Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Fantasy Baseball: Tear Apart Sum's Roster

Are you all bracketed out? Tired of the NCAA tourney? Can't stand watching all that great college basketball? No, I'm not tired of it either, and doubt I ever will be. But, we must show some love to America's former favorite pastime (since we all know football has taken over the #1 spot on both the AP and Coaches polls) of baseball. Unfortunately, I'm even less knowledgeable about baseball than I am about college basketball. I drink my Red Sox kool-aid every morning from opening day through the fall classic, and that's about it. Surprisingly, however, I'm in a fantasy baseball league, and we just had our draft last weekend. So I thought I'd come to you, the loyal PHSports readers, with my lineup so you can berate my picks while laughing and pointing at me (just remember, when you point at me, three fingers are pointing back at you).
The dude even wears red ... ohhh yeah

A quick primer about my league. It's a rotisserie format, with the following stat categories: Runs, Home Runs, RBIs, Stolen Bases, Batting Avg., Wins, Saves, Ks, ERA and WHIP. It's an 11-team league, with a wrap around draft. I had the 9th pick in all odd number rounds and 3rd pick in even number rounds, and there were 23 rounds in total. I have my picks, in order, below, along with the players taken directly before and after my selections (my picks in bold). Let me know what you think and who I should get rid of ASAP.

Round 1: (Josh Hamilton) Ian Kinsler - 2B, Tex (Ryan Braun)
Round 2: (Ryan Howard) Tim Lincecum - P, SF (Evan Longoria)
Round 3: (Russell Martin) Jason Bay - OF, Bos (Carlos Quentin)
Round 4: (Brandon Phillips) Brandon Webb - P, Ari (Ray Halladay)

After 4 rounds, I had the top 2 pitchers in the NL last year (Credit: The Arizona Republic)

Round 5: (Nick Markakis) Joe Mauer - C, Min (Alex Rios)
Round 6: (Shane Victorino) Adrian Gonzalez - 1B, SD (Rafael Furcal)
Round 7: (Chipper Jones) Ryan Doumit - C, Pit (Hunter Pence)
Round 8: (Garrett Atkins) Josh Beckett - P, Bos (Brad Lidge)
Round 9: (Cliff Lee) Adrian Beltre - 3B, Sea (Mariano Rivera)
Round 10: (Ryan Ludwick) Ervin Santana - P, LAA (Jon Lester)
Round 11: (Mike Aviles) Raul Ibanez - OF, Phi (Derek Jeter)
Round 12: (Robinson Cano) Joakim Soria - P, KC (A.J. Burnett)
Round 13: (Jorge Posada) Denard Span - OF, Min (Jose Valverde)

Who the hell is this guy? And why did I draft him ahead of Jhonny Peralta? (Credit: boston.com)

Round 14: (BJ Ryan) Khalil Greene - SS, StL (Carlos Delgado)
Round 15: (Brad Hawpe) Randy Johnson - P, SF (Francisco Cordero)
Round 16: (Zack Greinke) Xavier Nady - OF, NYY (Brett Myers)
Round 17: (Max Scherzer) Jason Motte - P, StL (Brandon Morrow)
Round 18: (Mike Gonzalez) Hank Blalock - 1B, 3B, IF, Tex (Rick Ankiel)
Round 19: (Willy Taveras) J.D. Drew - OF, Bos (Jered Weaver)
Round 20: (Matt Lindstrom) Jim Thome - Util, CWS (Nick Swisher)
Round 21: (Mike Pelfrey) Chris Volstad - P, Fla (John Smoltz)
Round 22: (Jeff Clement) Wandy Rodriguez - P, Hou (Fernando Rodney)
Round 23: (Troy Percival) Clay Buchholz - P, Bos (Jesus Flores)

So, I went a little Red Sox heavy, with 4 players. But you can't blame me for taking Clay in the last round ... can you?
(Credit: yoursportsmemorabilia.com)

Early on, as the best batters were flying off the board, I decided to try and concentrate on the pitching categories, in particular the starting pitchers. Needless to say, I'm quite happy with a rotation that includes Lincecum, Webb, Beckett, and Ervin Santana. Randy Johnson is a question mark, but I figured he was worth the risk in round 15. Of course, the flip side of having a great pitching staff is my fairly weak batting order. None of my guys had over 36 HRs last year, and only three had over 100 RBIs. I think I'm fairly solid with regard to catchers, and that is a weak spot on other teams, but my outfield leaves much to be desired ... as does my infield.

My hope is that come mid-August, I'll be so far ahead in the pitching categories and close enough in the batting categories, that I can trade away one or two of my starting pitchers to get some solid upgrades at the plate. But give me some feedback. Who did I reach on? Did I get any steals? Best pick? Worst pick? Lay it on me...

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