Fantasy Baseball 2014: Full 15-Team, 23-Round Mock Draft, Version 1.0 – Bleacher Report
The strongest aspect of my team is unquestionably my outfield, headed by my top-two position player picks in Trout and Choo. If Hamilton can get and stay healthy enough to make amends for a brutal 2013, then this group will do damage, particularly with 25-homer threats Cruz and Rasmus in the OF4 and OF5 spots.
There’s also quite a lot of stolen-base potential, what with Trout, Andrus, Choo and Hosmer likely to be above-average in the category for their respective positions, and with Utley capable of chipping in 10-15, too.
On the pitching side, strikeouts should be easy to come by, thanks to Darvish and his 225-250 or so at the top, along with a likely 170-plus from Miller and perhaps one or two of Gallardo, Tillman, Lackey and/or Quintana. Even if those last four fall short of that mark, they all should reach 150 as long as they make most of their starts.
The most glaring problem? Injury issues. Rostering hitters like Utley, Sandoval, Teixeira, Hamilton and Cruz, as well as arms like Feliz, Lackey and Soria, is putting a lot of faith in their ability to ward off the DL this season, at least for extended periods.
That concern is bound to come with the territory when you go after proven players coming off rough seasons due to injury, which isn’t a bad approach for unearthing value in a draft, as long as a few of them return to form. For example, imagine how much better my infield will look if Teixeira cracks the back end of the top-10 1Bs or if Sandoval pushes his way near the top-five 3Bs. Both are possible, but even just one happening would be a big lift.
If I were to consider potential trades in the near future, I’d likely be looking to boost the front of my rotation by obtaining another starter to fit in with Miller as an SP2/SP3 and push everyone else down a notch. Given my numerous bounce-back candidates on offense, I’d imagine that once one or two of those prove they are again back on the map, that would help with such an acquisition.
Best Players Who Weren’t Drafted
To finish up, here’s a brief batch of players I considered picking over the final few rounds but never pulled the trigger on—and neither did anyone else: Adam Dunn, 1B; Justin Smoak, 1B; Kolten Wong, 2B; Dan Uggla, 2B; Dustin Ackley, 2B; Matt Davidson, 3B; Derek Jeter, SS; Chris Owings, SS; Josh Willingham, OF; Ryan Ludwick, OF; Nate Schierholtz, OF; Matt Joyce, OF; Raul Ibanez; OF; Martin Perez, SP; Alexi Ogando, SP; Brett Anderson, SP; Tyler Clippard, RP; Jordan Walden, RP; and Carlos Martinez, RP.
Are you surprised to see any of those names going undrafted? And which of my draft picks do you like/dislike the most? Where would you have made a different choice along the way? Let me know in the comments section.
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