2011 Projections, No. 19: Why Phillies' Roy Halladay Is the Top Fantasy Pitcher

Nick KappelAnalyst IIIJanuary 25, 2011

SAN FRANCISCO - OCTOBER 21:  Roy Halladay #34 of the Philadelphia Phillies throws a pitch against the San Francisco Giants in Game Five of the NLCS during the 2010 MLB Playoffs at AT&T Park on October 21, 2010 in San Francisco, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Our 2011 fantasy baseball projections will be released one-by-one until the top 100 players have been revealed. These rankings consider past achievements, current performance and expected future results based on standard 5×5 H2H settings.

Fantasy managers generally avoid starting pitchers entering their age-34 season, but when you’ve tallied no less than 220 innings for five consecutive seasons with a 2.96 ERA over that time frame, exceptions can be made. That’s just the case with Roy Halladay.

During the aforementioned five-year span (2006-2010), Halladay has averaged a whopping 18 wins per season and posted a minuscule 1.51 walk rate.

But wait, there’s more.

Still speaking in terms of the last five seasons, Halladay has posted by far the best first-pitch strike rate (65.2 percent) and top O-Swing rate (30.7 percent) among qualified starters.

In 2010, Halladay boasted the best cutter in the majors to go along with an extremely effective fastball/change-up/curveball repertoire. The Phillies’ ace hasn’t lost any velocity on his fastball (92.6 average MPH in 2010, 92.1 career), and is among the league leaders in ground ball rate.

His slightly above-average strikeout rate (7.86 in 2010) is somewhat negated by the fact that he piles up so many innings, as he’s posted 200-plus strikeouts in three consecutive seasons.

A tiny regression to the mean may be in Halladay’s future, though not enough to keep him from being the No. 1 fantasy pitcher in 2011. Draft him with confidence.

2010 stats250.2217.861.082.441.04
3-year average245197.741.272.671.07
2011 FBI Forecast240197.601.302.801.10


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