About the Post

Author Information

Mark has been following baseball since a family holiday to California in 1996 included a trip to Dodger Stadium. A die-hard Dodger fan (yes, they do exist), Mark is a committed fantasy baseball manager and, much like Seinfeld's George Costanza, REALLY wants to be the GM of an MLB team. Mark played in the UK for Croydon Pirates III for seven years. Follow him on Twitter @MarkGeorge43

BGB Fantasy League 2014: Draft review

It’s that time again. 16 teams entered the live online draft for the BaseballGB Fantasy League. Here’s what happened round-by-round in the draft last Friday night, alongside a review of the resulting rosters.

 

Round 1

1. Mike Trout(LAA – CF) Jesmond Denn…
2. Miguel Cabrera(Det – 3B) The Cheddar …
3. Paul Goldschmidt (Ari – 1B) Northfleet K…
4. Clayton Kershaw(LAD – SP) Bits & Bytes
5. Andrew McCutchen(Pit – CF) Norwich No II
6. Carlos González(Col – OF) Angels of As…
7. Chris Davis(Bal – 1B) Batteries Es…
8. Ryan Braun(Mil – OF) Weston-Super…
9. Hanley Ramírez(LAD – SS) Orpington Is…
10. Robinson Canó(Sea – 2B) Richie’s RBI’s
11. Adam Jones(Bal – CF) Iron Men
12. Bryce Harper(Was – CF) NE Riverkings
13. Adrián Béltre(Tex – 3B) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
14. Edwin Encarnación(Tor – 1B,3B) Enfield Butc…
15. Troy Tulowitzki(Col – SS) London Bananas
16. Prince Fielder(Tex – 1B) Mighty Slugs

Arriving about half an hour before the draft started, I found my Orpington Isotopes were picking 9th out of 16. Could have been better, but could have been worse. After consulting my mock drafts (I did three, picking early, middle and late) I began jotting down a few notes for the opening rounds. I was hoping Hanley Ramirez would make it to me. If he didn’t, I’d go for the next best hitter available. I was grateful Hanley made it to me as I was able to fill the tricky SS position straight away.

The only minor surprise in round one was Kershaw going fourth overall to Bits & Bytes, ahead of McCutchen. As a Dodger fan, it would have been tough to pass up on Kershaw had I been picking earlier, but I always try to get a bat first. Still, if you are going to take a pitcher, you take the best.

 

Round 2

1. Carlos Gómez(Mil – CF) Mighty Slugs
2. Jacoby Ellsbury(NYY – CF) London Bananas
3. Joey Votto(Cin – 1B) Enfield Butc…
4. Yu Darvish(Tex – SP) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
5. David Wright(NYM – 3B) NE Riverkings
6. Stephen Strasburg(Was – SP) Iron Men
7. Masahiro Tanaka(NYY – SP) Richie’s RBI’s
8. Yasiel Puig(LAD – CF) Orpington Is…
9. Evan Longoria(TB – 3B) Weston-Super…
10. Giancarlo Stanton(Mia – OF) Batteries Es…
11. Adam Wainwright(StL – SP) Angels of As…
12. Freddie Freeman(Atl – 1B) Norwich No II
13. Félix Hernández(Sea – SP) Bits & Bytes
14. José Bautista(Tor – OF) Northfleet K…
15. Jason Kipnis(Cle – 2B) The Cheddar …
16. Jay Bruce(Cin – OF) Jesmond Denn…

The Mighty Slugs and London Bananas end up with nice combos, with Gomez and Fielder a speed and power mix for the Slugs while London fills two tough positions in SS and CF with Tulo and Ellsbury. Darvish is the second SP to go, followed by Strasburg and, surprisingly, Tanaka. If the new Yankee turns into the next Darvish, this pick will look very good, but personally I wouldn’t want Tanaka as my ace if more established pitchers (Wainwright, Verlander, Price, King Felix) are available, but if he has a great rookie season, fair enough.

I think about taking Wainwright with my second pick, but looking further down the list, I’m confident there will still be an ace available in round three, so I happily grab Puig here to fill CF. I have taken two boom or bust type players early, but the thought of those two in my lineup is hard for this Dodger fan to resist. I had considered Longoria here as 3B is a bit of a problem position after the top names go.

 

Round 3

1. Albert Pujols(LAA – 1B) Jesmond Denn…
2. Max Scherzer(Det – SP) The Cheddar …
3. Dustin Pedroia(Bos – 2B) Northfleet K…
4. Jean Segura(Mil – SS) Bits & Bytes
5. Justin Upton(Atl – OF) Norwich No II
6. Cliff Lee(Phi – SP) Angels of As…
7. José Fernández(Mia – SP) Batteries Es…
8. Madison Bumgarner(SF – SP) Weston-Super…
9. Justin Verlander(Det – SP) Orpington Is…
10. Curtis Granderson(NYM – CF) Richie’s RBI’s
11. Shin-Soo Choo(Tex – CF) Iron Men
12. Ian Desmond(Was – SS) NE Riverkings
13. José Reyes(Tor – SS) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
14. Craig Kimbrel(Atl – RP) Enfield Butc…
15. Starling Marte(Pit – CF) London Bananas
16. Anibal Sánchez (Det – SP) Mighty Slugs

The brilliantly named Jesmond Dennings kick off round three with a punt on Pujols, while there is a run on starters. Matt nabs Scherzer, while Lee, Jose Fernandez and MadBum all go in succession. That leaves me with a choice of Verlander, Price and Sale, so I opt for the Tiger.  The RBIs cause a surprise with the pick of Granderson. If he’s healthy, he provides pop at CF, but with Marte and Choo still available, I’d have gone for them and kept Grandy up my sleeve for later on in the draft.

I really like the Marte pick here by the Bananas. He put up great numbers last year, but still doesn’t seem to get the credit he deserves, what with being a Pirates and playing alongside the excellent McCutchen. More shortstops fly off the board, as Segura, Reyes and Desmond go, while Kimbrel is the first closer selected, being drafted by Enfield. I’ll worry about saves later, as I’m thinking about my next hitter.

 

Round 4

1. Matt Carpenter(StL – 2B,3B) Mighty Slugs
2. Ryan Zimmerman(Was – 3B) London Bananas
3. David Price(TB – SP) Enfield Butc…
4. Allen Craig(StL – 1B,OF) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
5. Chris Sale(CWS – SP) NE Riverkings
6. Adrián González(LAD – 1B) Iron Men
7. Buster Posey(SF – C,1B) Richie’s RBI’s
8. Álex Ríos(Tex – OF) Orpington Is…
9. Zack Greinke(LAD – SP) Weston-Super…
10. Yoenis Céspedes (Oak – CF) Batteries Es…
11. Joe Mauer(Min – C,1B) Angels of As…
12. Aroldis Chapman(Cin – RP) Norwich No II
13. Matt Holliday(StL – OF) Bits & Bytes
14. Wil Myers (TB – CF) Northfleet K…
15. David Ortiz(Bos – 1B) The Cheddar …
16. Elvis Andrus(Tex – SS) Jesmond Denn…

I’d highlighted Zimmerman, Holliday, Ortiz and Adrian Gonzalez for this round, hoping one of them would make it to me. Much to my surprise, Alex Rios was still available when it was my turn, so I happily nabbed his power/speed combination. My mouse did hover over Greinke for a bit, but Rios was too good to pass up.

 

Round 5

1. Homer Bailey(Cin – SP) Jesmond Denn…
2. Hunter Pence(SF – OF) The Cheddar …
3. Ben Zobrist(TB – 2B,SS,OF) Northfleet K…
4. Yadier Molina(StL – C) Bits & Bytes
5. Kenley Jansen(LAD – RP) Norwich No II
6. Jason Heyward(Atl – CF) Angels of As…
7. Billy Hamilton(Cin – CF) Batteries Es…
8. Gerrit Cole(Pit – SP) Weston-Super…
9. Jordan Zimmermann(Was – SP) Orpington Is…
10. Brett Gardner(NYY – CF) Richie’s RBI’s
11. Ian Kinsler(Det – 2B) Iron Men
12. Gio González(Was – SP) NE Riverkings
13. Eric Hosmer(KC – 1B) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
14. Greg Holland(KC – RP) Enfield Butc…
15. Mat Latos(Cin – SP) London Bananas
16. Josh Donaldson(Oak – 3B) Mighty Slugs

I was hoping to get a second starter this round, and my hopes were raised when Gerrit Cole was still around, only to see the Super Sox beat me to him. It would have been great to get Cole, but Jordan Zimmermann is not a bad alternative. We start to see a couple more closers go, while there is a mini-run on CFs with Heyward, Hamilton and Gardner. It’s hard to know what to expect from Billy, as he has lightning speed, but will he hit enough to be able to swipe bases? The Gardner pick is a surprise too. as good a player as he is, he is a bit one-dimensional, and would probably have been available much later in the draft. If I’d needed a CF at this point, I’d have gambled on Kemp or Josh Hamilton.

 

Round 6

1. Koji Uehara(Bos – RP) Mighty Slugs
2. Matt Cain(SF – SP) London Bananas
3. Mark Trumbo(Ari – 1B,OF) Enfield Butc…
4. Matt Kemp(LAD – CF) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
5. Carlos Santana(Cle – C,1B) NE Riverkings
6. Josh Hamilton(LAA – CF) Iron Men
7. C.J. Wilson(LAA – SP) Richie’s RBI’s
8. Manny Machado(Bal – 3B) Orpington Is…
9. Pedro Álvarez(Pit – 3B) Weston-Super…
10. Trevor Rosenthal(StL – RP) Batteries Es…
11. Everth Cabrera(SD – SS) Angels of As…
12. Alex Cobb(TB – SP) Norwich No II
13. Michael Cuddyer(Col – 1B,OF) Bits & Bytes
14. James Shields(KC – SP) Northfleet K…
15. Hyun-jin Ryu(LAD – SP) The Cheddar …
16. Julio Teherán(Atl – SP) Jesmond Denn…

The problem position of 3B one I need to fill sooner rather than later and I wonder if Carlos Santana, switching positions to 3B, will make it to me. The Riverkings step in, so it leaves me with a choice of three: Machado, Alvarez and Sandoval. Alvarez has the best pop by far, but the low average is off-putting. I opt for Machado and hope he can fully recover from his injury last year. Alvarez goes with the very next pick. Beck ‘Nams and Iron Men gamble of healthier and more productive seasons from Kemp and Hamilton, while six of the 16 picks in this round were SPs.

 

Round 7

1. Doug Fister(Was – SP) Jesmond Denn…
2. Joe Nathan(Det – RP) The Cheddar …
3. Mike Minor(Atl – SP) Northfleet K…
4. Andrew Cashner(SD – SP,RP) Bits & Bytes
5. Danny Salazar(Cle – SP) Norwich No II
6. Hisashi Iwakuma (Sea – SP) Angels of As…
7. Pablo Sandoval(SF – 3B) Batteries Es…
8. Alex Gordon(KC – OF) Weston-Super…
9. Sergio Romo(SF – RP) Orpington Is…
10. Jim Johnson (Oak – RP) Richie’s RBI’s
11. Brett Lawrie(Tor – 2B,3B) Iron Men
12. David Robertson(NYY – RP) NE Riverkings
13. Carlos Beltrán(NYY – OF) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
14. Christian Yelich (Mia – CF) Enfield Butc…
15. Jayson Werth(Was – OF) London Bananas
16. Tony Cingrani(Cin – SP,RP) Mighty Slugs

Pitching dominates the start of round seven, with six hurlers taken at the start of the round – nine in a row overall – and I start to think about getting a closer. Romo is the best available, so I grab the Giant. Had I not already filled two outfield spots, I’d have been very tempted to go with Werth here, so tip of the hat to the Bananas. I like the picks of Fister and Beltran here – Carlos should enjoy the short porch at Yankee Stadium.

 

Round 8

1. Shane Victorino(Bos – CF) Mighty Slugs
2. Cole Hamels(Phi – SP) London Bananas
3. Aramis Ramírez(Mil – 3B) Enfield Butc…
4. Shelby Miller(StL – SP) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
5. Billy Butler(KC – 1B) NE Riverkings
6. José Abreu(CWS – 1B) Iron Men
7. Corey Hart(Sea – 1B) Richie’s RBI’s
8. Brandon Belt(SF – 1B) Orpington Is…
9. José Altuve(Hou – 2B) Weston-Super…
10. Michael Wacha(StL – SP,RP) Batteries Es…
11. Martín Prado(Ari – 2B,3B,OF) Angels of As…
12. Wilin Rosario(Col – C) Norwich No II
13. Xander Bogaerts(Bos – 3B,SS) Bits & Bytes
14. Jedd Gyorko(SD – 2B,3B) Northfleet K…
15. Coco Crisp(Oak – CF) The Cheddar …
16. Glen Perkins(Min – RP) Jesmond Denn…

First base is a bit of a hole in my team. With it being a deep position, I was prepared to wait to get one but feel I really need one this round, especially with Butler and Abreu going. Belt, Rizzo and Adams are all available, as is Victor Martinez. I’m really tempted to grab Wacha, but stop myself and do what I hope is the sensible thing, hoping Belt can build on a strong finish to 2013. Rosario and Gyorko, two other hitters I had on my wish list for the next round, are snapped up by Norwich and Northfleet while Batteries Essential takes Wacha. The gamble on Hart by the RBIs could lead to big power numbers, but considering Hart missed all of 2013, I wouldn’t have taken him quite this early.

 

Round 9

1. Brandon Phillips(Cin – 2B) Jesmond Denn…
2. Brian McCann(NYY – C) The Cheddar …
3. Sonny Gray(Oak – SP) Northfleet K…
4. Alfonso Soriano(NYY – OF) Bits & Bytes
5. Kyle Seager(Sea – 3B) Norwich No II
6. Daniel Murphy(NYM – 1B,2B) Angels of As…
7. Matt Moore(TB – SP) Batteries Es…
8. Anthony Rizzo(ChC – 1B) Weston-Super…
9. Nelson Cruz(Bal – OF) Orpington Is…
10. J.J. Hardy(Bal – SS) Richie’s RBI’s
11. Jason Grilli(Pit – RP) Iron Men
12. Domonic Brown(Phi – OF) NE Riverkings
13. Kris Medlen(Atl – SP) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
14. Tyler Clippard(Was – RP) Enfield Butc…
15. Casey Janssen(Tor – RP) London Bananas
16. Matt Adams(StL – 1B) Mighty Slugs

My wish list shrinks even more this round as I see Phillips, McCann and Soriano all taken. I consider going for a second closer but it seems a bit early and there are still plenty of options left which I’d accept as a second reliever. The best hitters available are both outfielders, so I weigh up Cruz and Brown and hope Nelson enjoys hitting at Camden Yards. Northfleet make a nice pick with Gray, while it’s interesting to see a set-up reliever in Clippard drafted ahead of closers. The RBIs get a nice power boost at SS with Hardy, while another JJ groans after drafting Medlen, only to learn afterwards of his injury problems.

 

Round 10

1. Clay Buchholz(Bos – SP) Mighty Slugs
2. Addison Reed(Ari – RP) London Bananas
3. Mark Melancon (Pit – RP) Enfield Butc…
4. Francisco Liriano(Pit – SP) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
5. Aaron Hill(Ari – 2B) NE Riverkings
6. Jeff Samardzija(ChC – SP) Iron Men
7. Kelly Johnson(NYY – 2B,3B,OF) Richie’s RBI’s
8. Rafael Soriano(Was – RP) Orpington Is…
9. Austin Jackson(Det – CF) Weston-Super…
10. Desmond Jennings(TB – CF) Batteries Es…
11. Jonathan Papelbon(Phi – RP) Angels of As…
12. Brad Miller(Sea – 2B,SS) Norwich No II
13. Howie Kendrick(LAA – 2B) Bits & Bytes
14. Ernesto Frieri(LAA – RP) Northfleet K…
15. Andrelton Simmons(Atl – SS) The Cheddar …
16. Jurickson Profar(Tex – 2B,3B,SS) Jesmond Denn…

I’m surprised Rafael Soriano is still available when it’s my turn in round 10 and, although I didn’t plan on getting two closers this early, it seems too good an opportunity to pass up even though I had been very tempted with Cueto. Enfield goes early for holds again, adding Melancon, while Norwich cause a surprise with Brad Miller. Desmond Jenning is drafted, but not by Jesmond Dennings.

 

Round 11

1. Alejandro De Aza(CWS – CF) Jesmond Denn…
2. Jon Lester(Bos – SP) The Cheddar …
3. Brandon Moss(Oak – 1B,OF) Northfleet K…
4. Steve Cishek(Mia – RP) Bits & Bytes
5. Mike Napoli(Bos – 1B) Norwich No II
6. Jim Henderson(Mil – RP) Angels of As…
7. Starlin Castro(ChC – SS) Batteries Es…
8. Johnny Cueto(Cin – SP) Weston-Super…
9. Chase Utley(Phi – 2B) Orpington Is…
10. Joel Peralta(TB – RP) Richie’s RBI’s
11. Asdrubal Cabrera (Cle – SS) Iron Men
12. Jered Weaver(LAA – SP) NE Riverkings
13. Hiroki Kuroda(NYY – SP) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
14. Jed Lowrie(Oak – 2B,SS) Enfield Butc…
15. Jonathan Lucroy (Mil – C,1B) London Bananas
16. Jhonny Peralta(StL – SS) Mighty Slugs

Johnny Cueto’s name had been hanging around at the top of the rankings for a while, and just when I think he’ll make it to me the Super Sox nab him. I switch to filling the gap at 2B with Utley. His 30HR days may be behind him, but if he can hit 18HR again this year, I’ll happily take that from a 2B. Northfleet take the 30HR power of Moss, while more middle infielders are taken: Castro, Cabrera, Lowrie and Johnny Peralta. I start planning ahead for a third starter, but Weaver and Kuroda go…

 

Round 12

1. Justin Masterson(Cle – SP) Mighty Slugs
2. Lance Lynn(StL – SP) London Bananas
3. Salvador Pérez(KC – C) Enfield Butc…
4. CC Sabathia(NYY – SP) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
5. Grant Balfour(TB – RP) NE Riverkings
6. Fernando Rodney(Sea – RP) Iron Men
7. A.J. Burnett(Phi – SP) Richie’s RBI’s
8. Chris Archer(TB – SP) Orpington Is…
9. Huston Street(SD – RP) Weston-Super…
10. Matt Garza(Mil – SP) Batteries Es…
11. R.A. Dickey(Tor – SP) Angels of As…
12. Ervin Santana(Atl – SP) Norwich No II
13. Michael Bourn(Cle – CF) Bits & Bytes
14. Alex Wood(Atl – SP,RP) Northfleet K…
15. Leonys Martín (Tex – CF) The Cheddar …
16. Nolan Arenado(Col – 3B) Jesmond Denn…

… as do Masterson, Lynn, Sabathia and Burnett. Fortunately my target of Archer is available, so I waste little him in adding him to my rotation. Garza, Dickey and Santana go soon after in a pitching heavy round. Will Victor Martinez make it to me in the next round to fill my UT spot?

 

Round 13

1. Patrick Corbin(Ari – SP) Jesmond Denn…
2. Mark Teixeira(NYY – 1B) The Cheddar …
3. Víctor Martínez(Det – 1B) Northfleet K…
4. Dan Haren(LAD – SP) Bits & Bytes
5. Anthony Rendón(Was – 2B,3B) Norwich No II
6. Khris Davis(Mil – OF) Angels of As…
7. Bobby Parnell(NYM – RP) Batteries Es…
8. Jimmy Rollins(Phi – SS) Weston-Super…
9. Matt Wieters(Bal – C) Orpington Is…
10. John Axford (Cle – RP) Richie’s RBI’s
11. Marco Estrada(Mil – SP) Iron Men
12. Nick Castellanos(Det – OF) NE Riverkings
13. Norichika Aoki(KC – OF) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
14. Will Venable (SD – CF) Enfield Butc…
15. Ryan Howard(Phi – 1B) London Bananas
16. Jason Castro(Hou – C) Mighty Slugs

Northfleet nab V-Mart, which gives me a headache in this round. I had planned on waiting for a catcher until late on, but decide on going for Wieters’ power here, even if the average makes me wince a bit. Maybe Jason Castro would have been the better choice, but he is grabbed by the Mighty Slugs. Corbin is drafted by Jesmond, although since the draft he has been ruled out with injury. We see some gambles taken on older players (Teixeira and Howard) while the Riverkings go for Castellanos, who will add 3B eligibility and hit somewhere in the middle of the Detroit lineup.

 

Round 14

1. Torii Hunter(Det – OF) Mighty Slugs
2. Josh Reddick (Oak – OF) London Bananas
3. Alex Guerrero(LAD – 2B,SS) Enfield Butc…
4. Brian Dozier(Min – 2B) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
5. Tim Lincecum(SF – SP) NE Riverkings
6. Zack Wheeler(NYM – SP) Iron Men
7. Nick Swisher(Cle – 1B,OF) Richie’s RBI’s
8. Ubaldo Jiménez(Bal – SP) Orpington Is…
9. Wilson Ramos(Was – C) Weston-Super…
10. Evan Gattis(Atl – C,OF) Batteries Es…
11. Scott Kazmir(Oak – SP) Angels of As…
12. George Springer(Hou – CF) Norwich No II
13. Alexei Ramírez(CWS – SS) Bits & Bytes
14. Yan Gomes(Cle – C) Northfleet K…
15. Tyson Ross(SD – SP,RP) The Cheddar …
16. Carl Crawford(LAD – OF) Jesmond Denn…

I still have a gap at UT to fill, but no-one really stands out at this point in the draft. I know from doing my mocks there are later-round options which I can live with, so rather than reaching down the list of hitters now, I decide to add to my rotation. I’ve no idea which Ubaldo I’ll get this year, but I like him as my fourth starter. Three more catchers (Ramos, Gattis and Gomes) are drafted, Norwich takes a flier of Houston rookie Springer and Enfield adds Alex Guerrero, who has 2B and SS eligibility, but will likely start the season in the minors. The fielding may need work, but he can hit.

 

Round 15

1. A.J. Pierzynski(Bos – C) Jesmond Denn…
2. Joaquín Benoit(SD – RP) The Cheddar …
3. Joakim Soria(Tex – RP) Northfleet K…
4. Nate Jones(CWS – RP) Bits & Bytes
5. Rex Brothers(Col – RP) Norwich No II
6. Mitch Moreland(Tex – 1B) Angels of As…
7. Neil Walker(Pit – 2B) Batteries Es…
8. José Veras(ChC – RP) Weston-Super…
9. A.J. Griffin(Oak – SP) Orpington Is…
10. Josh Johnson(SD – SP) Richie’s RBI’s
11. Neftali Feliz(Tex – RP) Iron Men
12. Cody Allen(Cle – RP) NE Riverkings
13. Ian Kennedy(SD – SP) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
14. Dan Straily(Oak – SP) Enfield Butc…
15. Brandon Beachy (Atl – SP) London Bananas
16. Taijuan Walker(Sea – SP) Mighty Slugs

Seven relievers are drafted this round, but I decide to add to my rotation again, taking AJ Griffin… only to find out he’s picked up an injury, news which only broke a short time before the draft started and which passed me by. Hopefully it will not be a long-term injury, but he will not be ready to start the season. Still, at least it’s only a 15th round pick for a fifth starter. Pierzynski’s a nice value pick here for Jesmond. The Bananas take Beachy, who is also hurt, while Batteries Essential nab a 2B I really like in Walker. Another Walker, Seattle prospect Taijuan, is added by the Slugs.

 

Round 16

1. Yordano Ventura(KC – SP) Mighty Slugs
2. Omar Infante(KC – 2B) London Bananas
3. Iván Nova(NYY – SP) Enfield Butc…
4. Corey Kluber(Cle – SP) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
5. Jonathan Villar(Hou – SS) NE Riverkings
6. Danny Farquhar(Sea – RP) Iron Men
7. Adam Lind(Tor – 1B) Richie’s RBI’s
8. Daniel Nava(Bos – 1B,OF) Orpington Is…
9. Chase Headley(SD – 3B) Weston-Super…
10. Ben Revere(Phi – CF) Batteries Es…
11. Tanner Scheppers(Tex – RP) Angels of As…
12. Rick Porcello(Det – SP) Norwich No II
13. Derek Jeter(NYY – SS) Bits & Bytes
14. Yovani Gallardo(Mil – SP) Northfleet K…
15. Ricky Nolasco(Min – SP) The Cheddar …
16. Chris Tillman(Bal – SP) Jesmond Denn…

The Slugs then add another promising young arm in Yordano Ventura. I can’t ignore the UT hole any more, so opt for Nava here. This leaves me needing a bench hitter, a starter and two set-up relievers with my remaining picks. Northfleet and Jesmond get good value picks with Gallardo and Tillman.

 

Round 17

1. LaTroy Hawkins(Col – RP) Jesmond Denn…
2. Tommy Hunter(Bal – RP) The Cheddar …
3. Ryan Cook(Oak – RP) Northfleet K…
4. Chris Johnson(Atl – 1B,3B) Bits & Bytes
5. Drew Smyly(Det – RP) Norwich No II
6. Matt Domínguez(Hou – 3B) Angels of As…
7. Michael Brantley(Cle – OF) Batteries Es…
8. Dexter Fowler(Hou – CF) Weston-Super…
9. Brian Wilson(LAD – RP) Orpington Is…
10. Adam LaRoche(Was – 1B) Richie’s RBI’s
11. Jake Peavy(Bos – SP) Iron Men
12. Edward Mujica(Bos – RP) NE Riverkings
13. Travis Wood(ChC – SP) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
14. Brandon Workman(Bos – SP,RP) Enfield Butc…
15. Luke Gregerson (Oak – RP) London Bananas
16. Kevin Siegrist(StL – RP) Mighty Slugs

It’s no surprise to see plenty of pitching in round 17 as teams fill out their rotations and grab set-up relievers. Hawkins, who will start the year as Coloradio’s closer, is nabbed by Jesmond, proving you can wait for saves until the very late rounds. I go for Brian Wilson, who will be Jansen’s set-up man. Hopefully this will mean plenty of holds and the odd save should Jansen need a day off.

 

Round 18

1. Jake McGee(TB – RP) Mighty Slugs
2. Luis Avilán (Atl – RP) London Bananas
3. Tanner Roark(Was – SP,RP) Enfield Butc…
4. Junichi Tazawa(Bos – RP) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
5. Erik Johnson(CWS – SP) NE Riverkings
6. Bartolo Colón (NYM – SP) Iron Men
7. Nate McLouth(Was – OF) Richie’s RBI’s
8. Sean Doolittle(Oak – RP) Orpington Is…
9. Adam Eaton(CWS – CF) Weston-Super…
10. Kole Calhoun (LAA – OF) Batteries Es…
11. John Lackey(Bos – SP) Angels of As…
12. Colby Rasmus(Tor – CF) Norwich No II
13. Jarrod Saltalamacchia(Mia – C) Bits & Bytes
14. Sergio Santos(Tor – RP) Northfleet K…
15. Tim Hudson(SF – SP) The Cheddar …
16. Archie Bradley(Ari – SP) Jesmond Denn…

I think about adding my final starter here, particularly Hudson, but there are a number of SPs on my list I would happily take, so I decide to wait and grab the next reliever I’d targeted in Doolittle. Iron Men grab Colon, who should enjoy life in the Mets’ spacious stadium against NL lineups, while Roark could be an inspired pick by Enfield if he clings on to his spot in the Washington rotation. Eaton and Rasmus are nice late-round CF options.

 

Round 19

1. Will Middlebrooks(Bos – 3B) Jesmond Denn…
2. Rajai Davis(Det – CF) The Cheddar …
3. Todd Frazier(Cin – 3B) Northfleet K…
4. Raúl Ibañez(LAA – OF) Bits & Bytes
5. Avisail García(CWS – CF) Norwich No II
6. Oscar Taveras (StL – OF) Angels of As…
7. Kendrys Morales(Sea – 1B) Batteries Es…
8. B.J. Upton(Atl – CF) Weston-Super…
9. Chris Carter(Hou – 1B,OF) Orpington Is…
10. Carlos Martínez (StL – RP) Richie’s RBI’s
11. Kelvin Herrera(KC – RP) Iron Men
12. Miguel Montero(Ari – C) NE Riverkings
13. Kevin Gregg(ChC – RP) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
14. Martín Pérez (Tex – SP) Enfield Butc…
15. Derek Holland(Tex – SP) London Bananas
16. Darren O’Day(Bal – RP) Mighty Slugs

Ibanez had been on my list for my bench hitter, but is grabbed by Bits & Bytes. I decide to go for Carter’s power, although his low average is a concern. Hopefully between him and Nava I can have a workable platoon at UT. The Angels grab the Cards’ top prospect in Taveras, Matt should enjoy seeing Davis run wild in Detroit and Norwich take Avisail Garcia, an intriguing hitter. I’d like to see what he can do over a full season.

 

Round 20

1. Carlos Quentin(SD – OF) Mighty Slugs
2. Ángel Pagán (SF – CF) London Bananas
3. James Paxton(Sea – SP) Enfield Butc…
4. Dioner Navarro(Tor – C) Beck ‘Nams (GB)
5. Marlon Byrd(Phi – OF) NE Riverkings
6. Devin Mesoraco (Cin – C) Iron Men
7. Mike Avilés(Cle – 2B,3B,SS) Richie’s RBI’s
8. Mike Leake(Cin – SP) Orpington Is…
9. Justin Morneau(Col – 1B) Weston-Super…
10. Erick Aybar (LAA – SS) Batteries Es…
11. Josh Rutledge(Col – 2B,SS) Angels of As…
12. Tony Watson(Pit – RP) Norwich No II
13. Peter Bourjos(StL – CF) Bits & Bytes
14. Javier Báez(ChC – SS) Northfleet K…
15. Joe Smith(LAA – RP) The Cheddar …
16. Kolten Wong(StL – 2B) Jesmond Denn…

In the final round I get my sixth start in Leake, who I think is underrated in the Yahoo rankings. There’s a mix of veterans (Morneau, Byrd, Quentin, Pagan) and rookies (Paxton, Baez and Wong).

On the Orpington Isotopes

Overall, I’m pretty happy with my team. I don’t have the big power hitters you would expect at the infield corners, but there’s extra pop in the middle infield. I really like my outfield and the top of the rotation. The rest of the rotation could go either way, especially Ubaldo, and then there’s the Griffin injury to deal with. But the bullpen looks solid.

On the rest of the field

Here are my thoughts on the other teams:

Jesmond Dennings: Picking first can be a blessing and a curse, but a very strong batting lineup with nice blend of youth, experience, speed and power. Pitching staff may be lacking a true ace and could use a set-up reliever or two, but a very good effort.

Cheddar Chasers: Very strong infield and the outfield’s pretty good too. If Tex is back to his old self, they’re in business. Strong overall pitching staff, could get stronger if Hunter claims the Baltimore closer role.

Northfleet Knights: Very solid across the board offensively. Pitching staff needs wins from Shields and saves from Soria. If they get them, look out.

Bits & Bytes: Two top aces and two closers make the pitching staff high in quality if not quantity. Lineup may be lacking power, as only one player hit 30+ HR last year.

Norwich No II: Plenty of pop with seven 20+ HR players and strong outfield. Not sure about Miller at SS. Two top closers in Chapman and Jansen, but roation lacking a true ace.

Angels Of Ash Vale: Strong pitching staff led by two aces. Lack of power may be an issue but there is good speed.

Batteries Essential: Going for young arms at the top of the rotation. Will need to add rotation depth. Lineup of mashers and a couple of speedsters. Average may suffer.

Weston Super Sox: Pretty solid across the board. Average may be a problem, but decent power and speed. Strong roation and closers, but more pitching depth and set-up relievers needed. Plenty of batting trade bait in the bench.

Richie’s RBIs: A lot of gambles here. Need Hart, Josh Johnson and Granderson to be healthy and Tanaka to be worth early pick. 3B needs an upgrade and rotation depth may be an issue.

Iron Men: Pretty steady across the board. Like the outfield. Will hope for more power from Josh Hamilton and Abreu. Decent pitching depth.

NE Riverkings: Strong rotation, power spread amongst lineup but maybe lacking 30HR bat.

Beck ‘Nams: Really good rotation depth despite Medlen injury. Bullpen needs some work, but can use SP surplus as trade bait. Lineup fairly steady. Could be really boosted by a healthy Kemp.

Enfield Butchers: Lineup should compete for good average. Need a 2B or SS until Guerrero arrives. Bullpen strong, but may regret taking two closers and two set-up men early in draft.

London Bananas: Really solid lineup could look even better if Howard rebounds. Speed to burn with Ellsbury/Marte combo in strong outfield. Injury to Parker to contend with, but rotation and bullpen still strong. Very good effort from 15th in draft order.

Mighty Slugs: Power impressively spread throughout lineup and should be strong contenders in average too. Pitching staff maybe lacking top-tier ace but decent enough depth. Just the one closer.

Tags: , ,

4 Responses to “BGB Fantasy League 2014: Draft review”

  1. Matt Smith #

    Thanks for doing the draft review again, Mark. Great stuff.

    In previous drafts I’ve ended up being a bit light on pitching so I’ve gone a bit more hurler-heavy this time around (bearing in mind my attempt last year resulted in a last placed finish!).

    I think I’ll be relying on a few astute (lucky) pick-ups over the course of the season to cover for batting lineup injuries, but hopefully there’s enough quality there that can mean if most play up to expectations, some average temporary pick-ups should still allow me to hold my own.

    Should be another fun competition.

    March 18, 2014 at 8:31 pm Reply
  2. Clive Barker #

    Great write up of a great draft. Good to see lots of banter and I must admit, it was the most fun draft I’ve done so far this year

    March 18, 2014 at 8:35 pm Reply
  3. Norwich No II #

    Nice write up – always cool to hear what others think! :)

    I’m pretty happy with my team – as ever it always depends on whether the flyers and solid picks work out as such. Surprised a little by your Miller comments. He’s got decent power and speed – a nice combination at SS. I’m a believer – he’s a pretty common denominator on all my teams this year, so hope I’m right!

    Agree about my starting pitching but hoping Cobb, who I think is a bit underrated after missing part of last season with injury and Salazar, who could be this year’s Harvey come through. And with Chapman / Kenley I should be getting extra Ks from my closers to help.

    March 18, 2014 at 11:28 pm Reply
  4. Garreth #

    Thanks for the write-up; good effort.

    Picking first and having the subsequent ‘swing’ picks each round isn’t exactly my favourite place to go in a draft; it’s annoying to see so many players go off the board in between selections and makes it harder to plan ahead for what will be there come your next turn, but overall I’m pretty happy with my selections, particularly my hitting.

    It seems a lot of people are down on Pujols this year, but even at his hobbling, plantar-fasciitic worst last year he was still on pace for a 30 homer season. There’ll be a drop from his peak, for sure, but back fit he should still mash plenty of HRs. With him, Trout and Bruce as my first three, there’s plenty of power.

    I’m annoyed that I’ve already lost Corbin for the season, as I was more than happy with the value in my rotation (Bailey, Teheran, Corbin, Fister and Tillman would’ve been a great front 5 for where I got them), although his injury probably accelerates Archie Bradley’s jump up to the majors, so it’s swings and roundabouts. I might have to pick up another arm in the meantime to compensate for that loss (feel free to propose any trades).

    I’ll have a proper look at other people’s teams later, although I note already that Yahoo!’s ranks/projections and mine differ quite wildly, so will be interesting to see where I rank teams compared to them.

    Looking forward to the season, now!

    March 19, 2014 at 3:22 pm Reply

Leave a Reply