Wednesday, February 20, 2013

2013 Dodgers fantasy rankings

Football is over, the NBA season is over (if you're a Lakers' fan like me), and pitchers and catchers have reported to Spring Training.  And with all of that, the return of fantasy baseball is on the horizon.

The following is a list of rankings from two major sites (ESPN and MLB) for players from the Dodgers, along with my thoughts.  Each ranking is based on the specific position, not overall.

AJ Ellis, Catcher
ESPN - 22
MLB - 17
Thoughts? Ellis was a solid hitter in the first half of last season, but clearly wore down after that.  With a season under his belt, perhaps he'll be a little stronger over the long haul to put up decent numbers.

Adrian Gonzalez, First Base
ESPN - 7
MLB - 6
Thoughts?  There's obvious concerns that he's slowing down, as he failed to put up much of any power numbers with the Dodgers after the trade from Boston.  But he's clearly the man in the heart of the order, so opportunities will be there.

Mark Ellis, Second Base
ESPN - 27
MLB - 32
Thougths?  A good player on the field, but that doesn't really translate into fantasyland. 

Hanley Ramirez, Shortstop
ESPN - 2
MLB - 2
Thoughts?  This could be more of a reflection of not much competition beside him.  Like Gonzalez, there's concerns that his best days are behind him.  If he can turn it around, he can hit for power and run, which is coveted in the fantasy world.  One big bonus is that he ranks highly at third base, too (5 and 4).

Luis Cruz, Third Base
ESPN - unranked
MLB - 33
Thoughts?  Has shown pop, now needs to show he's not a flash in the pan.  Will be given the opportunity to stay on the field, though.

Carl Crawford, Outfield
ESPN - 41 
MLB - 33
Thougths?  It all comes down to the elbow injury.  If healthy, he can run and score lots of runs.  If not, it could be a long season.

Matt Kemp, Outfield
ESPN - 4
MLB - 3
Thoughts?  The last time he stayed healthy for a full season, he was clearly the top player in baseball with unbelievable numbers.  Let's hope the shoulder is healed so he can show it again.

Andre Ethier, Outfield
ESPN - 42
MLB - 37
Thoughts?  A solid, but not spectacular hitter.  Can get hits, but not much in the line of consistent power.

Clayton Kershaw, Starting Pitcher
ESPN - 2
MLB - 2
Thoughts?  Damn you, Justin Verlander!  But seriously, to be ranked right behind that guy is no shame at all.

Zack Greinke, Starting Pitcher
ESPN - 10
MLB - 10
Thoughts?  Could be an adjustment period, but should settle in quite nicely in Dodger Stadium and the NL West as the season progresses.

Josh Beckett, Starting Pitcher
ESPN - 66
MLB - 46
Thoughts?  I think he can rank much higher than this, as he was undoubtedly a better pitcher once he came to LA.  I'm looking forward to a full season in Dodger blue from him.

Hyun-Jin Ryu, Starting Pitcher
ESPN - unranked
MLB - 90
Thoughts?  He's understandably an unknown at this point.  I expect him to earn a spot in the rotation, and have success as well.

Chad Billingsley, Starting Pitcher
ESPN - 75
MLB - 83
Thoughts?  Like some others, it all comes down to health.  He's a concern when even slightly hurt, as he's as inconsistent from one inning to the next as they come.

Chris Capuano, Starting Pitcher
ESPN - 69
MLB - 47
Thoughts?  It's hard to know right now if he'll even be a starter, so drafting him is risky.  Wore down in the second half of last season, but with a fresh arm, was a very good starter.

Kenley Jansen, Relief Pitcher
ESPN - 25
MLB - 39
Thoughts?  Much like last year when he was right behind Javy Guerra, his ranking is based on the belief that he'll soon be closing again.  Can't argue with his numbers, but without the save opportunities, owners will either have to be very patient or shy away completely.

Brandon League, Relief Pitcher
ESPN - 32
MLB - 29
Thoughts?  He's being paid to close, and did very well in September of last year once he adjusted after the trade from Seattle.  Has the experience of closing, so it could work.  If he has a slump, however, it's Jansen time.

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