Part III: Vegas, And The FSTA Draft
My three part series on Las Vegas wraps up today. In PART I thanks was given to many of the people in the industry an I explained some of the exploits that I was a part of over the weekend in Sin City. In PART II I took a look at the team I drafted for the FSTA Experts League that was covered live on air by SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio. Today I'll finalize the week in Vegas by giving some thoughts on how the FSTA Draft played out.
For the full results click on FSTA 2012 Experts Draft.
Anthony Perri of Fantistics set the room on fire taking Troy Tulowitzki with the first overall pick. He's a big believer in position scarcity and put his money where his mouth is. Tim Heaney of KFFL then took Albert Pujols second leaving my #1 guy, Matt Kemp, for Steve Gardner/Howard Kaman of USA Today to grab third overall.
I'd much rather have Prince Fielder at #13 than Adrian Gonzalez at #6.
The 21st overall selection was Mike Stanton. My question is this – should he be taken that high? If he hits .270 with 45 homers and 110 RBI that's great, but unless he steals 15 bases I don't think he returns this value, not with his batting average woes. Is he really any different than Adam Dunn in his heyday?
The first pitcher taken was Clayton Kershaw at #23. I don't have a problem with him going off the board as the top pitcher, but you know me, I'm not a fan of taking a hurler this early.
The third round turned out to be the round of risk. Starlin Castro was taken and he's dealing with that off the field issue with the ladies. Carl Crawford was taken there as well, and we learned about 13 hours after the draft was completed that Crawford had wrist surgery and that leaves him somewhat doubtful to be good to go on opening day. Another casualty of having a draft this early were Glenn Colton and Rick Wolf who took Victor Martinez in the third. Sixteen hours later we found out that he had a torn ACL that will likely end his season.
Per usual, the experts waited to draft starting pitching. Don't plan on being able to take Felix Hernandez in the 5th round like Chris Liss of Rotowire did in your draft. CC Sabathia and Cole Hamels also went in the 5th round.
Craig Kimbrel was the first closer off the board. He was taken in the 8th round.
I like Vernon Wells as much as the next guy and can see a comeback this season, but taking him in the 9th round ahead of guys like Chris Young or Billy Butler, who were also taken in the 10th, I'm not a fan of that.
Ron Shandler, who knows this game as well as anyone, has a faith in Cory Leubke taking him ahead of guys like Shaun Marcum, Justin Masterson, Tim Hudson, Hiroki Kuroda etc.
I'm a fan of R.A. Dickey in the 29th round as long as he doesn't kill himself climbing mountains this offseason.
The best pick of the draft or the worst? The answer to that question is likely to be Javier Vazquez who was taken in round 28 by Fantasy Sharks. If he retires it was a wasted pick, but if he somehow ends up on the hill this season this could be a difference making selection.
How the mighty have fallen. Francisco Liriano was taken in the 26th round. He's well worth the risk at that point (he was my target for that round). Another perpetually injured an underachieving lefty is Erik Bedard. He was taken in the 22nd.
Justin Smoak in the 12th round? What does Jeff Mans of Fantasy Alarm know that we don't? I don't think anyone on his team is old enough to have a five o'clock shadow.
Everyone had a laptop out during the draft but myself and Charlie Wiegert if I'm not mistaken. Old school.
Todd Helton is a shell of his former self, but as a 27th round selection I've got no complaint at all.
Jason Bay in the 23rd round sounds absurdly low doesn't it? He's gotta be able to outperform that. His teammate, Daniel Murphy, went in the same round. I think that was an excellent selection.
Look at the team from Mastersball. It shows you what you can accomplish when you you take stable players early even if the names don't jump off the page at you. You end up with a pretty solid squad.
Buster Posey went in the middle of the 6th round. If healthy he will surpass that cost. If he has any setbacks physically that's gonna be a pick that Liss will be able to look at as one of the reasons his team struggled.
Adam Wainwright in the 8th round? If healthy we've seen what he can do, but coming back from Tommy John surgery you can't be thinking he's gonna throw 200-innings this year. I'd rather have 9th round guys like Gio Gonzalez, Matt Garza and Madison Bumgarner. Hell, I'd rather have my first four arms.
Keeping the dream alive. Justin Morneau was taken in the 14th while Kendrys Morales went in round 19.
By Ray Flowers
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The co-host of The Drive on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio (Sirius 210, XM 87: Mon-Fri 7-10 PM EDT), Ray also hosts his own show Sunday night (7-10 PM EDT). Ray has spent years squirreled away studying the inner workings of the fantasy game to the detriment of his personal life. Specializing in baseball, football and hockey, some consider him an expert in all three.
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