Volquez made his 2nd strong start since being recalled as he limited the DBacks to 3 ER’s over 6 2/3 innings allowing 6 hits and 2 walks, while striking out 7. As with most Tommy-John recoveries Volquez big issue upon his return was his command, but since he’s been recalled he’s thrown 63% of his pitches for strikes and walked just 3 in 13 2/3 innings. I’m still nervous about deploying Volquez given the history of shaking command, but the K Rates and GB Rates are certainly enticing (9.86 K/9, 53% GB Rate) and as long as he throws strikes he’ll be fine. So far he’s walked less than 3 batters in 4 of his 10 starts and in those starts he has a 1.75 ERA. However in the other 6 outings he’s posted an 8.60 ERA. Feast or famine for Volquez based on his command, understand your risks accordingly.
Reynolds is in one of the ugliest slumps we’ve seen all season. He went 0-4 on Thursday and picked up another strikeout. He’s now just 3-38 in September with 17 K’s and has now struck out at least once in 21 of his last 23 games (1 of those games was a PH appearance that he was walked). He’s hit at least 5 HR’s every month this season, so there’s some reasonable expectation that the power will return in September (currently 0 XBH’s), but Reynolds has been banged up with a multitude of injuries and just looks like a different player right now. In shallow leagues I think he’s droppable and for owners competing in a playoff run, I’d strongly consider adding a hotter hand to replace Reynolds. He simply provides more risk than return at this point in the season.
Davis is putting a strong finish to his 2010 rookie campaign hitting .380/.484/.680 in the final month of the season with 3 HR’s, 9 Runs, and 12 RBI’s in the first 15 games. He’s cut the K’s way down in September to just 19% after spending much of the year in the high 20’s and has raised the BB Rate to a fantastic 17.5% while continuing to show big improvements in the power (.319 ISO). Davis has moved quickly through the Mets minor league system the last two years rising from low A to the majors and he’s done so by making quick adjustments at each stage. His OPS has jumped 50 points over the course of the 2nd half, up to .828 as the power has continued to develop. Batting average looks like it will be a problem for the next year or so as he continues to work on improving the contact, but a 25-90 season seems possible if not probable for Davis as a 24 year old.
I have to admit coming into the year my love for Carlos Santana probably blinded me a little bit from just how good of a prospect Buster Posey has been. His career .969 OPS in the minor leagues is hard to overlook but it happened as I wrote off Sabean’s love of veterans (Benjie Molina) and the tough ballpark and shifted all my focus towards Santana. Well it turns out it was my loss as Posey has been arguably the most impactful fantasy rookie in baseball this season. He homered for the 14th time last night and is now posting a rather absurd .325/.370/.516 line. The unusual thing for Posey is how he’s been able to improve his contact rate at the major league level without sacrificing any power. In addition despite hitting 47% GB’s, he’s maintained an ISO near .200 for most of the year because anything he does get in the air, he really gets into. It’s a combination that has allowed him to maintain a high average (yes, thanks in part to a .341 BABIP) while hitting for power. While its likely the batting average will come down a tad next season, I’d also expect to see the BB Rate climb a bit as he was a consistent 13% BB guy in the minors (just 6% this season) which will help boost the Runs scored total. I’m not sure the Giants will be able to replicate the offensive support around him next year, but Posey looks to be a truly elite offensive force with or without lineup support. The more I see him, the more I’m reminded of Victor Martinez and I think that’s the type of bat you can expect to see from Posey for years to come.
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