April 01, 2008
Is there a better Opening Day player, ever?
Here's what Nady has done in his first game of the year each of the past four seasons:
April 4, 2005 - 2/4, 2 R, 2 HR, 4 RBI
April 3, 2006 - 4/4, 1 R, 1 RBI
April 2, 2007 - 1/4, 1 R, 1 HR, 1 RBI
March 31, 2008 - 4/7, 4 R, 2 HR, 4 RBI
That's eight runs, five home runs, ten RBIs and a .579 batting average in four openers. Last year, after Nady went deep in his first two games, we also discussed him:
If the baseball season were condensed to eight weeks and played entirely before June, Xavier Nady would be a fantasy god. He has 44 career homers, and 22 of them have been hit in either April or May. Monday's ninth inning home run off Brad Lidge should've surprised no one, and neither should the dinger off Jason Jennings Tuesday night. Nady is a fair add right now. Ride the crest of his unrivaled spring awesomeness for a few weeks, then try to flip him …
So it's really no surprise that Nady is today's most-added player (16,036 adds as of 12:15 PT). Hopefully you're still thinking of him as a trade chip and/or a 20-25 HR outfielder, though.
As breakout candidates go, I'm much more interested in today's third most-added player, Pirates' centerfielder Nate McLouth. (And his teammates agree). He's three years younger than Nady, and he went 3/5 last night with two runs scored, one HR, and four RBIs. McLouth also stole 22 bases last year in 23 attempts.
Still, he entered the season owned in only 5.8 percent of Yahoo! leagues.