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Fantasy Baseball: Bear Market For Cubs Hitters

Coming into the 2009 season many fantasy and roto owners probably targeted Cubs hitters going into their drafts, but as of today, many Cub hitters have disapoointed owners by not meeting projections. You could say that Cub hitters are in a bear market, to use a stock market term. Actually, since March, the stock chart for Cubs hitters would probably point downwards and toward the right, directly opposite of how the actual stock market has performed.

Here is a comparison of how the Cubs hitters are performing vs. their projections, courtesy of Ron Shandler's Baseball Forecaster:

Player AB R H HR RBI SB BA
Theriot, Ryan SS 434 61 130 7 45 15 0.299
proj, 568 82 164 2 43 25 0.289
Lee, Derrek 1B 377 58 108 23 74 0 0.286
proj, 592 92 176 22 89 6 0.297
Soriano, Alfonso LF 434 61 106 19 50 8 0.244
proj, 550 92 156 34 82 24 0.284
Fukudome, Kosuke RF 339 54 93 9 40 6 0.274
proj, 520 91 143 15 75 11 0.275
Ramirez, Aramis 3B C 164 24 52 9 33 0 0.317
proj, 547 89 162 30 110 1 0.296
Bradley, Milton OF 285 43 76 8 30 2 0.266
proj, 348 60 101 17 59 6 0.290
Fontenot, Mike 2B 309 31 71 9 36 2 0.229
proj, 309 47 89 11 42 3 0.288
Soto, Geovany C C 232 20 51 9 29 1 0.219
proj, 471 64 131 20 79 0 0.278

The only Cub hitters that are close to their projections are Ryan Theriot and Derrek Lee. The rest, lead by catcher Geovany Soto and third baseman Aramis Ramirez, won't come close to their projected stats. I like many of you, drank the Geovany Soto kool-aid and drafted him in the 4th round of my only straight draft, NL-only league. When I drafted him, I figured I got the best hitting catcher in the draft. Little did I know Soto would be on the DL a few times, and not hit when he was in the lineup.

I also drafted Milton Bradley and Mike Fontenot in the same league, thinking Fontenot would hit for a decent average with double digit power possibilities. Well, I got the power, but no average. Bradley has only recently started to hit for average, but still not much power or RBIs in the average.

The Cubs were the overwhelming choice to win the NL Central and to possibly make the World Series before the season started. Well, due to injuries and sub-par hitting from their starting lineup, the Cubs are looking up at the St. Louis Cardinals in the NL Central standings.

The same can be said about the New York Mets hitters, many of whom were drafted in the first round in NL-only drafts, and in rounds 1-3 in mixed league drafts.

The lesson learned here is to spread your risk around in the stock market, as well as in your fantasy/roto drafts.