2014 Outlook: After a breakthrough 2012 in the States, Cespedes regressed badly in 2013, his strikeout rate rising (23.9 percent, up from 18.9), walk rate dropping (6.5 percent, down from 8.0) and both his batting average and BABIP plummeting by identical 52-point margins. This resulted in a 92-spot decline in Player Rater standing -- 28 spots among outfielders alone -- and a second consecutive season with a DL stint because of a hand injury continued to fuel questions about his long-term health as it relates to his violent swing. Cespedes still has massive power, however, as his isolated power and fly-ball and line-drive rates remained consistent in the two years, and if he enjoys any correction to his BABIP, he could recapture at least some of his 2012 fantasy stock. After all, he did finish 2013 with a .314/.337/.570, six-homer September, and a strong spring could increase his draft stock. It might be prime time to buy a rebound.
2014 Outlook: Craig is much more of a risk/reward hitter than fantasy owners give him credit for. Consider that his 134 games played in 2013 represented a career high; he has appeared in only 67.8 percent of the St. Louis Cardinals' scheduled games (playoffs included) in his big-league career, making four trips to the DL in four years. Still, despite his injuries, Craig has the 10th-best batting average (.311) and 17th-most RBIs (189) the past two seasons combined, showing how productive a hitter he is when he takes the field. The RBIs might have been somewhat fluky; keep in mind that the Cardinals managed the highest batting average with runners in scoring position of any team in history, and Craig himself plated 24 percent of his runners on base, tops in the majors. His health might also remain in question as a regular outfielder; he's expected to move to right field to clear first base for Matt Adams. Craig's ceiling is awfully high and he's more reliable (when healthy) than Adams, but be prepared with a contingency plan for the likelihood he misses additional time in 2014.
Stephania Bell: Craig suffered a Lisfranc injury while rounding first base last September but was able to avoid offseason surgery. He expects to be a full participant this spring although the key will be how well he's running.
2014 Outlook: Don't worry about a thing, 'cause every little thing gonna be all right. Who knew how prescient Victorino's change in walk-up music would be for the soon-to-be playoff hero. But that was then, 2014 is now and the concern with Victorino is health, as he is coming off surgery to relieve pressure in his right thumb and wrist, as well as dealing with other assorted ailments, including back woes that troubled him in the playoffs. On the field, Victorino's numbers improved markedly from 2012, which is even more impressive considering the aforementioned right-hand issues forced him to eschew hitting from the left side. Even without the injury concerns, Victorino's numbers are bound to slide a bit, but if the injury discount is sufficient, he's still a solid source of steals without sacrificing too much power.
Stephania Bell: Victorino dealt with recurrent hamstring and back issues throughout 2013, but he also had a nerve-related thumb problem that lingered into the offseason. December surgery addressed the issue and the team expects him for Opening Day.
2014 Outlook: Ticketed as Jacoby Ellsbury's successor in center field for the Boston Red Sox, Bradley should not elicit hopes from his fantasy owners of Ellsbury-like fantasy production. "Ellsbury lite" might be the fairest comparison. Bradley isn't quite Ellsbury in terms of batting average or home run production, and he's not nearly as fast, with 10/25 numbers his likely ceiling, at least initially. Bradley does provide more potential in terms of defense and on-base ability, however, and in leagues that weigh on-base percentage and/or walks, he's especially intriguing. As things stand, he should receive enough playing time to crack the mixed league radar, but he's of most worth as a mid-to-late pick in AL-only formats.
2014 Outlook: Nava is a handy matchups play in both the real game and fantasy. Although a switch hitter, he is a lifetime .292/.390/.443 hitter against right-handers (as a lefty hitter) and .223/.307/.328 against lefties, and the Boston Red Sox have other righties they can pair with him at first base or at the corner outfield spots. Nava will get his time against right-handers, enough to help an AL-only team at the back of the roster, but he's unlikely to take any more significant career steps at the age of 31.