Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Finding Keepers: Chicago White Sox: 09/29/2010

The Chicago White Sox have some very nice options to choose from when assessing your roster in search of keepers this offseason. The White Sox are one of only two teams with three players in the top 25 on ESPN's Player Rater (St. Louis is the other).

If you were savvy enough to draft OF Alex Rios (ADP 115.2), you've been rewarded with the output of the 14th ranked player and a 2011 "no brainer" keeper. Rios bested his career averages in HR, RBI, SB, AVG, OBP, SLG and OBP and set career highs in RBI (88) and SB (34) in 2010. Rios is signed through 2014, so it will be nice to see him as a permanent fixture in the #3 hole of the potent White Sox lineup for years to come.

How does a player with a career line of .280/32/101 get such little fantasy respect? 1B Paul Konerko (ADP 213.3) is the 4th ranked first baseman in 2010 with a .310/38/107 line and reached career highs in OBP (.390), SLG (.581) and OPS (.971). You won't find a better option at first base in a keeper league if you decide not to keep him for 2011.

OF Juan Pierre gives you steals, steals and more steals. His 63 stolen bases in 2010 lead the majors and are just two short of a career high (65 in 2004). He struggled out of the gate (.193 BA in April) in his first season on the South Side, but has hit a respectable .286 in the second half. Statistical dominance is definitely a benchmark to weigh when deciding if a player is a keeper or not.

Positional ranking is another benchmark to use when deciding keepers and SS Alexei Ramirez is the 4th ranked shortstop this season. His .283/81/17/67/13 line definitely has room for improvement and is worthy of being a keeper for 2011.

When looking at White Sox pitchers, SP John Danks, SP Gavin Floyd, SP Jake Peavy and SP Edwin Jackson each have potential fantasy value but none can be justified as solid keepers for 2011 and can easily be targeted as mid-to-late round draft targets. Their bullpen also has some very nice fantasy assets but also lots of question marks for 2011. CL Bobby Jenks is far from an elite closer (his 27 saves rank 15th most) and RP Matt Thornton and RP Chris Sale have each shared auditioning for the closers role next season.

Lastly, what to do with OF Carlos Quentin? An injury-riddled 2010 tends to lessen my view of him as a keeper for 2010. He should be available in the middle rounds as a "bounce back" candidate for 2011. I'd rather use my limited number of keepers (I always assume 5 per team is a reasonable norm) on proven performers and take my chances in the draft on players with question marks.

Are there any other players on the White Sox roster you'd be willing to use a keeper selection on for the 2011 season or do you disagree with my assessment of their roster? If so, open up the discussion by leaving me a comment.

No comments:

Post a Comment