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Hunting for the next fantasy star

Most experts believe that Hunter Pence can eventually become a 30+ HR, 20 SB guy.
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Each year, when a fantasy owner drafts Houston Astros outfielder Hunter Pence with one of his middle-round picks (ADP 94), he is hoping that Pence finally matures into the player everyone thinks he can be.

Most experts believe that Pence can eventually become a 30+ homer, 20 stolen base guy. A solid combination of power and speed that every fantasy owner looks for. And each year Pence leaves them disappointed after showing glimpses of the talent, but never putting it all together.

In his rookie season, 2007, Pence batted .322 with 17 homers, 69 RBI and 11 stolen bases in just 108 games which got owners excited about his future production. However, despite seeing plenty of additional playing time in 2008 and 2009, Pence has failed to reach the 30-20 goals set for him by fantasy experts.

He likely won't hit those numbers again in 2010, but that doesn't mean he can't help you. Plus, he's still just 27-years old so there will be plenty of chances for him to reach those fantasy goals.

Meanwhile, over the past two weeks, Pence has been the third-best hitter in baseball behind only Albert Pujols (no surprise there) and Carlos Gonzalez, who we featured just last week as being a future No.1 fantasy selection.

Pence is batting .375 with 12 runs scored, three homers, 11 RBIs and a stolen base in his last 12 games. He is also only owned in 84% of all leagues, not the 90-percent or more that you would expect. If he is available in your league, pick him up immediately.

Hunter Pence Career Statistics
Year AB R H HR RBI SB AVG OPS
2007 456 57 147 17 69 11 0.322 0.899
2008 595 78 160 25 83 11 0.269 0.783
2009 585 76 165 25 72 14 0.282 0.818
2010 443 73 127 18 66 15 0.287 0.803


Comments? Criticism? Applause? Contact Steve Schwarz at sschwarz@sportsnetwork.com.