TDG 2022 PLAYERS TO AVOID: THIRD BASEMAN
In this article I look into two third baseman that have provided serious power in the past, however this year I am choosing to look elsewhere as I’m concerned that they will be able to continue that production.
Eugenio Suarez, Cincinnati Reds
“Eugene!” as Rapunzel would say, or rather, “EUGENE!” as I would say as he whiffs again for another strikeout. At an age of 30, an age in which many are considered to be in their prime years, Suarez is trending in the wrong direction. It seems ages ago when he blasted 49 dingers and had .271 batting average, alas, that was only 2 years ago. It seems that long because he has been a Mendoza line batter with a mediocre walk percentage for a power hitter and a strikeout rate that hurts my heart for the past 2 years. Those 31 homers he hit in the 2021 season are satisfying, but right now he is looking more and more like a one-dimensional hitter. What confuses me about Suarez even more is that he had a monster September/October, accounting for 8 of his 31 homers with an average in the high .300s. This pumps up his numbers to hide just how much of a hole he was in fantasy lineups before those last two months. But which Suarez is the real one? With a walk rate that was his worst since 2016 (9.8%), a career-worst batting average, and a strikeout rate that is continuing to skyrocket, I am having a tough time trusting this Reds hitter in 2022.
Patrick Wisdom, Chicago Cubs
Well, well, well, after the Cubs’ sell-fest in 2021, it seemed there would be some time to find replacements for their power corners that were Bryzzo. Fast forward to the end of the year where “Schwisdom” dominated and brought some excitement to that lineup with both power and average. There were a lot of positives for Wisdom that earned him 4th place in the Rookie of the Year voting. With a slash line of .231/.304/.518 really draws you in, and even a few steals just for fun.
What worries me about this 30 year old, other than him entering his sophomore season at 30, is his already low batting average had an expected batting average (xBA) of .216. Not only that, his staggering 40.8 strikeout percent brings considerable risk if you are counting on him to fill your 3B slot in 2022. Lastly, even his slugging was a bit of an illusion, as his .460 xSLG comes in over 50 points below his final line. All things considered, tread carefully when expecting him to put up the same numbers that he posted in 2021.