O's outfielders not helping fantasy owners 

April, 20, 2010
4/20/10
4:15
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Even going back to spring training, it was easy to see things weren't going to be easy for the Baltimore Orioles this season. Let's face it, the young pitchers just aren't ready to rock, the team's offense still lacks depth (and good health), and there's no tougher division for a team like this to succeed. One of the things I found a bit odd was how much fantasy baseball owners loved this team's outfield. Personally, I thought Nick Markakis, Adam Jones and Nolan Reimold were a bit overrated by fantasy owners in spring drafts. It's early, of course, but so far things aren't looking so good.

The right fielder (Markakis) does nothing but take walks. The center fielder (Jones) doesn't take enough walks. And the occasional left fielder (Reimold) isn't healthy enough to do much more than limp around.

Nick Markakis
Jason O. Watson/US PresswireNick Markakis is still getting on base ... he's just not hitting his way there.
Markakis was the first one to be taken in most fantasy drafts, though I bypassed him in all my leagues. I value batting average as much as anyone, and Markakis did reach 100 RBIs in 2009 for the second season in three years, but that's about all there is. He's not really a base stealer, and the power is a bit too modest for someone being regarded as a top-20 outfielder. Markakis hit 23 home runs and stole 18 bases in 2007. Since then he has averaged 19 home runs and eight steals. This season, in 50 at-bats, he has yet to homer or steal a base. He's getting on base (11 walks already, one per team loss), which is great in real life if others can knock you in, but when the slugging percentage nearly matches the on-base percentage, that's not a good thing. The Orioles had only one player reach 20 home runs in 2009, and that was Luke Scott. Markakis, 26, has become Bobby Abreu without the speed, but people still view him as possessing major upside. I think he possesses a 20-90 season, at best.

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