This is from ESPN’s top analyst (pointing out that he’s their top analyst makes it sarcastic), Eric Karabell:
1. Alex Rodriguez: Even with some statistical regression, you can’t go wrong.
2. Hanley Ramirez: Power and speed, and someday manning center field.
3. Jose Reyes: Nobody steals more bases, and he could reach 15 homers.
4. David Wright: No, he’s not moving to second base. He’ll still run.
5. Albert Pujols: And that was an off-year. He can put up A-Rod numbers.
6. Jimmy Rollins: Take the power down a notch, but still, fantastic.
7. Alfonso Soriano: Split the difference from ’06 and ’07.
8. Chase Utley: Now there are two top second basemen, but still.
9. Miguel Cabrera: And it’s not like Florida’s park has been good to him.
10. Matt Holliday: Can’t go wrong as long as he calls Coors home.
11. Carl Crawford: Extremely talented, even if this is the best he can do.
12. Vladimir Guerrero: It wouldn’t hurt to have lineup protection.
13. Johan Santana: Could make the case to put him in round one.
14. Ryan Howard: No reason why he can’t get back to 50 home runs.
15. Jake Peavy: Imagine the Cy Young race if Johan goes to NL!
16. Grady Sizemore: I don’t think he goes 30/30, but he could.
17. David Ortiz: With the knee fixed, the extra power resumes.
18. Ichiro Suzuki: A must-get if you plan on taking Adam Dunn later.
19. Prince Fielder: I still think Ryan Howard has more upside though.
20. Brandon Phillips: Time for everyone to believe this is legit.
21. Ryan Braun: With the steals, could make the case for round one.
22. Carlos Beltran: It’s not like he’s too old to steal some bases.
23. Mark Teixeira: Capable of hitting anywhere, and could hit 40.
24. Lance Berkman: Go middle infield first, and he’s still around later.
25. Carlos Lee: I admit he’s a steal this late. Look at his stats, and Vlad’s.
1. First off, Arod number #1. How’s that limb look, Karabull? Don’t want to venture out on it, eh? I wonder who he went out on a limb with last year, Pujols? I say take Reyes. But that will have to wait for a future column.
2. Hanley Ramirez is a bold pick for number two. Completely asinine, but bold nevertheless. Has anyone seen Hanley swing? Anyone worried about his shoulder that he hurts once a month when he swings? Yeah, me too.
3. If I see Jose Reyes at number three, I would take him gleefully. If the top two guys in your league skip Jose, they’re morons or they work for ESPN.
4. David Wright sucks donkey feces. Sure, he’ll get you 25/25 but so will Rollins with much more speed upside. To paraphrase Ralph Kramden, “Karabull!!!”
5. Pujols has an off year (that wasn’t that off). His first off year in the majors and he drops to five. I hope none of Karabull’s kiddies comes home with a B-. Off to boarding school with Tristan Cockcrap’s thumb suckers.
6. Jimmy Rollins makes sense at sixth. The next one will blow your mind.
7. Soriano?!?!? Dude, between you and me. Let someone else take Soriano then mock them for taking him.
8. Utley, I like. Numerous reasons. Biggest reason, the guy actually seems to want to play every single inning of every single game. My man’s a future MVP.
9. Cabrera just ate your draft cheat sheet. Personally, I want about six players instead of Cabrera, but he is a pure hitter. Plain and simple. Also, he loves to hug Miguel Olivo. Might be the shared name thing, might be something else. Keep an eye on it.
10. Holliday is officially priced out of “I got a steal” territory, which is a shame. He took about three non-intentional walks this year. I’d be wary. Karabull obviously wasn’t, “Can’t go wrong as long as he calls Coors home.” Expert analysis! (Exclamation point now indicates sarcasm.)
11. Crawford is now falling into the “I got a steal” territory. As for Karabull’s comment, “Extremely talented, even if this is the best he can do.” No, this isn’t the best he can do. He was playing hurt, Karanumbskull.
12. Vlad just got back from his third tour of Nam, or at least his legs appear that way. Don’t take him.
13. Johan beats Peavy? Nah, he really doesn’t actually. To use Karabull expert anlysis, “Not as long as Peavy calls Petco home and he’s facing the weakest hitting division sixty percent of the time.”
14. Ryan Howard at 14? Yeah, I would take that, but he’s not going to be here.
15. Peavy is fantasy’s newest ace. Karabull will make note of that at the end of November in ’08.
16. Grady Sizemore — see Howard, Ryan.
17. Ortiz, I’m sure there will be a Son of Sam Horn (do they actually call themselves this with a straight face?) who might take Ortiz at 17, but at strictly utility I would not. Aside, I bet Miguel Cabrera and Big Papi could hug each other for hours.
18. Ichiro at 18? Last year, this same nitwit probably (I don’t feel like looking it up) ranked Ichiro somewhere between 25 and 30. He’s the same guy every year. Eventually, he will slow down and you don’t want to be there when that happens. Pass.
19. Prince Fielder will be at number 9 next year, you do the math. BTW, is it me or is Karabull living in 2006 for some of these choices?
20. Phillips… Ugh, can’t argue with this, but I don’t want him. Doesn’t feel as safe as his 20th placed ranking should. I’d let someone else deal with Phillips.
21. Ryan Braun is going to be good, but he doesn’t hit righties as well as I’d like to take him here. The fact Karabull’s comment is saying there’s a case for round one makes me even more nervous.
22-24 Carlos Beltran, Tex and Berkman… Seriously, this guy is their top analyst.
25. I want Carlos Lee above all three of the aforementioned bozos. The horse is a natural slugger.