First, we have Michael Bourn, as you can see I was pretty high on this kid to start the season, so was Ed Wade apparently because he gave up Brad Lidge for him. How'd that work out? Don't ask.
CF - Michael Bourn .280 10HR 50RBI 50SB
Here's what he actually did in '08. He hit .229 with a .288 OBP and .588 OPS. He slugged .300 if you do the math. That's not good, at all. He hit 5 HR and drove in 29 RBI. He stole 41 of 51 attempts on the year. We'll call "speed" his strength. At this point he seems like a downgrade in Wily Taveras, so needless to say he needs to step it up offensively or he needs to be replaced.
Second, I present to you Kaz Masui. Well he got injured, which surprised absolutely no one. When healthy he was serviceable, but at this point he is what he is. You'll be seeing plenty of David Newhan next year when KazMat will undoubtedly be injured again.
2B - Kaz Matsui .270 10HR 55RBI 30SB
That was the prediction based on him staying healthy. Never again will I be assuming that with this guy. He hit a respectable .293 with a decent .354 OBP. Was successful in stealing 20 of 25 attempts.
Third, the artist formerly known as Miguel Tejada. What a year for this guy. Ed Wade buys high on this guy the day before the Mitchell Report is due. That's a fireable offense in my book, but whatever. Let's just go to the stats.
SS - Miguel Tejada .285 25HR 95RBI 5SB
He hit an unsurprising .283, but OPS'ed at a .729 clip. That's no good folks, not for a third hitter, not for a guy we're paying $14,000,000+. He should quickly be demoted to the 7 hole for next year. I'm not even holding out hope that we would be able to move him in a trade, so you know...let's move on to some positive things.
What is there not to like about Caveman Hitter, Lance Berkman. He had one of the best starts of all time, and single handedly provided offense while the rest of the team was scuffling.
1B - Lance Berkman .295 35HR 110RBI 5SB
He ended up hitting .312 on the year with an OPS of .986. That is outstanding. He hit 29 HR and drove in 106 RBI. He even stole successfully 18 of 22 times, which was a bonus to most fantasy leaguers.
Up fourth, is El Caballo, Carlos Lee. I can honestly say, so far, we've gotten exactly the production that we were paying for. You could do a lot worse in giving a player a $100,000,000 contract than Carlos Lee.
LF - Carlos Lee .285 30HR 110RBI 10SB
He hit .314 and had 28 HR and 100 RBI in only 115 games. Hopefully he can come back strong in 2009 and continue to produce at this level.
Up next, Hunter Pence. He's clearly the future of this club. He plays with a lot of enthusiasm and should continue to develop into a very good player for years to come.
RF - Hunter Pence .290 25HR 85RBI 25SB
His average dipped to .269 this year, but I pretty much nailed his HR and RBI output as he had 25 HR and 83 RBI. He's not a very patient hitter(40BB)and struck out 124 times. Also he needs to stop trying to steal. Being successful 11 of 21 times is not helping the team, and giving away precious outs.
Ty Wigginton by most accounts had a good year. I had him projected to provide some decent offense from the 7 hole last year and that he did.
3B - Ty Wigginton .265 20HR 70RBI 2SB
He managed to hit .285 and OPS .876 for the year. Hitting 23 HR and driving in 58 in only 386 AB's. However his home/road splits (AVG/OPS) are attrocious .343/1.080 at Home and .234/.697 on the road. He's arbitration eligible and will certainly require a healthy raise. If Wade decided to cash in on him now, you wouldn't hear a complaint out of me.
Last and certainly least is by far the biggest offensive dissapointment of the year, J.R. Towles. Here's a look at my projections for him
C - J.R. Towles .270 10HR 50RBI 10SB
Hide the women and children, because this is going to get U G L Y. Towles only lasted on the major league club until June 6th, when he was demoted to get some confidence back. In 54 games he hit .137 with 4 HR and 16 RBI. OPS'ed at a .503 clip. That's really really shockingly bad. It was so bad that the team doesn't even mention him in their plans anymore. It's all about finding another catcher to split time with Humberto Quintero. I'm not sure that's fair since he rebounded pretty well in the minors, he certainly should get another chance. At his worst, he's Brad Ausmus so why not see how he rebounds from failure.