Saturday, March 19, 2011

Favorite $1 Players of 2011

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When it comes to fantasy baseball, I am not a big proponent of punting positions.   However, sometimes you're forced to do so.  In that case, here are some of my favorite options for 2011.

Anybody I've highlighted represents a higher confidence pick.  This is somebody I'd consider going an extra $1 or $2 for, depending on the league.

Catcher
Jake Fox
Miguel Olivo

I personally wouldn't go any lower than Jorge Posada ($2-$3).  But if you're forced to scrounge, I'd go with Jake Fox.  He offers a realistic semblance of upside.  

Beyond that, most of the other guys are pretty fungible (Olivo, Saltalamacchia, Buck, Martin, Chooch, Arencibia, Conger) and offer slightly different strengths depending on your league.

First Base
Kila Ka'aihue

Second Base
Juan Uribe

Definitely not for the OBP/SLG leagues, but if your league has a lot of counting stats (HR,R,RBI), Uribe is your man.  

He'll be 31, and like last year, he has a good shot at regular playing time.

Third Base
Edwin Encarnacion

If you can burn two roster spots, Chipper Jones and Scott Rolen make nice caddies for each other.  Both are fairly productive when healthy.

Shortstop
J.J. Hardy

Hands down one of my favorite $1 sleepers of the year.

Corner Infielder
Mitch Moreland

This guy is getting less ink than an empty Bic pen.  But I think he has a quietly solid year.  Only real concern is that he loses AB to Napoli and Young.  The same could be said of Ian Stewart, Ty Wigginton and Jose Lopez.

Middle Infield
Bill Hall

Another guy I wouldn't mind owning for $1.  Almost a given that he'll get full playing time.

I look at 15 HR, maybe 10 SB as a reasonable expectation.  He's a drag on average, but I think the counting stats will be there.

Outfield
Jason Kubel
Nate McLouth
Logan Morrison
Seth Smith
Alex Gordon

Kubel would be going higher than $1, but questions about his playing time could suppress that down.  I think he ends up with 500+ AB when it's all said and done.

In some leagues you can stick Alex Gordon at 3B.

If the following guys had clear roles, I would add them to the list of outfielders: Michael Morse, Matt Joyce, Desmond Jennings, Ben Francisco, Tyler Colvin, Brandon Allen, Eric Young.

Utility
Jim Thome

Not a full time player, but he puts up counting stats in line with other full time $1 players.  I'd also take a flier on any of the additional outfielders listed above.

Starting Pitcher
Anibal Sanchez
Edwin Jackson
Edinson Volquez
Jaime Garcia
Brian Matusz
Homer Bailey

I don't expect any of these guys to put up ridiculously good seasons, but I think they all offer some Brandon Morrow circa 2010 upside.  In the last couple of years I have been stuffing my rosters full of these guys, but this year, I'm taking one, maybe two at most.

I think Jackson has the best upside of the group and one of the less dangerous floors if the bottom drops out.

Relief Pitcher
Johnny Venters
Takashi Saito
Mike Adams

I really wouldn't draft any of these guys save for Venters.  He's about the $1, non-closer in waiting who I think has a projectable shot at 15+ saves.

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