And the fantasy baseball drafts just keep on coming… Kay Adams and I hosted the Livin’ the Fantasy Draft for SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio (Sirius 210, XM87). The league consisted of myself, Kay, Kyle Elfrink, two producers (Drew Phelps and Phil Backert), and six listeners (one was unable to make it). That means we had a shallow 11 team, mixed league draft that we took part in. I had the #2 selection in the draft, and here is how my team turned out.
C: Carlos Santana (7th round), Victor Martinez (8)
1B: Kevin Youkilis (19), Kendrys Morales (24)
2B: Rickie Weeks (9), Martin Prado (6)
3B: Ryan Zimmerman (4), Manny Machado (21)
SS: Jose Reyes (2)
OF: Ryan Braun (1), B.J. Upton (3), Shin-Soo Choo (5), Dexter Fowler (13), Cameron Maybin (23), Drew Stubbs (25), Michael Brantley (28)
It’s a two catcher league, and with the two talents I saw sitting there in the 7th and 8th rounds I thought to myself what the heck, do something you normally don’t due and roster two potentially elite options at catcher.
First base is an area of weakness relative to the rest of my team. Still, I’m confident that my duo of Youkilis and Morales will be able to hold their own at the spot, even if I’m just treading water there.
Weeks fell in my eyes, so I was more than willing to dive into the pool in the 9th round. Injuries are always an issue, but per 162 games for his career here is Weeks line – .251-23-67-107-20. Yeah, I know right? Prado qualifies at OF, 3B, 2B and SS in this league. I know he shouldn’t, but you have to play to your leagues rules. He offers excellent cover up the middle, at the corner, and in the outfield. I love him as my middle infielder right now. Speaking of up the middle, Reyes is a strong contender to lead shortstops in fantasy value in 2013.
Zimmerman’s shoulder keeps passing all the tests this spring, and he seems well on his way to another traditionally impressive effort at the hot corner. Machado in the 21st was a shocking fall actually. Kyle Elfrink, my co-host on The Drive (5 PM EDT, Monday-Friday) pointed out something very interesting. Rookies like Wil Myers and Jurickson Profar are on everyone’s must draft list. A youngster like Machado, who is just as talented, simply isn’t because he played last year and only did so-so. The perception is that Myers/Profar are worth the risk this season but Machado is only blah. Folks, Machado is a dynamic talent who has a starting job with the Orioles. That should mean more than it does to some.
Braun is still my #1 guy, PED junk be damned. Upton is a great #2 outfielder. Choo is a great #3 outfielder. Fowler is a great #4 outfielder. Maybin/Stubbs/Brantley equals a great #5 outfielder.
On the hill I waited on starters, shocking I know, and yet again proved you can do well following that strategy. Gallardo and Latos are top-20 arms in my eyes, and Morrow is right on the edge of that as well. My 4th starter is Wilson, and I have a lot of faith in him rebounding this season (see his Player Profile). My fifth is Haren, and I have a lot of faith that he will rebound this season (see his Player Profile). My sixth starter is Tim Hudson, you know the guy who has averaged 16 victories with a 3.19 ERA and 1.16 WHIP the past three seasons. My seventh starting arm is Volquez who has a 200 K season in his back pocket, has filthy stuff, and pitches half his games in Petco Park.
In the pen, some strong arms as well. Nathan and Hanrahan are top-10 closer types, and Cishek is a strong 3rd closer. I also added Jansen, that guys arm is as good as any in baseball, and Pestano who is one hell of a hurler himself (he’s also potentially going to get some 9th inning work if Chris Perez isn’t 100 percent by opening day).
It’s an 11 team league, having one less team in the mix certainly opens up the player pool for sure, and who knows about injuries, but looking at this squad I really don’t think I have an obvious weakness.
Oh, and here are the results of an NL-only draft that we held on The Drive which you can hear Monday through Friday at 5 PM EDT on Sirius 210. XM87.
By Ray Flowers