I posed this question to my followers on Twitter a few nights ago, because 1. I knew the response I would receive, and 2. to let them know that maybe Justin Upton isn't the player we all think he is.
Who would you rather have in 2014: Jayson Werth or Justin Upton?— Ray Guilfoyle (@faketeams) September 10, 2013
I received responses like "this can't be a real question?" and "Upton and it's not even close." But, here is the one I agree with:
@faketeams the fact that's a legit debate says more about Upton than Werth, have to wonder if he ever makes the leap at this point
I removed his name, but the comment is verbatim, and I am beginning to wonder the same. Actually, i have written about this previously in one or two Roundups. So, let's take a look at both players and then let me know your opinion in the comments below.
Juston Upton has all the name value in fantasy circles. He is hitting .257-.351-.459 with 24 HRs, 86runs, 64 RBI and 7 stolen bases in 132 games, but his strikeout rate has jumped back up into the 25% range after falling to 19% in 2012. His 2012 season was considered a disappointment, as he hit .280-.355-.430 with 17 HRs, 107 runs, 67 RBI and 18 stolen bases, all in 150 games. His power is up this season, but I have to say that this season has been a disappointment as well. Or, maybe I was just too high on him after his 2012 season. I expected a bounce back from him, and he was the April MVP with 12 HRs and 19 RBI, but since then has hit just 12 HRs and driven in 48 runs over the last 4+ months. Upton has hit 20 of his 24 home runs in two months this season: 12 in April, and 8 in August, so he hit just 4 home runs, while killing his fantasy owners, from May through July.
On the other hand, we have Nationals outfielder Jayson Werth who missed most of the 2012 season due to injury, but has been very good at the plate in 2013. Werth is hitting .327-.399-.546 with 23 HRs, 74 runs, 71 RBI and 8 stolen bases in 112 games. His batting average is buoyed by a lofty .369 BABIP this season, so that could fall in 2014. Then again, maybe it won't. His BABIP before he was injured last season was .356, and here are his BABIPs for the three seasons he was an every day player in Philadelphia and in his first year in Washington:
2008: .324 BABIP
2009: .304 BABIP
3010: .352 BABIP
2011: .286 BABIP
I think we can throw away the 2011 BABIP, his first year in Washington, as he was obviously pressing to prove he was worth the huge 7 year, $126 million deal the team gave him the previous offseason.
Werth is hitting for more power than Upton this season, by almost .100 in slugging percentage, and owns a better batting average by a wide margin.
I am sure Upton will continue to be drafted ahead of Werth in 2014, but stay away. Werth is the guy to own.
So who would YOU rather have in 2014? Let's hear it in the comments below.