Sunday, March 29, 2009

MLB Fantasy Draft Recap

While I couldn't draft Barry Bonds, I did at least name my fantasy team after him.

So I just had my fantasy draft. Overall, fun stuff. Football in my mind is superior, NBA is not as fun as you would think. College basketball brackets are great, bowl pick 'ems suck hard. MLB draft so far ranged in the middle, but still not as fun as the NFL.

Overall, I am pretty much on the fence about my draft. Thing about Fantasy sports is if you're active, the draft won't matter. I won fantasy football two out of three years because of guys I picked up off waivers rather than through the draft. If I stuck with the draft I would have been relying on Deshaun Foster three years ago instead of dropping him for Frank Gore, who ended up carrying me to a Fantasy Football title. I don't expect to be staying with Kurt Suzuki for the entire 162 game season, so at this point I did my part in the draft and I'm going to keep an eye out for guys who are off to hot starts or who are going to get a lot of playing time this year.

Guys I really like from my draft is of course my first pick Ryan Howard, who I think is going to have another MVP season because he plays in such a small ballpark and I also like Dan Uggla for some strange reason. I think Uggla's stats this year are going to be more rounded, which means less home runs but less K's. The guy's got a sweet stroke. Hopefully the Marlins put him in the three hole this year instead of two so he can get more RBIs. Carlos Beltran I also think is capable of a big season. The guy has gone under the radar the last couple of years, but I think he's feeling the pressure of the NY media which can produce a big season. However, it can also produce a big drop off, but I think Beltran's too talented to drop off dramatically.

My bench is mostly fast guys, specifically highlighted by a three headed speed monster of Coco Crisp, Lastings Milledge and Fred Lewis. I think Crisp is due for a big year, especially in Kansas City where they will be looking at him more as a leader, and I think with his playoff experience, he'll build on that. I also like Milledge. The guy struggled in the beginning last year because he wasn't used to being the main man, but I think now he's used to Washington, we'll see him get on base more. The guy has more speed than his stats show and I think we'll see that this year, as long as he gets on base more and cuts down his K's. Lewis is a questionable pick because I have that rotten feeling he's going to have an off year from a solid year the previous season. As a Giants fan though, I love him. He was in my opinion our most consistent player last year and that was in his first season as a starter. I got mad at Bochy last year for not running Lewis more in the last couple of years. He's faster than people think, and I think he showed that at times last season.

I'm not so high on the Giants pitching staff. I think Tim Lincecum will drop off (not Mark Fidrych bad, but still a drop-off), don't think Randy Johnson's going to do as much as people think and I think Barry Zito will finally implode for good this season. But in comparison to other staffs, there is so much upside I just had to pick them, even if it is quite a risky pick. My worst pick of the bunch other than Suzuki is probably Pablo Sandoval. In my mind, I picked him solely on his potential, which was an outstanding 421. Yet I don't think he's going to have that good of a year. He barely played last year and I just don't think he's going to produce the kind of numbers people saw from him down the stretch last season. However, Sandoval was my last pick, and it was a very high risk, high reward pick, so I went with him. Jed Lowrie could be a similar situation, but I think Lowrie could have more potential to do better than I pessimistically think because A.) Boston hates Julio Lugo and B.) Mike Lowell's health is so poor. Lowrie will get a lot of at bats, especially with the way he played, even though I'm scared he's going to have an Angel Berroa-esque second year drop off.

Guys I wished I picked? I was so down on Shin-Soo Choo. I didn't watch much of the WBC, but for some reason, the games I did watch featured Korea and Choo was the only major leaguer of the bunch. I think Choo really could be a surprise. He played well in the WBC and he's a consistent kind of guy. Not flashy, but he's super-disciplined. I might try to make a trade with the guy who drafted him, who desperately wants Lowrie. I like Lowrie, but I would be willing to part with him for Choo.

Overall, predictions are fun and all, but it doesn't mean anything. Only when the season starts I can see how well I drafted. Here's to the 2009 MLB season and my team "Bring Back Barry."