So I had my fantasy baseball draft earlier today and I wanted to run down who I picked and why I picked them or what lead to me picking this player. If you like baseball this should be fun, if you do not like baseball...I apologize.
First off I was drafting 12th of out 12 teams, that sucked! The draft is set up as a snake system meaning I would draft 12 and then 13 and it wouldn't be my turn again for 22 picks. I had a lot of waiting to do and when it was finally my turn I had to make two picks back to back, which sometimes was stress inducing.
Round 1. Pick 12 - Ryan Howard 1B Phillies - I do not think this pick needs much explanation. I was really surprised that he was even still available at pick number 12 overall. If you didn't know he anchors one of the best hitting teams in baseball and hit .279/ 45 HR/ 141 RBI last year.
Round 2. Pick 13 - Felix Hernandez SP Mariners - I ended up taking quite a few Mariners this draft but none better then King Felix. He is going into the prime of his career and is playing with an improved team. He has played 5 seasons and is still only 24 years old. I found the guy to anchor my starting pitching. Felix was 19-5/ 2.49 ERA/ 217 K's last year.
Round 3. Pick 36 - Joey Votto 1B Reds - I know it was a little odd for me to pick up another big hitting 1B so high and yes it could be a stretch but I think Votto could have a huge year on a good hitting Reds squad. Last year he hit .322/ 25 HR/ 84 RBI playing in only 131 games. I figure with a full season and the new help he can put up even better numbers. I have UTIL positions so he will be there or play when Howard is off.
Round 4. Pick 37 - Zack Greinke SP Royals - Its not usual to grab Cy young picthers in the 4th round but I somehow got lucky and nabbed Greinke to go along with Hernandez, forming what should be a great tandem of starters. The AL Cy Young award winner was almost who I picked over Hernandez and I was so shocked to still see him I just had to take him. My early strategy was to take one hitter and pitcher and I think I got some great players. I do have some worries, like he plays on the Royals and most likely will not match last years numbers (16-8/ 2.16 ERA/ 242 K's).
Round 5. Pick 60 - Carlos Lee OF Astros - I have always wanted Lee on my team, is very consistent in his numbers and that is something I value for fantasy baseball. He plays in that small stadium in Houston and the Astros can score some runs. He will lead my Outfield squad. Last year he hit .300/ 26HR/ 102 RBI.
Round 6. Pick 61 - Robinson Cano 2B Yankees - I couldn't resist the skilled position this time around. I was thinking that I wasn't getting any 2B/SS/3B so I nabbed up Cano. He is on the Yankees which means he will have a lot of run and RBI chances. Last year he hit .320/ 25HR/ 85 RBI/ 103 Runs. The Yanks are stacked again this year so I am hoping for similar type numbers if anything he should score a lot.
Round 7. Pick 84- Josh Johnson SP Marlins - I had a hard time pulling the trigger on this one, I saw a personal favorite of mine still on the board in Giants SP Matt Cain but decided to go with Johnson. I could be kicking myself of this but Johnson is the Marlins ace and had an all-star season last year, going 15-5/ 3.23 ERA/ 191 K's. Did I make the right pick, only time will tell. I hope they both go great.
Round 8. Pick 85 - Chone Figgins 3B Mariners - Went for some speed and runs here. Chone plays 3B, you usually don't get a ton of stolen bases from that position. Plus he is hitting in front of or behind Ichiro now which either way should help him. He is also playing in the same division he was in his whole career and knows the Angels. I got my 3B off the board with this pick. Last year Chone hit .298/54 RBI/ 114 Runs/ 42 Stolen Bases.
Round 9. Pick 108 - Francisco Cordero RP Reds - I nabbed my first save guy and a pretty good one at that. Cordero is a great save guy last year he had 39 saves and a 2.16 ERA for the Reds. I felt it best to get someone who is pretty consistent for this position and went with the established save guy over less unknown players like David Aardsma.
Round 10. Pick 109 - Shane Victorino OF Phillies - Victorino also plays for the Phillies and is sure to score a lot of runs and steal some bases. He is a good in just about every category (sans HRs). He gave me a second OF player, last year he hit .292/10 HR/ 62 RBI/ 102 Runs/ 25 SB for the Phiilies. I look for my #1 pick to knock this guy in a lot more in 2010.
Round 11. Pick 132 - Elvis Andrus SS Rangers - Another players on a great offensive team, Andrus was a rookie last year and hit .267/ 6 HR/ 40 RBI/ 72 Runs/ 33 SB. I am hoping that he will be able to score more runs and get some more SB's this year. I put off getting a SS for a while but think that Andrus could help in the SB category that I usually overlook.
Round 12. Pick 133 - Billy Wagner RP Braves - Wagner who used to be one of the best save guys made a come back last year and is now penciled in as the Braves stopper. He is a nice comeback story which I hope pays off. I think I went on a tad of a stretch here, but save guys were being taken and I didn't want to get left out.
Round 13. Pick 156 - Miguel Montero C Diamondbacks - Catchers usually only have around 5 guys who can really make an impact on your fantasy team. I am the type who likes to take a big hitting Catcher early but I sort of waited it out this year and I think for waiting this long I got a good player. I had Montero on my fantasy team last year in the second half and he was pretty amazing. Montero hit .294/ 16 HR/ 59 RBI. For a catcher those are pretty good stats, and most of that came in the second half of last year.
Round 14. Pick 157 - Leo Nunez RP Marlins - I stayed closer happy, this time I was worried Wagner wouldn't be enough. Usually whoever is closing for the Marlins gets a ton of saves. Nunez had 26 saves last year for them, but his era was 4.06 a tad high but something that could be worked with. He could be one of those players you never hear about but ends up with 40 saves at the end of the season.
Round 15. Pick 180 - Jorge Cantu 1B/3B Marlins - Another Marlin for my team. I was looking at depth here with the pick. Cantu can be plugged in at 1B or 3B and last year hit .289/ 16 HR/ 100 RBI. He hit 29 HR the year before so I look for the power to increase a tad more, but having a guy with 100 RBI for a back up is a good thing to have.
Round 16. Pick 181 - David Price SP Rays - I went out on a limb, going with potential here instead of picking a more established player. I was so close to going with former Ray Scott Kazmir but instead felt that Price could be less injury prone and have a break out season that is expected of him. Last year Price managed to go 10-7/ 4.24 ERA/ 102 K's. Not sure if this pick will pan out but it could be a great pick if I am right.
Round 17. Pick 204 - Nick Swisher 1B/OF Yankees - Once again he plays on the Yankees and the guy can still hit. Now he can take on a bigger role since Damon, Matsui, and Cabrera are out of NY. He plays in that ballpark where runs come a plenty too. Last year he hit .249/ 29 HR/ 82 RBI not too bad, imagine if he hits .300 he could easily get 100 RBI on what I think is the best line-up in the majors.
Round 18. Pick 205 - Ryan Franklin RP Cardinals - I am not sure anyone (including myself) didn't notice Franklin still on the board, I would have most likely picked him over Nunez had I known he was still available. The guy was lights out for the Cardinals in his all-star season of 09. He had 38 saves and a 1.92 ERA. I think this could be a steal for me, a almost 40 save guy going in the 18th round.
Round 19. Pick 228 - Carlos Quintin OF White Sox - It was getting down to picking injured guys on the comeback or sleepers at this point. I went with Quintin who despite being injured for a lot of last season still hit 21 HR and 56 RBI, in 99 games. I am hoping for a comeback season where he can get back to his 2008 numbers of .288/ 36HR / 100 RBI. I was also looking at his profile and it said he was tearing up preseason pitchers so I felt okay taking this pick.
Round 20. Pick 229 - Jhonny Peralta 3B/SS Indians - I was looking for depth at SS with this pick, and as an added bonus he can be plugged in at 3B too. He is on a pretty bad Indians team so he should get pitched too. He is a good RBI guy, topping 70 or more RBI in the last three years. Last year he hit .254/ 11HR / 83 RBI. I think it also could have been an off year seeing as how he had 23 HR in 08. I hope he is worth keeping on my team.
(Opps! I forgot to say Pick 252 and 253....Franklin Gutierrez and Erik Bedard...just so you know!)
Round 21. Pick 276 - Nick Blackburn SP Twins - I had the last pick of the draft and I made sure to stick it out. I really had no idea what to do with the pick. I was just scanning down the players still available and Blackburn's name came up. I took him with the last overall pick and he has now become my drafts Mr. Irrelevant. Blackburn has gone 11-11 the last two years, which I found odd. He could be on the verge of having a break out season maybe getting 15 wins or so. This is also guy who I can drop and pick up someone else.
So that was my fantasy draft, remember it's always fun to make your own picks!