Byron Buxton is fantasy baseball fool’s gold due to injury history

The game of fantasy baseball is riddled with cliches. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. No one wins the league on draft day. It’s better to be down early than down late.

They get rolled out, year after year, as analysts hope to assuage the fears of overreacting fantasy managers while also teaching them that, even in the game of baseball, history often repeats itself.

Yet no matter how many times we witness the same things happening year after year, there are some who simply refuse to learn. Years of data could be staring them right in the face, waving a variety of red flags and yet, like a fish that continues to fall for the same hook and worm, they continue to ignore the obvious. If you want to know who the fish is in your league, find the team that is rostering Byron Buxton, and if that fish is you, trade him now.

Byron Buxton injured.
Byron Buxton walks off the field after injuring himself sliding into second base.
Boston Globe via Getty Images

Through seven major league seasons, Buxton has played in as many as 140 games just eleven. His talent may be off the charts and, as a true gamer, his effort is second to none, but this guy spends more time on the injured list than he does on the field.

Last year it was a broken tooth, a broken hand and a strained hamstring. The year before it was a concussion, a sprained foot and a shoulder injury. The year before that it was the shoulder, a knee and a wrist injury. On and on it goes. He may be one of the most dynamic players with all the potential in the world, but if he doesn’t play, he doesn’t help your fantasy team.

Just as he does every year, Buxton came out swinging a big bat this season. His batting average might have been pedestrian, but through the first two weeks of the season, he had two doubles, three home runs, four RBIs and a stolen base. His 1,067 slugging percentage ranked second in the majors. People were, once again, gushing over his upside and potential of him, but then what happened? The same thing that happens every year. Buxton got hurt.

The injury kept the Twins superstar out for only a week, and as you read this, he’s probably going 2-for-3 with a home run. But no matter how tempted you may be, he should be avoided, and if you already roster him, you should trade him now. His value of him is only going to diminish as every at-bat brings him closer and closer to his next trip to the injured list.

Howard Bender is the head of content at FantasyAlarm.com. Follow him on Twitter @rotobuzzguy and catch him on the award-winning “Fantasy Alarm Radio Show” on the SiriusXM fantasy sports channel weekdays from 6-8 pm Go to FantasyAlarm.com for all your fantasy baseball advice.

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