Stephen Drew, the brother of Boston’s J.D. Drew, debuted in the Major Leagues in 2006. Two years later the 2004 first round draft pick showed just how good he could be, hitting .291 with 21 HR, 67 RBI, 91 R and 3 SB in 611 AB. Since then fantasy owners have been waiting for him to rediscover that form to no avail.
In 2010 he continued his less than stellar performance:
565 At Bats
.278 Batting Average (157 Hits)
15 Home Runs
10 Stolen Bases
.352 On Base Percentage
.458 Slugging Percentage
.321 Batting Average on Balls in Play
Even in his “big” power year, he posted a HR/FB of just 9.7% (a career high). With a career fly ball rate of 42.6%, it just doesn’t seem like he’s made to be a big-time home run hitter despite playing in a favorable hitters’ park (though only 5 of his 15 HR came at home in ’10). He only hit 13 HR in 342 AB in the Pacific Coast League in 2006, so that statement really shouldn’t be earth shattering.
He spent the majority of his time in 2010 hitting either first (184 AB) or second (136 AB), exactly where he should remain in 2011. That is going to limit his RBI potential, regardless of how much power he has. With Justin Upton, Miguel Montero and company hitting behind him he should be given a fair amount of opportunity to score runs… Of course, he needs to get on base for that to happen.
He does a decent, though unremarkable, job with a career OBP of .332. Just to put it in comparison, there were 34 players who scored 90 runs or more in 2010. Only five of them had an OBP below .340. I know he was above that mark in ’10, but he also benefited from a .321 BABIP (he’s traded good years with marks below .290). There’s no guarantee that he can maintain the elevated mark, meaning he’s not likely to post a great OBP in 2011.
So, he is not a huge power hitter. There may not be much upside in runs scored or average (assuming his BABIP regresses). He has to have speed, right? The answer to that would be no, as 2010 actually saw him set a career high.
With all that said, here’s what I am projecting for him in 2011:
.282 (162-575), 18 HR, 65 RBI, 85 R, 8 SB, .317 BABIP, .352 OBP, .480 SLG
The best word I have seen used to describe Drew is “reliable”. While he showed a flash of brilliance in 2008, the past two years he has regressed but put up consistent numbers. He’s not flashy anywhere, but he isn’t going to hurt you either. While that makes him far from an elite choice, it makes him usable all the same.
What are your thoughts of Drew? Is he a player you would target on draft day? What are you expecting from him in 2011?
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