I wrote an article on Justin Upton last year thinking 2010 would be the year that Justin Upton would become an elite roto hitter. While Upton had good numbers (17HR, 69RBI, 73R, 18SB, .273AVG in 133 Games) they fell far short of elite. Considering Upton's 2009 (26HR, 86RBI, 84R, 20SB, .300AVG in 138 Games) all signs pointed to Upton breaking through in 2010. Word was that Upton dealt with a cranky shoulder for a good chunk of the season. So the question begs to be asked is this the year Upton becomes one of the top NL hitters? NL King says it's a big YES !!!
I have been reading about Justin Upton since he was the #1 overall pick by the D-Backs in the 2005 draft. Early on in his minor career a lot of scouts in baseball were saying things to the effect that "mark my words Justin Upton will be one of the top 5 players in baseball someday and that day will be here sooner rather than later." Remember even though Upton has 3 full seasons plus in the big leagues and he is only 23. Upton has power, has speed, can hit for average, hits in one of the best hitters park in all of MLB (the ball flies in Arizona), is the D-Backs #3 hitter, has good deal of experience now to fall on and that cranky shoulder from last year is no longer cranky according to Upton. I think 2011 is the perfect storm for Justin Upton and the big key for him is to play a full season. Even in 2009, his best season, he missed 24 games. A healthy Upton that plays 155 games plus will have a stat line of 30+HR, 100+RBI, 100+R, 20+SB and an average around .300. I guess you can say I am high on Justin. But like I said above, he has a lot of things going for him and on top of his ridiculous talent, all indications are he is a kid who has the desire. If Justin Upton slips in your draft come draft day and goes let's say $30 in an NL only league, I am telling you now POUNCE !!!!
NL King - C.Lizza