Archive for February, 2010

2010 Top 20 Fantasy Baseball First Basemen

Monday, 22 February, 2010

2010 Top 20 Fantasy Baseball First Basemen
by Raymond Ayala

1. Albert Pujols (STL) – He continues to win MVP award after MVP award for a reason. Has never had a season in his career with less than 30 Homeruns and 100 RBI. We may never see a player like him ever again.

2. Prince Fielder (MIL) – He is the player you go to if you are looking for the most homeruns this season. While 50 is his career high for taters, I predict Fielder breaks that mark this season.

3. Ryan Howard (PHI) – Another young powerful first basemen in the prime of his career. Howard is a lock for monster Homerun and RBI numbers, but do remember he is a K-machine as well.

4. Mark Teixeira (NYY) – He is my early pick for AL MVP this season, and I think his stats continue to rise in the new Yankee Stadium.

5. Miguel Cabrera (DET) – He has a lot to prove, after a disappointing 2009 season (Yah 30 Homeruns and 103 RBI’s is disappointing). He will prove it, and then some. Look for Cabrera to have his first 40 Homerun season of his career this year.

6. Derrek Lee (CHC) – He wasn’t even healthy last season and he put up big homerun and RBI numbers. Now he is in a contract season. If he can improve his numbers, he is worth 15 million a year when he is a free agent in 2011.

7. Adrian Gonzalez (SDP) – Would be much higher on my list if only he didn’t play in Petco Park. Gonzalez should improve his RBI numbers next season, and similar to Howard, you can expect those Homeruns to be in the low 30’s. A trade to the Red Sox would move him to 4th best first basemen on my list.

8. Mark Reynolds (ARZ) – He has a lot of K’s, but his power and speed numbers are unmatched by any 1st basemen currently. Reynolds is a legit contender to go 30-30 this season, as well as strikeout two hundred times.

9. Victor Martinez (BOS) – Even though he is also a catcher, Martinez is also 1st base eligible in all leagues. If you draft him, make sure you wait awhile before you draft another 1st basemen. Victor Martinez might be one of the most valuable players in fantasy baseball during 2010.

10. Carlos Pena (TB) – Has to be considered one of the top first basemen ever since joining the Rays in 2007. Pena is another first basemen that is good for 40 homeruns and 100 RBI. Why am I so confident? Pena will be a free agent in 2011…cha-ching!

11. Justin Morneau (MIN) – Morneau struggled with injuries at times last season, but continues to be another 1st basemen who is a consistent 30-100 threat. If healthy Morneau could be in the hunt for his 2nd MVP award.

12. Kevin Youkilis (BOS) – Youk continues to be one of the Red Sox most hard working and consistent players. Not only could he hit 30-100 next year, but he could also have 100 runs this year as well.

13. Pablo Sandoval (SF) – There was only one player in the NL who had a higher batting average than Sandoval, and his name is Hanley Ramirez. With a better average than Pujols, don’t expect Kung-Fu Panda to repeat the performance next year, but his Homerun and RBI numbers should jump significantly.

14. Kendry Morales (LAA) – When the Angels decided not to resign Mark Teixeria, there was logical thinking behind it after all. Morales is a dangerous switch-hitter who will duplicate last seasons numbers easy.

15. Joey Votto (CIN) – He started off strong last season, before suffering from depression and taking a couple of weeks off. Now his mind should be clear, and he will make a run at the NL Home Run title, guaranteed. Expect Votto’s average to drop a bit, but his homeruns to increase by at least 10.

16. Adam Dunn (WAS) – Gotta love that new ballpark in Washington. Dunn also lowered his K-count from previous season. Dunn, once again, is in a contract year, so you have to expect another 30-100 season.

17. Lance Berkman (HOU) – Another player in a contract year, coming off of an injury. Berkman has never played baseball for a team outside of the state of Texas, so some teams may be skeptical, but if he can show flashes of his former self, he could easily hit the 30-100 mark.

18. Billy Butler (KC) – Showed the baseball world why he was a 1st round pick in 2004. Butler’s power potential has still yet to be tapped, and I expect him to make a run for 30 Homeruns this season. If only he played for another team other than the Royals.

19. David Ortiz (BOS) – That’s right I have three Boston first basemen in my top 20. Ortiz is going to bounce back this year, and even though he is mostly a DH, he still has 1st basemen eligibility. Bold Prediction: Ortiz has 35 Homeruns and 110 RBI’s this season.

20. Paul Konerko (CHW) – I put him in my top 20, not only because he will be a free agent at seasons end, but also because he continues to be a consistent threat for 30-100, but just never seems to get there. This season he gets there and some, so long as his teammates on the White Sox help him out.

Future Five to Watch
1. Justin Smoak (TEX)
2. Logan Morrison (FLA)
3. Chris Carter (OAK)
4. Yonder Alonso (CIN)
5. Brett Wallace (TOR)

2010 Top 20 Fantasy Baseball Catchers

Monday, 22 February, 2010

2010 Top 20 Fantasy Baseball Catchers
by Raymond Ayala

1. Joe Mauer (MIN) – If he is not listed as your top catcher, then you shouldn’t be playing fantasy baseball. Mauer has a better lineup around him this year, and is entering a new hitter friendly ballpark. He will break the 30 Homerun mark this year.

2. Brian McCann (ATL) – I think this could be the year McCann breaks the 100 RBI mark for the first time. I like the Braves as a sleeper team, and I think McCann carries them this season.

3. Matt Wieters (BAL) – His slow start, was due to typical growing pains rookie catchers have, now you can steal him in your fantasy league. In his second season Wieters is going to show the league why he was so highly touted in the minors. I think 20 Homeruns and 80 RBI’s are too be expected.

4. Victor Martinez (BOS) – Homerun numbers dropped, but is still the 2nd best catcher in fantasy. Let’s not forget what a contract-year does for a player. Another season like last, and Martinez is staring at 15-million a year at least.

5. Jorge Posada (NYY) – Ballpark definitely has given Posada’s career a much-needed recharge. Pretty easy to drive in all those RBI’s when you play for a team with an offense that is stacked from top to bottom.

6. Kurt Suzuki (OAK) – This may be a bit of reach, especially in the ballpark, but Suzuki showed a lot of promise last season. Suzuki is a dark horse candidate to go 20-20 this season, which would make him the only catcher to do so since Ivan Rodriguez (WAS).

7. Russell Martin (LAD) – Martin slumped last year, but he is still young and will bounce back this season. The Dodgers are not much weaker on offense, and they will need to put up runs if their pitching staff remains what it is.

8. Benjie Molina (SFG) – He wasn’t expected to return to San Francisco, but has and has to be considered one of the most consistent fantasy catchers out there. He has three straight seasons of at least 15 Homeruns and 80 RBI’s.

9. Miguel Olivio (COL) – Yah he will be battling with Ianetta, but if he can hit 23 Homeruns in Kansas City, he could easily hit 25 Homeruns at Coors Field. I would be shocked if Olivio isn’t able to pry the starting catcher job from Chris Ianetta (COL).

10. Miguel Montero (ARZ) – Montero broke out last season and showed an unexpected jump in power. Mark me down as one person that believes he can reach the 20 Homerun plateau this season.

11. Jarrod Saltalamacchia (TEX) – There are fourteen letters in his last name, and I expect him to hit a homerun for every letter in his last name this season. In that ballpark he may even hit 2 for every letter. Pretty much has a chance to be the best catcher in baseball not named Mauer.

12. Geovany Soto (CHC) – Completely fell off the map this year, and could lose the job this season if his struggles continue. I look for Soto to revert back to the All-Star Soto we saw during his rookie season.

13. A.J. Pierzynski (CHW) – Call him old reliable. All 5 years with the White Sox, A.J. has been good for at least 50 runs, 10 Homeruns, and 50 RBI each season. If you’re looking for a catcher with upside though, he’s not your guy.

14. Yadier Molina (STL) – Power seems like it will never come, but he is the 2nd fastest catcher behind Kurt Suzuki. Could see him nabbing 10-15 SB’s, as well as hitting for a .300 average. Would be a good choice in the later rounds.

15. Dioner Navarro (TB) – Navarro has a top prospect when he was with the Yankees, before he was traded to the Devil Rays. I expect better power numbers from him this season. At least double the 8 Homerun output he had last season.

16. Mike Napoli (ANA) – Showed potential power early last year, but then completely fell off. If Napoli isn’t careful, Angels top prospect Hank Conger is nearly ready to go after an amazing season in the minor leagues.

17. Chris Ianetta (COL) – Look I really like Olivio, even though the Rockies are going into Spring Training with Ianetta as a starter. If there is a tandem of catchers to have on your team, it is Ianetta and Olivio. One of them will prosper in that ballpark guaranteed!

18. Ryan Doumit (PIT) – Could increase value if the Pirates trade him to a contender at the deadline. As crazy as this sounds, a contender with a need for a catcher might give up a lot for him at the deadline. Doumit can flat out hit, period.

19. Carlos Santana (CLE) – Might not start the season with the big club, but he is going to get the call up very soon this year and when he does, your going to wish you had him. Why? Because this kid has a lot of raw power. He is Victor Martinez Version 2.0.

20. John Baker (FLA) – Will have higher power numbers with increased at bats. Baker has some upside.

Future Five to Watch:

1. Buster Posey (SFG)
2. Jesus Montero (NYY)
3. Hank Conger (ANA)
4. Derek Norris (WAS)
5. Jason Castro (HOU)