I started this topic in the Draft, Trades and WW forum, but I thought this would be a better place for it:
Hunter Pence has obviously been one of, if not THE best rookie this season, but as with all young players, the question is whether or not he can keep it up. He is currently batting .344 with 8 HR, 35 RBI, 27 runs and 7 SB in 53 games this season while hitting in the No. 2 spot for the Astros.
I started this topic to get some input from the board about whether or not he is the real deal, or just enjoying an extended stay in the spotlight before he comes crashing back down to earth (a la Josh Hamilton early in the season). I know he hit .500+ in spring training and he carried that success into his major league debut.
Looking at his game log, however, he is maybe showing signs of wearing down. There was about a 7-game stretch where he struggled after recovering from a hip injury, and with the exception of one big outing (4-for-6, 2B, HR, 4 runs), his last six games have been less than stellar (3-for-18 excluding the big 4-for-6 game).
Is it time to sell high on Pence, or am I just overthinking it? I'm a big Astros fan and this guy has quickly become one of my favorite players, but as I've come to learn, that doesn't really count for much in fantasy baseball.
Seems likely that he'll come down because of his BB/K ratio and his BABIP, but if he's one of your favorite players, I would probably just hang onto him and enjoy the ride. Having your favorite players makes fantasy baseball all the more fun (although winning makes it most fun ) There are things working in his favor: he's certainly talented, he's hitting in front of Berkman and Lee so he'll see some good pitches; and one thing you can't discount is that he has an exceptionally fast bat, at least from what I've seen. I shipped him and Torres off a month ago for Konerko before Konerko started hitting again, but I've kept an eye on Pence and his numbers haven't dropped that much, which I thought they would.
He is going no where from my squad. I also don't expect a Josh Hamilton type crash. Quick bat, and i mean quick, equals good adjustment. I'm sure one of the major aspects he is being worked over on is his BB/K ratio. At least they aren't BJ Upton type numbers, i think, without checking. I believe he will finish the year with a .320ish average and that works for me. I would only sell him for a top 25.
While his BB:K ratio is pretty terrible, he isn't striking out at an alarming rate. If he had 600 ABs at the current pace, he would have 118 Ks on the year. He can't (well, its unlikely) that he continues to hit at this pace but I don't see him falling off that far and I see him as a pretty good 3rd outfielder going forward. I recently moved Berkman in order to lighten the headache I get trying to figure out who to bench out of berkman, hart and pence.
Of course, if you can sell high, do it. There isn't a player that you don't sell high, assuming you getting value that exceeds what you paid.
I moved him in both leagues I had him in (both redraft), and am thrilled with the value I got for him in at least one of the leagues. If you can get good value for him, definitely look to move him, as I would be shocked if he didn't hit a major wall in the near future.