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BaseballGB Fantasy draft

by Mark George
BgbFantasyThe BaseballGB fantasy league has had its draft day, but how do the teams of its writers shape up?
Below are the details of the teams picked by Matt, Joe, Russ and myself – feel free to add your comments about whether you think our teams are good or bad!
The players are listed in the round they were drafted, with the overall pick number in brackets


Rio Crande Typos – Joe Gray
1. (6) Ian Kinsler
2. (23) Roy Halladay
3. (34) Brian McCann
4. (51) Nate McLouth
5. (62) Aubrey Huff
6. (79) J.J. Hardy
7. (90) Cliff Lee
8. (107) Joey Votto
9. (118) Andre Ethier
10. (135) Kerry Wood
11. (146) Ty Wigginton
12. (163) Ben Sheets
13. (174) David DeJesús
14. (191) Mike Napoli
15. (202) Chad Qualls
16. (219) Andy Sonnanstine
17. (230) Jerry Hairston Jr.
18. (247) Jon Rauch
19. (258) Mark Buehrle
20. (275) Hiroki Kuroda


This was the first draft for fantasy newbie Joe, and I think he’s done a decent job. The starting pitching looks strong with Halladay and Cliff Lee and by drafting both Chad Qualls and Jon Rauch he should get most of Arizona’s saves to go with Kerry Wood.
Joe’s counting on younger players such as Kinsler, McCann, McLouth, Hardy, Votto and Ethier and could afford to trade one of McCann or Napoli to fill any areas he needs to strengthen.
The one mistake was drafting Sheets, as Joe was unaware of his injury, but aside from that, it’s a pretty solid team.
RussDev Giants – Russ Dyas
1. (7) Grady Sizemore
2. (22) Prince Fielder
3. (35) Carl Crawford
4. (50) Russell Martin
5. (63) Joe Mauer
6. (78) Magglio Ordóñez
7. (91) Jermaine Dye
8. (106) Derek Jeter
9. (119) Howie Kendrick
10. (134) José Valverde
11. (147) Justin Verlander
12. (162) Chris Young
13. (175) Matt Garza
14. (190) Erik Bedard
15. (203) Frank Francisco
16. (218) Hideki Matsui
17. (231) Elijah Dukes
18. (246) Mark Reynolds
19. (259) Jonathan Sánchez
20. (274) Mike Pelfrey

Russ was relying on autopick for this draft, but hopefully he won’t be too disappointed with this team. He has plenty of power/speed players in Sizemore, Crawford and Martin to go with the power of Fielder and the average of Mauer. Throw in veterans such as Dye and Ordonez and you have a potent lineup.

He will be counting on Verlander, Bedard and Young to rebound this year while he should be OK for saves with Valverde and Francisco. I think he could use another reliever though, but he has a surplus of hitters to use as potential trade bait.

Overall, I like the offense and if his pitchers rebound, Russ could have a team which is tough to beat.

The Cheddar Chasers – Matt Smith
1. (8) Ryan Braun
2. (21) Carlos Beltrán
3. (36) Justin Morneau
4. (49) Brian Roberts
5. (64) Mariano Rivera
6. (77) Chipper Jones
7. (92) Jay Bruce
8. (105) Chris Iannetta
9. (120) Javier Vázquez
10. (133) Lastings Milledge
11. (148) Zack Greinke
12. (161) Milton Bradley
13. (176) Hong-Chih Kuo
14. (189) Randy Johnson
15. (204) Jose Arredondo
16. (217) Édgar Rentería
17. (232) Paul Konerko
18. (245) Orlando Hudson
19. (260) Oliver Pérez
20. (273) Melvin Mora

Matt’s team were the next to pick, and he’s got a nice balance of power and speed with his first four picks of Braun, Beltran, Morneau and Roberts. Add in the potential of Bruce and Iannetta, and you’ve got a promising offense.

Rivera, Kuo and Arrendondo are a nice trio of relievers, but I think Matt could use more starting pitching to go with Vazquez, Greinke, Johnson and Perez. He does have some useful surplus hitters for potential trade bait.

Overall, a strong hitting line-up, but it could use a little more pitching.

Orpington Isotopes
1. (9) Ryan Howard
2. (20) Chase Utley
3. (37) Manny Ramírez
4. (48) Curtis Granderson
5. (65) Joe Nathan
6. (76) Adam Dunn
7. (93) Jon Lester
8. (104) Michael Young
9. (121) Edinson Vólquez
10. (132) Matt Cain
11. (149) Mark DeRosa
12. (160) James Loney
13. (177) John Danks
14. (188) Heath Bell
15. (205) Gavin Floyd
16. (216) Kelly Shoppach
17. (233) Joe Saunders
18. (244) Justin Masterson
19. (261) Rafael Pérez
20. (272) Mike Lowell

My team was the last of four straight BaseballGB participants to pick in the opening round.

Looking back, I feel pretty good about my overall draft, especially with Howard, Utley and Ramirez as my top three picks.

In the past I have tended to reach early for closers, but limited my self to grabbing Joe Nathan early and waiting for one of the lesser closers – in this case Heath Bell – later on.

I was unsure whether I took DeRosa too early, but I like his versatility, and even if he has a down year, I can plug Mike Lowell in at third.

I seriously considered taking Pat Burrell instead of Loney, but I thought a team with Burrell, Dunn and Howard may do too much damage to my average, so I opted for Loney instead.

My pitching staff is stacked full of promising young arms. Normally I like to try to get an experienced quality starter, but one my main targets were gone, I went for youth.

In past seasons, my teams have had strong pitching, and I’m hoping this year will not be an exception.

I’m usure how many holds I’ll get with Masterson and Perez, but I’m pleased with my rotation of Lester, Volquez, Cain, Danks, Saunders and Floyd.

Overall, this might be the best draft I’ve done, but I am relying on talented young arms to carry my staff. If they struggle, I will too.

Please feel free to post you thoughts below.

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Joe Gray March 16, 2009 - 6:00 pm

You’re too kind (which I don’t mind, of course).

Matt Smith March 16, 2009 - 6:44 pm

Thanks for the positive analysis Mark.

This was also my first draft and it wasn’t until late on that I realised plenty of other players were stocking up on starting pitchers. So I wouldn’t argue with your ‘shortage of starters’ assessment at all. A bit of a rookie mistake perhaps, but hopefully I can add some more pitching along the way to make amends.

There were a few players who I had earmarked as being ones I’d particularly like to get, mainly on the back of a hunch. Vazquez, Greinke, Arredondo, Iannetta and Bruce were all right near the top of the list, so I was pleased to get them. Maybe they will prove to be my downfall, but I thought just following the traditional fantasy rankings would be a bit boring. So I’ve take a punt on a few players and we’ll see how they shape up.

The best thing is I think all of the rosters look decent and there should be plenty of competition throughout the season, with injuries, trades and waiver wire pick ups no doubt playing a key role.

Thomas Ogilvie March 16, 2009 - 10:28 pm

Playing as the Border Bats, it was my first live draft, and the first draft where I had to take pitching into account (last year I was playing on the MLB Fantasy League, which works out pitching by team.) Overall it was an enlightening experience, and exposed the shallowness of my knowledge. However, I’m reasonably happy with the roster; the prospect of such stiff competition ensures that at the very least the year will prove a learning experience.

Matt Smith March 16, 2009 - 10:35 pm

Hi Thomas. Yep, I definitely feel this could be a learning year for me as well. Maybe beginner’s luck will see us through?!

Joe Gray March 17, 2009 - 2:07 pm

Hi Thomas,

I watched the Bad News Bears on Sunday. It made me laugh that one of the kids in this film was called Ogilvie:


Thomas Ogilvie March 17, 2009 - 11:56 pm

Ha! I’ve only seen the re-make. That character seems ominous. There’s been no Ogilvies in the majors, but one Oglivie (not sure where the mis-spelling came from), Ben Oglivie, All-Star outfielder for the Brewers in the late seventies.


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