Feb 23, 2012 by Dan Wheelock
Catcher has always been one of the weakest positions in fantasy baseball. It used to be that after the top 2 or 3 guys were taken, everyone else was pretty much the same. There has been a little more depth recently, but in the years to come this could be a very deep position. Devin Mesoraco, Travis d’Arnaud, Ryan Lavarnway, Yasmani Grandal and Wilin Rosario will soon join Buster Posey, Carlos Santana, Matt Wieters, and J.P. Arencibia as a very talented, young group of catchers.
Each of the last three seasons a top fantasy catcher has gone down with a significant knee injury. In 2010 it was Carlos Santana, Buster Posey was last year and this season (thankfully for fantasy owners it was before the season), Victor Martinez. Hopefully this doesn’t become an annual thing. But if you play in a standard mixer and your catcher goes down, there will be a few decent options out there on the waiver wire.
Here are the Fantasy Sports Kings composite catcher rankings as well as a sleeper, bust and prospect pick for 2012.
Feb 19, 2012 by Dan Wheelock
Over the last couple of weeks I have written about some sleepers and prospects from each division. The last one on the list is the AL East, the powerhouse division that is home to some of the best baseball, the biggest payroll and the most media attention.
As it turns out, it is hard to have sleeper status in the AL East. Guys like Desmond Jennings and Brett Lawrie, who would probably be under the radar in most other divisions, are being drafted as if they’re proven veterans. Also, top prospects like Manny Banuelos and Dellin Betances just don’t have the minor league numbers to back up the hype they’re receiving.
So I’m going to do something a little different in this preview. Instead of trying to convince myself (and you) that guys like Nolan Reimold and Eduardo Nunez are good sleepers this year, I’m going to highlight a few young players that may or may not be worth their current draft position.
Feb 16, 2012 by Dan Wheelock
Auction drafts are becoming more and more popular in fantasy baseball. It is by far my favorite way to draft. In an auction draft the possibilities are endless. All teams start with a $260 budget and have a chance to buy any player they would like as long as they are willing to pay enough to get him. You aren’t restricted to only having two or three superstars; you can have five or six if you’re willing to pay for them.
There is so much more strategy involved and you are rewarded more for knowing your stuff than you are in a conventional snake draft. An auction draft room is a very hectic place to be, however. It will chew up and spit out any unprepared participants with no mercy. You will have to be engaged for the whole three or four hours it takes to complete your draft. It’s not like a snake draft where you have 5 minutes in between picks. The draft will take its toll on you mentally and emotionally, but it won’t be as bad if you’re ready for what is to come.
Feb 13, 2012 by Dan Wheelock
The Detroit Tigers ran away with the AL Central in 2011 and they appear ready to do so again in 2012. They recently signed after losing Victor Martinez for the year due to a knee injury.
No one else in the division had a winning record a year ago and that might again be the case this season. I am intrigued by the Royals, however. They are loaded with talented young hitters but their pitching prospects may be a couple years away from making an impact.
Feb 9, 2012 by Dan Wheelock
Despite having just four teams, there are plenty of big-name players in the AL-West. Albert Pujols joins names like Josh Hamilton, Felix Hernandez, Jered Weaver, Nelson Cruz, Dan Haren, Ian Kinsler and Adrian Beltre.
While it’s nice to have as many of these types of players as possible, it is also imperative that you spend your later picks on guys that will far exceed their draft value. In this preview we’ll look at some of these late-round players as well as some minor leaguers that have a chance to help your team this season as well.
Feb 4, 2012 by Dan Wheelock
In 2011, the Arizona Diamondbacks won their first division title since 2007. In December they traded for starting pitcher Trevor Cahill to help bolster their young rotation.
The Giants had the second-best ERA in the National League but also scored the fewest runs. They’re getting Buster Posey back from injury and are hoping he can help the team score enough runs to get them back into the playoffs.
Feb 2, 2012 by Dan Wheelock
The two biggest free agent signings so far this off-season have been at the expense of the NL Central. Both Albert Pujols and Prince Fielder left their clubs to sign with the Angels and Tigers, respectively.
The Central produced two National League playoff teams in 2011, the Brewers and the Cardinals, with the Cardinals winning their 11th World Series championship. In 2012 this division should be an exciting three-team race between the Brewers, Cardinals and Reds.
Even without Pujols and Fielder, this division is full of studs with names like Ryan Braun, Joey Votto and Andrew McCutchen, but let’s take a look at some lesser-known players that will be useful to fantasy owners in 2012 and beyond.
Jan 29, 2012 by Dan Wheelock
The offensively-challenged Phillies will most likely be without Ryan Howard for a least a month, but still have arguably the best rotation in the National League.
The Braves haven’t added or lost any major pieces this off-season, but a bounce back year from Jason Heyward could help bring them their first division title since 2005.
The Mets are in rebuilding mode, but they are getting Johan Santana and Ike Davis back from injuries. Continue reading “2012 NL East Preview – Sleepers and Prospects” »
Jan 25, 2012 by Dan Wheelock
First base has always been the deepest position in fantasy baseball. There are always 20 to 25 first basemen that can get you 25+ home runs, a commodity that has become scarcer in recent years. There are also a few elite players at this position that can hit over 35 home runs and drive in well over 100 runs with a batting average over .300. While this is still the case in 2012, the top-end talent is not spread evenly between both leagues. With Prince Fielder and Albert Pujols switching leagues, the American League has five of the top 6 first basemen in fantasy baseball.
Jan 21, 2012 by Dan Wheelock
Since Citi Field opened in 2009, the Mets’ home ballpark has been the hardest to hit a home run in. Citi Field has only allowed 1.43 home runs per game, the lowest of any stadium. With a 415-foot power alley in right center and a wall 16 feet high in some places, it’s easy to see why this was such a pitcher-friendly park.
Citi Field will have new, smaller dimensions, however, for the 2012 season. Most notably, the wall in right center field will be moving in 17 feet. In addition, most of the outfield will have eight-foot walls which will also help make this park a more hitter-friendly one.