Wednesday, March 31, 2010

San Francisco Giants: DOs and DON'Ts

  • DO use your first round draft pick on SP Tim Lincecum with confidence if you prefer a dominant pitcher over a dominant hitter. Lincecum should continue to give you the Wins (15+), Ks (250+), ERA and WHIP to build an impressive pitching staff upon.
  • DON'T draft SS Edgar Renteria. His numbers are on the steady decline since 2007 and you can do better, even in deep leagues. If he starts hot, he'll be there on the waiver wire for the picking.
  • DO draft 1B/3B Pablo Sandoval as a third baseman. ESPN has him ranked as the 4th best at that position and 7th best at first base. His .330 BA, 25 HRs, 90 RBI are valuable to any roster.
  • DON'T overlook RP Jeremy Affeldt if your league uses Holds. His numbers (33 Holds, 1.73 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, 7.94 K/9) should regress a bit but still will be a top middle reliever option.
  • DO grab SP Matt Cain in the top 100 picks. He's on the verge of 15 Wins with some very nice ratios (3.33 ERA, 1.24 WHIP, 7.38 K/9).
  • DON'T be afraid of SP Jonathan Sanchez's ugly career walk rate (4.7/9 IP) and WHIP (1.45). What he is going to bring is 10+ Wins and 9.3 K/9.
  • DO expect CL Brian Wilson to be gone by the 10th round. He's a top 10 closer who brings you 10 K/9 stuff with an ERA (2.74) and WHIP (1.21) that will help rather than hurt.
Players I'd be willing to use a late-round pick on:
  • 3B/OF Mark DeRosa (20 HR, 80 RBI, .275 BA)
  • C Bengie Molina (15 HR, 75 RBI, .270 BA)
  • 1B Aubrey Huff (20 HR, 70 RBI, .280 BA)
  • C Buster Posey - Check out this quote from Baseball America“Posey draws legitimate comparisons to Joe Mauer. He’s a pure hitter with terrific strike-zone awareness, and his clean, unfettered swing allows him to drive pitches from pole to pole.” He's still in camp and will be interesting to see if he makes the opening day roster.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Dreaded Words: Closer-By-Committee

Minnesota Twins manager Ron Gardenhire announced the team with go with a closer-by-committee until someone separates themselves from the pack.

Here's the guys that now have fantasy value:
  • Matt Guerrier RHP (33 Holds, 2.36 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, .207 BAA)
  • Jon Rauch RHP (Closer experience, 17 Holds, 3.60 ERA, 1.33 WHIP, .262 BAA)
  • Jose Mijares LHP (27 Holds, 2.34 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, .224 BAA, 8.0 K/9)
SP Francisco Liriano is still competing for the 5th spot in the rotation. He and the Twins consider him a starting pitching and have no interest at this time in moving him to the bullpen or into the closer role.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Chicago Cubs: DOs and DON'Ts

  • DO expect a nice return to form (25/100/.300) from 3B Aramis Ramirez, if healthy. He's generally the 8th third baseman off the board but you'll only have five rounds to do better.
  • DON'T over-value SP Carlos Zambrano. His ADP is around 200. Let the Cubs fan in your league take the risk. ESPN has him ranked one worse than TEX Derek Holland (assigned to AAA this week) and one better than TEX Scott Feldman. At least he won 17 games last season compared to Zambrano's nine.
  • DO enjoy steady production from 1B Derrek Lee. He'll never reach his incredible 2005 numbers, but 25 HR/100 RBI/.300 production is worth the 7th round pick. Personally, I'm taking the upside of Billy Butler instead.
  • DON'T rely on OF Alfonso Soriano a primary outfielder. He may not disappoint as a 4th or 5th option. Although averaging just 113 games over the last two seasons, he's managed to average 25 HRs and 14 SBs.
  • DO hold your breath if drafting C Geovany Soto. Sophomore slump or statistical correction? Projections have him back up to 20 HRs/.270 BA. Good Luck.
  • DON'T be surprised if CL Carlos Marmol fails in his new role of Closer. He has all the stuff to be an dominant closer, but his near 8 BB/9 offset his astronomical 11+ K/9.
Players I'd be willing to use a late-round pick on:
  • SP Ryan Dempster (12 W, great ratios)
  • OF Marlon Byrd (20 HR, .280 BA)
  • OF Kosuke Fukudome (10 HR, 80 Runs, .270 BA, #2 hitter in lineup)

Boston Red Sox: DOs and DON'Ts

  • DO expect continued top 25 value from OF Jacoby Ellsbury. His 100 runs, 70 stolen bases and .300 average are what you're paying for.
  • DON'T be a hater! I'm a Yankees fan but you can't deny the value Red Sox players have to fantasy bsaeball. If you refuse to draft players because of your personal feelings about the team, you've probably never been successful in this game.
  • DO realize 2B Dustin Pedroia is the 4th second baseman being taken before the 3rd round is even over. If you value what he brings from that position (100+ Runs, 15-20 HRs, 70 RBI, 20 SBs, .300 BA), grab him.
  • DON'T listen to experts that say "never pay for saves". If you are willing to pay for saves, CL Jonathan Papelbon is a lock to get you the 40 Saves, 10 K/9, with ERA and WHIP numbers that will help more than hurt your team.
  • DO draft 1B/3B Kevin Youkilis as a third basemen because this may be the last season he qualifies there.
  • DON'T fool yourself into thinking OF J.D. Drew won't get injured and miss significant time this season. But expect good numbers for the time he's on the field (450 ABs, 20 HRs, .280 BA).
  • DO like what C Victor Martinez is capable of doing for a full season in Boston. He hit .336 in 56 games in 2009.
  • DON'T be surprised if SP John Lackey's numbers take a dip now that he's in the tougher AL East.
  • DO you think SP Jon Lester or SP Josh Beckett will have better numbers in 2010? Each will cost you at least a 4th round pick. (My money is on Lester).
  • DON'T forget about SP Daisuke Matsuzaka. He won 18 games in 2008 and reports are that he's healthy again after leaving it all at the World Baseball Classic in 2009.
  • DO take a chance that DH David Ortiz and 3B Adrain Beltre bounce back after disappointing, injury-ridden 2009. Each will cost you about a 13th round pick (or later).
Players I'd be willing to use a late-round pick on:
  • SS Marco Scutaro (As a MI, 10+ HRs, 10+ SBs, .280+ BA)
  • RP Daniel Bard (Holds, 11+ K/9)
  • SP Clay Buchholz (Double-digit Wins, great ratios)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Spring Training: DOs and DON'Ts

  • DO keep an eye on websites that track depth charts and projected lineups, such as RotoTimes, ESPN and others.
  • DON'T put too much faith in statistics; good or bad. Quantify the numbers. Is the player coming off injury (Conor Jackson)? Changing teams (Brad Penny)? Break-out season (Chris Coghlan/Aaron Hill)?
  • DO listen to what managers and coaches are saying about position battles, rookie phenoms and the overall state of their teams. A lot of information is put out there each day. You just have to know where to find it.
  • DON'T dig through box scores.
  • DO read the game summaries and the "notes". That's where the juicy tidbits are hiding.
  • DON'T overload yourself with "too much" information. More doesn't always mean better.
  • DO find the websites, blogs and resources that you trust and focus your time and effort there.

New York Mets: DOs and DON'Ts

  • DO hope for a bounce-back from 3B David Wright to something closer to the norm of 100/20/100/20/.300. PS, exhale.
  • DON'T expect a Cy Young from SP Johan Santana in 2010. He's still recovering from injury. Be realistic and you may actually enjoy his 15 Wins, 3ish ERA, low WHIP and nice K/9 ration.
  • DO snag SS Jose Reyes as late as you possibly can. Only two years removed from being a top-5 pick, if he figures it out, he could win you your league.
  • DON'T be surprised if OF Jason Bay's numbers dip as he figures out CitiField (see David Wright). Still, 100/25/100/.280 are numbers you should enjoy having on your squad.
  • DO draft CL Francisco Rodriguez if you can stand all the antics that come along with the saves and high K/9 ratio. I can't and won't.
  • DON'T be "that guy" that thinks this year is the year SP Oliver Perez figures it all out. If he does and you missed out on him, so be it. You'll survive. Just think of the flip-side if you draft him and you're wrong. UGH!
  • DO not forget about OF Carlos Beltran. He's a risk/reward pick. You feel lucky, punk?
Players I'd be willing to use a late-round pick on:
  • OF Jeff Francoeur (.311/10 HR in 75 games with Mets in 2009)
  • SP John Maine (2007 - 15 W, 3.91 ERA; not much since)

Friday, March 19, 2010

San Diego Padres: DOs and DON'Ts

  • DO use your 3rd round pick on 1B Adrian Gonzalez and his attainable 100/40/100/.280 stats. Toss in 120 BBs and a .400 OBP if your league has expanded scoring categories.
  • DON'T miss out on OF Kyle Blanks. He has 20-30 HR potential and will be given every chance to do so batting 5th behind Adrian Gonzalez. His career .304 BA in the minors could translate into a .280 BA in the majors.
  • DO draft SS Everth Cabrera if you are in the need for speed but don't expect much else. He has 30+ SB ability but that could very well come at the price of a .250 BA.
  • DON'T expect too much out of SP Chris Young until he proves he's healthy. He's not worth drafting at this point but be ready to snatch him off waivers if he turns things around.
  • DO assume CL Heath Bell continues to perform like an elite closer (35+ Saves, 9+ K/9) but don't assume he finishes the season with the Padres.
Players I'd be willing to use a late-round pick on:
  • SP Mat Latos (10+ Wins, sub 4.00 ERA, 7 K/9)
  • 3B/OF Chase Headley (20 HR, 10 SB, .280 BA)
  • SP Kevin Correia (10+ Wins, 4.00 ERA, 6 K/9)
  • SU Luke Gregerson (Holds, 10 K/9, Closer potential)
  • RP Mike Adams (Holds, 10 K/9, Closer potential)
  • SP Clayton Richard (10 + Wins, 4.00 ERA, 6 K/9)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Pittsburgh Pirates: DOs and DON'Ts

  • DO expect good things from OF Andrew McCutchen in 2010. His ADP in the 90s puts him in a group with Hunter Pence, Torii Hunter, Jay Bruce, Carlos Quentin and Nate McClouth. Not bad company for a guy with only 433 career ABs.
  • DON'T expect 21 HRs from 1B/OF Garrett Jones in just 82 games. He'll probably get you that many over a full season with a BA around .260.
  • DO draft CL Octavio Dotel and SU Joel Hanrahan together if your league counts Holds. Dotel is always an injury risk and Hanrahan has some experience closing games.
  • DON'T even waste a late-round pick on OF Lastings Milledge, at this point. He'll be there on waivers and if he does anything positive in April, grab him.
  • DO relax if you punted on a catcher. C Ryan Doumit can be had on the cheap (18th round or later) and, if healthy, can provide 15 HR, 60 RBI, .280 BA and a few steals too.
Players I'd be willing to use a late-round pick on:
  • All the players above, except McCutchen, are late-round picks.

Toronto Blue Jays: DOs and DON'Ts

  • DO continue to expect great things out of OF Adam Lind in 2010. His breakout season should be considered the norm for the near future (90/35/100/.300).
  • DON'T guess wrong on who the Closer will be this season. RP Jason Frasor seems to be the current favorite but established CL Kevin Gregg and RP Scott Downs are waiting in the wings. Keep an eye on any Spring Training updates. All three are worth owning if your league uses Holds.
  • DO give OF Vernon Wells another shot. We've all been burned by him. It's time to forgive and forget. His double-digit homers and steals can be had with a 19th or 20th round pick.
  • DON'T expect to get 2B Aaron Hill cheap this year. He was virtually undrafted in 2009 and will now cost you a 4th round pick. Expect some regression in his numbers but enjoy 25 HRs from the 2B position.
  • DO draft OF Travis Snider and hope he explodes this season the way Lind and Hill did last season.
Players I'd be willing to use a late-round pick on:
  • SP Shaun Marcum (3.39 ERA, 1.16 WHIP, 7.31 K/9 in 2008)
  • 3B Edwin Encarnacion (27 yrs old, 20 HR/.260 BA, may open season on the DL)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Kansas City Royals: DOs and DON'Ts

  • DO consider 1B Billy Butler on the verge of becoming a top-10 1B option. Expect 30/100/.300 in 2010. Grab him in the 7th Round after guys like Carlos Pena and Lance Berkman are taken.
  • DON'T YOU DARE draft Jason Kendall in any format. I'd rather leave the roster spot empty than throw away 500 ABs for 25 extra-base hits and a .240 BA. Look elsewhere!
  • DO pat yourself on the back if you drafted SP Zack Greinke in 2009. You were rewarded with a Cy Young from an 11th round pick. He will cost you a 3rd or 4th round pick in 2010.
  • DON'T keep waiting for 3B Alex Gordon to live up to his potential. If you are considering drafting him, you've got bigger problems. Look elsewhere for guys that will be on the field like Casey McGehee and Edwin Encarnacion.
  • DO draft CL Joakim Soria around the 100th pick. If the Royals actually win some games and Joakim's healthy, he brings it with these nice career numbers: 2.09 ERA, 0.97 WHIP, 9.98 K/9
  • DON'T expect much out of their current outfield (see below).
Players I'd be willing to use a late-round pick on:
  • OF Rick Ankiel (20 HR, .250 BA)
  • OF Scott Podsednik (10 HR, 30 SB, .300 BA)
  • OF Jose Guillen (20 HR, .260 BA)
  • OF David DeJesus (15 HR, .280 BA)
  • SP Gil Meche (10-12 Wins, 4.50 ERA)

Washington Nationals: DOs and DON'Ts

  • DO handcuff CL Matt Capps and SU Brian Bruney together if your league counts Holds. Capps was signed to be the closer but he did struggle in 2009. Hopefully we don't hear the word "committee" coming out of Washington this season.
  • DON'T forget about SP Chien-Ming Wang. He was a 2-time 19-game winner in the AL. If he can recover from his injuries, he could be a nice late-round "sleeper".
  • DO hold your breath that 1B/OF Adam Dunn hits closer to .270 than .230. Either way, he makes another strong run at 40 HRs and an OBP near .400.
  • DON'T be afraid to draft 3B Ryan Zimmerman early. He' going as early as the late 2nd round. If you like 100/35/100/.300 and aren't sold on Arizona's Mark Reynolds, grab Zimmerman if you have the opportunity.
  • DO draft OF Nyjer Morgan if your team is light on speed. He stole 24 bases with a .396 OBP in 49 games after being traded to Washington.
  • DON'T expect too much from OF Elijah Dukes until he gets his head on straight. I'm tired of drafting him and his 20/20 potential. Let him be someone else's headache. *UPDATE* Dukes released by Nats
  • DO monitor the situation at shortstop this Spring. I'd rather draft rookie SS Ian Desmond than Christian Guzman.
  • DON'T go crazy for SP Stephen Strasburg. He's been drafted as early as the 140's. That's before proven hurlers such as Roy Oswalt and Carlos Zambrano. A late-round pick should definitely be used if your pitching staff is already solid. *UPDATE* Strasburg optioned to Double-A
Players I'd be willing to use a late-round pick on:
  • OF Josh Willingham (25 HR potential, if healthy, as a 5th OF option)
  • SS Ian Desmond (2009 in the bigs: .280/4HR in 21 games)

Monday, March 15, 2010

Milwaukee Brewers: DOs and DON'Ts

  • DO draft OF Ryan Braun as early as you can. Depending on how many AROD haters are in your league, Ryan could go as early as 3rd. He has the potential to go 40/20!
  • DON'T over-pay for 2B Richie Weeks' potential. According to, his 162 game projections are 20 HRs and 27 SBs. The problem with that is that he's never played more than 129 games in a season.
  • DO enjoy all the fruits of SP Yovani Gallardo's labor (15+ Wins, sub 3.50 ERA, sub 1.30 WHIP and a robust 9.90 K/9).
  • DON'T focus on these 1B Prince Fielder numbers: 270ish (his weight) and 138 (K's). Try these on for size: 162 (games), 103 (runs), 46 (HRs), 141 (RBI), 110 (BB) and 1.014 (OPS).
  • DO yourself a favor and draft CL Trevor Hoffman. At 42, he posted some sick numbers (1.83 ERA, 0.91 WHIP, 37 Saves).
  • DON'T expect 20/20 from OF Corey Hart. Project him for 15/15 and be happy when he produces 25/25. I'm a fan and I'm buying!
  • DO take a chance on rookie SS Alcides Escobar. It's his job to lose. A full season on the field could produce a .300 BA and 25+ SBs.
Players I'd be willing to use a late-round pick on:
  • SP Randy Wolf (24 of 34 QS, 7.4 K/9 career rate)
  • OF Carlos Gomez (20+ SB potential is good, sub .250 BA is bad)
  • 3B Casey McGehee (20 HR/.300 BA potential at a very thin position)
  • RP LaTroy Hawkins (Primary setup man for Holds, potential closer if Hoffman gets injured)

Baltimore Orioles: DOs and DON'Ts

  • DO continue to enjoy the numbers OF Nick Markakis puts up (20/94/.298). A pleasant surprise would be 10+ SBs.
  • DON'T miss out on C Matt Wieters and his 80/20/90/.300 projection.
  • DO draft CL Mike Gonzalez and his career 10.58 K/9, 2.57 ERA and 1.22 WHIP.
  • DON'T waste draft picks in any format on any of their SPs (Millwood, Guthrie, etc). They will be waiver fodder all season long.
  • DO take a chance on SS Miguel Tejada. He's being drafted between the 12th and 15th rounds. Not bad for a guy that will soon have 3B/SS eligibility and averages 25/103/.289 for his career.
  • DON'T shy away from OF Adam Jones and his 20/20 potential. He's being drafted right around injury-risk OFs like Carlos Beltran and Alfonso Soriano. I'll put my money on Jones for 2010.
  • DO keep an eye on 2B Brian Roberts' back. I'd hate to guess wrong with a 3rd/4th round pick. If you are desperate to pick a 2B this early, Robinson Cano and Aaron Hill are being drafted in this neighborhood.
  • DON'T waste your time on SU Jim Johnson, even if your league counts Holds, unless you are desperate. He may pick up some cheap saves, but this bullpen is full of guys like him.
  • DO listen to what is being said about OF Nolan Reimold's achilles ("Orioles manager Dave Trembley said there are not currently any restrictions on Reimold, who is expected to start in left field for Baltimore when the 2010 season kicks off. Monitor Reimold's status throughout spring training, but for now it looks like fantasy owners can feel safe about his health." -
Players I'd be willing to use a late-round pick on:
  • 1B Garrett Atkins (1B/3B eligibility and a prayer for a "comeback")
  • 1B/OF/DH Luke Scott (25+ HR potential if the O's find him enough at bats)

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