by Ivar Anderson
We held our third mock draft this past Thursday night. This time we had 12 teams signed up to draft, although we did again have two no-shows. I cannot stress enough that if you sign up, please attend the draft as autopicks throw off the results. As you can see from the draft results posted here, one of our absentee drafters took three 3B in the early rounds.
Next week’s draft will be held on Wednesday, March 5, 2014 at 8:30 PM EST. The link to join is here. Password is roto4. The draft will be a 12 team snake draft, with our usual 23 roster spots, which include a CI, MI, U and 10 pitchers. Only one catcher, though, as that is one of my basic rules.
On to the analysis, or as I tend to refer to it, “Picks that make me go hmmm.”
Nothing out of the ordinary in round one again, with Paul Goldschmidt going back to the third pick (which I still think is too high). I like Buck Davidson’s selection of Braun in the second round, as I won’t take him in the first round, but as a second pick he could return great value. One of our no-shows took Xander Bogaerts in the third, as his THIRD third baseman. The value of attending a draft is evident there.
The selection of Felix Hernandez in the 4th round with the 12th pick is a steal. Not that I would begrudge any of the drafters who took the likes of Stephen Strasburg, Jose Fernandez, Cliff Lee and Justin Verlander before him, but the guy has proven to be a top five SP for years now. Adrian Gonzalez went early to a no-show team in the fifth round, but at least it wasn’t another 3B.
Kemp goes in the 6th round, and if he can provide both power and speed again that would be a steal for Mastro802. Randall took Wil Myers later in 6th round, and I applaud his chutzpa. Myers looks to be the real thing, and could be a difference maker for fantasy this year and beyond. I like the Mauer pick in the 7th by StatR_Us, but anyone who has ever played against me knows how little I value catchers. I have taken Mauer early in some drafts, though, I will confess, just because I treasure the AVG he provides. I might have opted for Alex Gordon over Josh Hamilton at the end of the 7th round, but if Hamilton can produce like he did two or three years ago, then I have to applaud the pick. Still, I like the player Gordon has developed into, and see him as a solid OF2/3.
I like Anibal Sanchez a ton this season as a real life player and especially as a SP2/3 on my fantasy squads, so I was sorry when Buck took him in the early part of the 8th round. Tanaka, if he keeps pitching like he did in his Yankee debut, will be rising up the boards quickly and that will make him too expensive for me to own him.
I hesitated with my pick in the 9th, wavering between Seager who I selected, and Prado, who went immediately after I selected. I like Prado’s position versatility, especially, but wanted Seager’s power here. Andrelton Simmons is a fine middle draft SS selection, especially if his power continues to develop.
Randall stole Danny Salazar from my queue, and probably from several other drafters, when he grabbed the young strikeout artist with the penultimate pick in the 10th round. Sonny Gray was another young SP I was targeting who was sniped when BraunsV took him with the 7th pick in the 12th round. Obviously, Mastro802 believes that Corbin’s 2013 was no fluke as he snagged him in the middle of the 14th round.
I am not a fan of taking catchers earlier than the late rounds, as I have posted ad infinitum, so I am not enthused over the Wilson Ramos pick by BraunsV in the late portion of the 14th round, but I will confess that Ramos is on my radar late in drafts. Not this week, though.
It is a tossup for me as to whether Jeff Samardzija or Travis Wood is the ace of the Cubs’ rotation, but you cannot discount Samardzija’s strike out capability and apparently Zool (Kyle) feels that way. Teixeira is a decent 1B selection in the later rounds, although I really dislike his slow starts which seem to be growing longer and longer as he gets older.
If I had to choose, I would take Khris Davis over Nick Swisher, but both carry risk regarding their production in 2014. Markakis, on the other hand, is a steady performer who seems to be a forgotten man in many drafts. You cannot over value steady production, though, and his ballpark is a factor in his favor if you are searching for a late round OF. Kuroda is another afterthought by many drafters, but he is the number two SP on the Yankees. You could do much worse than taking his boring but acceptable production. The 18th round is a bit too early for my taste for Bossman Jr., but as I keep arguing, he cannot be as bad as last season, can he?
You can get saves late, as witnessed by the Freiri (19.6), Henderson (22.3) or Parnell (22.4) picks. Brantley, as a starting OF in Cleveland, is a fine late pick for a fifth OF. De La Rosa had a very good 2013, and taking a flier on a repeat with a 20th round selection seems wise to me. Plus he is a favorite of mine. Infante is very nice late MI pick by Randall, and if I had needed a batter there he would have been in my queue. I have soured on Ian Kennedy but as a final round SP, I have to say BraunsV did very well in snagging him there.
If you want to suggest some specific setup up in terms of rosters (stat categories don’t really make a difference on CouchManagers), then hit me up at email@example.com. Hope to see you in the draft room on Wednesday.
*** Make sure to order Rotoprofessor’s 2014 Fantasy Baseball Draft Guide and be entered to win an autographed David Price mini bat! The guide comes complete with projections of over 600 players, expended rankings, sleepers, Top 50 prospects and so much more (including constant updates up until opening day). For just $6 you will get everything you need to dominate your fantasy league! For more information and to place your order, click here. ***
Make sure to check out all of our 2014 rankings: