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Thursday, January 5, 2017

2017 FANTASY BASEBALL DRAFT SLEEPER: LANCE LYNN SP ST. LOUIS CARDINALS

Perhaps the first big injury to come down the pike in 2016 fantasy baseball was the Tommy John elbow surgery diagnosis for St. Louis Cardinals workhorse righty Lance Lynn.  Having quietly established himself as one of the better power arms in the game prior to the surgery, Lynn was a decent-sized loss for his fantasy baseball owners right at the outset of spring training.  Having suffered no setbacks in his recovery, Lynn should be ready to go sometime around mid-to-late April.  Keep in mind that Lynn had a string of five MLB seasons out of five where he posted an ERA under 4.00 and in three of those campaigns, he went under 3.15.  Lynn also can be considered a power pitcher as he generally resides in the 8.50 range with his K/9 and he also has a knack for coming up with wins which is always a plus from that unpredictable category.  The one thing that has to be watched here is the typical control problems most pitchers have the first season back from Tommy John.  This is especially troubling for Lynn because he was a poor control pitcher even before going under the knife.  From 2012 through 2015, Lynn had a BB/9 rate over 3.00 which is a big negative and one assumes he will be right back there again for 2017.  Still despite the lack of control, Lynn has been able to post very good ERA’s and K totals to go with winning games.  That is still a nice return on investment and the drastically reduced draft price is quite attractive. 
2017 PROJECTION:  12-7 3.48 ERA 1.27 WHIP 163 K 

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