Carlos Santana- It has been a struggle for Carlos Santana this season, which isn't necessarily a great thing considering that we have been saying that for some time. It seems the decrease in Santana's batting average that we saw in 2014 was a real issue as he maintained the .230's average with another disturbingly low BABIP. In 2014, he made up for that average by tying his career high in home runs with 27. In 2015, that power evaporated as he has managed only 18 home runs on a career low .157 ISO. All this would be at least bearable for 2016 if he were maintaining his catcher eligibility where 18 home runs with a bad batting average may still be relevant in deep leagues. With him losing his catcher eligibility, his fantasy value has taken a huge hit.
Blake Swihart- Blake Swihart has been a fairly successful contributor in the batting average category, which means he is at least relevant at the catcher position for fantasy purposes. Given his age and position as the Red Sox starting catcher, Swihart has some value in dynasty formats. I would be cautious though. His batting average is almost entirely BABIP driven (.360), and he is striking out 25% of the time. The combination of which could lead to a less than stellar regression for fantasy formats. It is worth being cautious with Swihart until we see this type of production over a longer format or a higher power outlay.
Ben Revere- Ben Revere has continued his value as a two/three category player for fantasy formats in fantasy. When a part of a solid offensive unit, he can score a significant amount of runs. On top of the runs scored, Revere has consistently been a solid batting average and stolen base producer. I am a little concerned over the fact that his stolen bases decreased from 49 to 31 in 2015. Despite this decrease, he is still a solid bet to be a valuable contributor in that category given he is still under 30. I like Revere in 2016 especially at the top of the Blue Jays lineup as he still has one season left on arbitration prior to free agency.
Steven Souza, Jr.- Steven Souza, Jr. was a hot name in draft season. Early in 2015, he flashed some very significant skills by hitting 15 home runs and stealing 10 bases. While his batting average was rarely something to get excited about, Souza's combination of speed and power made him a very fantasy relevant asset. Sadly, injury marred his second half, and his power and speed have been non-existent (1 home run and 2 stolen bases over 111 plate appearances). Souza should find his way back to regular playing time in 2016, and if he can flash the power/speed combo the way he did in the first half, he will have value. I like Souza in 2016 as a player that has a legit shot at a 20/20 season.
Martin Perez- Martin Perez might be a solid bet for the Texas Rangers to continue to running out there as a starting option, but fantasy owners should all but ignore Perez as an option for their squads. Perez has not been able to find a way to get professional hitters to strikeout with any real frequency. His 14.1% K Rate is abysmal for fantasy owners, and while he does maintain a fantastic 60% ground ball rate, it just isn't enough to justify his existence on a fantasy roster. He can safely be ignore in 2016 unless the strikeouts move up 5 or more percentage points.
Today's American League Player Blog is brought to you by Nicholas Rossoletti. You can follow Nicholas on Twitter @NRoss56.
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