Fantasy Six Pack Mock Draft Analysis

by Tyler Gettmann

2015 mock draftOn March 11, 2015, twelve guys sat in front of their computer for a chance to show off their expertise on a possible draft for 2015. It was a 12 team league that consisted of the following starting positions: 2-C, 1-1B, 1-2B, 1-SS, 1-3B, 1-MI, 1-CI, 1-U, 5-OF, 9-P and 2 bench players. The results of the draft can be found at RealTime Fantasy Mock Draft Results. While much of the country is still covered in snow or slowly starting to thaw out, it is time to start thinking about your 2015 draft strategy.

The gentlemen involved were, with their respected pick, as well as their sites they are involved with:

  1. Damian Schaab, So-Called-Fantasy-Experts
  2. Joe Bond, Fantasy Six Pack
  3. Charles Lentz, So-Called-Fantasy-Experts
  4. Jake Ciely, RotoExperts
  5. Daniel Domenick, So-Called-Fantasy-Experts
  6. Adam Pfeifer, ProjectRoto
  7. Michael Seng, Fantasy Six Pack
  8. Matt Strachman, SportsVault
  9. Patrick Wallace, So-Called-Fantasy-Experts
  10. Rodric Richenberg, FantasyPros
  11. Kyle Soppe, RotoExperts
  12. Tyler Gettmann, Fantasy Six Pack

Number One Overall Pick: To be honest with you I do not think there is much to debate about who the overall number one pick should be in any league this year. Mike Trout needs to be off the board first in all types of leagues. What he offers to a fantasy team far out weighs what any other positional or pitcher player is going to be able to exceed. He is the safest first round pick as they come. I know that is pretty boring to hear and you have probably heard that over and over again, but the truth can be boring sometimes. Here are the not so boring numbers that Trout was able to put up in 2014. Over the past three years, he averaged 117 Rs, 31 HRs, 97 RBIs, 32 SBs and a .311 BA. He is looking to lower the amount of strikeouts he had from last year (struck out 26.1% of the time) and increase the amount of stolen bases in 2015. This is great news as a fantasy owner of Trout. I usually do not like getting the first pick of the draft, but Trout seems to calm my nerves this year.

Credit: Dustin Nosler

Credit: Dustin Nosler

Round One Analysis: I am fine with how the first three picks went. I believe Trout, Stanton and McCutchen should be the top three in some kind of order. The biggest surprise for me in the first round was how far Clayton Kershaw fell. I do not like picking a pitcher in the first round of any draft but I thought he would have easily gone in the top five of the draft. I believe he is a steal at the eighth pick. Another surprise for me was Anthony Rizzo at number nine. I do not think that he is a first round pick, but definitely a second rounder. Rizzo was a little bit of a reach in round one. I would of easily drafted Bautista, Encarnacion (which I had the luxury of having both guys falling to me at the end of the round) or even Cano before him. The biggest faller for sure this year is Miguel Cabrera. I believe everyone is a little hesitant about his injury and hoping that he can stay healthy all year. My debate last year was either Cabrera or Trout in the first round. I am seeing Miggy go as late as the 10th to 12th pick in some leagues. It is nice to see Goldschmidt finally get the recognition that he deserves at number four. He is not one of the flashier players in the league like most top picks would be, but he gets the job done. After coming off of an impressive 2014 campaign, I like Goldy to end up a top-five fantasy player by the end of 2015. I love the pick at number four. I do believe the biggest steals of the round were Encarnacion and Baustista, who technically went in the second round. To me these guys are both top 10 picks.

Best Pick(s): I will have a few in this section. One of my favorite early round picks was made by Damian Schaab. He picked Adrian Beltre with his second round. I feel like Adrian Beltre should have went early in the round and Schaab started off the draft with a nice one-two punch of Beltre and Trout. Beltre has refused to get older with time and has made himself more of a “Benjamin Button” effect or nice fine wine. Besides 2004, Beltre’s best four years of his career have been in the last four with the Rangers. It is really a matter of time that he does regress, but I would ride the Beltre train as long as possible. Another pick I enjoyed in the later rounds was when Charles Lentz chose Eric Hosmer in the 17th round. Obviously, Hosmer did not live up to expectations in 2014 (I would know, I owned him in a few leagues), but where he was drafted is a great value pick. Position players chosen before Hosmer were Khris Davis and Joc Pederson. Position players chosen after Hosmer were Yasmani Grandal and J.J. Hardy. I believe Hosmer has more upside than these other players at this point in the draft. This choice for best pick may leave you wondering, but please let me explain myself. Daniel Domenick selected Kenneth Giles in the twenty-first round. According to the current relief pitcher rankings on ESPN, Giles is ranked as the 26th RP. If you venture up to Domenick’s pick in the 12th round you will understand the selection. By having Papelbon on your team I believe it is crucial to try and get Giles this year (if you have enough bench spots). Nice work Daniel!

Credit: Keith Allison

Credit: Keith Allison

Worst Pick(s): Adam Pfeifer selected Yamany Tomas with his 12th round pick. I do not like this at all. Not that I do not like Tomas, just did not like where he was drafted. I thought this was done way too early for him. At this point in the draft, I still want to make sure that I am grabbing players that I know for sure are starters for their respected teams, so then in return they will be starters on my fantasy team. Another pick that left me scratching my head, was when Michael Seng picked Matt Wieters in the 12th round as well. This may be cause of having to select two catchers as starters in this league, but I do not like Wieters at this spot. I do believe Wieters will have a bounce back year, but the end of 2014 proceeds to have him drafted later on.

Best Team: My favorite team in this mock draft is Rodric Richenberg’s of FantasyPros. Even though I am a huge fan of a top five pick this year, I believe that Rodric did a nice job with the 10th pick. One of my strategy sayings for fantasy drafts is that drafts are not won in the first half; they are won in the second half. Rodric certainly displays this by getting great value at his middle infielders (Johnny Peralta and Howie Kendrick) later on in the draft. He may not have a flashy bunch of hitters, but they are hard workers and will get the job done. I am also a fan of his pitching staff; which is anchored by David Price and Jordan Zimmermann at the top. I am a little hesitant about how he did not put too much stock in his closers, but feel that he will be on top of things throughout the year if a closer happens to lose his job later on down the road. At the time, I was even ok with taking a chance on how they were going to handle the Yu Darvish situation with his last pick. I would say he has a nice complete team. The next best team I would have chosen is Adam Pfeifer’s of ProjectRoto. The reason I did not choose his as my number one is because I believe he has a bomb or bust team. A lot of question marks enter his team when coming into 2015, but could stay healthy (i.e. Tulowitzki) or play to their potential (i.e. Verlander) and have a fantastic year.

Worst Team: Unfortunately, there is always a team that needs to fit this category in drafts. In my opinion, Michael Seng of Fantasy Six Pack has the worst team in this mock draft. A couple picks I thought were made too early that I thought he would be able to get later. One is Ian Kinsler. I love Kinsler as I always try to target him, but the third round was too early for me. Another guy was Brian McCann. I would have not looked for him until at least the 12th round. I think there is too much of a jump from Seng’s top starter (Kluber) to his next starter (Wood). I usually like to get one of the top 10 OFs and I am not a fan of his OFs as a whole. Matt Holliday is his top OF and collectively. I remember him actually saying during the draft that he was not a big fan of his OF either. However, I am a big fan of his later round Matt Adams pick. I always like choosing who I think is the worst team in my drafts because they are often the ones that surprise you in the fantasy year.

Sleeper Picks: All four of these players I am about to talk about were drafted in the 18th round or later. I believe this would be the true definition of a sleeper pick. These are the rounds where you take chances and go for a player that has low risk/high reward potential. Plus, if he does not pan out you know you got him later on in your draft anyway, so he is easily replaceable if he is not making the cut on your team. Just a few sleepers I am pretty excited about this year are Adam Eaton, Steven Souza, Carlos Martinez and Taijuan Walker. All players I believe were picked in the right spot. Adam Eaton, if he stays healthy, could be a nice late round steal type guy. Steven Souza replaces Wil Myers in Tampa Bay this year, after spending years in the Nationals farm system. Carlos Martinez, a mini Pedro, looks to become the fifth starter for the Cardinals this year, while spending last year in the bullpen. Taijuan Walker had an early shoulder injury in 2014, but is poised to have a breakout year for the Mariners in 2015.

“Mr. Irrelevant”: Mr. Irrelevant was chosen by yours’ truly. With the 300th pick, I selected Christian Bethancourt for the Atlanta Braves. At this point, I did not have a second catcher and thought, why not? With Evan Gattis now out of Atlanta, Bethancourt should step up and be the starting catcher. A.J. Pierzynski will also be on the Braves in case Christian’s bat cannot hold up to the standards the Braves are looking for. Bethancourt is known more for his defense with a very small upside with his bat. He did get a call up last September and showed little success. The Braves believe this was the result of fatigue for Bethancourt. In 117 PAs last year, he had 7 Rs, 9 RBIs and 1 SB with a BA of .248. I would be happy with a result of a BA of .250, around 10 HRs, 40-50 Rs and 40-50 RBIs for a player like Mr. Irrelevant this year.

Credit: Keith Allison

Credit: Keith Allison

Best Picks Not Made: This section talks about guys that were not picked in the draft and shouldn’t have been. With the most recent news of Cliff Lee landing on the 60-Day DL, I am quite impressed about none of us taking a chance on him later on in the draft. Good job to everyone involved in the mock draft. Lee getting hurt shouldn’t be anything new to fantasy owners around the world. I have told a lot of my Philadelphia friends that Lee should have been traded a long time ago. He is not worth anything now and the Phillies will certainly not be able to bolster their farm system. He was a vital piece that could have done this. Another pick that I was happy to see not made was drafting Nick Markakis. I talked about Markakis earlier this year and believe that the Orioles ended up getting the better of the deal. At this point in his career, I believe that Markakis is washed up and is not fantasy worthy.

Worst Picks Not Made: This section talks about guys that were not picked in the draft and probably should have been drafted. After seeing that this guy was still available at the end of the draft, I was kicking myself for not drafting him. This guy is Coco Crisp. For starting five outfielders in this league, Crisp is not a bad option as a fifth outfielder. Apparently, I heard that the A’s are going to be moving Crisp into a corner outfield position and not having him play in center this year. He still has some upside hitting at the top of an A’s lineup this year that can be beneficial to higher starting outfielder leagues. Another player who I was surprised was not drafted was C.J. Wilson. In 2014, Wilson did not have “Wilson-like” numbers, but as I look at some of the late round pitchers drafted I would have probably drafted him over Shane Greene, Brett Cecil and T.J. House.

My Team: I am usually very critical on myself and I will be in this portion of my article. I personally do not like my team. I like my first five picks and then felt it went down hill for me. I believe the two catcher system messed with me a little bit as well as many players who I had queued up were taken usually a pick or two before me. I was late on some players who I was eyeing up in this mock draft. Some players include Johnny Peralta, Matt Adams, Jason Castro, Travis d’Arnaud and Danny Duffy. All late round players who I believe will have nice years.

I am sorry to those that I have been critical of in this article, but this is what fantasy sports is all about: everyone coming together to voice their opinions over something they have no control over. I think Jimmy Fallon puts it best in the movie Fever Pitch (personally one of my favorite movies) by saying, “I like being part of something that’s bigger than me, than I. It’s good for your soul to invest in something you can’t control.” Everyone is going to have their opinions about the way drafts end up, but the way the season ends dictates who had the best year in your league. The draft is but a minute fortitude of what is to come in the overall picture of a fantasy season.

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