Fantasy Draft Time

So I had my first fantasy baseball draft the other day. Considering that I didn’t really prepare for it, I thought it turned out alright. I had the seventh pick in a 14-team draft. Here’s my team with links to their Yahoo player cards:

1. (7) Chase Utley
2. (22) Jason Bay
3. (35) Michael Young
4. (50) Jermaine Dye
5. (63) Bill Hall
6. (78) Prince Fielder
7. (91) Rocco Baldelli
8. (106) Bobby Jenks
9. (119) Rich Harden
10. (134) Brian Fuentes
11. (147) Howie Kendrick
12. (162) Nick Johnson
13. (175) Morgan Ensberg
14. (190) Frank Thomas
15. (203) Noah Lowry
16. (218) Brad Wilkerson
17. (231) Jeremy Sowers
18. (246) Jeremy Hermida
19. (259) Scott Olsen
20. (274) Doug Davis
21. (287) Joe Blanton
22. (302) SalomΓ³n Torres
23. (315) Luke Hochevar

Some thoughts:

  • With the household names gone (Pujols, A-Rod, Santana, Soriano) I decided to take a stud at a traditionally weak position. I took Chase Utley, who has been far and away the best second baseman over the last couple seasons. I also decided to take a great shortstop in Michael Young in the third round. I addressed second base and shortstop early with the knowledge that first base and outfield have much deeper talent pools.
  • A good strategy to follow in fantasy baseball is to wait on talent from deeper positions. Once Albert Pujols, Ryan Howard and Justin Morneau were gone, I chose to wait until the sixth round to grab a first baseman. I was happy to get Prince Fielder at that spot, as I think Prince will be relatively close to elite first basemen this season.
  • I also followed this with starting pitchers. There are a ton of quality starting pitchers, so unless I had a shot at Santana, I probably wasn’t going to take one with my first couple picks. I think I got a bit carried away, as I probably won’t wait until the ninth round in my next draft to take my first starter. I feel that I got value in Harden this late, as he’s a true ace coming off injury. Reports are that he’s 100% this spring. I feel good enough about Noah Lowry, Joe Blanton and Doug Davis, and I think I may have stolen Jeremy Sowers in round 17.
  • I waited a bit on closers as well, but I was happy to get Solomon Torres at the end of the draft. Usually closers are long gone by pick 300. I almost took Joe Nathan in round four instead of Jermaine Dye, and I still kind of wish I would have. I still figure that Jenks and Fuentes will be solid enough though.
  • Versatile players are a plus, and nobody’s more versatile than Chuck Norris’ mortal enemy, Bill Hall. Hall can be put at third, short, second and in the outfield in fantasy play.
  • I like to take a hotshot rookie or even an advanced prospect at the very end of the draft. This time I went with Kansas City pitcher Luke Hochevar, the number one pick in last year’s MLB draft. I hit a home run doing this last year with Jered Weaver. If it doesn’t work out, well, it was only the last pick.




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