Saturday, December 27, 2008
Mike Napoli 2009
A good source of sleepers or players ready for breakout seasons is those who have put up good numbers in a limited number of at bats. Mike Napoli definitely fits the bill going into 2009. In only 227 at bats (274 plate appearances), he hit .273 with 20 home runs, and even had 7 steals. While those numbers are probably a bit of a statistical fluke, he has now hit 46 career home runs in just over 700 at bats. Given that he's already 27 years old, he's unlikely to improve any further, but who cares. Given 450 at bats he could hit .250 with 30 homers and 10 steals. That's incredible production for a catcher, and especially one likely to slip to the middle rounds in most drafts. The best news of all is that the Angels are supposedly looking for ways to get him more playing time, even if they have to use him at DH sometimes.