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Fantasy Tip of the Week

We are about 1/3 of the way through the 2006 MLB season, and whether you are doing well or are struggling, this is a crucial time. You know what categories you need to improve on and one of the best ways to improve your standing is to pick up guys who have started off slowly but are due to break out. Here is a list of players to target who have had a bad spring but should soon get as hot as the weather: Batters: Marcus Giles, 2B, Atlanta –He is historically a .300 hitter who is currently hitting .235. He’s a perfect buy-low candidate.

Manny Ramirez, OF, Boston – Usually good for 40 HRs and 130 RBIs, he is currently in single-digits in HRs and very low in RBIs. He is the ONE player who is due to go crazy in the month of June.  Juan Pierre, OF, and Aramis Ramirez, 3B, Chicago Cubs – Both players have seen their value decrease with the injury to Derrek Lee. Pierre isn’t scoring or hitting as well as normal, and Ramirez’s numbers are all down. When Lee returns, watch these numbers start to rise.

  Ken Griffey Jr., OF, Cincinnati – IF he can stay healthy, a power surge is coming. Todd Helton, 1B, Colorado – Now over his mysterious stomach ailment, he should be sending many homers into the Mile-High air shortly. Reggie Sanders, OF, Kansas City – Should be good for at least 15 homers and 15 steals in the upcoming months. Garret Anderson, OF, LA Angels – The Angels’ offense has been horrible so far, so look for Anderson to have more RBI opportunities as they begin to heat up. Jeff Kent, 2B, LA Dodgers – Kent is always good for 25 HRs and 100 RBIs, so take advantage now and reap the rewards later. Cliff Floyd, OF, NY Mets – Floyd has really struggled so far, barely batting over .200. That won’t continue. Alex Rodriguez, 3B, NY Yankees – Along with Manny Ramirez, he is the highest-profile player on this list.

 Look for A-Rod to really explode soon. He is too good a player not to. Jimmy Rollins, SS, and Bobby Abreu, OF, Philadelphia – It’s amazing the Phillies have done as well as they have with two of their biggest players slumping. Abreu is about to bust out, so snag him quickly. Rollins is the best SS in the NL, but you wouldn’t know it judging from his numbers so far. He will hit over .300 and get you at least 20 steals the rest of the way, so grab him now! Jason Bay, OF, Pittsburgh – He’s already started to break out, but if you can find an owner who isn’t paying attention, go get those 20-25 HRs and 75-80 RBIs that are coming. Richie Sexson, 1B, and Adrian Beltre, 3B, Seattle – These two were supposed to be the Mariners’ power duo of the future, but it just hasn’t happened….yet. Look for both of these guys to get it together soon and help Ichiro out.

  Jim Edmonds, OF, St. Louis – With only 5 HRs so far, Edmonds is a very good candidate to bust out. He’s normally good for 35, so look for him to get at least 25 more for the year…IF he can stay healthy, which is always his biggest issue. Carl Crawford, OF, Julio Lugo, SS, and Aubrey Huff, 3B, Tampa Bay – All 3 of these guys have had slow starts due to injury (Lugo/Huff) or just a sub-par performance (Crawford). All 3 should start to pick it up together. Mark Teixeira, 1B-DH, Texas – With only 4 HRs so far, Big Tex is my bet to hit the most homers in the AL from here on out. He is simply too good a player not to have a huge hot streak and in the 100-degree Texas heat, the ball simply flies out of the stadium. Jose Guillen, OF, Washington – This is a talented player if he can keep his head on straight. He was projected to have 30 HRs and 100 RBIs, so pick him up now and hope he stays on the straight and narrow. The numbers will come if he can.

  Obviously not all of these players will break out and start to hit immediately, but they have done much better historically than this year. Next week, I’ll take a look at some pitchers to acquire that fall under the same classification.


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