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Wednesday, May 17, 2017

2017 FANTASY BASEBALL TRIP DOWN MEMORY LANE: COREY DICKERSON

Given the insane numbers from Tampa Bay Rays outfielder Corey Dickerson this season, here is what I wrote about him in mid-March as he takes the lead in the "Mark Trumbo 2016 Reclamation Project Made Good" heading.  Last season I recommended Trumbo as a supreme value play that no one wanted and we all saw how this turned out.  This is what I said about Dickerson who seems set to take the title.

"In the spirit of Mark Trumbo 2016, I present to you another reclamation fantasy baseball value play veteran power-hitter in the form of Tampa Bay Rays outfielder Corey Dickerson.  If you don't remember Dickerson, that would be understandable somewhat as the guy became a pariah in the fantasy baseball community in 2016 when he did an early face plant with the Rays after coming over to the team the previous winter in a trade from the Colorado Rockies.  Moving from Coors Field to Tampa was about as big a drop as a hitter can get in terms of ballpark potency and so Dickerson's fantasy baseball stock took a nosedive last March in drafts.  With Dickerson having shown during his big years in Colorado a pretty decent home/road split like most Rockie hitters, again one can understand the hesitancy to get involved with a stripped-down version of the guy now that he no longer called Coors Field home.  Fast forward to the end of 2016 and a ghastly .245 batting average told a lot of the story about how poorly Dickerson hit away from Colorado.  With a 24.5 K/9 rate helping to send him on the skids, Dickerson no longer had the spacious alleyways in Colorado to collect the hits that propped up his average previously (.304 and .312 in 2015/2014 respectively).  So Dickerson right away was cast as a Coors Field-enhanced bust.

While the average was no doubt ugly, if you looked at the big picture on Dickerson last season, he was not a total abomination.  For one thing, Dickerson's 24 home runs tied his previous career-high and they came with 70 RBI which should have been higher if not for some anemic protection in the lineup.  A .285 BABIP was also a bit unlucky for Dickerson and so his batting average should have been higher as well.  Again fast forward to present day and Dickerson is hitting everything in sight in spring training as he goes into Wednesday's action with a scorching .433 average and 2 home runs.  While he still want to be leery of playing Dickerson against lefties, he is showing that his bat is still quite potent and worth using in 2017 fantasy baseball.  With an ADP that is ridiculously cheap at 314.3, Dickerson could very well be the cheapest 25 home runs and 80 RBI you can possibly find this season.  Now while we don't grade out Dickerson as anything more than an OF 3, his price has fallen so low that even his biggest critics should not take another look at him this spring."

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