The 2012 baseball season was a tale of two seasons for Rickie Weeks. The first half of the season he had 6 home runs and a batting average that made Mario Mendoza look good, and a second half that produced 16 home runs and a .269 batting average. There is a funny about baseball stats, though; the rules require that both halves of the season be used to come up with an entire season of numbers. And with Rickie, what fantasy owners ended up with was a nice set of counting stats, that included 21 home runs and 16 steals, and a horrific .230 batting average. But the past is gone and it is time to look ahead to 2013.
I'll start with that aforementioned .230 batting average. The good news is that I think fantasy owners can expect an overall improvement in Rickie's batting average. The bad news is that I do not expect much improvement in Rickie's 25% strikeout rate, and 0.44 walk to strikeout ratio from 2012, which should keep him batting average for 2013 in the .249 area. For his batting average, the only saving grace is his consistent double digit walk rate, which helps him get on base and steal bases, but cannot make up for his difficulty in making contact.
Power? While his underlying power metrics remain above league average his fly ball rate and home run to fly ball ratio have declined for three straight seasons, and that is a trend that is hard to ignore. Speed? His career stolen base numbers are inconsistent, but I think another double-digit season of stolen bases is in store for his fantasy owners. The problem, though, is that I think all this adds up to 18 homeruns, 13 stolen bases, and a .249 batting average. Let's face it; Rickie Weeks is 30 years old, and while he was able to stay injury-free in 2012, he missed 140 days in 2009 and 42 days in 2011, on the DL, and an injury history does not just magically disappear. Fantasy owners need to factor in some possible DL time if they draft Rickie.
Do you want upside? Mr. Weeks has upside. He could hit 20 home runs and steal 15 bases. He could score 80+ runs and drive in 55, along the way. I think those days are behind him, though, and for where you will need to draft him, which is as a starting 2B in a 15 team league, I do not think it is worth it. If Rickie is still there after those first 15 2B are off the board, I may take a flyer on Mr. Weeks, but I do not think he will be there at that time, so chances are, I will not own Mr. Weeks on my fantasy team in 2013.