About two weeks into the season, there are some players with crazy-hot starts. Around that time, a lot of articles come up letting us know which of those players are "for real" and which are just having their hottest two weeks in the first two weeks.
Later on in the season, hot streaks sometimes are camouflaged by early season struggles. So using ESPN’s player rater for the last 15 days, let’s take a look at some players who are red-hot right now and decipher which ones will stay that way.
Alex Rios, OF—Rios has had a great season so far after a disappointing 2009. While I wouldn’t expect him to entirely keep up the pace he is setting right now, Rios’ skills are nothing new—he has demonstrated them before. My advice would be to hang on to Rios (as opposed to selling high)—he’ll continue to be productive.
Brett Cecil, SP—I like Cecil. Actually sat behind his fiancé and her family at a game when he got rocked at Fenway once (true story). But that was last year and this is now. Cecil is going to still have growing pains, but he’s worth spot-starting in games against weaker offenses. I wouldn’t put him out there every day though.
Drew Stubbs, OF—I think Stubbs will end up being a fine player, just not yet. He may have 12 steals, but if you need speed, there are probably better options out there that won’t kill your batting average so much. It seems like there are a few young players that get called up and steal a ton of bases (a la Rajai Davis last year) each season, so if that is your area of weakness I’d sit tight.
Ervin Santana, SP—Mentioned him in yesterday’s post as part of the group of pitchers I would rather have than John Lackey. If he’s not owned in your league yet (89% in ESPN standard) go get him.
Adrian Beltre, 3B—Beltre his 25 home runs just two years ago, and people forget he’s only 31. He’s away from Safeco and around a better offense. I actually expect his power to increase the rest of the way.
Derek Lowe, SP—He’s had back-to-back nice starts but I still don’t trust him. His walks are up this year and he has too much of a track record of being just mediocre. Next start is at Arizona, and I wouldn’t start him.
Troy Glaus, 3B—Five home runs in the last seven games? Glaus is just like Beltre—he hit 27 two years ago. Though he is 33 instead of 31, his power is still real. He’s still available in a few leagues grab him if you can.
Clay Buchholz, SP—Buchholz has been around for a while, but is still very young. Everyone knows he can be dominant at times, it’s just the consistency that has been a problem for him, and I expect that to continue. He still is very useful but is overrated playing for Boston. People often compare him to Phil Hughes, but I would rather have Hughes by quite a margin.