During the Philadelphia Phillies‘ bipolar 2013 season, Ryan Howard has not been much help. Yes, he seems to have gotten hot, but his performance has been pedestrian this season.
In short, Howard is the most overrated player on the Phillies roster this season.
Is Howard still a good baseball player? Yes, but I think his production at first base and at the plate has plateaued and it will only go down from here. I hope he proves me wrong this season, but he has had some knee problems at times.
Howard hit only his eighth homer of the season on June 17, his first since May 29. This streak without a home run was only one day shy of his career-high. Last year, Howard had a lengthy DL stint and only played in 71 games with 260 at-bats. Over that span, He struck out 99 times and hit the long ball 14 times. So far this season with 239 at-bats, Howard only has eight HRs and already has 75 strike outs.
With the way he has played the last two seasons, the hype around Howard after his hot 2010 season has crashed real fast, but many still think he can get back to those numbers. If 2013 is any indication, I think the 33-year-old first baseman is heading in the wrong direction. Many were calling on 2013 to be a bounce-back season, but Howard has yet to show that yet.
The man is making about $25 million dollars a year. I understand the Phillies gave him big money in his prime, but in a two-year span, he has gone from one of the best batters in MLB to the Phillies’ most overrated player.