The fans' Top 5 first half baseball busts
1. Jimmy Rollins, SS, Phillies
He's wearing Jimmy Rollins' jersey, but is that really the 2007 NL MVP? The Phillies shortstop is batting a putrid .207 (as of July 1) and has one of the worst OPS in all of baseball at .572. After smacking 25 and 30 homers in 2006 and 2007, Rolliins lost some pop last year, hitting just 11 dingers. He has six so far, but at least his average was up to .277 in 2008. There are ways to make up for a lack of power, but Rollins is struggling in just about every area right now.
2. Chien-Ming Wang, SP, Yankees
The Yankees expected Chien-Ming Wang to return from a foot injury to once again be an important part of their starting rotation this season, but Wang has been absolutely attrocious thus far. Through eight starts and 11 total appearances (as of July 1), Wang is sporting a mammoth 10.06 ERA and has a 1-6 record. After his first two starts of the season, he had a mind boggling ERA of 54.00. Wang has gotten better, but he still has miles to go before approaching his previous career average ERA of 3.80.
3. Manny Ramirez, OF, Dodgers
Manny Ramirez was hitting a scorching .348 after May 6, but it was the last game he'd play for the Dodgers until July 3 because he tested positive for performance enhancing drugs. Despite stellar numbers while he was actually on the field, the fact that he was suspended for 50 games was enough for our readers to be fed up with "Manny being Manny." The Dodgers fans in Mannywood, though, have been buying Manny wigs and cheering him on despite his suspension.
4. David Ortiz, DH, Red Sox
Last year, David Ortiz started to decline, posting an OPS of .876. It was the first time since 2004 that number had dipped below 1.000 and the first time since 2002 it had dipped below .900. Even after a recent hot streak, Ortiz's OPS is still at a paltry .731. He has come on as of late, getting his home run total up to 11 but his batting average is a pedestrian .224. The fans decided that he'll need more than a hot week or so to keep him off their list of Top 5 first half busts in baseball.
5. Russell Martin, C, Dodgers
It's pretty amazing that the Dodgers have two players on the biggest bust list yet still boast the best record in baseball. Martin was expected to be one of the top 2 or 3 catchers in the national league this season, but he has not come close to those expectations. He's hitting only .255 while slugging just .303, but the biggest surprise is his lone home run. He's off to a better start in July, going 9-for-26 through July 9, but he still has a long way to go to get to the numbers that were expected from him.