For whatever reason the Rockies never gave Eric Young Jr. a fair shot at an everyday playing job. I’m pouring out some of my forty-oh for EY. Okay, enough of that sob story. What is this a Lifetime movie? Sheesh! BTW, if I ever had a son, I’d name him Sheesh. Talk about the annoying looks he would get. “Sheesh, where are you?” “I’m on my way other, why are you so annoyed?” “I’m not. Sheesh!” “You sound it.” “Sheesh!” “What?!” Man, my offspring could lose a good three years total of his life just explaining his name. The Rockies have committed 2nd base in 2013 to Josh Rutledge. In 356 Double-A at-bats last year, he dominated with 13 homers and 14 steals with a .306 average. Then jumped to the majors and kept it going. In 277 ABs, he had eight homers and seven steals with a .274 average. So what can we expect of Josh Rutledge for 2013 fantasy baseball and what makes him a sleeper?
There’s chance for a huge year from Rutledge. He’s shown great speed and a decent amount of pop. “Decent amount of pop” translates in Colorado to fifteen homers and pass the doobie while on the sky lift. (Sorry, it’s Colorado, and everything ends with a doobie on a sky lift.) Let’s say he hits at the top of the order and gets 550 ABs. That’s conservative, he could easily break 600 ABs. Decent pop in Coors with 550 ABs is 17 homers (take 12% HR/FB, 140 fly balls over a full year, yadda/schmadda.) His speed is actually a tad better than his power. His Bill James Speed Score for a half season last year was 7.6 and would’ve been the fifth best in the majors if he had qualified. Slightly better than Michael Bourn. In seven steals last year, he wasn’t caught once. I could easily see twenty-plus steals, but let’s just give him twenty because he’ll be in front of guys where he might not always have the green light and his walk rate is miserable (which I’ll get to). Top of the order in Colorado gives you about 100 runs and 45 RBIs, the two hole gives you crap, the two hole in a Rockies lineup gives you about 90/55. There’s no downside here, except his walk rate. It’s terrible. (You had to know something negative was coming.) Again, if he qualified, he would’ve had the 2nd worst walk rate in the majors. Between Alexei Ramirez and Delmon Young. Belch. Coors and speed will help with BABIP. The biggest pitfall is if no one throws him another strike in his career. Assuming he gets some pitches to hit, I’ll give him the line of 92/17/51/.262/20. That’s huge value and a definite sleeper. Sheesh! “What did I do now? Now pass the doobie on the ski lift.”