In the second installment of the grading process, it’s helpful to look at those sleepers I, Albert Lang, just nearly missed on – basically guys who were a push. These are players who were almost successful sleepers picks but walked too many, gave up too many HRs or just swung and missed a ton.

Dan Uggla – This is the most miraculous push in the history of the world. After Uggla’s horrendous start to the season, he rebounded to bat .234 but with 35 HRs.

Jimmy Rollins – Consensus had Rollins as a top 5 option. Rollins is 6th at the position. However a bigger pre-draft split was where he should fall overall. I thought Rollins could push 15-20 HRs and 25-30 SBs, but rest on the low end of each. He had 14 HRs and 28 SBs. We also saw his average stay below .275. If you drafted Rollins in the top 50, you are probably somewhat disappointed.

Colby Rasmus – Rasmus was a tricky player to write about all year. I liked him, but the hype was a little ridiculous. While I would rather have Nick Swisher, I thought Rasmus was capable of hitting .260 with 20-25 HRs and 15 SBs. Petty squabbles in St. Louis and poor health have Rasmus at 14 HRs, five steals and a .235 average. I was clearly wrong on my projection.

Jason Bartlett – I thought Bartlett could get back to batting .275 (didn’t happen: .251), but I also thought he was a good bet to reach 20 – 30 SBs (he has 23). It’s a wash, but with how bad the SS position has been, he’s been a useful figure in 2011.

Nick Swisher – God it is disgusting how dirty good Brian Cashman is – he absolutely stole Swisher from Kenny Williams. Still, the entire fantasy community also seems to sleep on Swish, as he was the 33rd consensus OF. Well, he is the 31st OF, so they were closer in terms of ranking.

Gio Gonzalez – I had Gonzalez as the 42nd best SP, consensus put him around 49, and he will end up about 46th overall. So maybe I overvalued him…or maybe not.  I predicted a 4.00 ERA and 1.35 WHIP with 200 Ks. Right now, he has bested my ERA prediction (3.41 ERA) and come very close to meeting my WHIP prediction (1.37 WHIP). He has 177 Ks, so he’ll likely fall a tad short of 200.

Will Venable – While, technically, I had Venable ranked higher than most people, I still warned against the hype I saw building. Specifically, I said that his ceiling of a .320 OBP and the amount of balls he swings at out of the zone wouldn’t get him anywhere near the 30 steals he approached last season. Well, he currently sits at 26 – whoops. I did add in the caveat that we could see some weird things with the Padres this year, i.e., that in the absence of any real offense, their players would be running silly and that could artificially buoy Venable’s SB number. So, I was sort of correct in my Venable assessment.

Mark Reynolds – It’s so weird to be wrong about a known commodity. I had Reynolds buried on the draft board (22nd 3b), whereas consensus had him a bit higher. I believed he was a .240 hitter with 35 HRs and 10 SBs. He has actually batted worse (.222) and has 36 HRs and just 6 SBs, but has come in as the 6th best 3b for the year. What a dreadful position.

Edwin Jackson – Partly because he was born in Germany, partly because I believed in the Chicago White Sox pitching coaches, I thought Jackson would have a nice year. I expected an ERA in the 4.25-4.50 range with 170 Ks. He has fallen short of the Ks (he has just 146) but his ERA has been a nice surprise (3.85). Sure the WHIP is miserable, but he wasn’t that bad of a pitcher.

Chris Iannetta – I had Iannetta as a sleeper for the millionth year in a row, expecting a .250 hitter with 15 HRs (with upside as well). Well, Iannetta has batted just .236 this year but does have 13 HRs. He hasn’t helped at all down the stretch though and has really sputtered out. It would be nice if he batted anything other than eighth, but you have to play the cards you’re dealt.

 
  1. Tony says:
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    wow was 3B terrible or what this year?

    If reynolds batting .222 claims the 6th best at the position that tells you something!

    I had wright in one league and AROD in my RCL. Terrible. Zimmerman was hurt all year almost. In the words of barkley…. TURRIBLE!

    Bautista was such a crapshoot, most saw him as risky, and he pans out. This was the year to pass on 3B, and take a chance on beltre or Aramis later on….

  2. Hey guys – i’m at meetings from 9 – 12 but will try to respond on the fly and will definitely respond once i get back.

    So who were some of the guys you kept waiting on that ultimately sort of did/didnt pan out? Uggla was mine…just kept holding, like Braveheart.

    Lets commiserate on 2011, think about strategy/kepers for 2012 and talk play-offs!

  3. Jake says:
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    You believed Reynolds was a .240 hitter w/ 35 HR and 10 SB, but still just#22 overall at the position? Who did you have ranked directly in front of him? That’d have to be a monster 3B class to have 35 HRs not even break the top 10.

    Bautista is definitely the #1 3B for 2012 in my book. Would give Longo some consideration, but Joey Bats has been too dominant (and healthy) for 2 straight years to pass on him. With how much 3B sucks, I honestly wouldn’t argue with someone for wanting to take him in the top 3 overall in drafts next year.

    As for someone I held on to for way too long — Justin Morneau. Should’ve dumped him by the start of May.

  4. JMonte says:
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    Pedron F’n Alvarez, when he was up he sucked. Held onto him when he went down hoping he would correct things… and he still sucked when he came back up… what a dbag… completely useless and maybe the biggest failure this year in fantasy…..with Dunn a close 2nd.

  5. Wake Up says:
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    I don’t think Longoria will be a question mark and am excited at the thought that he will probably slip down draft boards.
    31 HRs in 483 ABs (I’m looking for 40 HRs 120 RBIs next year)
    with an AVG back in the .280s (.239 BABIP)

  6. T.J. says:
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    OK, I finished second in my 16-team, mixed league, 6×6 (R and OPS, K and QS), H2H, 9 P/9 H lineup, $260 budget (for 23 players) league this year. Managed to keep almost all my players. Limited to only 7 keepers. Who would you keep heading into 2011:

    Avila, $5
    Trumbo, $5
    Ackley, $5
    Asdrubal, $2
    Ellsbury, $34
    Upton, $33
    Hart, $12

    Sabathia, $35
    Cliff Lee, $32
    Stauffer, $1
    Kuroda, $2 (if he stays in USA)
    Norris, $2

    I’m thinking (in order of preference):
    Lee
    Ellsbury
    Cabrera
    Upton
    Avila
    Sabathia
    Trumbo

    Advice?

  7. He has 177 Ks, so he’ll likely fall a tad short of 200.

    Hmmm…I tend to agree. In fact, I will bet you $100 he will end the season with 197 strikeouts.

    Chris Young was sort of a wash for me. I mean, dude gave me a 20/20+ season, but his average was a knife in the face. Conversely, Michael Young had a glorious average, but 11 home runs is about as exciting as having your uncle touch your penis.

  8. T.J. says:
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    You’re right, it’s Justin. Sorry about that.

    Stauffer really tanked down the stretch, but he might have been injured or worn out before they shut him down. Ended up with a mediocre K rate.

    Hart is probably #8.

    Re: keepers, one guys has already said he plans on keeping Halladay at (::gulp::) $52. I don’t know about F-Her ($42), The Freak ($42), and Cain ($18). I figure Kershaw ($31), Verlander ($29), Price ($27), Haren ($24), Weaver ($23), Hamels ($22), Romero ($13), Beckett ($8), Chris Perez ($7), Fister ($5), Kennedy ($7), and Shields ($3!) will be kept.

    With QS and Ks, along the the H2H format, relievers are almost worthless (including closers).

    I forgot to mention Carpenter at $16, but I think he’s just too expensive, right?

  9. Tony says:
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    ya gotta throw cargo into that mix u listed too…..

  10. KB says:
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    16-Team Yahoo! H2H 14 scoring categories (HR, RBI, R, SB, AVG, BB, TB, W, SV, HLD, ERA, WHIP, K, K/BB)

    I need to choose 5 Keepers from the following:

    Joey Votto
    Troy Tulowitzki
    Rickie Weeks
    Ryan Zimmerman
    Desmond Jennings
    Brent Gardner
    Zack Greinke
    Yovanni Gallardo
    Craig Kimbrel
    Jose Valverde
    Heath Bell

    Leaning towards Votto, Tulo, Zimm, Weeks, Greinke – What do you think?

  11. Wake Up says:
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    I don’t think Ells will put up first round numbers.
    CarGo is a 2nd rounder.
    Kemp is top 5. easy.
    Crawford won’t be this bad again. But, he is also a glorified SAGNOF!
    I’d have a hard time taking Granderson in the 1st as well.
    2B is deeper but Cano is head and shoulders above the rest of the field. He will put up 1st round numbers again. Esp. batting in the 3 hole for a full season.

  12. For the record, I would definitely take Cano over Longo (Cano was in my top 5 this year). I also think I’d take Kemp over him.

    I’m not worried about lineup protection though — think Longo will do just fine and could chip in a few steals. However he does have some risk associated with him, which knocks him down a peg.

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