My advice is to always draft who you want to.
These are guys I’ve taken a long look at, did my due diligence, and have determined are the guys I want.
Brandon Belt – 1B, Giants
I’m playing in an ESPN writer’s league that uses OBP and SLG as categories instead of home runs and batting average. Brandon Belt should finally get a chance to get regular at bats and he’ll get on base at an excellent clip. AT&T park will suppress his home run total, but he’ll still SLG well. This makes him a perfect 1B/3B for this particular category league. Toss in 15 potential stolen bases and I’ll be stoked to roster him.
Jedd Gyorko – 2B, Padres
Jedd will be tricky because he’s becoming such a trendy sleeper that he may be over-drafted. Still, I like his floor. His great walk and strokeout rates suggest he’ll have a high floor, minimizing risk. At best he’ll be a .285 hitter with 20 home runs at a thin second base position.
Glen Perkins – RP, Twins
While it’s true that poor teams overall have less save opportunities. But it’s also true that even the worst teams win 60 games and they are often close ball games, meaning their designated loser gets a fine number of opportunities. If you are familiar with the Twins you’ll know that Perkins has really grown up and worked himself into a fine ballplayer. He’s a great pick as a late round closer.
Jed Lowrie – SS, Athletics
See Brandon Belt above. In a league that counts OBP and SLG Lowrie is a sneaky good play at a power poor position. True it’s possible he’ll play fewer games than he has homers, but I won’t have to risk much to roster him. If I get lucky and he plays 100 games I can cut my loses on the other 62, rostering another MI who gives help in whatever particular roto category that’s running close for me.
Carlos Gomez – CF, Brewers
Most think that GoGo’s 2012 breakout was a fluke. But don’t overlook that he’s had an intentional change of approach at the plate. He’s no longer pounding the ball into the ground and instead he’s intentionally lifting it into the air. That means 15 homers and you know the steals will be there. He can be had for much cheaper than B.J. Upton, but their numbers will be in the same ballpark.
Aaron Hill – 2B, Diamondbacks
I certainly get the sense of uneasiness with Hill. It seems like only Alex Rios has been more inconsistent. But Hill’s 2008 was an injury nightmare, and the poor batting average of 2010 looks like the worst outliar. I’m not saying he’s the most tired and true pick, but in a very shallow 2B position I’m really to give him a roster.
Alex Gordon – OF, Royals
Few hit more extra base hits, which means he’ll have higher RBI totals than your typical leadoff guy. He also will help in AVG and will be one of the league leaders in runs scored. While I don’t think he’ll have more than a dozen steals, I do think his power rebounds, giving him at least 20 for the season.
Miguel Montero – C, Diamondbacks
This is a consistency pick. Just look at these numbers over the last 2 seasons: 65/65 Runs, 18/15 HR, 86/88 RBI, .282/.286 AVG. Not only are they consistent, but the yields are also above league average for the catcher position. If I can get him for a reasonable draft price, I will happily roster him.