While the merits of what someone is hitting or not hitting in Spring Training can be debated, where they are hitting or not hitting is important to look at. First, I want you to refresh your pretty little brain with the impact of lineup position on Runs and RBIs. Welcome back! Anyway, here’s some players whose value dips or shoots up (easy, Hamilton) due to 2010 lineup position:
Alexei Ramirez – He tends to start the season slow and he’s slated to bat ninth. That’s a recipe for yawnstipation.
Ben Zobrist - Here’s what I said about Zobrist in the 2010 fantasy baseball rankings, “Zobrist’s homers don’t seem as fluky as they might appear. He maintained a 17.5 HR/FB in 2009 and a 17.4 HR/FB in 2008. Granted, that was a smaller sample size. So he may look like David Eckstein, but the only thing they have in common is neither is Jewish though their names sound like they are. Zobrist’s average seems out there; he looks closer to a .270 hitter. He was a utility man coming into 2009 and I wouldn’t be surprised if he left 2010 back in that role.” And that’s me quoting me! Well, I could be wrong. Zobrist will be hitting third for the Rays. The doubts I had about Zobrist coming into this season are a bit assuaged by this lineup position. I still don’t think Zobrist hitting third will last the whole year, but who goes from hitting third at the start of the year to the bench? Oh, wait…
Casey Kotchman – Should hit third against righties. Look at Casey making a play for fantasy value! Unfortunately, he probably won’t play against lefties with Garko stealing ABs. If you can somehow work a platoon of Kotchman into your fantasy lineup (I’m thinking mostly AL-Only leagues), Casey could be a steal. Damn, every time I say I’m done with a player, they pull me back in. So who’s hitting third vs. lefties? Glad you asked, random italicized voice.
Franklin Gutierrez – Will hit third vs. lefties. Though The Big FraGu is slotted into the 7 hole vs. righties, hitting in front of the catcher and Jack Wilson. On the bright side, this is contingent on the health of Bradley and Griffey Jr., who’s now older than Griffey Sr. from when you remember him.
Jose Bautista – Hitting leadoff. That could also be the answer to, “Where did all of Aaron Hill’s RBIs go?”
Travis Snider – Currently stuck between John Buck and Alex Gonzalez. That’s like the middle seat between Afa and Sika.
Gaby Sanchez – This could change, but right now he looks like he’s stuck in the eight hole. Luckily, no one’s actually drafted him anywhere, except for me. Yay me.
Shane Victorino – This move has been covered by me numerous times before, but, yeah, he’s in the 7 hole and Crapolanco is appropriately enough in the two hole.
Ian Desmond – Batting 2nd. “Mr. Desmond, roses just arrived from you.” “Who are they from?” “Grey from Razzball.” “Put them in the pile with the chocolates he sent yesterday.”
Marlon Byrd – The five hole. He’s going to prove to be so borderline mixed league worthy, I have a feeling there will be at least 1700 comments this year asking me if they should drop (Insert Schmohawk) and pick up Byrd.
Orlando Cabrera – O-Cab’s in the two hole. He’ll probably be more valuable than most middle infielders that are owned more than him, but what freakin’ fun is it owning Orlando Cabrera?
Jay Bruce – Until Rolen gets injured, Bruce is in the 6 hole. Bruce could be this year’s Kemp in regards to a losing value from lineup position.
Julio Borbon – Will be hitting on top of a very potent lineup. Borbon will have to really struggle to not have a huge year.
Elvis Andrus – He has not left the building, but he has parked in the nine hole.
Albert Callaspo – Hitting third. For all of you crazy excited about Butler this year. He’s hitting in this lineup: DeJesus, Podsednik, Callaspo, Butler, Ankiel, Guillen, Betancourt, Kendall and Getz. There’s about eight names there that wouldn’t make the starting lineup for any other team. Fun times!
Magglio Ordonez – I really don’t think he’s ownable anywhere, but he’s set to bat third. I could probably knock in 90 and score 90 in the three hole of a major league lineup.
Scott Sizemore – Will be allowed to ferment in the 8 hole as he proves his mettle for a month or two. I have a feeling that I might be jumping off the Scott Sizemore bandwagon sooner vs. later. We shall see.
Erick Aybar – Leading off for the Angels. Will get Runs, some steals and average, poor homers and RBIs. His stats are like looking at Yunel’s in the mirror. I will call you, lenuY.
Garrett Jones – Will bat third. If you can have a fantasy lineup of mostly three hole hitters, you’re at least pointing in the right direction.
Colby Rasmus – Batting in front of Pujols. A 2001 Bonds would get pitches to hit in front of Pujols.
Carlos Gonzalez and Dexter Fowler – Top of the Rockies order. That’s rated 3 M for Mmm…
Everth Cabrera – At some point, I hope the Padres make the right decision and put EverCab at the top of the order, but I don’t think it’s happening out of the gate.
Pablo Sandoval – Hitting third behind Rowand and Renteria, which sounds like a VD clinic.
Nick Johnson – Hitting 2nd for the Yankees. Johnson has a .400+ career OBP. Last I checked the Yankees scored a lot of runs. Anyone want any action on the over/under for the amount of times Johnson’s on second and gets held at 3rd on a single? 65? 70?
Nolan Reimold – I’m not even sure he’s in the lineup. Trembley’s talking about starting Pie. How dare you judge, Reimold! Doode, your team’s going nowhere fast — play Reimold! Sorry, this has nothing to do with this post. But I thought some of you might not have heard and I didn’t want to do a whole post on this, though I did have the title, Effin’ Pie.
Alcides Escobar – Batting at the bottom of the lineup for right now, but Weeks is one aggressive burp away from the DL.