Let’s keep these Wild Predictions (things that I predict to happen 20% of the time or less) rolling:
Felipe Paulino will strikeout at least 180 batters
He has a cannon of an arm, averaging 95+ mph on his fastball over 97.2 innings of Major League action last season. If I knew nothing else about him, that would be enough to encourage me to make this prediction, but there is more.
Over his minor league career he posted a K/9 of 8.3. In his stint in the Majors last season he was at 8.6. All he really needs is an opportunity to pitch every five days and he has the skill to get to this type of mark.
His biggest problem could be an innings limit, as he threw just 132.1 innings last season. Outside of that, why would the Astros not utilize him in the rotation? Is Brian Moehler really a better option for the team?
I don’t think so. He’s got the talent and should have opportunity. That could mean a huge season for the youngster.
If he were to maintain an 8.5 K/9, he would need to throw 190 innings to reach my projection. If he were able to maintain a higher strikeout level, the innings obviously fall. So really, is this that far-fetched?
Chance of Happening: 20%
What are your thoughts on Paulino? Could he reach the level I’ve predicted? Why or why not?
If you would like to see a free preview of the Rotoprofessor 2010 Fantasy Baseball Draft Guide (available for just $5) now including a Top 50 Prospects for 2010 List, click here.
Previous Wild Predictions:
- Cody Ross will hit 35 HR or more
- Yovani Gallardo will post a WHIP of 1.17 or better
- Mike Pelfrey will strikeout 160 batters or more
- Julio Borbon will steal 70 bases or more
- Billy Butler finishes in the Top 5 in the Majors in RBI with at least 120
- Max Scherzer will post an ERA of 4.75 of worse
- Carlos Quentin will hit at least .310 in 2010
- Shin-Soo Choo will hit .265 or worse in 2010
- Kurt Suzuki will outperform Ichiro Suzuki in 2010 (without taking position scarcity into account)
- Octavio Dotel will save at least 40 games
- Vladimir Guerrero will hit .340 or better
- Kevin Kouzmanoff will hit at least 32 home runs and drive in at least 110 RBI