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5 Fantasy Baseball Positive & Negative Regression Candidates (2024)

5 Fantasy Baseball Positive & Negative Regression Candidates (2024)

Which players are enjoying an unsustainable hot streak right now? Which players are uncharacteristically cold? And, which ones have simply been receiving too much or too little luck of late?

Each week in this article, players who are due for some positive or negative regression compared to their recent performance will be highlighted to assist fantasy managers in how to view each one properly. Digging underneath the surface stats, we will examine some hitting and pitching metrics to try to determine if a given player is overperforming or underperforming what should be expected.

The goal here should be clear. Now, let’s get to it.

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Fantasy Baseball Positive & Negative Regression

(Stats up to date through April 1)

Players Due for Positive Regression

Francisco Lindor (SS – NYM)

Coming off the first 30-30 season of his career, much is expected from fantasy managers that spent a high draft pick on Francisco Lindor this year. The four-time All-Star has not gotten off to a promising start, going just 1-16 with a single and two walks over his first four games. He has also yet to get on the board with any counting stats.

Patience is the proper approach with Lindor. He is making plenty of contact, only striking out three times so far. It’s also been good contact, as evidenced by a 46.2 HardHit% and 92.9 EV. Lindor is seeing the ball and striking it well. The results should soon follow.

Yordan Alvarez (OF, DH – HOU)

One of the game’s top power-hitting run producers in the last few years, Yordan Alvarez, has gotten off to a slow start in 2024. He managed to pick up a couple of singles on Opening Day, but it has been mostly zeros since. Over his last four games, Alvarez has gone 0-15 with three walks and a run scored.

Despite not picking up his first RBI through five games, Alvarez has – similarly to Lindor – been hitting the ball well and often. He’s only struck out three times over his first 23 plate appearances while recording a 41.2 HardHit% and 92.6 EV. Those marks are a bit down from his career norms, but Alvarez’s track record speaks for itself. There’s nothing to worry about here.

Keaton Winn (SP – SF)

Keaton Winn was actually pretty impressive in his first start of the season Monday against the loaded Dodgers lineup. Yes, he did surrender three earned runs over five frames, but there were a few encouraging signs to take away from the effort. The rookie right-hander sat in the mid-90s with his heat, producing 14 swinging strikes (13.5%) and better than a 50% groundball rate. He finished off the night with six strikeouts and only one walk.

Winn showed off his ability to induce groundballs at a high rate and keep his walks down during his first cup of coffee in the Bigs last season. If his first outing of 2024 is indicative of things to come, he could add some notable strikeout upside to his fantasy profile. In addition, Winn will work his home games in arguably the best pitching environment in the league.

Players Due for Negative Regression

Oswaldo Cabrera (2B, 3B, SS, OF – NYY)

Oswaldo Cabrera found a route to regular playing time coming into the season largely due to DJ LeMahieu (foot) landing on the IL. Cabrera has certainly taken advantage of this opportunity. He homered on Opening Day, then followed that with a four-hit day and then another homer in the Yankees’ third game of the season. Overall, the versatile Venezuelan is sporting a ridiculous 1.179 OPS with three extra-base hits, seven RBI and four runs through five games.

It’s not going to last, though. Coming into the year, Cabrera had amassed 501 MLB plate appearances over the last two seasons with the Yanks. In that span, he had put together a .224/.288/.343 slash line with 11 home runs. Sure, Cabrera could be stepping up his game at age 25, but there’s little to suggest he’ll be a fantasy star in 2024. He’s already struck out six times in 21 plate appearances this season, and an 87.2 EV is less than inspiring.

Colin Rea (SP – MIL)

Colin Rea had a nice start to his season, limiting the Mets to only one run on five hits and two walks while striking out two over five frames en route to a win this past Sunday. Still, there’s no reason to expect the veteran righty to offer much fantasy value aside from maybe NL-only formats. He doesn’t offer much in the strikeout department, and the Mets were hammering plenty of his pitches, as their lineup ripped six line drives while recording a 44.4 HardHit% and 91.7 EV. Rea will not be able to sustain success long with measures like those.

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