M as in Mancy: A Fantasy Baseball Experiment (1st Half Review - Hitters)

Not sure what all this M business is about? Catch up here:

We made it through the first half of the season, everybody! And we're over .500! (Cue sad party kazoo)

But we've got work to do. We're still 2.5 games back from a playoff spot, and it's only gunna get tougher down the stretch. It's time to review the team, the expectation, and our plan going forward. This week we'll focus on the hitters. Depth charts are below, with replacements available via waiver wire.


  • Matt Wieters: 27 R, 7 HR, 37 RBI, 1 SB, 102 TB, .249 AVG
  • Mike Zunino: 28 R, 13 HR, 39 RBI, 0 SB, 101 TB, .233 AVG
  • Manny Pina: 28 R, 6 HR, 29 RBI, 0 SB, 91 TB, .295 AVG
  • Martin Maldonado: 26 R, 10 HR, 28 RBI, 0 SB, 105 TB, .245 AVG

Going into the season Wieters was just about my only choice at Catcher, and we knew it'd be a weak position, but he's performed poorly enough that there's lots of contention. I'm seriously considering dropping Wieters for one of the others, but they all have their pros and cons. I'm leaning towards Pina; he's heated up in June/July, and has similar stats to the others in ~60 fewer at-bats.

Outlook: meh

First Base

  • Matt Adams: 34 R, 15 HR, 43 RBI, 0 SB, 128 TB, .286 AVG
  • Matt Holliday: 37 R, 16 HR, 48 RBI, 1 SB, 125 TB, .245 AVG
  • Mitch Moreland: 42 R, 12 HR, 42 RBI, 0 SB, 132 TB, .249 AVG
  • Matt Davidson: 31 R, 18 HR, 43 RBI, 0 SB, 128 TB, .242 AVG
  • Mike Napoli: 35 R, 20 HR, 42 RBI, 0 SB, 123 TB, .203 AVG

I started the season with Mike Napoli alone, eventually dropping him for Matt Holliday when he fell onto the waiver wire. Matt Adams joined the team after being traded to the Braves. I'm still happiest with these two platooning and utilizing the UTIL roster spot (get it? Utilizing?) and won't look at any of the others barring an injury or hot streak. 

Outlook: good enough

Second Base

  • Matt Carpenter: 54 R, 14 HR, 45 RBI, 2 SB, 142 TB, .253 AVG
  • Miguel Rojas: 12 R, 0 HR, 4 RBI, 2 SB, 26 TB, .338 AVG

Yep. That's about it for this position. Thankfully Carpenter has been playing well enough and rarely takes a day off. Rojas went down with a fractured thumb in May, and was just reactivated yesterday, so he might be a great backup option should anything happen (he's also eligible at 1B, 3B, and SS).

Outlook: need a reverse-voodoo-doll for Matt Carpenter that I give massages to

Third Base

  • Miguel Sano: 59 R, 22 HR, 63 RBI, 0 SB, 170 TB, .273 AVG
  • Matt Davidson: 31 R, 18 HR, 43 RBI, 0 SB, 128 TB, .242 AVG
  • Maikel Franco: 35 R, 14 HR, 49 RBI, 0 SB, 137 TB, .230 AVG

I started the season with both Sano and Franco. The former chose to rise to the occasion on the Mancies. The latter chose to phone it in, and was dropped back in May. Thankfully Sano has been a BAMF, leading the team in just about every category. As for the depth: Davidson is hot garbage (his AVG by month is .286-.253-.239-.194) and Franco is actually showing signs of coming around, hitting .286 in July with only 4 strikeouts. Another hot day or two and he'll earn a spot back on the team.

Outlook: neato burrito and getting better


  • Manny Machado: 40 R, 18 HR, 48 RBI, 5 SB, 155 TB, .239 AVG
  • Miguel Rojas: 12 R, 0 HR, 4 RBI, 2 SB, 26 TB, .338 AVG
  • Marcus Semien: I don't have the heart to type it out here

Manny was my first draft pick, and he picked a super inconvenient time to have a down year. Still, his numbers are okay. Marcus Semien hit 27 HR last season but has been injured most of this year, so he's at least worth keeping an eye on, but for now it's the Machado Show.

Outlook: tepid bathwater


  • Mookie Betts: 65 R, 17 HR, 57 RBI, 16 SB, 185 TB, .274 AVG
  • Mark Trumbo: 59 R, 15 HR, 47 RBI, 1 SB, 153 TB, .253 AVG
  • Michael Brantley: 32 R, 5 HR, 39 RBI, 10 SB, 114 TB, .297 AVG
  • Michael Conforto: 50 R, 16 HR, 46 RBI, 2 SB, 134 TB, .282 AVG
  • Mitch Haniger: 35 R, 7 HR, 23 RBI, 3 SB, 83 TB, .265 AVG
  • Manuel Margot: 23 R, 5 HR, 17 RBI, 10 SB, 95 TB, .259 AVG
  • Michael A. Taylor: 40 R, 12 HR, 35 RBI, 10 SB, 123 TB, .278 AVG

It's a mixed bag, here. Mookie (acquired via trade) has been stellar, as has Brantley (though in reduced time due to injury). Conforto and Haniger and Taylor were dice-rolls and have panned out nicely. But then there's Mark Trumbo, whose drop in power is alarming and annoying, and Manuel Margot, who doesn't excel at much of anything and is still trending downward. But it's a deep position, so I'm not worried; Betts/Brantley/Conforto are a fine core netting me tons of points, with Taylor and Trumbo shifting between OF and UTIL slots. There's lots of others available that I didn't list, but that's alright. This is the one position where I don't lose sleep at night.

Outlook: gumdrops and rainbows


So how do we stack up in the league?

  • R: 7th
  • HR: 5th
  • RBI: 4th
  • SB: 10th
  • TB: 7th
  • AVG: 9th

Honestly? That's pretty darn good. We're middle of the road! And some of the stats (like SB) will improve after acquiring guys like Betts and Taylor. And here's the big thing: we're super streaky. Here's how our offensive matchups have looked this year:

  • Week 14: 1-4-1
  • Week 13: 6-0-0
  • Week 12: 0-6-0
  • Week 11: 5-0-1
  • Week 10: 0-6-0
  • Week 9: 6-0-0
  • Week 8: 1-5-0
  • Week 7: 4-2-0
  • Week 6: 1-4-1
  • Week 5: 6-0-0
  • Week 4: 5-1-0
  • Week 3: 2-4-0
  • Week 2: 0-6-0
  • Week 1: 3-3-0

We're either hot or cold, alternating depending on the week. And streaky teams can make a hell of a run in the playoffs. All we need to do is get there.

Next week: pitching! (that thing chicks dig less than the long ball)