Irrefutable 2011 Fantasy Rankings – Second Base

Second base has a decent amount of depth this year, albeit risky depth. With players like Ian Kinsler, Rickie Weeks, Chase Utley and Howie Kendrick being drafted almost universally there is sure to be plenty of fantasy managers bemoaning their draft strategies when their starting second baseman goes down with an injury. To think that all those listed above will play 140+ games in 2011 is an optimistic proposition. That is a glass-completely-full approach to the game and you are probably too peppy of a person for me to be your friend. Here’s our rankings for the coming season. Projections are based on the player seeing the field in the majority of their games:

The Been

1.       Robinson Cano – It’s a changing of the guard at 2b and for those into math, Cano = (Utley + health + youth + avg)  – (steals  + hair).  Hitting in the middle of the Yankees lineup with that short porch in right, Cano has established lofty expectations:  .320/100/27/110/3

2.       Chase Utley – How the mighty have (barely) fallen.  Utley had some injury concerns last year and is on the wrong side of his peak.  But he can be had at good value and if he stays healthy all year shouldn’t disappoint:  .285/100/30/90/15

3.       Dustin Pedroia – The laser show was well on his way to having another solid season until injury cut it short.  Expect even better counting numbers now with Carl Crawford and Adrian Gonzalez aboard:  .295/120/18/80/20

4.       Dan Uggla –The only thing inconsistent about his game is batting average.  And while I don’t expect  .287 again, the Little Donkey should have no trouble pumping out 30 hr seasons for the Braves:  .265/90/30/100/5

5.       Ian Kinsler – Would be a top 20 player if he could kick the habit of visiting the DL.  He’s only once topped 140 games and went 30/30, so cross your fingers and have a good backup in place:  .275/85/24/80/20

6.       Brandon Phillips – Would it surprise you to find out that Phillips is only 29?  It’s clear his 30/30 season was an outlier, but he’s almost a sure bet for 20/20:  .275/80/20/75/20

7.       Rickie Weeks – So that’s why we’ve been torturing ourselves with Rickie Weeks for the last 5 years.  If health were a guarantee, he’d be higher up this list and Dr. Oz would be out of a job:  .270/90/22/75/12

8.       Aaron Hill – The million dollar question, will we get the 2009 or 2010 Hill?  To quote every baseball site on the internet, “probably somewhere in between.”  Gee, no kidding:  .280/80/28/80/2

9.       Brian Roberts – Could be a huge steal in the draft, but could miss most of the season with lingering injuries.  Showed he could still provide good numbers when he came back last year:  .280/85/10/65/30

10.   Kelly Johnson – Other than a disastrous 2009, Johnson has been a pretty valuable fantasy asset at second base.  Is he 26 hr good?  Probably not.  But he should provide pretty good pop and decent speed at a traditionally weak position:  .285/85/20/70/10

11.   Martin Prado – Nothing exciting about Prado. . . literally:  .300/90/15/65/5

12.   Ben Zobrist – Should still have 2nd base eligibility and has one more chance to prove 2009 wasn’t a fluke.  Provides 20/20 potential at a discounted price:  .260/85/16/75/20

The Stew

1)      Robinson Cano – You can’t spell Cano without can. That’s logic you can take to the bank. Cano is worth the 1st round investment even though second base actually has some decent depth. And remember; Cano can go-go, but Jimmy Carter is smarter: .325/100/25/110/1

2)      Chase Utley – As The Been pointed out above, if hair was a roto category Utley would force his way into the top half of the 1st round. He’s been injured but I wouldn’t consider him injury prone. Like my old college roommate’s Aussie shampoo bottle read: “Every day will be a good hair day”. Rumor has it Utley is a fan of Paul Hogan: .280/100/27/90/12

3)      Dustin Pedroia – First there’s this. Then there’s this. And finally this recent bit of awesome. That’s the kind of guy you can get behind in the 3rd round of drafts: .310/110/18/80/18

4)      Ian Kinsler – The inspiration for one of the best pun-related team names in my short fantasy baseball career (Kinsler’s List), Ian is the best hitting Jew since Shawn Green. If Rickie Weeks and Howie Kendrick can stay healthy for a year, why can’t Kinsler? Caveat emptor: .275/100/25/80/25

5)      Brandon Phillips – I hear he doesn’t like the Cardinals. That’s all I need to know. I can’t imagine Jason Larue will be drafting him this year: .275/90/20/80/20

6)      Dan Uggla – One time I made a joke at a draft using Uggla’s name as a pun. No one laughed. I’ll never have confidence in him. Plus, I hate batting average risks: .255/90/30/90/3

7)      Rickie Weeks – I’m hoping someone from my keeper league decides to hold on to Weeks. That way I don’t have to decide to draft him if he’s available. Classic case of risk/reward here folks. Enron or Microsoft? What stock are you buying here? I’ve seen him going as early as the 3rd round. Too rich for my blood: .270/110/25/75/15 (assuming he plays at least 140 games)

8)      Kelly Johnson – People go to Phoenix for fake boobs on trophy wives and home runs. Johnson delivers the latter. He probably would have produced like this if Bobby Cox would have shown a shred of confidence in Johnson when he was in Atlanta. I think 2010 was for reals: .280/90/25/80/10

9)      Martin Prado – I like a fair level of certainty with my players. Prado, unlike his overpriced namesake in the fashion medium, is quality at decent price. He’s affordable in drafts and will contribute in 4 of 5 roto categories: .310/95/15/60/5

10)   Aaron Hill – I’m with The Been on this one. If Hill falls in your drafts he could be a pretty big pickup. He has 30 homer potential and there aren’t many 2nd basemen that can say that. Especially not in Canadian: .280/90/25/90/2

11)   Ben Zobrist – Take a look at his minor league stats. The guy is not a power hitter. He is a good hitter though. However, he is Baptist. Although, his wife has a nice set of pipes on her. Do what you will, but don’t be expecting 27 hrs again: .290/80/12/80/20

12)   Gordon Beckham – The White Sox are going to score some runs this year. Beckham will probably hit in the 2-spot. He may have had a sophomore slump, but he’s not the first to ever struggle in his second year. He hit pretty well during the second half of 2010. He’s a Stew Sleeper Special: .290/80/15/80/15

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One Response to Irrefutable 2011 Fantasy Rankings – Second Base

  1. Mary says:

    Very good details! I have been hunting for some thing similar to this for some time finally. Thanks!

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