Mark Teixeira Player Projection No. 22

Key Stats: Mark Teixeira has averaged 697 plate appearances the last four seasons. With good health comes a better chance for numbers to accumulate. Sure enough Teixeira has driven in at least 108 runs in each of the last four seasons and at least 105 in the last eight seasons. No other player in the game can make that claim. Teixeira has also had at least 30 long balls every season since 2004.

Skeptics Say: Last year Teixeira followed up a .256 average in 2010 with a .248 campaign. He was supposed to bounce back to the kind of player that hit .297 in five seasons before that.  The problem lies in Teixeira’s batting average on balls in play and more specifically the fly balls that he’s hit. His BABIP in New York was just .218 last year. He is probably too drawn to the short porch in right field. While the 39 home runs were great last year, fantasy players might want to trade in five of them for 40 to 50 points in batting average.

Peer Comparison: Teixeira will be 32 this season, so perhaps the batting average is a trend of the times to come as he slowly should see his numbers come down. Teixeira isn’t the only first baseman that is going to be 32 and has driven in at least 100 while bopping 30 home runs in each of the last six seasons. No I’m not talking about Albert Pujols. He didn’t drive in 100 last season. Ryan Howard has done this for the past six seasons. Howard is currently coming off the board 113 selections after Teixeira on drafts at Mock Draft Central.

Assuming Howard’s achilles injury can heal properly and he gets back into baseball for four months to close the season out, head to head leagues should be jumping at the opportunity to get Teixeira’s production in the playoff month of September this late in the draft. They just should try to make the playoffs first.

Lineup Outlook: Despite an MVP caliber season from Curtis Granderson last season, Teixeira was the Yankees number three hitter for close to 80% of the Yankees team games. Despite a prime spot in the batting order though, Teixeira’s teammate Robinson Cano finished with 14 more runs scored while hitting out of the number five spot in two-thirds of the team’s games and having an OBP that was only 8 points higher. That stat pretty much says it all about the pop the Yankees have.

What They’re Saying: CBS Sportsline: #7 First Baseman; Tristan Cockcroft of ESPN.com: #6 First Baseman & #28 Overall; Yahoo: #6 First Baseman & #23 Overall; Mock Draft Central ADP: #7 First Baseman & #24 Overall; RotoChamp: #17 Overall

Projection: The batting average isn’t the same trend as the RBI and home runs, but it’s a trend nonetheless.
97 R 36 HR 111 RBI 3 SB .260 AVG .865 OPS