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A Little Caution On J.R. Towles

I've been hyping Houston's J.R. Towles pretty often here on RotoAuthority as a sleeper at the catcher position.  He's intriguing in two-catcher mixed leagues or NL-only leagues.

I project Towles at .271-11-57-60-11 in 388 ABs, an $11.91 value.  That's seventh among backstops.  However, there are reasons for caution here.

  • Towles is currently dealing with a strained hamstring.  Say that instead of 11 steals, he's careful because of the hammie and his precarious rookie status and just swipes two.  35% of his value disappears.
  • Towles started last year in A ball.  He played 26 games there, 61 at Double A, 13 at Triple A, and 15 in the bigs.  So, just a half season worth of high minors seasoning.
  • He's a rookie catcher learning to handle a big league staff.  That's a tad stressful, and it could affect his hitting.
  • The Astros have loved Brad Ausmus for far too long, and if he were to split the gig evenly with Towles I would not be shocked.
  • So make sure you have a good #1 if you're going to use Towles as your #2.  And if you went a few extra bucks for more known commodities like Kenji Johjima, Bengie Molina, Carlos Ruiz, or Ryan Doumit, I would not fault you.  Hell, Jorge Posada seems to be getting no love in fantasy leagues, and he's not much worse than Martin/Martinez/Mauer/McCann (the Four Ms).

Full Story |  Comments (9) | Categories: Catchers

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