Originally written on Baseball Professor  |  Last updated 1/30/12
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I just got through telling you about how I think Chris Young should be a top-100 player but George, my co-contributor, doesn’t value him as highly. The inverse is true for Howie Kendrick. Who knows which of us is right, but either way they’re definitely two of the most polarizing players in fantasy. Kendrick will give you a good average, some useful stolen base totals and a good amount of runs, but his power output will either make or break his draft value. Can he reproduce the 18 homers he had last year or is it back to the days or 10? We’ll soon find out.

Best case scenario: Brandon Phillips (CIN)
Similar players: Dustin Ackley (SEA), Derek Jeter (NYY), Nick Markakis (BAL)
Worst case scenario: A repeat of his injury-shortened 2009.

Strengths

Balance, streakiness. Kendrick does a little bit of everything. That can be extremely useful in the early-to-mid rounds of the draft as you can get some great values later on by taking one- or two-category specialists. Players like Kendrick allow you to do that. Last season he hit six homers in April, six homers in August and four homers in September. In the other three months he totaled just two. Catch him during a hot streak and you’re golden.

Weaknesses

FB%, streakiness, injuries. Of course, catch him during a cold streak and you’re screwed. Will those trends continue? It’s impossible to know, although there are definitely some players (Brennan Boesch comes to mind) who are consistently inconsistent. Yes, that makes sense. I have a hard time imagining him repeating the 18 homers if he can’t get his fly ball rate up. A HR/FB rate of 16.5 will be hard to reproduce.

ADP Report (104.2)

We nailed this ADP with our pre-draft rankings. That’s a pretty good sign that Kendrick is right at home with this ADP. If you were to average his end-of-season ranks in 2010 and 2011, you’d get an average rank of 107. That’s good enough for me.

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