Quick 2010 Projection: Colby Rasmus

With the Cardinals likely parting ways with Rick Ankiel, the glut of outfielders would appear to be alleviated.  That means Colby Rasmus, thought of as a top prospect, will finally get regular at bats.  Coming off a rookie campaign that saw him hit .251 with 16 HR, 52 RBI and 72 R in 474 AB, there’s certainly plenty to like.

Let’s take a look at what I am projecting for him for 2010:

.255 (134-525), 21 HR, 65 RBI, 80 R, 12 SB, .293 BABIP, .333 OBP, .436 SLG

Thoughts:

  • He spent 296 AB in the #2 hole in 2009, and it’s likely, given the roster the team currently has, that he stays in that role in the early portion of 2010.  While that should lead to runs scored, with Matt Holliday and Albert Pujols hitting behind him, his OBP may not be conducive to it.
  • The problem isn’t his ability to draw a walk (11.54% minor league career walk rate), but his ability to hit for a higher average.  He strikes out a good amount of the time (my projection has him at about 22.5%, right around his minor league career mark) and hits the ball in the air a lot (45.7% in 2009).  Put those two things together and he’ll need to get pretty lucky to hit above .260.
  • Hitting in the second spot in the Cardinals batting order is not a good spot to drive in many runs.  The bottom of their order figures to be weak and while he’ll get pitches to hit, he likely won’t have significant opportunities to put up big numbers.
  • He has more speed than he showed in 2009 and you have to figure that he was simply adapting to the Major League game.  He stole at least 15 bases a year in the Minor Leagues from 2006-2008 (topping out at 28), so look for more production there.
  • The power he showed last season is very much for real, having hit 29 home runs at Double-A in 2007.  I wouldn’t look for a huge increase, but the extra at bats will certainly lead to a higher total from a year ago.
  • He’s not a great option for those in shallower formats, but if you play in a five-outfielder format or a keeper league, he’s a solid pick.

What are your thoughts on Rasmus?  How well do you see him performing in 2010?  Is he a player you are targeting?

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Make sure to check out some more of our 2010 projections, including:

One comment

  1. Aaron says:

    I think he could have a nicer season than your projection, which for where he’ll be drafted, he could be a nice guy to take a risk on..

    I am thinking .260 75 rbi 85 run 15 steals

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