Recently, I realized I like my steals like I like my women, cheap. Sure, there’s girls out there that know which spork to eat their Hamburger Helper with, but real value is found in girls that can have fun in a bar with sawdust on the floor and Jimmy Buffett playing on the jukebox. Now this doesn’t mean I’m turning my nose up at Kate Bosworth if she shows up at my door in sweatpants, carrying some takeout Chinese. Same goes for fantasy baseball. Steals is a category I tend to neglect on draft day in March. The only pure speed guys I’ll consider, where they are drafted, are first round gems like Jose Reyes and Hanley Ramirez. I’m not suggesting you punt steals, because that would put too much pressure on your other categories. (Just like if you neglect getting laid.) Instead, I opt for Grady Sizemore, Corey Hart or Chase Utley-types. Guys that give you everything, including ten to twenty steals. In one league where I drafted Carl Crawford, when I saw his power still wasn’t coming this year, I traded him for Braun two months ago. But when you don’t draft a Juan Pierre-types, you’re usually hurting a bit for steals and need some cheap ones. Anyway, here’s some cheap steals that you might find on your waiver wire:
Chris Dickerson – Plus speed, some power and a womb-full of strikeouts. In NL-Only leagues, he should be owned already or picked up. In deep leagues, he’s an add on need. Dickerson will sit (or you should sit him) against lefties. His splits are weird guy cheerleader bad.
Denard Span – A near .400 OBP warrants consideration in all leagues. He is the starter even with Cuddyer’s return and he’s entrenched in the leadoff spot.
Carlos Gomez – As he starts to hit the waiver wire in a bunch of leagues, I find myself liking him more. In a few leagues where I need steals and have the room, I’ve grabbed Gomez off waivers and have substituted him in on days that someone on my team sits or short schedule days. He may lose playing time to Cuddyer so that might make him step up his game or not, but if it’s cheap it can’t be that bad.
Lastings Milledge – Mentioned him last week as a guy who has a chance to be the quietest 20/20 in recent memory. His steals do come at a price to your average.
Mike Cameron – See one half centimeter above.
Jerry Hairston Jr. – About to return from hamstring injury. His vacay was so extended and with the nature of his injury, I’m not that high on him having a huge amount of value upon return, but if he’s there you take the flier, cause that’s what you do.
Joey Gathright – He reminds me of this nasty couscous my friend used to eat for lunch. The tartar on your tongue tasted better than this stuff. So why did he eat it? Because it was cheap. Joey Gathright is nasty couscous.
Emmanuel Burris – How awesome would it be if Burris and Fred Lewis were near the cage and Bochy said, “Hey, Emmanuel, Lewis, come here.” And they responded in unison, “Sure thing, Mr. Papadapolis!”