In 5×5 leagues this is a topic of debate that will persuade the drafter from one player to another. Who is more valuable, Ryan Howard or BJ Upton? Well lets take a look at a 15 team 5×5 roto league. Last year there was at least 185 players that hit 10HR or more whereas there were only 85 basestealers totaling those same numbers. In a 15 team league you need about 140 pts to lock up 1st in the stolen base category in order to reach that mark you will need a bonafide base stealer.
Let’s look at what Ryan Howard provides you…..About 50 Hr, .250 avg and 135 RBI. His avg can be a category killer. Upton has easy 20 Hr potential as was the case with his 7 postseason HR; possibly 30. He will also steal between 30 and 40 bases while batting about 20-50 points higher than Howard. Homeruns are considered a category that is easily made up over the course of the season because their are 185 players in major league baseball who can hit homeruns. Basestealing is another story. This is a category that once you fall behind it is difficult to make up because only a certain type of player can steal a base.
Spending a 1st or early2nd round pick on a 3 category player is not something I recommend. I would perfer to draft BJ Upton and his 4.5 categories then 5 round laters Adam Dunn will still be on the board providing similar stats at a far better price than Ryan Howard.