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Player Profile #194: Zack Cozart | SS | CIN

I told you to add Zack Cozart just six games into his major league career back in 2011. He got hurt five games later. I told you to target him in your draft last season because he’d surely hit for a good average in a cushy second spot in the Cincinnati lineup. He finished the year ranked 437th overall. This year we’re hedging our bets a bit on Cozart, but there are still plenty of reasons to keep an eye on the Reds’ starting shortstop. Maybe not a close eye, mind you, but definitely an eye.

194_zack_cozart

At a Glance

  • Strengths: none
  • Neutral: R, HR, RBI, SB, BA
  • Weaknesses: OBP, SLG

Player Comparisons

Zack Cozart 2013 Fantasy Projection

Right now Cozart is slated to bat eighth — in front of the pitcher — for Cincinnati. That’s not good. He also doesn’t walk very much, and his strikeout rate is a few percentage points higher than I’d like. All of that puts a modest cap on Cozart’s fantasy potential for 2013, but a strong showing in the early going could buy him some goodwill in Cincinnati. Unfortunately that might not amount to much with the Reds’ acquisition of Shin-Soo Choo because now they’re set at the top of the lineup.

I’ll admit that our projection — 77 R, 16 HR, 55 RBI, 14 SB, .260 BA — may appear optimistic to some, but Cozart has played solid in stretches. Last year he would have put together a rather nice season if you took out his May and July numbers (I’m aware you can’t do that, but I’m looking for a silver lining here!) and his August play was actually very good.┬áIt does hurt listing Cozart’s strengths as “none,” but to be fair he does have a lot of neutrals! Just don’t look his way in OBP leagues.

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Updated: January 2, 2013 — 12:00 pm
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