While Cuddyer didn't go crazy with the home runs in Colorado, his home run rate undoubtedly will drop in Citi Field like what we saw out of Granderson last season. 

In addition to the expected drop in numbers, Cuddyer is also a big risk due to his age and injury history.  Cuddyer will turn 36 in March which is really starting to get up there for a ballplayer.  His body started to really betray him last season as Cuddyer spent three stints on the DL for two separate injuries to his shoulder and his hamstring.  That doesn't bode well for Cuddyer's ability to stay in your fantasy baseball lineup in 2015 and thus he presents risk on that aspect alone. 

When you put things all together, Michael Cuddyer is our first clear fantasy baseball bust for the 2015 season.  Many will foolishly buy into the Colorado numbers and think they will follow along to New York,  No chance that will even come close to remotely happening and when you throw in the injury risk, Cuddyer is a major risk on more than one front that makes him not worth bothering with unless the price is very low.

2015 PROJECTION:  .281 21 HR 83 RBI 74 R 7 SB

 

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