Kendry Morales of the Los Angeles Angels was one of the players we featured in a list of players to watch AFTER you draft, provided by WaiverSharks.com. By the end of season, anyone having issues at first base, in the outfield, or at the utility hitter position likely took that advice and added Morales to their lineup, as he had one of the top breakout fantasy baseball seasons of 2009.
Coming into 2009, Morales was projected to finish the year as the no. 297 overall player in Yahoo! fantasy baseball. His standard 5×5 projection for 2009 from CBS Sportsline looked something like this:
- .272 average, 14 homeruns, 66 RBI, 42 runs scored, 1 stolen base
To say the 26-year old first baseman exceeded those expectations is a understatement. Keeping in mind that Morales did log 158 more at-bats than his CBS Sportsline projection, his 5×5 statline still bloated above that projection to .306/34/108/86/3. Those numbers placed him eighth among first-base eligible hitters and 10th among all outfielders.
As the Angels fight on towards the World Series, Morales has cooled down, batting only .167 with a homer and four RBI in 18 at-bats. Hopefully the warmer weather in LA will help heat his bat up.
In 2010, Morales has value pick potential. While he is eligible at positions that are loaded with heavy hitters, he was only owned in 85% of Yahoo! fantasy leagues at season’s end. That percentage rates the fourth lowest total among the top 50 overall hitters.
The Angels are likely to see some lineup changes in the offseason with Bobby Abreu and Vladimir Guerrero facing free agency. Assuming that Abreu leaves, Morales still figures to fit in nicely throughout that powerful Angels lineup.
Consider Morales a good pick as a low-end fantasy baseball first baseman or OF2 in 2010, definitely worth a pick as early as round 5 in deeper mixed leagues.
Kendry Morales is ranked the no. 10 first baseman in fantasy baseball 2010 by Fantasy Baseball Dugout. Check out our 2010 fantasy baseball rankings for complete coverage.