All fantasy baseball players begin jonesing for a fix after the New Year kicks off. I cannot be excluded from this group. I always try to wait and indulge in my first mock draft once all the big names and major moves off the off-season have finished panning out. With the announcement of Ryan Braun’s victorious appeal coming yesterday, Friday night seems like the perfect time to kick things off. I thought this year it might be fun to live blog my first draft of the 2012 mock draft season. The Denslow Cup, my only fantasy baseball league, is a 12 team, 7×7 roto league that includes OBP and K/BB.
RD 1 (3) I took Jose Bautista here. Pujols and Cabrera were first off the board, so you may wonder why not take Tulo here. Well, I am 99% sure that in my league, the Denslow Cup, Tulo is going to be the 2nd overall pick. I have the 3rd pick so I am pretty sure this will be my first pick in my real draft this spring. Not like there is anything to complain about here either.
RD 2 (22) Here I took Mike Stanton. I was hoping to have a shot at a middle of the infield guy such as HanRam, Reyes, Kinsler, or Pedroia…but that didn’t work out. So, I went with a big ass bopper. New stadium with a new shiny home run thingy. Great guys in front of him. HUGE power. No reason to believe in a sophomore slump. I am happy with this pick.
RD 3 (27) I decided on my main man, Tim Lincecum. Last year I took him in round 2. That was also the 1st year I ever drafted a starter before round 6. I like having an ace. As a pitching coach I love Lincecum’s mechanics and what it does for him in terms of IP and K’s. I see his increased walk rate as no big deal, and returning closer to what it was his first 2 years in the league. Now I can focus on hitting for a while.
RD 4 (46) Brandon Phillips here. I was really hoping for Ben Zobrist as he is a guy I plant my flag in every season. He went 3 picks before me so I felt that getting @DatDudeBP was what I needed to at least have something up the middle. After him I just feel like the dropoff is either not enough for what I want, or too risky (Utley). Not like Brandon Phillips is really going to hurt me.
RD 5 (51) Starlin Castro. I am not totally happy with this pick. I felt like I went maybe a bit too early with picking an unproven SS. Just went to check up on his stats and feel much better. I love the tools Castro brings, and he will help me protect my average. I like this pick more now that I have written these sentences.
RD 6 (70) Michael Morse. Won’t lie, I did not plan on Drafting him as my 1B. But I watched this video on ESPN and loved his swing. I really believe he will provide this year in much the same way he did last year. After missing out on other 1B guys, this is fine by me.
RD 7 (75) Michael Young. Now I can move Morse to an OF spot and put Young at my 1B, or move him to 3B and Bautista to my OF. He will help protect my AVG and still be very productive across the board in the Texas lineup.
RD8 (94) Jonathan Papelbon. Elite Closer…check. I like his move to the NL, even if it is the NL East. Getting a 40 save closer is never a bad thing.
RD 9 (99) Had to go with Brett Gardner here. Chose him over Hellickson because, now I can not worry too much about steals and runs. I can still build pitching later on. Sure you can get steals late in the draft but with a guy who can easily (that’s right, easily) bring in 50 stolen bags, why not grab it when you can. As I typed that last sentence the fire alarm went off in my apartment- not sure what kind of sign that is, but is has me thinking.
RD 10 (118) Took Joel Hanrahan here. I like trying to have two 40 SV closers in my bullpen and add a 3rd closer later. Whats not too love about a guy who chucks it 100 MPH?
RD 11 (123) Picked up Tommy Hanson and his 200 K’s. With that I now have two SP that will rack up over 400 strikeouts this season. With two scoring categories including strikeouts in our league (K’s and K/BB) I really like this pick here, all health issues and worries aside.
RD 12 (142) JJ Putz is a great 3rd closer for me. A guy with 35-40 saves potential is sweet. I now have a chance to grab a 4th closer, which can really help me out as far as dominating the saves category early and then swaping one of my top closers for another need I may have later.
RD 13 (147) Nick Markakis is a truly undervalued fantasy player. Filling him as my 4th OF is no problem for me.
RD 14 (166) Every year I really try hard to draft one player from my beloved Houston Astros. Not that there are many options this year, but that is a different story I would prefer not to reiterate. This year I decided to take a chance with Wandy Rodriguez. He actually wasn’t my first choice from the Astros rotation- Bud Norris was- but as my 3rd starter I feel quite comfortable with getting him here. I actually believe he has a high chance of outperforming 14th round value.
RD 15 (171) Colby Lewis…I hate this pick. As soon as I made it I saw that Ryan Howard was still available. Not that I have anything against Lewis, I just didn’t really need another SP yet. Oh well. I will attribute this one to the fact that dinner was served to me on the couch and I became quite distracted.
RD 16 (190) Carlos Marmol…is anyone else noticing a trend here? I was hoping to grab Josh Willingham and his OBP skills for my OBP league, but he was pried from my grasp two picks prior. No problem, just grab another closer.
RD 17 (195) Bud Norris- F#@K YEA!!! Bud Norris is one of my sleepers this year. I have my own reasons for thinking that he might actually turn out to be one of the biggest SP surprises this season. He misses a lot of bats, pitches in the NL Central, and throws a heavy ball. He is young enough to handle an extended workload for a 3rd consecutive year. Did I mention I’m an Astros fan? I love this pick! Great value here.
RD 18 (214) Chris Perez…another closer. Enough said. (But, seriously, what’s my deal?)
RD 19 (219) Mark Trumbo- This is mostly a “Why Not?” pick. I have plenty of depth on the mound, in the pen, and pretty much everywhere. Dude can crush, and I like the upside this late in the draft.
RD 20 (238) Yoenis Cespedes- He was one of the first guys I threw on my watch list when I entered the draft. I seriously considered waiting one more round to take him, but figured WTF? This late in the draft it is just fun to take a flier on a guy…and no other guy in the draft has this kind of hype. Even if he flops, I can at least take off on the Yoenis-train from day one. Plus, if Billy likes him, I like him.
RD 21 (243) Jose Altuve…never did I imagine in my wildest dream drafting 3 Houston Astros on my team. At least Altuve will be able to hit .285 off my bench. 2 birds, one stone kind of pick here.
RD 22 (262) Alfonso Soriano…blegh. 25 homers off the bench, but not much else for me to like here.
RD 23 (267) J.P. Arencibia- I normally pick my catcher with my last pick, but seriously, what’s not to like about 25 homers from behind the dish? Sure, his average will do a team no good, but with my high average guys I took earlier, I don’t have much worry there.
RD 24 (286) Sergio Romo- Now this is a guy I love. Lots of K’s and very few baserunners. He will also help out enormously with ratios. A great kind of RP to snag late and plug in on days when you don’t have any starters going, or to replace that closer who threw back-to-back nights.
RD 25 (291) Michael Brantley- Last pick of my draft, and a chance at a 20-20 season is worth…why not?
All in all, my team looks as follows:
C- J.P. Arencibia
1B- Michael Morse
2B- Brandon Phillips
SS- Starlin Castro
3B- Michael Young
OF- Jose Bautista
OF- Mike Stanton
OF- Brett Gardner
UTIL- Nick Markakis
SP- Tim Lincecum, Tommy Hanson, Wandy Rodriguez, Colby Lewis, Bud Norris,
RP- Jonathon Papelbon, Joel Hanrahan, J.J. Putz, Carlos Marmol, Chris Perez, Sergio Romo
Bench- Mark Trumbo, Yoenis Cespedes, Jose Altuve, Alfonso Soriano, Michael Brantley
I really dig this team at first glance. I will have to take the time to dig deeper and see how it projects and find mistakes that I most likely made. But, off the top, I can dig this team. What do you think? Leave your comments below. Follow me on twitter @sp_flips