I mean, after just over a month, he's at .295/4/20/10. (and he just hit a 3-run bomb off Sean Marshall for his 5th HR and 23rd RBI).
I think people undervalued/underrated this guy the last couple of years because he moved to San Fran and plays in a mediocre offense/pitcher's park, but he has the talent to play his position and play it well.
He averaged 75(.5) RBI over those last 4 seasons as well. Those are "elite" numbers for his position.
The man does no harm whatsoever at his position, and it helps that people have passed him up the past couple of years thinking that his production will decrease playing in San Fran...but Bengie can absolutely rake, and as a Giants fan who sees him play all the time, he is just a line drive/contact machine. Not to mention, he had some insane avg. with RISP and 2 outs (can't remember exactly, but Giants announcers brought up the figure all the time) and has had some big hits in clutch situations. Very underrated/undervalued.
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Bengie is a top-5 catcher this year. Beyond McCann, Mauer, Martin and Vmart, I can't think of anyone better. Soto/Doumit/Iannetta have started off slumping/injured. I refuse to believe Inge can keep his AVG a respectable number, and Posada is a near wash imo. He's not flashy, pretty old, and bats in a terrible lineup, but hitting cleanup will do wonders for your fantasy line.
Well you can't completely disregard his run totals for the past few years. Given that he's probably the slowest player in the league and plays on a weak offensive club, its likely that he'll be atleast 20 runs behind the upper-echelon guys which is why he's not in that tier despite his consistency in other areas.
I picked Molina up off the Waiver Wire to replace Mauer until he came back. Since I also lost Devine, I was able to keep Molina as my DH (swapping Mauer & Devine on my DL). I now have to look at dropping someone or doing a 2-1 trade to activate A-Rod, and have been shopping Molina around. Let me tell you - there are NO buyers of Molina. Sure he's batting cleanup, but here are the knocks on him:
#1 - Average is great, but it's May and he hasn't drawn a single walk. Not one. In fact he's a rare player that his Average is actually HIGHER than his On Base Percentage (due to sac flys). He is an incredible contact hitter (iirr 522 ABs last year with 37Ks and only 10 walks?) but in leagues that use OBP instead of average, he is pretty pathetic.
#2 - Low Ceiling. You posted the numbers already. Not on the right side of 30 (he's 35) and he'll deliver 15-20 homers, .275-.295 average, and 80-100 RBIs. In this lineup, probably 50 runs. Last year he delivered that, and although RBIs was tops at the Catcher position, due to his low OBP, SLG, no SB, and terrible runs scored, it was good enough for only 6th fantasy rank. That is with players like Chris Ianetta only playing partial seasons.
#3 - Risk - Sure he's been consistent, but he's 35 and playing EVERY DAY behind the plate. As fantasy owners, we'll ride that as long as we can. But he's played 386 games over the past 3 years at C and I'll bet that's more than any other catcher in the Majors. That's likely to put wear and tear on the body, so is an injury risk. Anyone you try to trade him to will factor that in.
So... looking at the catchers that people may value more than Molina:
Mauer, Martin, McCann, Martinez - these are the elites. Iannetta, Sandoval, Saltalamacchia, Wieters - these are the top tier prospects
Then you get into the "Steady Eadies" of the catchers: Molina, Posada, Napoli...
And the breakout candidate of Inge.
Certainly Molina is worth a roster spot, but you're not going get much for him, given that those players listed above are all likely on a roster... and who wants to carry two catchers, or use a Catcher as a DH?
hahahaha...he's among my favorite fantasy players too. I am usually able to sit back and then snag him in all of my leagues. What's disappointing is that, despite the success, his trade value is very low. I was able to acquire VMart in a trade and with one catcher spot, Molina has been riding a pine. Three teams don't have very good catchers, and the best players I can get from them...Mark Reynolds and Koji Uehara!