Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Daft Draft Reply

Jay and I both so enjoyed reading Ryan and Jeff's draft breakdown we drafted a response. I am a bit of an addict, so I tend to be less sensitive than I should be to complaints of overlong posts. Deal with the length or don't read it (that's what she said?). You can always skip down to the questionable masculinity in Jeff's post about American Idol below.

This is basically a round by round breakdown, in response to Jeff and Ryan's post. I provide my notes on the round first, then a breakdown of my pick. Jay then replies with some general comments on his pick and on the round in general.

Round 1

1 Jose Reyes - Ebner
2 David Wright - Wilson
3 Alex Rodriguez - Jay
4 Matt Holliday - Bri
5 Hanley Ramirez - Ryan
6 Chase Utley - Evan
7 Miguel Cabrera - Jeff
8 Jimmy Rollins - Jon
9 Prince Fielder - Paul
10 Ryan Howard – Emery

Notes: I like Hanley even better than Wright, if healthy. The shoulder surgery scares me and I don’t consider it less of a risk than Pujols’ elbow, which got so much more press. Let’s examine some quotes from Baseball Prospectus injury expert Will Carroll:

Another shoulder surgery survivor, Ramirez is in much the same situation as Vernon Wells . . . Ramirez, on the other hand, is coming off shoulder surgery, something that figures to depress his power, at least in the first part of the season. While he should come back to a high level, the same can't be said for the cast surrounding him. Added in with the recovering shoulder, Ramirez's prospects for this season aren't quite as high as one would expect based on his talent and past production.”

I couldn't’t expose myself to that risk at the 2nd overall pick, and I don’t think Wright will be much worse even if Hanley is as good as he’s appeared to be in spring training. Rollins will regress, significantly. Holliday and Fielder are money.

Wilson’s Pick: Alex Rodriguez is awesome. Let’s get that out of the way. He is one of the 5-10 best baseball players of all time. He won 3 of the last 4 MVPs. He accidentally hit a home run on a sacrifice bunt. They stopped running elevated trains in Manhattan because his home run balls kept knocking them off the tracks. His sweat cures cancer, but regrettably baseball is so easy for him he doesn’t sweat. Moreover, he plays the same position as the guy I picked over him, David Wright. Yet, I don’t expect better numbers from him for a number of reasons. I haven’t forgotten 2006 quite yet, and let’s not forget that he’s 32; the decline will happen at some point. The advanced age makes him more likely to decline naturally or succumb to injury. Even when healthy and productive, he strikes out a bit more often than Wright, hits fewer doubles, is less likely to hit triples, and steals fewer bases. In light of our scoring system, PECOTA strongly prefers Wright--I cannot deny my robot. Also, David Wright is just so pretty . . . how can I turn down that face? He’s like the Matt Leinert of baseball, except good.

Jay’s Pick: It’s Alex Rodriguez.

Round 2
11 Johan Santana - Emery
12 Grady Sizemore - Paul
13 Brandon Phillips - Jon
14 Albert Pujols - Jeff
15 Ryan Braun - Evan
16 Carl Crawford - Ryan
17 David Ortiz - Bri
18 Alfonso Soriano - Jay
19 Vladimir Guerrero - Wilson
20 Carlos Lee - Ebner

Notes: Alfonso Soriano has no business going that late. I don’t understand that at all. I wouldn’t have taken Crawford or Phillips or Ortiz or Sizemore over him. I mean, he’s only one year removed from 40-40-40 and hit 30 home runs and stole 20+ bases last year with a bum leg. He’s not usable at 2B anymore, but I cannot understand passing him up for Grady’s infinite strikeouts or Crawford’s limp wristed game. Pujols is a great pick. Huge risk, but go big or go home.

Wilson’s Pick: Vlad is on bum knees, with a bad back, and is old. Why take him when I passed on A-Rod earlier ostensibly on risk? In a league with hits, doubles, strikeouts, average, and OPS as categories, few players are as valuable as a healthy Vladimir Guerrero.

I’m convinced that too often we think of our league as a 5x5 league. The hitting categories are similar and correlate strongly, but some guys change in valuation a great deal. Vlad is a late second round pick in a 5x5 and a late first rounder in this league. This mindset drove the draft robot I built this year, and drives many of my picks in this draft.

Jay’z Pick: I don’t own a draft robot. This will be made apparent in later rounds. But if I did, I think it would have patted me on the back after taking Soriano. Soriano kind of scares me after his down 2007, but if 30+HR’s and 20 SB is down, then I can’t wait to see what up is. I almost took BJ Upton instead, and thought Wilson would take him in three and I’d miss him, but hey…..

Round 3
21 Jake Peavy - Ebner
22 Ichiro Suzuki - Wilson
23 B.J. Upton - Jay
24 Mark Teixeira - Bri
25 Carlos Beltran - Ryan
26 Lance Berkman - Evan
27 Alex Rios - Jeff
28 Curtis Granderson - Jon
29 Erik Bedard - Paul
30 Derek Jeter - Emery

Notes: Whoops on Granderson, he couldn’t hit lefties, and then he broke his finger. Heck of a writer though. I thought he was wildly overrated going into this draft so I was happy to see him go 3rd round. I agree with Ryan on his assessment of Beltran. Very risky. Rios is a high upside pick, but not one I would have made. My favorite pick of the round is Teixeira, who has very little downside and absurd upside. Why was he going earlier in drafts last year coming off of a worse year in the tougher league?

Wilson’s Pick: Never had Ichiro. PECOTA hates him, but my robot loves hits and average and steals and triples and all the other silly things he does. So I took him, and I’m very happy to have him. Between him and Vladimir, I’m going to have fun watching my team’s at bats this year.

Jay’s Pick: Nice pick Wilson, way to defy PECOTA. I went ahead and took Upton, because, hey, it’s round 3. I love Teixera too, go Bri. Beltran and Granderson? No thanks. Jeter? At 30?

Round 4
31 Magglio Ordonez - Emery
32 Nick Markakis - Paul
33 Justin Morneau - Jon
34 Troy Tulowitzki - Jeff
35 Manny Ramirez - Evan
36 Travis Hafner - Ryan
37 Aramis Ramirez - Bri
38 Victor Martinez - Jay
39 Brian Roberts - Wilson
40 Derrek Lee - Ebner

Notes: Tulo is a good pick. He will be strong at shortstop, and Coors is oh-so-good to him. It actually blew my mind that someone reached on Markakis and it wasn’t one of the Baltimore boys. Manny is looking very good right now, but I laughed at the time. Maybe he actually puts it together and is fantastic this year. He’s something else, but once old players start to decline it’s very rare that they bounce back. Derrek Lee is a great player that PECOTA is in love with. I think that was a great pick, but there was one pick my robot liked better . . .

Wilson’s Pick: I obtained Roberts in both of my leagues; PECOTA loves his average and his steals. In this league in particular he is valuable for the reasons outlined above. Power simply isn’t as useful, as it usually comes packaged with strikeouts and the impossibility of getting steals or triples. So my team now has Roberts and Ichiro.

Jay’s Pick: I took Victor Martinez a little early because I like him and he’s good at baseball. I too like the Derek Lee pick, but I don’t really like him, but he is, admittedly, also good at baseball. Whatever, this is where I start to dislike my picks, or at least disagree with them post hoc. Everyone’s going nuts about Tulowitzki, and I don’t get it. I hope for my sake everyone is wrong. I don’t have him anywhere. Either way, I like Ebner’s Rockie better.

Round 5
41 Garrett Atkins - Ebner
42 Chipper Jones - Wilson
43 Cole Hamels - Jay
44 Corey Hart - Bri
45 Hunter Pence - Ryan
46 C.C. Sabathia - Evan
47 Chone Figgins - Jeff
48 Josh Beckett - Jon
49 Brandon Webb - Paul
50 Adam Dunn - Emery

Notes: Corey Hart. Damn your soulful singing eyes. How did everyone else know you would be so awesome? I guess my plan of waiting and then taking him and Chris B. Young with my next two picks was conceived in delusions. I’m somewhat less excited about Hunter Pence. There’s no evidence that he can take a walk, and he was very lucky on balls in play last year. Baseball Prospectus suggests that his post All-Star Break numbers (.293 .348 .464) are more realistic. He’s still got some speed though. Also . . . Adam Dunn probably would have come all the way around. There’s a guy who was the opposite of my philosophy this year. Chone I think has very little downside. You know what you are getting, and I think you are pretty safely getting it.

Wilson’s Pick: My 3 year Chipper Jones streak continues. I felt like his injuries last year were very fluky. It’s not as though they were muscle pulls or oblique tears. He actually broke his thumbs jumping over some fat Pirates 2B. I think he has a good chance to be healthy, and if healthy he’s obviously still one of the best dozen players in the league. My power needs to come from somewhere, I guess. . .

Jay's Pick: Whole Camels? Sure, whatever. For some reason this year I decided to have strong pitching staffs. I wish I didn’t. Hamels is awesome, no doubt, a little injury risk. But I really wish I took Corey Hart. Or Figgo. Or any batter, really. Poo. In a 5X5 Adam Dunn should go here. In this league, that’s going to hurt.

Round 6
51 Justin Verlander - Emery
52 Carlos Guillen - Paul
53 Adrian Gonzalez - Jon
54 Ryan Zimmerman - Jeff
55 Jonathan Papelbon - Evan
56 Howie Kendrick - Ryan
57 Torii Hunter - Bri
58 Carlos Pena - Jay
59 Chris Young (OF) - Wilson
60 Francisco Rodriguez - Ebner

Notes: Zimmerman is a beautiful pick. I kept getting burned trying to wait on guys in this league. Kendrick isn’t a terrible pick, but I think it may be dreaming a bit. He still can’t take a pitch and hasn’t shown any power or speed. I guess the upside is a .320 batting average, but I think it’ll be mostly empty. Should have taken your boy Tejada instead. Torii Hunter is a completely bewildering choice. I guess he won’t be that bad, but this is way too early. I guess you and Bill Stoneman are making the same mistake, so maybe I’m the one who’s crazy.

Wilson’s Pick: Well, I couldn’t get Corey Hart, but Chris Young is going to be quite good. His minor league batting average is .270, and his minor league OBP is .360. He was very unlucky on balls in play last year. He might hit .250 this year, but he’ll take some walks and hit many home runs and steal some bases along the way.

Jay’s Pick: Carlos Pena will hit some HR’s and get some RBI’s and R’s. That’s why I picked him. I like a lot of picks in this round, namely Zimmerman, Gonzalez, and The Country’s Best Young. Kendrick was the reach of all reaches. Did you really think he’d go before round, like, 9?

Round 7
61 Joe Mauer - Ebner
62 Brian McCann - Wilson
63 Miguel Tejada - Jay
64 Robinson Cano - Bri
65 Todd Helton - Ryan
66 Russell Martin - Evan
67 Eric Byrnes - Jeff
68 Vernon Wells - Jon
69 Bobby Abreu - Paul
70 Jorge Posada - Emery

Notes: Todd Helton is an amazing pick here. I was waiting on him, and got burned yet again. All the reasons you lay out are absolutely true. He was at the top of my board for several rounds and I got greedy waiting on him and got burned (again). I like Tejada and Byrnes as well. Although I expect a gigantic regression from Byrnes he’ll still be solid. As for Vernon Wells and Bobby Abreu, I guess they weren’t reaches but you couldn’t pay me to draft either one so I’m always happy when other people do.

Wilson’s Pick: Tim took my guy and I panicked. I should have taken Todd Helton once Mauer was gone, but whatever. McCann will be fine, he’s a better player than he showed last year.

Jay’s Pick: Suck it Bitches, I got Tejada. Ryan, I can’t believe you didn’t take him, especially in place of Kendrick. Every time I read something about Tejada it was about Minute Maid Park being a righty pull hitter’s paradise. Yay. Hit some HR’s you juicin’ son of a bitch! I don’t know where he’s batting, but wherever it is it’ll be surrounded by Pence, El Caballo, and Lance Berkman. He’s going to be great this year. Might even steal a base or three.

Round 8
71 Brad Hawpe - Emery
72 Ian Kinsler - Paul
73 Jeff Francoeur - Jon
74 Aaron Harang - Jeff
75 Dan Haren - Evan
76 Michael Young - Ryan
77 Carlos Zambrano - Bri
78 J.J. Putz - Jay
79 John Smoltz - Wilson
80 Nick Swisher - Ebner

Notes: The love for Hawpe is confusing to me. He’s a decent hitter who plays in Coors, so I guess that’s good. I just see him as really one of a whole bunch of outfielders; Swisher seems like the better pick to me. Zambrano I’m also not a fan of, because walks aren’t a roto category in our league. Michael Young is another of these guys who is very good in our league, and not very good anywhere else.

Wilson's Pick: I decided to take a pitcher, because I’m a dummy, and I took the riskiest one on the board. Still, he’s really quite good if he stays healthy, but I should have just taken Tim Lincecum and been done with it.

Jay’s Pick: Wilson’s just pissed he didn’t get Francouer. I’m sure his robot doesn’t like him for this league, but still. I basically agree with everything Wilson said. That’s probably going to happen a lot. As for me, well, you are what you draft. Once again, the strong staff thing. I honestly don’t know what I was thinking. Saves is like, 4.5% of our categories. Whatever, at least I didn’t take him in round 6. Besides, I’m sure I’ll make up for it next round with some awesome sleeper triples hitting machine.

Round 9
81 Joe Nathan - Ebner
82 Huston Street - Wilson
83 Billy Wagner - Jay
84 Takashi Saito - Bri
85 Tim Lincecum - Ryan
86 Jason Bay - Evan
87 Delmon Young - Jeff
88 Scott Kazmir - Jon
89 Francisco Cordero - Paul
90 Bobby Jenks - Emery

Notes: I tend to believe Baseball Prospectus, who blame Bay’s huge decline last year on recovery from a knee injury. They always say, once you display a skill, you own it, and he’s not quite old enough to show that major a decline. I believe he’ll bounce back and seems like a fine pick there. I also like Delmon Young quite a bit. I would have taken Kazmir myself, but all this talk about his elbow has me scared, and I’m trying to balance the amount of risk my team takes on.

Wilson’s Pick: I got caught up in the run on relievers this year, and took the top reliever on my board (16.20 ERA as of today). Yet, last year I led the league in saves comfortably despite not taking a single reliever until the last few rounds (Joe Borowski!). Still, that’s really such a crap shoot it’s unbelievable. You might be the guy who gets Al Reyes, Kevin Gregg and Hideki Okajima off the wire. But we’re all watching carefully for those guys, even if we spend high picks on relievers anyway, since they are valuable. So unless you think you have Jedi skills, there’s nothing but luck in getting them. As I felt like my offense was dominant thus far in the draft, I’ve decided to try to avoid that particular crap shoot.

Jay’z Pick: Billy Wagner??? Right after Putz? Okay, not terrible. I clearly didn’t need him, but what I was trying to do was continue the run on Closers, and dominate in it with two top tier guys. Saito, Cordero, and Jenks were the only guys that followed. Damn you jerks and your steel wills!!! I wish I’d taken Delmon Young by the way.

Round 10
91 Roy Halladay - Emery
92 Matt Kemp - Paul
93 Mike Lowell - Jon
94 Shane Victorino - Jeff
95 Rafael Furcal - Evan
96 Chris Young (P) - Ryan
97 Fausto Carmona - Bri
98 Felix Hernandez - Jay
99 Jacoby Ellsbury - Wilson
100 Javier Vazquez - Ebner

Notes: Felix is a good upside pick here, and Halladay is also pretty strong at this point in the draft. I’m not a huge fan of Mike Lowell, but I do like Matt Kemp quite a bit. If the Dodgers don’t play him, they are ‘dodging’ good sense! Get it? I’m not as funny as Jeff/Ryan/Jay.

Wilson’s Pick: My machine says to take steals, doubles, hits and runs. So I took the prospect with absolutely no power. I wanted to shoot myself for probably caving into the hype machine of the Red Sox Nation, but I have no choice but to obey my robot master. Jay’s Pick: “How does it feel to get fucked by the King!” Thank you, Peter Gallagher, for my battle cry every time Felix destroys opposing batters, which I’m hoping will be every 5 days or so. Anyway, Lowell, top 100? Nope. This whole round was fine to me, but I’d have held out for Lowell for about, oh, 15 more rounds.

Round 11
101 Daisuke Matsuzaka - Ebner
102 Yovani Gallardo - Wilson
103 James Shields - Jay
104 Francisco Liriano - Bri
105 Roy Oswalt - Ryan
106 Jose Valverde - Evan
107 Adrian Beltre - Jeff
108 Kenji Johjima - Jon
109 Ben Sheets - Paul
110 Placido Polanco - Emery

Notes: Go Ben Sheets! I hope that works out. I like him significantly better than Liriano there. Oswalt will probably be fine, but his strikeout rate decline is actually terrifying. The Astros are going to be historically bad, and I think he’s going to have trouble getting wins. I will never understand taking a mediocre catcher like Johjima before round twenty.

Wilson’s Pick: I didn’t get Lincecum, so I took the other incredibly high upside young pitcher. Gallardo was really good last year. I think he’ll be back soon and be probably a bit worse than he was last year, but still with high K rates and good ratios. Jay’s Pick: 7 Pitchers. I say I got the best one, but I also like Gallardo’s and Sheets’s upside. Valverde will implode. Beltre would be fine, but he’s talking about a lasting injury that will likely sap his power. Agreed on Johjima. I have no idea why people are so high on Polanco.

Round 12
111 Gary Sheffield - Emery
112 Jim Thome - Paul
113 Raul Ibanez - Jon
114 Dustin Pedroia - Jeff
115 Paul Konerko - Evan
116 Alex Gordon - Ryan
117 Kelly Johnson - Bri
118 Jermaine Dye - Jay
119 Joakim Soria - Wilson
120 Hideki Matsui - Ebner

Notes: So much love for Hideki Matsui, this needs to be explained to me.

Jose Guillen last year: .290/.353/.460, with 53 XBH. Those are about in line with his career rates.

Hideki Matsui: .285/.367/.488, with 57 XBH. Also about in line with his career rates

It’s clear from those numbers that Matsui is better than Guillen, who went undrafted. Seriously though, how much better? He’s also 2 years older, being 34 this year. Let’s do another one:

Austin Kearns: .266/.355/.411 with 51 XBH, he’s 28 and is moving from the worst pitchers park in the game.

I could do this all day. How about just the Ryans in this mold now?

Ryan Church: .272/.349/.464 with 59 XBH.

Ryan Garko: .289/.359/.483 with 51 XBH.

Matsui is fine, I guess, I just don’t get the love that was shown in Jeff’s post or in the chat room at the time. My favorite pick of the round is Pedroia, who will be at least as good this year as he was last year, in which case he’s worth this pick, and might be better.

Wilson’s Pick: 4th best reliever on my board. Baseball Prospectus compares his cut fastball to Mariano Rivera’s. I think he’ll be money, and fits into my strategy of piling on high K relievers.

Jay’s Pick: I’m with Wilson on Matsui. What’s the deal? CN, Cool Nicknames, is not one of the 38 categories we score on. And because of Wilson’s comparison, Jose Guillen is now Mothra. And yeah, Soria is pretty dirty. I like him. I guess I don’t really like the Jermaine Dye pick. Should have taken Andruw, or Loney, or any Dodger really. Remember when Dye hit 44 HR’s? That’d be nice. Oh well.

Round 13
121 Dan Uggla - Ebner
122 James Loney - Wilson
123 Mariano Rivera - Jay
124 Andruw Jones - Bri
125 Rickie Weeks - Ryan
126 Kosuke Fukudome - Evan
127 Chad Cordero - Jeff
128 Rafael Soriano - Jon
129 Evan Longoria - Paul
130 Aaron Heilman - Emery

Notes: Soriano is a great pick. Heilman is a confusing pick. Cordero is a fat pick. Rivera is an old pick. Rickie Weeks is a high upside pick. Uggla is a bad pick.

Wilson’s Pick: I don’t really like James Loney. I feel like he’s overrated based on his second half last year and I don’t really expect him to add power. Once again, however, he piles up hits, which is very important in this league regardless of power, so I added him to the team.

Jay’s Pick: Good summary Wilson. I thought I could wait on Weeks. Jeff is right; too bad about Longoria, but he’ll be up in a couple months, and he could be Ryan Braun-ish. It’s roto, so there’s no reason to drop him.

As for my pick, are you fucking kidding me? Putz, Wagner, and Rivera? I have both NY closers? I don’t even know what the hell I’m doing. The sad thing is, two of these guys will get injured or lose their job, and I won’t even win in Saves. I hate that I drafted these closers. The places/rounds they went is all fine, they just weren’t good picks for my team. Ugh.

Round 14
131 Kevin Youkilis - Emery
132 Matt Capps - Paul
133 Manny Corpas - Jon
134 John Lackey - Jeff
135 Aaron Rowand - Evan
136 Matt Cain - Ryan
137 Trevor Hoffman - Bri
138 Brett Myers - Jay
139 Joba Chamberlain - Wilson
140 Edwin Encarnacion - Ebner

Notes: Cain is better than Hill. That is a good pick. I think the Brett Myers pick is also good, as he seems highly likely to strike out 180 and win 15 games. That is a good value here.

Wilson’s Pick: Joba was my favorite pick, and no one even seemed to notice. He is one of the best holds guys in the game, until the break, when he becomes an awesome starter. That pick makes me very happy.

Jay’s Pick: Aaron Rowand Sucks. Lackey is great here. Stash him on the DL. I too like Myers here, I think a fantastic value. As for Joba, well, he may become a starter, maybe not. And holds guys just aren’t sexy.

Round 15
141 Johnny Damon - Ebner
142 Jeremy Hermida - Wilson
143 Rafael Betancourt - Jay
144 Carlos Marmol - Bri
145 Brad Lidge - Ryan
146 Rich Hill - Evan
147 Josh Hamilton - Jeff
148 Heath Bell - Jon
149 Jonathan Broxton - Paul
150 Josh Fields - Emery

Notes: It’s guys like Josh Hamilton that will make me damn PECOTA to the depths of hell when I lose this year. PECOTA is unable to predict that kind of breakout, so I just ignore it. Josh Hamilton defies description. Let’s look at his line from this spring, which I suppose is meaningless but still awesome:

.460/.500/.780 in 50 at bats; 10 XBH including 2 triples; 1 steal

Gah! When I lose in fantasy it will be because of men like Josh Hamilton; black swans that utterly defy prediction. I like all the high K relievers going here, but last year saw Mike Gonzales, Scott Linebrink, and Akinori Otsuka go in round 15 so I guess we have some expectation on how good these guys will actually end up being. Wilson’s Pick: Jeremy Hermida has a 162 game average of .278/.355/.466 in his MLB career, he’s 24 and getting better and getting healthier. I guess Eric Karabell and I would probably come to blows over this kind of thing but how Hermida goes several rounds after Gary Sheffield and Paul Konerko I don’t know.

Jay’s Pick: I like Hermida and Hamilton, but Hamilton better, so I’d have gone with him. In fact, I regret not taking him. He could be huge. I can’t believe I took Betancourt over Broxton. I always get Broxton. Wait a minute, I still need batters…

Round 16
151 Jon Rauch - Emery
152 Chad Billingsley - Paul
153 Hideki Okajima - Jon
154 Dustin McGowan - Jeff
155 Jason Isringhausen - Evan
156 B.J. Ryan - Ryan
157 Kevin Gregg - Bri
158 Ryan Garko - Jay
159 Eric Gagne - Wilson
160 A.J. Burnett - Ebner

Notes: Unremarkable round to me. I like Billingsley’s upside here and Burnett is a safe and solid pick that could have gone several rounds earlier.

Wilson’s Pick: I am dumb? Is that a fair explanation? Let’s try again. Eric Gagne’s peripherals didn’t change last year when he went to the Red Sox but he was historically unlucky on balls in play. There’s no reason to believe he’s not basically the same pitcher he was in Texas last year, if still a long way removed from the goggled terror of NL west. Yet his spring has me quaking in my boots. At the very least, I probably didn’t need him.

Jay’s Pick: I would have taken Burnett, but as I just mentioned, I needed batters. Ryan Garko is a batter. That’s basically what I was doing there. Picking a guy who was a batter. I hope everyone’s high hopes for Garko come true. Hit 30 HR’s you jerk. I really like the McGowan pick too.

Round 17
161 George Sherrill - Ebner
162 Pat Neshek - Wilson
163 Juan Pierre - Jay
164 John Maine - Bri
165 Geovany Soto - Ryan
166 Carlos Delgado - Evan
167 Orlando Cabrera - Jeff
168 Pedro Martinez - Jon
169 Jeremy Accardo - Paul
170 Tim Hudson – Emery

Notes: Pedro is a good pick, I think he’ll be fine and seems to be healthy enough. I don’t understand Orlando Cabrera, I think he probably could pretty safely reside as a free agent. Delgado has enough upside that I think he was a good pick here. Low upside hitters I think have no business being taken at this point in the draft. Hudson is a good pick in round 17 as well.

Wilson’s Pick: Yeah yeah, just pay no attention to me stocking up on relief arms.

Jay’s Pick: Fuck Juan Pierre. I hope the Dodgers are as dumb as they seem to be.

Round 18
171 Aubrey Huff - Emery
172 Jarrod Saltalamacchia - Paul
173 Oliver Perez - Jon
174 Ian Snell - Jeff
175 Clay Buchholz - Evan
176 Kelvim Escobar - Ryan
177 Yunel Escobar - Bri
178 Willy Taveras - Jay
179 Jeremy Bonderman - Wilson
180 Michael Cuddyer – Ebner

Notes: I think Huff’s got some upside, certainly no worse a pick than Cuddyer (who’s somehow wildly overrated). I love Ian Snell, and I too am worried that you could pull the same trick with Snell you did with Bedard last year. I would have taken Buchholz instead though.

Wilson’s Pick: I think my feelings on Jeremy Bonderman are common knowledge, but I will repeat them for posterity. Good peripherals. Good stuff. Good team.

Jay’s Pick: Huff might have upside, but he wasn’t getting drafted, so no need to here. Salty’s probably back down, but he’ll be back up, and be fine at C. A lot of potential heart breaking pitchers here. Buchholz could be amazing. If Willy Taveras steals more than 30 bases for me, I got what I wanted.

Round 19
181 Joaquin Benoit - Ebner
182 Kerry Wood - Wilson
183 Adam LaRoche - Jay
184 Adam Jones - Bri
185 Justin Upton - Ryan
186 Tony Pena - Evan
187 Troy Percival - Jeff
188 Adam Wainwright - Jon
189 Brian Wilson - Paul
190 Brandon Lyon - Emery

Notes: Adam Jones and Justin Upton are good picks here. I think both of them will probably under-perform their PECOTA forecasts, but I think they’ll both be solid nevertheless. LaRoche is good but brings a heavy burden with 131Ks. He needs to rake to be worth it, but I think he will.

Wilson’s Pick: I continue to accumulate high K relievers, and apparently, extremely high risk relievers. I think I am dumb. This and the Gagne pick, when I look back next year it’s going to be a ‘what was I thinking’ pick.

Jay’s Pick: Yeah, I have Laroche and Garko. If one of them breaks out I’ll be happy. LaRoche is also a batter. Joaquin Benoit was the odd pick here I thought. Well, that and the same guy who has Gagne taking Wood. This was a dull round except for Jones and Upton, which are fine, but I don’t think either will kick ass this year. Could be wrong. Fine upside.

Round 20
191 Ken Griffey Jr. - Emery
192 Phil Hughes - Paul
193 Bob Howry - Jon
194 Ivan Rodriguez - Jeff
195 Brad Penny - Evan
196 Ted Lilly - Ryan
197 Rich Harden - Bri
198 Scot Shields - Jay
199 Lastings Milledge - Wilson
200 C.J. Wilson - Ebner

Notes: Rich Harden does indeed look quite brilliant today after he threw 6 IP and 9 Ks. I also think Brad Penny is underrated (I realize that it’s hard to compute those words in that order). Scot Shields is overrated at this point in his career, but since Jay now has two shields on his team that’s a +2 to armor class.

Wilson’s Pick: Milledge has no competition for his position and a bucketful of upside. Watch him go 20/20.

Jay’s Pick: Yeah Junior. Milledge is a good pick. I was looking at Harden as well. That could be really really awesome. I have no idea why Ryan thinks Ted Lilly is his best pick in the draft. It’s Ted Lilly. He’s pretty good. About a 20th rounder I’d say. Now, Scot Shields on the other hand…Yeah, I wanted holds and I remembered his name. It will likely prove a mistake.

Round 21
201 Billy Butler - Ebner
202 Nick Johnson - Wilson
203 Frank Thomas - Jay
204 Edgar Renteria - Bri
205 Kevin Kouzmanoff - Ryan
206 J.J. Hardy - Evan
207 Joe Blanton - Jeff
208 Jeff Kent - Jon
209 Akinori Iwamura - Paul
210 Pat Burrell - Emery

Notes: Oh Billy Butler, why do I have such problems obtaining you in leagues? Next year, I suppose, though I will probably have to draft you in the 3rd round. Jeff Kent going at pick 208, immediately before the incredibly inferior Akinori Iwamura is rather mindblowing. Jeff Kent may be old, but he’s still an asshole. Also, he can still hit a baseball rather well. Emery continues to punt Ks, which shows real guts.

Also, if Joe Blanton has a Dan Haren year, I swear to god I will uninstall excel, burn my statistics textbooks, and consult an African witch doctor on any future analytical problem.

Wilson’s Pick: Nick Johnson is a very good baseball player. He broke his leg in a rather gruesome fashion, but it’s going to be rust more than injury which slows him down. Still his career OPS+ is 125, and he’s only 29.

Jay’s Pick: Frank Thomas is an old guy with a pretty good OPS that hits HR’s and RBI’s. Karabell would be proud. Yeah, Kent is a good pick. Wilson, didn’t you try to trade me Iwamura for BJ Upton early last year??? Blanton will not break out. He will be pretty good. Billy Butler will turn out to be one of the best steals of this draft.

Round 22
211 Dontrelle Willis - Emery
212 Brian Fuentes - Paul
213 Gary Matthews Jr. - Jon
214 Derrick Turnbow - Jeff
215 Derek Lowe - Evan
216 Kazuo Fukumori - Ryan
217 Colby Rasmus - Bri
218 Hank Blalock - Jay
219 Jered Weaver - Wilson
220 Randy Johnson - Ebner

Notes: Agreed, boring round. I like Randy Johnson and I’m kind of angry I didn’t take him, but Weaver is the safer pick. Matthews Jr. belongs on the free agent wire. Blalock could bounce back, I suppose.

Wilson’s Pick: See above.

Jay’s Pick: I like the Fuentes pick a lot, and the Randy Johnson. Hank Blalock could turn it around, Wilson supposes, or I could drop him after week one. I really don’t care. I just kind of moved the mouse and clicked on a guy at random on this one.

Round 23
221 Conor Jackson - Ebner
222 Jay Bruce - Wilson
223 Joey Votto - Jay
224 Andy Pettitte - Bri
225 Randy Winn - Ryan
226 J.D. Drew - Evan
227 Josh Willingham - Jeff
228 Ryan Spilborghs - Jon
229 Zack Greinke - Paul
230 Elijah Dukes – Emery

Notes: Greinke sat around for far too long. He’s going to be very good. Everyone else in this round will be a free agent at some point this season.

Wilson’s Pick: Why pick a 21 year old hitter who was certainly going to triple A to start the year here? I don’t know. Hoping to randomly get lucky here, I might end up dropping him by May so keep your eyes open!

Jay’s Pick: Fuck Dusty Baker. At the time I thought Votto would probably play. Can’t believe I didn’t take Greinke. Hell, even Dukes.

Round 24
231 Joel Zumaya - Emery
232 Austin Kearns - Paul
233 Dmitri Young - Jon
234 Joe Borowski - Jeff
235 Chien Ming Wang - Evan
236 Mark Teahen - Ryan
237 Russ Springer - Bri
238 Rick Ankiel - Jay
239 Tom Gorzelanny - Wilson
240 Manny Delcarmen - Ebner

Notes: Ankiel is a very good pick here. I agree with exactly what was written on this below. Wang is the only other guy here I believe will remain owned the whole year. Teahen has some upside, I suppose, but guys like Kearns and Young should just be on the wire.

Wilson’s Pick: Already dropped this bozo, if you want him.

Jay’s Pick: Yeah, Ankiel was sweet. Better than Blalock, of course. I think Kearns and Teahen are about the same here. The real winner in this round is Wilson, drafting a perfectly acceptable excuse to use the word Bozo. Well done Wilson.

Tom Gorzelanny (SP, Pittsburgh Pirates)

Round 25
241 Matt Lindstrom - Ebner
242 Stephen Drew - Wilson
243 Ryan Theriot - Jay
244 Bengie Molina - Bri
245 Felipe Lopez - Ryan
246 Henry Owens - Evan
247 Todd Jones - Jeff
248 Jeremy Guthrie - Jon
249 Aaron Hill - Paul
250 Ryan Freel – Emery

Notes: Aaron Hill was a good pick, not sure why I passed on him. Todd Jones will probably get some saves before finally losing the job.

Wilson’s Pick: Finally, I picked my starting shortstop from the highest upside guy available in the last round. Go me.

Jay’s Pick: I picked a guy that will probably steal bases…for waivers, in like 3 weeks.


Ryan Smith said...

I demand more draft recaps. These are spectacular.

Mike LeGower said...

+2 to armor class. Classic. Gary Gygax would be proud, Wilson.