Week 7 Cut List: Players on the Chopping Block

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Welcome back to the Cut List. Each weekend from now until the end of the season, I’ll be offering my thoughts on players who don’t deserve to keep drawing a nonexistent salary on your fake baseball teams.

A column like this can be a tricky thing so early in the year. While the sample sizes are growing, they’re still small enough to be subject to plenty of noise. There’s a lot of season left, after all.

In addition to the players on the Cut List, we'll also spotlight a player on the Hot Seat: Someone who may not be a cut yet, but whose situation is worth monitoring.

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The Cut List: Week 7

Eduardo Nunez, 3B/SS/OF, San Francisco Giants

Like pretty much every player on the Giants, Nunez is struggling mightily right now. He’s slashing a putrid .246/.275/.306, no home runs, and paltry run production. While he does have seven stolen bases, the last one came nearly three weeks ago. Nunez wasn’t likely to repeat his breakout from a year ago, but he’s fallen even further than anyone expected.

Carlos Beltran, OF, Houston Astros

Beltran is one of the few Astros players not producing in the early going, hitting just .246/.285/.380 with three homers. As you could guess from that ugly OBP, his walk rate has withered into near-nothingness, and his strikeout rate is seven percentage points above his previous career worst. The underlying metrics are all pointing in the wrong direction, and though Beltran has been an established player for a long time, he did just turn 40 last month. This could finally be the end for him.

Neftali Feliz, RP, Milwaukee Brewers

Feliz has converted eight of his nine save opportunities. If that’s all you knew about his season, him being removed from the closer role (temporary or not) might have come as a surprise. Of course, despite what the arbitration process would have you believe, other numbers besides saves do matter, and by basically any of those measures, Feliz has been a train wreck. Lots of walks and homers have led to a 6.19 ERA despite a .179 BABIP. That’s incredible. Corey Knebel seems like a good bet to run away with the closer role going forward.

 

The Hot Seat: Week 7

Vince Velasquez, SP, Philadelphia Phillies

Velasquez flashed big upside last year in his first full big-league season, but the problems that plagued him last season – walks and home runs – have only worsened so far in 2017. While his 24.2 HR/FB% certainly isn’t sustainable, it suggests that he’s still a work in progress on the command front. He’s also been getting slaughtered in his second and third trips through the order, which isn’t a good sign for a guy still trying to prove he can hack it in the rotation.

 

Last Week

Mike Napoli hit two homers on Thursday, and only managed one other hit for the week. In other words, a typical week for him in 2017.

Hunter Renfroe would have liked to have that week. He still hasn’t homered in May.

Matt Harvey has the worst FIP in the majors after another start chock-full of walks and homers.

Julio Teheran pitched six shutout innings against the Marlins on Saturday, but still has just a 1.5 K/BB on the year.

 

More Week 7 Lineup Prep