I was a huge Mark Reynolds fan this preseason and recommended him as one of my favorites this year. I noted he finished top 5 in three categories last year and 7 in RBI. Obviously average was his one weakness, but he was still a great player with amazing power. This year he has absolutely blown the numbers away and making those of us picking him look really smart.
His plate numbers haven't changed much as he is walking at a 11.6%, which is only up slightly from his 10.6%. Then his strikeout rate is similar to last year down slightly to 36.7% from 37.8%. Overall he is showing the same numbers at the plate, but it is concerning that his LD% is down to 14% from a career rate of 18.2%. This could lead to a lowering BABIP if it doesn't return to normal rates.
So what about the power? Last year Matt Williams made the comment he thought that Reynolds would hit 50 homers some day. What scouting or info he based this on I don't know, but he sure looks smart right now. He won't reach 50 this year, but a 40 homer season is within his grasp. He does have a 38% rate of Just Enough homers which is a bit high, but even a final count of 35-38 homers would make a great return on your investment. (hittracker)
The true surprise this year though is the speed. I used his Bill James projection in my sleeper article which was: .269 BA, 32 HR, 101 R, 105 RBI, 10 SB. A total of 10 steals would be nice at third base, but to have 13 before the All-Star break is amazing. According to many his current stats have him as the second ranked third baseman to David Wright, but that is based on a unmaintainable BABIP. I project Reynolds will be the number 1 third baseman for 2009 when the season is over.