Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Matt Holliday 2009

Among the hitters likely to go early in 2009 fantasy baseball drafts, Matt Holliday is (by far) the most likely to disappoint. Obviously, the biggest factor in the likely decline of his numbers is that he'll be going from a great hitters' park in Colorado to a poor one in Oakland. But there are a number of other minor contributing factors. He's 29 years that's neutral or very slightly negative. In general, the American League is tougher than the National League, so that's another very slight negative. His 28 stolen bases in 2008 were FAR more than he had in previous years. While his high percentage of success should encourage him (and his managers) to keep running, he's going to a team that isn't known for its aggression on the basepaths, so it seems likely that he'll steal less bases in 2009 as well. While I don't generally put much stock in situational splits (because of somewhat limited sample size), Holliday does have a much larger than normal home/road split in his numbers of the course of his career. Parks can favor some hitters more than others, and seems possible that Holliday has been benefiting even more than other hitters from Coors Field. Overall, I think there are a lot of reason to expect Holliday to be less valuable this year. He's still going to be good, but I don't see a lot of reason to expect him to put up numbers much different from a guy like Nick Markakis who may be picked twenty to thirty picks later in most drafts.


Schruender said...

Contract year!

Alex said...

True, but I think the impact of contract years is relatively minor, and doesn't outweigh the factors working against him.

Anonymous said...

Also, contract years are usually more significant for players that are lazy or selfish and who do not give 100% all of the time. Manny comes to mind. I have never seen a player play as hard, and well, as he did after arriving in LA last year.

Anyway, Holliday always seems to hustle and put forth maximum effort. I don't expect his effort to change in this contract year.