NL Hitters you want to acquire

Ryan Howard's slugging percentage jumps 100 points in the second half of the season.
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - For the past couple of days, I've been telling you who you should trade away at the mid-point of the 2010 baseball season based on their historical tendency to have bad second halves. Today, we tell you who you should be looking to get in the deal as they have a great second-half track record.

As always in statistical research, the more data you accumulate, the more reliable the results. Since Aubrey Huff has played 11 seasons his "regularly scheduled" second-half splurge is more reliable than that of Jay Bruce, who has played just two seasons as a starter.

We continue our research with the National League.

Obviously, Ryan Howard and Troy Tulowitzki will cost you an "arm and a leg" but others on this list might still be a free agent.

The No.1 target on my list would be Chris Young, the Arizona Diamondbacks outfielder, who is already playing well above his pre-season expectations. In 22 games this season, he batting .281 with 11 runs scored, four homers and 21 runs batted in. If his second half slugging percentage is 76 points above his current level (.483) then fantasy owners would have the makings of a TSN "Best Bargain" winner. Young is still owned in just under 70% of all leagues and if he's a free agent in yours, run don't walk to pick him up.

Another Diamondback on the list is LaRoche, who is well known for second-half surges, but is already hitting a solid .299 with four homers and 17 RBI. He's owned in about half of all leagues.

And if you are looking for an outfielder to fill in for an injury, you could do a lot worse than Bruce, who has picked it up after a very slow start. Bruce, owned in 63% of all leagues, was hitting .146 on April 17th, but as we hit the last day of the month has his average up to .237. He has too much talent to finish at this level and I'm expecting his batting average to continue it's upward trend.

Selected NL Hitters - by Slugging Percentage Variation
Player Games AB R H HR RBI SB AVE SLG DIFF
Ryan Howard
First Half 377 1420 220 365 106 317 5 0.257 0.535
Second Half 376 1358 258 411 120 340 5 0.303 0.633 +98
Adam LaRoche
First Half 483 1654 230 420 67 259 3 0.254 0.453
Second Half 374 1290 188 387 73 227 1 0.300 0.546 +93
Troy Tulowitzki
First Half 225 838 133 215 29 104 18 0.257 0.430
Second Half 229 875 152 273 37 152 14 0.312 0.515 +85
Chris Young
First Half 274 1009 130 228 36 123 27 0.226 0.407
Second Half 220 777 115 196 39 103 29 0.252 0.483 +76
Matt Holliday
First Half 485 1839 293 576 70 288 42 0.313 0.515
Second Half 391 1482 296 477 86 312 40 0.322 0.579 +64
Aubrey Huff
First Half 699 2649 323 714 94 371 17 0.270 0.443
Second Half 644 2362 345 694 111 389 9 0.294 0.501 +58
Jay Bruce
First Half 149 538 77 124 28 71 7 0.230 0.442
Second Half 82 296 46 76 19 48 2 0.257 0.497 +55
Yunel Escobar
First Half 208 796 107 226 14 97 9 0.284 0.393
Second Half 185 644 114 201 15 75 5 0.312 0.447 +54
Jimmy Rollins
First Half 762 3228 493 858 69 314 163 0.266 0.416
Second Half 651 2736 460 780 78 310 165 0.285 0.468 +52
Ramon Hernandez
First Half 732 2483 276 626 75 361 6 0.252 0.395
Second Half 551 1821 230 503 67 282 2 0.273 0.445 +50


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

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