Saturday, March 31, 2012

Potential Opening Day Starters for the AL

By Corey R. Cunningham

Cleveland Indians 3B Opening Day spot should belong to Lonnie Chisenhall. Lonnie played in 66 games for the Tribe in 2011. He hit .255 with 7 HR, 22 RBI, 27 R, and 1 SB. Chisenhall was picked 29th overall in the 2008 draft by the Indians, and flew through the minor leagues. In a full season at AA Akron in 2010 Chisenhall hit .278, 17 HR, 84 RBI.

Cleveland Indians 2B Jason Kipnis will have the right side of the 2nd base bag to himself. Kipnis does have power, and I believe he can hit 20-25 HR during this prime. If Asdrubal Cabrera stays in Cleveland, they will have a nice double play duo. Kipnis played in just 36 games in 2011 for the tribe, but did manage some nice offensive production. In 136 AB he had 7 HR, 19 RBI, 24 R and 5 SB, while hitting .272.

Kansas City Royals catcher Salvador Perez, earned big payday recently and will need to prove himself for earning his contract. Perez spent his first 3 seasons of the minor leagues in rookie ball. He doesn’t have much pop to his bat, but he does hit for contact, and the Royals like to hit for contact, and there prospects now are coming around bringing power to the contact city. Perez batted .306, 64 RBI, 123 H, .762 OPS, and 45 K in 402 AB during the 3 seasons of rookie ball.  In 2010 Perez was promoted to High-A Wilmington, he caught in 85 of the 99 games he played in. Perez once again put up solid contact numbers, and just a tad bit of power hitting 7 HR. He had one complete season of High-A Wilmington where his numbers looked like this: .290 BA, 106 H, 365 AB, 22 EBH, 18 BB, 38 K, and OPS of .732.In 2011 Perez split time between AA Northwest Arkansas, and AAA Omaha, although ¾ of his games were in AA. Perez caught in 88 out of 91 games during his AA and AAA stint. Perez put up solid numbers while in AA, .283 BA, 81 H, 286 AB, 9 HR, 14 EBH, .756 OPS. This was one of his better seasons with the limited number of ABs he received, and I believe this may have been when the Royals realized they needed to lock Perez up to a long term contract. Though Perez has more of a defensive upside to him, rather than offensive, he will still be targeted during draft day, however, not in the minor league drafts, as he has MLB experience. Perez played in 39 MLB games, with a line of .331 BA, 3 HR, 21 RBI, 20 R. Although he has no speed he will certainly score runs in the lineup that is coming very alive.

Oakland A’s will more than likely have two SP on their opening day roster of RHP Brad Peacock, and RHP Jarrod Parker. Peacock was drafted in the 41st round of the 2006 MLB June Amateur Draft. His most notable years in the minor leagues were this past year, while splitting between AA Harrisburg and AAA Syracuse. In a combined year he went 15-3, with a 2.39 ERA. Brad had a total of 177/K with a K/9 ratio of 10.9, pitching in a total of 146 IP. Making two starting appearances and one relieving appearances in 2011 with the Nationals he had an overall record of 2-0, 0.75 ERA, 4/K, and 6/BB. In 12 IP, he allowed 7/H, however in his two starts he pitched five innings plus, allowing only 3/H, however, in his 1.1 IP of relief he allowed 4/H, with 1 ER allowed, with earning the BS.

Jarrod was drafted 9th overall in 2007 by the Arizona Diamondbacks before getting traded to Oakland this off season for Cahill. In his first full season in 2008 Parker went 12-5, striking out 117 batters in just 117 IP. Out of 113 Hits Parker allowed in 08’, he managed to just give up 8 HR. Before undergoing surgery in 09’ he managed to pitch a combined 20 games for High-A and AA. His totals for the 2009 season were 5-6, with a 3.14 ERA. Parker allowed 94 hits in 97 IP, and striking out 95. In 2011 Parker was brought up to the MLB and pitched for the Diamondbacks including the playoffs. He made a total of 6 innings pitched of work, with a 0.00 ERA. He gave up 6 total hits, allowing 1 ER, 2 BB and 1 K. This was just the start for Parker and perhaps a trade show for the Diamondbacks. If parker can live up to his potential, the A’s made and even swap, or perhaps upgraded from Cahill. If Parker makes the MLB starting rotation roster, I am not sure what to project for his shoulder issues. However, I will project full season stats for Parker as a starter: 10-10 4.50 ERA, 101 K

Seattle Mariners catcher Jesus Montero will see sometime behind the plate, however, more than likely will get used as the DH for majority of the season. In 2009 Montero split the season between Tampa and Trenton, combining for 379 plate appearances. He combined for a total of 117 hits, 70 RBI, 26 extra base hits, while batting .337. In 2010 Montero was promoted to AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. He batter for a .289 BA, 131 hits, with 37 of those being extra base hits, hitting 21 HR and batting in 75 RBI. He continued to stay in AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre in 2011 averaging the same numbers with a line of, .288 BA, 121 H, 20 extra base hits and 18 HR. Montero played 14 games fewer in 11’ than in 10’.  I would prefer to see Montero bat cleanup behind Justin Smoak.

It should be noted that Perez underwent minor surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee. He is expected out 12-14 weeks. Peacock was sent back down to AAA earlier this week but should be the first call up to Oakland’s rotation.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Potential Opening Day Starters for NL

By Corey R. Cunningham

Atlanta Braves SS Tyler Pastornicky is the favorite to land the starting nod at SS this year in Atlanta sharing double play duties with 2B Dan Uggla. Pastornicky is a true rookie with no MLB experience, and spent last year in AA Mississippi and AAA Gwinnett. Between the two leagues he managed a healthy .314 BA, .773 OPS, 7 HR, 45 RBI, 27 SB in 459 AB. I look for Tyler to land in the No. 8 batting order.

Arizona Diamondbacks 1B Paul Goldschmidt will get the nod at 1B on opening day. He appeared in 48 games last year, posting a .250 BA, with a .474 SLG. He did manage to hit 8 HR, and knock in 26 RBI in just 156 AB. Look for Goldschmidt to hit in the 4 or 5 hold with Upton holding down the No. 3 hole in the batting order. Goldschmidt will either hit in front of or behind Jason Kubel.

Cincinnati Reds SS Zack Cozart will open up the 2012 season pairing up the middle of the infield with 2B Brandon Phillips. Cozart came up in the MLB last year and managed just 11 games before getting injured. Cozart batted .324 with 2 HR, and 3 RBI. I think Cozart can be a 20 HR guy, and could fill in the No. 2 Hole behind Stubbs and in front of Phillips.

Houston Astros 2B Jose Altuve will get the nod and hopes to give some much needed offense to the already depleted lineup. This lineup is really fresh, with the exception of Carlos Lee manning 1B. Altuve hopefully will be the leadoff man in Houston and will steal some bases, while leading the team in runs scored. In 2011 he played in 57 games, where he had a .276 BA, 2 HR, 12 RBI, 26 R, and 7 SB. While I would not sleep on this team at any time, I do like LF J.D. Martinez being a gem, almost to the point of Hunter Pence.

Milwaukee Brewers 1B Mat Gamel is leading all candidates for the opening that Prince left. Gamel has spent his fair share of time in the minors, and as being brought up as a 3B most of his minor league career, he did spend 120 games at 1B last year in AAA Nashville; kind of odd for a team to do this if they didn’t figure to keep Prince Fielder!? Gamel hit .310, 28 HR, 96 RBI, .540 SLG, .912 OPS, and 84 K in 493 AB. That was the best full season at any one level Gamel had, and perhaps came at the right time since 1B is now open. Gamel and the Brewers may surprise some people in their offensive performance, to most who thought they lost a lot. I see Gamel hitting Freddie Freeman rookie numbers and settling in nicely in the 5 or 6 hole.

New York Mets new SS Ruben Tejada will have a big shoe to fill in the Big Apple, as he needs to replace Jose Reyes. While most critics’ say no way his offense is going to hold up, they do say however, he has better defensive skills. I realize defensive skills help us none in fantasy baseball, but perhaps with a healthy David Wright, Jason Bay, and Ike Davis, he could have decent numbers for a back up SS or a MI position in most fantasy leagues. Tejada spent 96 games for the Mets, hitting .284 with 36 RBI.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Spring Training update for Hitters

By Corey R. Cunningham

Today we look at offensive stats for Spring Training 2012, updated as of 03-16-12. Out of the 9 prospects listed below, 8 of them come from the National League. I am making this list, of at least 15 AB’s and concentrating on players who could pose an impact this year if an injury occurs, or perhaps these players play good enough to make their particular manager sweat.

Houston OF J.D. Martinez has appeared in 7 games, with 20 AB’s. He has a total of 7 H, with 3 of those being EBH. He has managed just 1 HR, but 9 RBI, while batting .350, OBP of .364, SLG of .650 and OPS of 1.014.

San Diego OF Jaff Decker has appeared in 12 games, with 26 AB’s. He has a total of 9 H, with 5 of those being EBH. He has managed just 2 HR, but 6 RBI, while batting .346, OBP of .433, SLG of .769 and OPS of 1.203.

Milwaukee 1B Mat Gamel has appeared in 9 games, with 22 AB’s. He has a total of 7 H, with 1 of those being EBH. He has managed just 3 HR, but 8 RBI, while batting .318, OBP of .423, SLG of .773 and OPS of 1.196.

St. Louis 1B Matt Adams has appeared in 9 games, with 30 AB’s. He has a total of 9 H, with 1 of those being EBH. He has managed just 2 HR, but 8 RBI, while batting .300, OBP of .323, SLG of .600 and OPS of .923.

Los Angeles Dodgers 2B Dee Gordon has appeared in 8 games, with 18 AB’s. He has a total of 5 H, with 0 of those being EBH. He has not managed to hit a HR, nor an RBI, however he does have 5 SB; and is batting .278, OBP of .435, SLG of .278 and OPS of .713.

Phillies 2B Freddy Galvis has appeared in 13 games, with 30 AB’s. He has a total of 8 H, with 2 of those being EBH. He has not managed a HR, but has 7 RBI, while batting .267, OBP of .306, SLG of .333 and OPS of .639.

Texas Rangers 3B Mike Olt has appeared in 11 games, with 21 AB’s. He has a total of 5 H, with 2 of those being EBH. He has managed not to hit a HR, nor drive in an RBI, while batting .238, OBP of .273, SLG of .429 and OPS of .701.

San Diego 1B Yonder Alonso has appeared in 11 games, with 31 AB’s. He has a total of 7 H, with 3 of those being EBH. He has not managed to hit a HR, but has 4 RBI, while batting .226, OBP of .250, SLG of .323 and OPS of .573.

Arizona Diamondbacks 1B Paul Goldschmidt has appeared in 10 games, with 25 AB’s. He has a total of 5 H, with 1 of those being EBH. He has managed just 1 HR, but 4 RBI, while batting .200, OBP of .333, SLG of .360 and OPS of .693.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Spring Training updates for Pitchers

Today we take a look at 4 particular pitchers who has either came up in trade talks, or who is a top prospect in an organization. These pitchers have no more than 9 IP so far in early spring training, and just like the hitters, they are fighting for a job; either at the Major League level or AAA, or AA.

Houston Astros traded for SP Kyle Wieland from Boston. Kyle has a record of 1-0 with a 0.00 ERA. He has started 1 game for the Astros with a total of 8.0 IP. He has allowed 3 H, and 0 ER, while allowing 2 BB and 4 K. He has acquired a WHIP of 0.63.

The Oakland Athletics traded for SP Tom Milone from the Nationals. Tom has a record of 1-0 with a 3.12 ERA. He has started 2 games for the Athletics with a total of 8.2 IP. He has allowed 6 H, and 3 ER, while allowing 1 BB and 7 K. He has acquired a WHIP of 0.81.

Washington Nationals SP Ross Detwiler has a record of 0-1 with a 3.52 ERA. He has not started a game for the Nationals. He has a total of 7.2 IP. He has allowed 6 H, and 3 ER, while allowing 3 BB and 9 K. He has acquired a WHIP of 1.17.

Atlanta Braves SP Julio Teheran has a record of 0-1 with an 11.00 ERA. He has started 2 games for the Braves with a total of 9.0 IP. He has allowed 14 H, and 11 ER, while allowing 4 BB and 6 K. He has acquired a WHIP of 2.00.

The surprise out of spring training for me is no doubt Julio Teheran. Some predicted Teheran would have a starting job out of spring training, and it does not look like his chances are good, in fact they are decreasing with every pitch. He will lose the 5th starting slot in the rotation to Brandon Beachy, or perhaps Randall Delgado.

Friday, March 23, 2012

1st Year Starters and Potential Top Prospect AL Dream Roster

By Corey R. Cunningham

This list will compact what I would be looking for in a dream team all-star roster for the American League. This list will compile of offensive players and pitchers from American League teams, which will be 1st year players (not counting September Call-ups if played 2 yrs) in 2011 and prospects from all American League teams. At first glance, I will give you my starting 9 offensive players, and 5 pitchers.

C- J.P. Arencibia TOR

J.P. got his bat going early and often for power in Toronto last year, hitting 23 HR, with 78 RBI. Although the contact was not there, with just a .219 BA, he can hit for AVG and will need to produce well in order for Toronto to be an AL East contender in 2012. I do believe Toronto is still a piece or two away from being a contender and lack the attention of big FA's due to the turf, rumor has it they are trying to resurface the turf to grass. Arencibia should hit .270; hit 25HR, with 90 RBI this year.

1B- Eric Hosmer KC

Hosmer is no doubt my 1B of the future for any dynasty team. Hosmer has the power to contribute in all categories needed to be a winner. Hosmer who hit .312 BA for his career in the minors also had a .886 OPS. He finished AA with a .615 SLG and AAA with .525 SLG. In 2011 his first season in KC as the starting 1B he hit 19 HR, with 78 RBI and 11 SB while batting, .293 in just 128 Games. No doubt in my mind, Hosmer hits 25 or more HR in 2012 and could go over the 100 RBI limit with Butler, and Moustakas coming along as well.

2B- Jason Kipnis CLE

Kipnis who will be the starting 2B in Cleveland in 2012 will perhaps find a home in the 2 or 7 hole in the lineup. Kipnis hit a career .297 BA, 29 HR, 148 RBI in 972 AB while in the minor leagues for 3 years. In 36 games in Cleveland to finish the 2011 season, Kipnis impressed once again, hitting .272 BA, 7 HR, 19 RBI and 24 R scored. Kipnis has the ability to hit 15 HR in a season, and possible more depending on his batting position.

3B- Nick Castellanos DET

Nick was the NO.4 ranked prospect in 2010 in the ESPNU rankings. He was selected to the USA Baseball 18U National Team. He batted clean up for the team, where he batted .308 with 8 extra base hits and 1 HR. Needless to say, the team won the Gold medal. In 2010 he played rookie ball for 7 games. In 29 plate appearances, he had 8 hits, 2 being extra base hits; 3 RBI. He walked 4 times, and striking out 5. In 2011, playing in the Midwest League for Western Michigan, he played 135 game season. His batting average was .312, hitting 39 extra base hits. He slugged .436, hitting 7 HR and driving in 76, and scoring 65 times.

SS- Manny Machado BAL

Manny Machado will see Baltimore sometime in 2014 as the O's hold the contract of JJ Hardy until then. Machado started his career with Baltimore at the young age of 17. He finished the 2011 season at age 18 in High A Frederick. Machado, who has a smooth swing, has the frame to continue his career at SS. In 2011 He hit for a .257 BA, 11 HR, 50 RBI, with 73 K, and 45 BB in 382 AB. Manny will most likely continue his stint in Frederick starting in 2012 as he is still at the young age of 18.

OF- Mike Trout LAA

Trout who has been a Top 3 Prospect the past two years or so, will continue to be until his time in LAA comes. Hunter who has a contract ending after this year will push Trout closer to the MLB full time. Trout has been hitting over .300 steadily in the minors and was not shy about that in 2011 where he hit .326 BA, with a .958 OPS. Trout seen sometime in LAA last year, batting .220, with 5 HR, and 16 RBI. Trout will see AAA again this year with all the OF spots filled up.

OF- Ben Revere MIN

I like Revere as an everyday player for my fantasy/dynasty team. He brings speed to his offensive help. This can help a team who lacks certain categories. Revere spent 5 years in the minors each year at one level. I would say his most productive came at Low A Beloit, where he hit .379 BA, with 129 H, and 44 SB, and a career minor league best .930 OPS. Revere had a total of 154 SB, and only 54 CS. He played 117 games in Minnesota last year with a .267 BA, and 56 Runs, and 34 SB. With a full season at the MLB level, I believe Revere can reach the 50 SB plateau, with a .280 BA.

OF- Desmond Jennings TB

Some may refer to Jennings as a Carl Crawford JR from Tampa; however, I think Jennings holds more power and less BA. Depending on what lineup you have, I would like more BA than power. I would rather have 10, 20 HR guys with a .290 BA than have 10, 35 HR guys with a .220 BA. Jennings played in 63 games last year batting .259 with 10 HR, 25 RBI, and 20 SB. I think he can hold Crawford numbers but with less BA.

DH- Jesus Montero SEA

Montero had his track to the big leagues blocked by long time Yankee favorite Jorge Posada, and now Russell Martin. Montero was traded to Seattle this off season for SP Michael Pineda in what seemed like a good deal for both sides, I still believe Seattle won this battle. Montero had a career .308 BA, 76 HR, 318 RBI, .501 SLG, and .867 OPS in the minors. Montero played in 18 games last year for the Yankees, as he batted .328, with 4 HR and 12 RBI. While I believe Montero will play the majority of his time at DH this year, he will earn his Catcher eligibility position, and that pushes him up further in the draft. I believe Montero will hit 25 HR this year, on top of 80 RBI.

P- Matt Moore TB

Moore pitched great in the playoffs last year for the Rays. Moore should see the back end of the rotation this year and will more than likely be behind price by 13'. In 2011 at AA Montgomery and AAA Durham he went 12-3 with a 1.92 ERA. Moore struck out 210 batters and walked just 46 in a total of 155 IP. He had a minor league career SO/9 of 12.7, and a 1.106 WHIP.

P- Manny Banuelos NYY

Manny will be a top of the order rotation pitcher for the Yankees for years to come. Last year he split time between AA Trenton and AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. He went 6-7 with a 3.75 ERA. He pitched a total of 129 IP. He needs to walk on his WHIP which was at a 1.55.

P-Michael Pineda NYY

I really liked Pineda coming into the 2011 season, as I drafted him in my Minor League draft that year 8th overall. Pineda was an up and coming SP who had the fastest track to the MLB and with a young pitching staff they had in Seattle anyone could bid for a SP job. Pineda won the starting gig out of spring training and was held to 171 IP, which is common for a first year pitcher, or a pitcher coming back from injuries. Pineda went 9-10, with a 3.74 ERA, 173 K, and 55 BB. Pineda may have a hard time adjusting from Rainy Seattle to Busy New York City in the Bronx, with a lot more media attention. I see his ERA rising slightly above 4 this year, and perhaps with few more wins, just due to the lineup being a lot more productive than the one in Seattle.

P- Hector Noesi SEA

Noesi is going to be a back of the end starter this year in Seattle, and with the pitching prospects coming up through the system I am not sure who is a safe bet. In 2015 Seattle could end with a rotation of Hernandez, Noesi, Hultzen, Paxton, and Walker. For Noesi, he holds his own fate, and in 2011 he smelled a little bit of the big leagues with pitching 56 IP, a record of 2-2, 4.47 ERA, 45 K and a WHIP of 1.51. In 2010 he hit 3 levels of the minors and which were his best, he had an overall record of 14-7 with a 3.20 ERA and a 1.098 WHIP. Noesi could win 12 games this year in Seattle with pitching in a pitchers ballpark.

P- Jeremy Hellickson TB

Tampa Bay no doubt spits out some serious prospects, but they are very consistent in developing pitching prospects. Hellickson is one of those, who won 13 games last year, with a career ERA of 2.95. Hellickson will man the middle of the order for that rotation this year in Tampa, and will be very competitive in pitching in the AL East. Perhaps 11' was a fluke, but we will see if he can repeat his outstanding performance in 2012.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

1st Year Starters and Potential Top Prospect NL Dream Roster

By Corey R. Cunningham

This list will compact what I would be looking for in a dream team all-star roster for the National League. This list will be compiled of offensive players and pitchers from National League teams, which will be 1st year players (not counting September Call-ups if played 2 yrs) in 2011 and prospects from all National League teams. At first glance, I will give you my starting 8 offensive players, and 5 pitchers.

C- Devin Mesoraco CIN
Mesoraco quickly climbed the minor league ladder, after starting in rookie ball in 2007 to jumping into AAA Louisville by 2011 and finishing 2011 off in a Reds uniform. It is not easy to find a catcher with power, and too keep that particular player at the position that a lot of GMs are afraid of keeping valuable players at, due to the physical ware. Mesoraco hit 15 HR, 71 RBI and had 126 H in 436 AB, while carrying a .289 BA, and .855 OPS. He will fit nicely in an offensive productive lineup in Cincinnati.

1B- Freddie Freeman ATL
No doubt in my mind I take Freeman as my opening day starting 1B for this dream team. With injuries to Heyward, and Jones, and a slow start for Uggla, Freeman produced far more than his rookie anticipations lead to be. Freeman who hit for .282 BA, 21 HR, 76 RBI, and 67 R. Those numbers were far more than anyone could ask for out of this young 1B phenom. I believe if Jones, and Heyward stayed healthy, and Uggla was his usually Florida self, no doubt Freeman could have hit 30 HR, and 90 RBI. With that said, I believe Freeman will continue his .280 BA, but will hit 28 HR and 95 RBI this year with a healthy Atlanta lineup.

2B- Joes Altuve HOU
Not every position on your fantasy / dynasty team has to have power. At some point you have to have players that will help you in some categories as well as all categories. Altuve helps out in 3 out of 5 or 6 categories. He will help your AVG, R, and SB. Altuve held down a .327 BA while in the minor leagues, and was able to swipe 117 SB in 382 games. Altuve has the ability to steal 40 SB as well as hold down a .295 BA, as well as score 80 R. Perhaps Altuve will replace some if not all Michael Bourne skills in Houston.

3B- Nolen Arenado COL
Colorado has the 3B of the future in Arenado, and that is a fact. This young phenom has huge potential and showed in at High-A Modesto, where Nolen hit for .298 BA, 20 HR, 122 RBI, while striking out only 53 times in 517 AB. Look for Arenado to hit Colorado sometime in 2014 as I believe he will hit AA at the start of 2012, and perhaps could be a September call up somewhere in 2013. If he hits like he did in Modesto he could be in Colorado by June of 2013. He has the power to hit 30 HR in Mile High.

SS- Dee Gordon LAD
My middle infield duo of Gordon and Altuve will be SB, R, and BA. Gordon just like Altuve has the ability to steal 40 SB, and hit for AVG. While this lineup is not as scary as some NL lineups, it does have the potential to score some runs. Gordon will hit for AVG as he did during his minor league career caring a .303 BA in 4 seasons at the minors, as well as 176 SB in 397 games played. In 56 games during his stint in LA, he hit .304, scoring 34 R, and stealing 24 SB. Gordon should steal 40 bases not problem, and should be the leadoff hitter in LA.

OF- Bryce Harper WAS
Harper has been the talk of the Nationals system since his arrival, and will continue to be the talk. I believe Harpers appearance in the starting lineup is 50-50, as he was hurt last year while playing in AA Harrisburg. Harper who dominated at Low A Hagerstown, hitting .318 BA, 14 HR, and 46 RBI, was not as successful after being promoted. During his stint in AA Harrisburg, he hit .256 BA, 3 HR, and just 12 RBI. I do believe Harper will start the season in the minors, just due to his inability to not complete AA successfully.

OF- J.D. Martinez HOU
Martinez will start in LF for Houston, and more than likely will hit within the 3 to 5 holes. Martinez will offer the power bat Houston lacks. He will share the load with Carlos Lee, and will hopefully contribute. Martinez had 43 career HR in the minors as well as a career .342 BA, .551 SLG, and .958 OPS. He will stroke doubles all career long as he had 89 doubles in just 382 Hits. I am predicting Martinez to be the All-star candidate this year out of Houston as well as predicting 25 HR, and 85 RBI from this young slugger.

OF- Brandon Belt SF
Belt who will need to produce in spring training to get a starting gig in SF this year, has the ability to be a 25 HR guy who can produce for BA as well. Belt starting out being a 1B, and while Aubrey Huff held him up at 1B, SF tried him in LF. He did struggle and was sent back down to the minors after starting 2011 in SF. Belt has no problem handling AAA pitching or handling any minor league pitching. He is a career .343 hitter in the minors, and did not spend much time down at all. He started off 2010 in high A and was promoted after 77 games to AA Richmond, while being promoted after 46 games to AAA Fresno. Belt spent 1 yr in the minors and he hit all 3 levels to which he dominated.

P- Drew Pomeranz COL
Pomeranz was traded last year which sent him to Colorado from Cleveland in the Ubaldo Jimenez trade. We all know being a pitcher in Coors Field is not exactly ideal, however, this may be the break Pomeranz needed. Cleveland in my opinion has more pitching prospects than Colorado and he could perhaps evolve as a No 1 or 2 pitcher in Colorado. He finished the 2011 minor leagues season 4-3 with a 1.78 ERA. He struck out 119 in just 101 IP. If Pomeranz holds down a starting rotation spot, I would like to see him win 14 games and an ERA under 3.20.

P- Jameson Taillon PIT
Taillon, who will be in Pittsburgh preferable by 2014, was 2-3 last year at West Virginia with a 3.98 ERA. I was always told if Washington did no select a P in the 2010 Draft in Stephan Strasburg, and went with an offensive player, in 2011 they would have selected Taillon instead of Harper. Taillon will be in the minors for another 2 years or so and perhaps could hit AA Altoona this year.

P- Vance Worley PHI
Worley, who should be in the No 4 hole as a SP, was 11-3 last year with a 3.01 ERA. I
Really like Worley to be a dynasty league phenom and he should produce very well. Philadelphia does have a nice set of youngsters coming up and should be able to work with Worley and hopefully Hamels. Worley went 25-23 during his 4 year stint in the minors. He held a 3.80 ERA, striking out 330 in 431 IP. Although his SO/9 is not much more than 6.9 I believe his K ratio will rise and hoping his WHIP will fall.

P- Trevor Bauer ARI
While his inexperience so far in the minors is in doubt to his ability to pitch, he is the most MLB ready. Bauer got in some work late in the season in 2011 by signing early and getting in as much work as possible. He got to see work at High A and AA. He threw a total of 25 IP, with 43 K and only 12 BB. I believe with Cahill, Kennedy, and Hudson Bauer could join this rotation in 2013 and have the Diamondbacks to be the next franchise to hit a dynasty in my opinion.

P- Zach Wheeler SF
Wheeler was the prized prospect that sent OF Carlos Beltran from NYM to SF last year. Wheeler has the ability to be a front line starter in NYM along with his counterpart Matt Harvey. Wheeler went 2-2 with a 2.00 ERA at High A St. Lucie with 31 K, in 27 IP.

Use The Tools You Have

Corey and I have given you projections, rotations, profiles, strategies, draft analysis, and any all information that we feel is available to make you the most informed when it comes to draft day and then managing your fantasy teams. All I can say is do not be the guy in the picture. USE THE TOOLS YOU HAVE AVAILABLE.
I concluded my final draft of the season late into the the early hours of this morning. Just under 4 hours total. It was Fantasy Gameday's Readers vs. Writers Daily Roto League. As much as I enjoy auction style it gets a little tedious towards the end. One strategy I imposed on myself was to not bid over $30 this year and see what type of team I could field. By doing this I continually kept myself with the most cash on hand at all times incase I had to over pay in the mid to late rounds for someone I truly wanted. I actually bid $25 on two occasions for players but the rest all came in under. One player I over paid for and did not really want was Gordon SS LAD. Yes many steals but I was bidding him up just so someone else would have to pay high  dollar for steals. I feel my biggest weakness on this team will be AVG but overall a solid team. Here are the final results.
1.(16)Paul Goldschmidt (Ari - 1B)$12
2.(29)CC Sabathia (NYY - P)$25
3.(45)Rickie Weeks (Mil - 2B)$13
4.(53)Josh Johnson (Mia - P)$14
5.(59)Shin-Soo Choo (Cle - OF)$16
6.(61)Brett Lawrie (Tor - 3B)$25
7.(74)Dee Gordon (LAD - SS)$16
8.(104)B.J. Upton (TB - OF)$14
9.(114)David Ortiz (Bos - Util)$11
10.(118)Mark Reynolds (Bal - 1B,3B)$15
11.(142)Brandon Belt (SF - 1B,OF)$3
12.(152)Carlos Beltrán (StL - OF)$8
13.(157)Sergio Santos (Tor - P)$7
14.(166)Johan Santana (NYM - P)$3
15.(174)J.J. Hardy (Bal - SS)$6
16.(178)Huston Street (SD - P)$7
17.(187)Coco Crisp (Oak - OF)$6
18.(193)Jesus Montero (Sea - Util)$9
19.(194)Jason Kipnis (Cle - 2B)$7
20.(196)Ervin Santana (LAA - P)$6
21.(208)Edwin Jackson (Was - P)$3
22.(211)Jeremy Hellickson (TB - P)$8
23.(224)Jim Johnson (Bal - P)$6
24.(225)Russell Martin (NYY - C)$5
25.(228)Javy Guerra (LAD - P)$7
26.(236)Chris Iannetta (LAA - C)$3
27.(237)Chris Sale (CWS - P)$2

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

2 Drafts In 1 Day Is 2 Much

Two drafts in one day can be a chore. Two drafts with different formats can be even harder. That’s what I did a few days ago. In the early afternoon I participated in the redraft of our old money keepers league. The league that I won the last three years by the way. What seemed to happen in this 10 team league with 5 keepers each is that a few teams ended last year with really only 2nd and 3rd tier players as keepers. I suspect this may happen in other leagues too. So instead of keeping the haves ahead of the have nots we collectively decided to redraft from scratch while adding 2 more teams. So a fresh 5x5 Roto league with 2C in addition to a CI & MI with no innings limit…time to stream baby.

The 2nd draft of the day came courtesy of an invite from the guys at Fake Teams for their inaugural H2H point’s league. I’ll admit I am a virgin to any type of point’s league. This draft was a real challenge trying to decipher a drafting strategy. The scoring is as follows, including my team per pick.

Runs (R)
Singles (1B)
Joey Votto(Cin - 1B)
Doubles (2B)
Dustin Pedroia(Bos - 2B)
Triples (3B)
Jered Weaver(LAA - P)
Home Runs (HR)
Brett Lawrie(Tor - 3B)
Runs Batted In (RBI)
Shin-Soo Choo(Cle - OF)
Stolen Bases (SB)
Caught Stealing (CS)
Jimmy Rollins(Phi - SS)
Walks (BB)
Adam Jones(Bal - OF)
Hit By Pitch (HBP)
Heath Bell(Mia - P)
Strikeouts (K)
Ichiro Suzuki(Sea - OF)
Hitting for the Cycle (CYC)
Pitchers Stat Category
Sergio Santos(Tor - P)
Innings Pitched (IP)
Shaun Marcum(Mil - P)
Wins (W)
Corey Hart(Mil - OF)
Losses (L)
Saves (SV)
Johan Santana(NYM - P)
Hits (H)
Alex Rios(CWS - OF)
Earned Runs (ER)
Adam Dunn(CWS - 1B)
Walks (BB)
Roy Oswalt(Phi - P)
Hit Batters (HBP)
Strikeouts (K)
Quality Starts (QS)
Tim Stauffer(SD - P)

Ryan Doumit(Min - C)

The challenging part of the draft was deciding what type of players to target…especially after the commish, which picked 2nd overall and has many seasons of experience in points leagues, drafted Kershaw his his 1st overall selection. That threw me immediately. I decided on a strategy to collect guys who do not strike out and can be a doubles machine. On the pitching side I tried to crunch the numbers for a staff that would get points for innings pitched and QS vs. stocking up on Closers who get just as many points for a save as a win. After seeing many teams completely punt on closers I started to target SP with QS from last year. Like I said this is all new to me but I am excited for the experience and I will figure out the best type of staff to run out every week…strictly SP, a combo of SP and RP, or heavy on the closers.  I do feel SP with low WHIPS will keep the negative points at bay. I figured my bench should consist of SP so I can run them out every week they have 2 starts…I know that will be a good strategy and a points accumulator.

Back to my first draft of the day, the opening rounds went pretty much chalk with no surprises. I took Adrian Gonzalez and wanted Pedroia at pick 2 but he went just ahead of me and I settled on Hanley. With my 3rd round pick from the 7th position I went with Sandoval over Beltre. Looking back I should have gone the other way. Of course Beltre went the pick after I took Sandoval. Round 4 saw both elite Catchers go. In a 2C format I expected as much. I got the player I wanted in Lawrie and soon 3 other 3B came off the board too. At this point 7 SP and Kimbrel have been taken. I feel no need yet to scramble for a SP.

To start round 5 BIGDog…team name…selected his 3rd SP with Hamels. He now has CC and Lincecum as well to go along with Miggy as the 1st overall pick.  He also collected many players that are injured or in free fall decline IMO like A-Rod Crawford, Utley, Jeter, Chris Perez, Salvador Perez, Grady Sizemore and Juan Pierre. My only thought is he thinks it’s 2009.

After I picked up Uggla in 5 and BJ Upton in 6 I briefly thought about trying the 6 hitters followed by 6 pitchers strategy. I went with Baumgartner as my ace then picked up my anchor of a closer in Storen. For round 9 I really gambled on Josh Johnson and his shoulder. This pick could really come back and haunt me. He was by far the pitcher with the highest ceiling on the board. The next I felt was Zimmerman and I thought I could snag him in the next round or two. I also anticipated a round where there would be a run on closers and I could scoop up some more quality SPs.

After the last pick of the 9th round I like to evaluate the teams and see what their strengths and weaknesses are at this point. I also jot down what positions they are lacking so I can anticipate where their next few position picks might come from.

Just about every team had two SP, one team had not selected a SP yet. Two teams already filled both C slots which was surprising. One team already had 3 of the 6 closers selected through nine rounds. Over half the teams had at least one speed guy, I did not and was feeling left out. The biggest surprise of top third of the draft would have to be Howard in round 7. He could have been had in round 17 I feel.

So I go speed with Gardner hoping to pick up some more power with Reynolds with my next pick. He got swiped two picks ahead of me so I sent that manager a note that I would trade for him. I then went speed again with Maybin. As I was going speed 6 more closers went off the board. I went with Santos in 12 and hoped to use my closer strategy and get 4 by drafts end.

I thought I got a fantastic pick in the 13th with Kipnis for my MI. It seems every year teams tend to forget about MI until very late. One league last year I had both Pedroia and Kinsler for 2B & MI. No one even came close to the production I got from those two spots. Once again I feel my combo of Uggla and Kipnis could be 55 HR 150 RBI 25 SB .255 for the year. No other 2B MI combo can touch that in this league. That includes Captain Crunch with Cano and Dee or Kinsler and Kendrick on buffet busters or Lafayette Yankees with the Weeks Brothers.

I finished out the draft selecting many previous opening day SP like Santana, Rodriguez, Stauffer, Zambrano, and Oswalt…he will pitch for a contender by late May. Drafted 2 Catchers in the later rounds that I am actually happy with and even reached for Adam Dunn in round 17 just because I wanted him. Here is my over all team.

Adrian Gonzalez(Bos - 1B)
Hanley Ramirez(Mia - SS)
Pablo Sandoval(SF - 1B,3B)
Brett Lawrie(Tor - 3B)
Dan Uggla(Atl - 2B)
B.J. Upton(TB - OF)
Drew Storen(Was - RP)
Josh Johnson(Mia - SP)
Brett Gardner(NYY - OF)
Sergio Santos(Tor - RP)
Jason Kipnis(Cle - 2B)
Ervin Santana(LAA - SP)
Brandon League(Sea - RP)
Joe Nathan(Tex - RP)
Adam Dunn(CWS - 1B)
Wandy Rodriguez(Hou - SP)
Josh Willingham(Min - OF)
Ted Lilly(LAD - SP)
Brett Myers(Hou - SP)
Roy Oswalt(Phi - SP)
Ryan Doumit(Min - C)
J.D. Martinez(Hou - OF)
Jason Bay(NYM - OF)
Tim Stauffer(SD - SP)
Carlos Zambrano(Mia - SP)
Brayan Pena(KC - C)