10: April 5
No. 10 –
The news could not be any worse for Andrew Bailey and his fantasy owners as he
had thumb surgery on Wednesday and will be out 4-5 months. He was poised to
have a solid season as the Red Sox closer, but now owners are scrambling for a
replacement. It looks like a closer-by-committee is how Boston will start the
season, but look for Mark Melancon to get the majority of save opportunities
No. 9 – No
doubt that CC Sabathia has had a rough spring, but this is nothing to be
concerned about. Owners should feel confident having him on their roster and
trust that he will perform as the ace that he is. I see him delivering his
usual healthy numbers including a sub 3.40 ERA, 1.15 WHIP, right around 20 wins
and over 180 strikeouts.
No. 8 –
Was any pitcher hotter in spring training than Minnesota’s Francisco Liriano? He
finished with an ERA of 2.33 and 33:5 K: BB ratio in 27 innings of work. Can
you say comeback season? He’s been going undrafted in some leagues and is
currently owned in fewer than 50% of ESPN leagues. I wouldn’t wait any longer
than the 13th-15th rounds to draft him because he’s on a
mission this season.
No. 7 –
A few teams still haven’t announced who their closer will be to start the
season, including the Kansas City Royals and Chicago White Sox. It’s almost a
certainty that Jonathan Broxton will get first crack for the Royals, while I
see Matt Thornton getting the nod for Chicago. Scoop both of them up if you’re
weak in the saves department.
No. 6 –
Eric Hosmer is the real deal. Many are skeptical about how his sophomore
campaign is going to go. Soak in these spring numbers: Five home runs, 28 RBI
and hitting well over .400. I think I’d take him on my team this season.
No. 5 – Another
bounce back candidate I love is Atlanta’s Jason Heyward. He hasn’t had the best
spring, but he finished strong and has hit a few homers over the last week. The
batting average is still a little low, but as long as he stays healthy I see
him hitting 25 homers and driving in around 90. I’ll take those numbers out of
my 2nd or 3rd outfielder all day.
No. 4 – Although
Carl Crawford is going to begin the season on the DL don’t let him slip too far
in your draft. Remember that he was a first round pick just last year. He’s
going to take advantage of hitter friendly Fenway Park in 2012 and get back to
his old ways of being a doubles and stolen base machine.
No. 3 – I
see the Dodgers having the No. 1 fantasy hitter and pitcher this season in Matt
Kemp and Clayton Kershaw. Talk about a bold prediction huh. Both were
incredible last year and neither has even hit their prime yet. Look for Los
Angeles to be a dominant team in the National League.
No. 2 –
I don’t know if it’s even possible, but I see Robinson Cano having an even better
season than he did in 2011. He’s in a contract year and has all the same
protection around him in the lineup that he had last season plus a healthy Alex
Rodriguez. 100-30-100-10 and a .325 BA are very possible in 2012.
No.1 – I’m
sure you’ve heard this stat somewhere in the last few days, but the last six
times Kentucky has won the National Championship in Men’s College Basketball
the Yankees have went on to win the World Series. Just something to think