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Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Fantasy Man-Crush: Pablo "Kung Fu Panda" Sandoval

This one's overdue. Up until today, there's been one "official" Life of Brian man-crush: Nick Markakis. Today, we expand the population to two with the addition of Pablo Sandoval.

Several months ago, I drafted Sandoval hoping he would attain catcher eligibility for the Giants within the first few weeks of the 2009 season. However, much to my chagrin... catcher eligibility never came for the Kung Fu Panda... in fact, it still hasn't arrived.

But...

I'm okay with it. Yes, it was hard for me deal with nagging groin and elbow injuries combined with bouts of the flu early on. For all the hardship Sadoval delivered early on this year, he's paid off in dividends when healthy.

...which has been for some time now. It's kind of hard to believe, but the 22 year-old Venezuelan is still a rookie for the San Francisco Giants. Masking this fact is Sandoval's current (as of 7-1-2009) .338 BA, 11 home runs, and .958 OPS on the season. To give you an idea of how good that is, here's a list of the Top-5 First basemen in BA and OPS for the season:

Batting Average (at least 250 ABs)
1. Pablo Sandoval -- .338
2. Miggy Cabrera -- .332
3. Albert Pujols -- .332
4. Victor Martinez -- .313
5. Justin Morneau -- .312

On-Base + Slugging (at least 250 ABs)
1. Albert Pujols -- 1.197
2. Prince Fielder -- 1.034
3. Adrian Gonzalez -- 1.001
4. Justin Morneau -- .975
5. Pablo Sandoval -- .958

I'm not going to repeat this chore for third base for one reason and one reason only: LOOK AT THE NAMES ON THESE LISTS!!! Seriously, this kid is hanging with the big boys of the most potent position in baseball.

Whether you're starting him at first or third, Sandoval has provided "must-start" support in 2009. If someone in your league is using Sandoval as a back-up or bench-warmer... feel confident in making a move for this young man... especially if you're in a deeper, keeper league.

2 comments:

Mike Plugh said...

He is currently 16th in all of baseball in VORP at 3B behind only Wright and Longoria. Among the 15 names above Sandoval on the VORP list are Jason Bartlett and Ben Zobrist of Tampa. That's even more shocking to me, and given that Carl Crawford is at 22 and Upton hasn't started to play yet, that's a scary squad.

bfadds said...

They Rays are scary. The question is... which closer is going to benefit from it (from a purely fantasy perspective). I've heard Huston Street's name bounced around... but last I checked the Rockies, themselves, were playing like the team to beat in the NL (no offense Dodger fans). Are we looking at a Matt Capps/Joakim Soria deal to the Rays? How nasty would that 'pen be?

Re: Sandoval @ 3B

How many 1B and C are ahead of him? I'm assuming V-Mart has to be pretty high on the VORP list for that shallow position. Lastly, are there very many "rookies" on the list?