Beginning of the end for some
The problem with that line of reasoning is that 1) not every player can father triplets (as Gonzalez did) or quintuplets (as Mora did), and 2) if you base your predictions on outliers such as Gonzalez and Mora, you'll finish last in your fantasy league every year. Here, then, are five players likely to suffer significant drops in performance in 2005:
(And by the way, the 2005 projections in this column are lifted from Ron Shandler's Baseball Forecaster, and they're probably as good as anybody's).
Avg-HR-RBI OBP Slug 2004 .293-39-106 .361 .557 2005 .290-19- 85 .361 .474
You think Alou will miss Wrigley Field? In his three seasons with the Cubs, Alou hit 26 home runs in road games and 50 at home (including 29 in 2004). In moving from the North Side of Chicago to San Francisco, Alou goes from the third-friendliest National League ballpark to power hitters to the second-least-friendly. Alou's batting average and OBP won't suffer much perhaps because of the roomy outfield, the Giants' home grounds actually inflate batting average but his power is going to drop precipitously.