I would have Ryan Howard ranked much lower on my list, even assuming this is a 5x5 league and his K's and poor OPS don't hurt you. If the stats counted are deeper, I'd move him even further down. I don't understand all the love Ryan Howard receives in fantasy circles. For starters, Ryan Howard has 2 career SB's. It is safe to say he will contribute nothing to your SB category, and though there are plenty of upper echelon hitters who contribute little to nothing to SB's, they usually are .300 ish hitters. Ryan Howard on the other hand is hitting .227 on the season, and hit .268 last year.
His K:BB disparity has increased over the last two years, especially this season, and stands at a deplorable 172:64. His HR totals are also on a decline. In 2006 he homered in 10.2% of his AB's. In 2007 he homered in 9% of his AB's. In 2008 he's homered in 7% of his AB's. That means his greatest asset is actually declining, even if his 34 HR's coming into the night (35 after tonight) are tied for 2nd in MLB. His 74 runs scored on the season coming into tonight have him tied for 52nd place on the runs scored list. Yes, his RBI's this season are fantastic ranking him 2nd in all of MLB, but are a very luck driven statistic. I certainly would not want to own a player in the top 50 even that is going to kill my batting average, not contribute in stolen bases, be a fringe top 50 runs scored player even if it comes with his power numbers. If his HR totals continue to decrease, and he comes up with fewer runners in scoring position next year, he could put up a serious stinker of a season. I would take at the very least 50 players to Ryan Howard.