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Fantasy Bust: Florida Marlins Outfielder Chris Coghlan

After shoveling some snow and downing a few beers with the neighbors yesterday, I sat down to read Ron Shandler's 2010 Baseball Forecaster. I recommend this book as it really is the bible for fantasy owners. So, I am reading through the comments for each player in alphabetical order, and I come to Chris Coghlan, the NL Rookie of the Year in 2009.

A friend and I have argued about how the prospect experts at Baseball America and Baseball Prospectus, among others, rank their prospects. He thinks that it is their job to find guys like Coghlan and rank him accordingly. I disagree. My argument is that ranking prospects is like picking ain't easy. He feels that the experts should have had Coghlan ranked higher in 2009 before he won the rookie of the year. I asked him what Todd Hollandsworth has been up to since he won the Rookie of the Year for the Dodgers back in 1996. I argue that the experts rank the prospects based on their ceiling, and not all prospects reach their ceiling.

We agree to disagree.

Anyway, Chris Coghlan did win the NL ROY in 2009, but after looking at his stats and reading Shandler's comments in his book, I am not sure if Coghlan can repeat his 2009 season. For the season Coghlan hit 9-47-8-.321-.390-.460 in 504 at bats with a 77/53 K/BB ratio.

Shandler doesn't think he can repeat his 2009 season. Here are his comments:

9-47-.321 in 504 AB at FLA. Unreal 2H fueled H% unlike any in his past screams regression. Solid-not-special skill set , would play better as a 2B or even 3B-his college and minor league positions.

In the second half of 2009, Coghlan hit .359-.405-.520-.925 with an 87% contact rate and a 40% Hit rate. His xBA was .296 for the second half, which is more representative of the kind of hitter Coghlan is. With all that said, Shandler predicts him to hit 13-64-10-.292-.362-.450 in 2010. Those are solid numbers for a second baseman, but not for a third baseman or outfielder.

Fantasy owners should expect some regression in Coghlan's numbers in 2010, and draft him accordingly. If the Marlins should trade second baseman Dan Uggla, and move Coghlan to second, his value will increase for sure.