The 2008 baseball season is one third finished. Here is a list of players that have had fantasy players pounding their fists in frustration for either passing on these guys in their drafts, auctions and free agent pools only to see them help their competitors rise above them in the standings. And stubbornly refuse to return to the levels expected of them!
This is appropriately called the All-WTF Team.
C Miguel Olivo: Victor Martinez - zero HRs. Joe Mauer - zero HRs. Jorge Posada - on the D.L. with one HR. Miguel Olivo? 6 HRs and a .303 AVG with 22 RBIs
Honorable mention: Mike Napoli - leading all catchers with 10 HRs and three SBs to boot!
1B Lance Berkman - How does a second/early third round pick surprise? The .381 AVG and 16 HRs don't raise eyebrows but 10 SBs? No frickin' way anyone thought that was possible. Previous season-high? 9 in 2004.
Honorable mention: Kevin Youkilis - Who was drafted earlier, Justin Morneau or The Greek God of Walks? Both have 9 HRs and are hitting .306-ish. Morneau has five more ribbies but Youkilis' two more SBs gives him the edge.
2B Ian Kinsler: A .294 AVG and 15 SBs? Yeah sure. You predicted that. Honorable mention: Dan Uggla - The power has always been there but a .307 AVG? Right. After he hit .245 last year.
SS Jerry Hairston, Jr. - The inspiration for the WTF Team. Most baseball pundits complained about Corey Patterson's OBP, but at least he had been productive over the past three seasons. Hairston? He hit .206 in 2006 and an even worse .189 last season. Now the 32-year-old is the starting SS with a a .345 AVG and 9 SBs? WTF! Honorable mention: Christian Guzman: Guzman hasn't hit 5 HRs in a full season since he clubbed eight in 2004. Raise your hand if you took Guzman before Khalil Greene? Both have 5 HRs.
3B Blake DeWitt - Andy LaRoche has got to be pulling his hair out. Nomar Garciaparra is officially wash-ed up. Every other weak-hitting utility infielder Ned Colletti can find is hurt or no longer a viable 25th man, and DeWitt rises from a third of a AA season to hit .293/.366/.463.
Honorable mention: Jorge Cantu - Evan Longoria has seven HRs and a .252 AVG. Cantu has seven HRs and a .268 AVG. Is there anyone who didn't think Cantu's 2005 season wasn't a fluke that coincidentally never came close to re-appearing after MLB began PED testing and suspending?
OF Ryan Ludwick - A 28-year-old righty hitter who had a career AVG of .218 versus lefties does not all of sudden turn into a 13 HR/ 39 RBI/.327 hitter after six seasons of journeyman status. Honorable mention: Nate McLouth
OF Jayson Werth - similar to Ludwick in that he is a 29-year-old who has spent six years being a part-time playe. With 9 HRs and seven SBs, he had a full-time job until he got huirt. Again.
OF Eric Hinske - Someone else who was written off as incapable of producing in the post-PED ERA. The 31-year-old Hinske has 10 bombs and has made the Rays one of the best teams in the American League with a versatility that recalls the days of 20+ HR utility man Tony Phillips.
Honorable mentions: Xavier Nady - The 29-year-old Nady set career highs in ABs, HRs and RBIs last year with 431, 20 and 72 respectively. Now he's hitting .321 with 9 HRs and 42 RBIs.
Nate McLouth - He spent his first three seasons bouncing from a .257 AVg to .233 back to .258. Yeah, you thought he'd be hitting .311 right now with 12 HRs.
Carlos Quentin - A sleeper for many given the weak OF options the White Sox have used over the past couple seasons, but no one thought he'd be a leading candidate for the AL MVP. Certainly not Arizona Diamondbacks' GM Josh Byrnes who gave a 31-year-old Eric Byrnes a three-year contract to play Quentin's position and then dealt him for a Low A 1B this past winter