Wednesday, January 13, 2010
Josh Hamilton 2010: Expect a Rebound
I'm expecting a major rebound for Josh Hamilton in 2010. It seems as though people are writing his fantastic 2008 season (.304 AVG, 32 HR, 9 SB) as a fluke right now, with Hamilton ranked 63rd by ADP at Couchmanagers.com. That's a pretty big fall from last year, when Hamilton was a late first round or early second round pick in many drafts. Hamilton is only 28 years old, so he should still be in his prime. His numbers were obviously hurt by injuries in 2009, so I'm willing to give him a partial free pass on his weak season. The problem with viewing his previous season as a fluke is that in roughly a half season in 2007 (298 AB), he was just as good, hitting .292 with 19 home runs. And despite his age, he had played in very few minor league games, so he was essentially learning on the job. If anything, I think Hamilton's career path is likely to follow that of a player a year or two younger than he is. In other words, I think there's a possibility that the best is yet to come for Hamilton. If he's available in the 4th or 5th round of a 12 team draft and you're looking for an outfielder, I wouldn't hesitate to take him.