Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Prospect Profiles - Rich Hill

posted by Jon Williams
I have a weakness in fantasy baseball. Prospects. Prospects are my kryptonite. For those of you into Superman (or with a girlfriend who watches Smallville) I don't have to tell you there are many types of kryptonite. There is the regular old Green Kryptonite which will kill Superman but slowly (albeit painfully). But what we're talking about here is Red Kryptonite. Red Kryptonite doesn't kill Superman it changes his personality, his caution and restraint go out the window. Unlike Superman I've learned to avoid the Green Kryptonite but the red stuff? It catches me everytime. On this site we will avoid the Green Kryptonite Prospects and concentrate on the Red Kryptonite guys. Why? Because in Fantasy Baseball the green guys will cause you serious pain. With the Red guys at least you'll have fun. I'll let you know when we get to the Black Kryptonite, that is some heavy stuff!

Rich Hill is like Red Kryptonite - You'll Have No Fear

Rich Hill might sneak past a few guys in your league. He led the minors with a 13.4 K/9IP in 2005. His control went from terrible in his earlier minor league days to pretty damn amazing for AAA Iowa in 2005. Yeah? you might say. So, how is that supposed to help me get Hill cheap?you might add. Simple. Take a look at Rich Hill's numbers in the majors last year:


Team G GS W L SV CG SHO IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP BAA
2005 CHC 10 4 0 2 0 0 0 23.2 25 24 24 3 17 21 9.13 1.77 .260
Career
10 4 0 2 0 0 0 23.2 25 24 24 3 17 21 9.13 1.77 .260

Yeah, I don't care what league you're in those numbers will scare off the casual bidders no question. Hill's control went away with his promotion to the majors. He simply lost track of what sent him flying thru the minors in 2005. That was throwing strikes in case you weren't paying attention. He'll be better when he returns in 2005, especially if he gets to start the season with the team. Flying thru the system from A to AA to AAA to the majors takes a toll on a player. I'm confident he'll be fine. The Cubs are so confident that he's ready they're shopping Mark Prior and Kerry Wood around for a big time bat. Bobby Abreu? Maybe, but a rotaion of Zambrano, Prior, Wood and Hill would be damn fun to watch. Damn fun.

Okay here's his deal: Rich Hill has an amazing curveball. An unhittable 12-to-6 curveball. That combined with a low 90's fastball that he's finally learned to control (he attributes it to greater mental focus, the coaches say he cleaned up his delivery - whatever, right?) His change-up is constantly improving. And he's a lefty, which guarantees the opportunity will be there. He's 26 so the time is now. A big huge chunk of Red Kryptonite.

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