George Bell wrote:Hillenbrand developed a reputation as a fast starter hitting .421 in April of '05, but his career numbers show a hitter that has been productive late in the season, too. Hillenbrand can hit, no doubt about it, but he is probably not going to give you much more than his traditional 17-20 HR 80-90 RBI and .290 average. I believe that he does become a free agent at the end of the season, and he has a great team hitting around him, so there may be a modest improvement in those projections.
This is all true and in line with his career averages, but there is a good chance at this point that the guy will finish with a career year. He may be a fast starter in April, but we're in June now and he's still hitting well.
His low end this year are the above numbers, but I think his high end for this year could be around .310-.320, 25-30 homers, 90-100 RBI. That's if
he has a career year and doesn't enter any mammoth slump. He's always been a consistent hitter so chances are good that he won't dip unreasonably.
He's been a great FA pickup for me. I drafted Sexson for 1B because I figured that he would only suck in terms of average and not...well..suck at everything, and Hillenbrand has put a stop to the bleeding. He's allowed me to not worry so much about 1B and only start Sexson at 1B on Hillenbrand's bench/off days, or start Sexson at Util every now and then until he shows signs life (like he has against KC). Even if Sexson breaks out like he likely will at some point, I'll be keeping Hillenbrand as he'd be a serious bonus in the Util spot.