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Fantasy Baseball Today

Rookie of the Year winners of 2013 providing food for thought

By Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com

Jose Fernandez showing the form that made him 2013 NL Rookie of the Year (USATSI)
Jose Fernandez showing the form that made him 2013 NL Rookie of the Year (USATSI)

The Sophomore Slump is no phantom. It has even proven to be a precursor of careers circling the drain, whether via injury or opponent adjustments to which the slumpers could not successfully respond. Coparatively recent Rookie of the Year winners such as Bob Hamelin, Pat Listach, Bobby Crosby, Ben Grieve and Chris Coghlan all come to mind.

The problem for Fantasy owners has been determining who is susceptible to the dreaded disease and who is slump-proof. The most recent example of the latter is Angels absurdly talented outfielder Mike Trout, who few ever dreamed would fall victim to it last season and proceeded to show why.

The two 2013 Rookies of the Year provided Draft Day participants a fairly clear difference in regard to potential second-year slides. American League ROY Wil Myers is a gifted hitter and potential annual all-star. But his slow start this season comes as no shock. He has been dropped in the batting order after starting the year with a .229 batting average and no home runs in 35 at-bats. It is far too early to peg him as a sophomore bust, but a significant fallback from his 2013 numbers is not out of the question.

The same can not be said about 2013 National League Rookie of the Year Jose Fernandez. His stuff is simply too overwhelming to consider him a Sophomore Slump candidate. In fact, Fernandez boasts talent on the mound that has arguably not been seen since Sandy Koufax toed the rubber for the Dodgers in the early 1960s. Fernandez has already won twice with a 0.71 ERA and 17 strikeouts in 12 2/3 innings.

It's no wonder that Fernandez was projected as the 24th player taken in Fantasy drafts this year while Myers was 64th. This is not to speculate that those who selected Myers will regret it. But it does indicate that Fantasy owners should give even the premier second-year players a bit more consideration on Draft Day.

 
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