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Christopher Gingrich: Top picks for Mid-season Draft

Christopher Gingrich
Chris Gingrich
ChrisGingrich

If you’re looking to get a fresh start with a new fantasy baseball team, you’re in luck.

Yahoo is offering, as they do every year, a Mid-season Draft which starts June 22.

That leads me to this week’s topic: Who would your top picks be now that season already is under way?

There’s a few players who have caught my eye so far. I’m going to list the top five players who have well outperformed their average draft position this year.

This list could have 20 players on it, but I won’t go that far.

5. Ryan Zimmerman, third base, Washington Nationals: This 24-year-old third baseman was coming off a lackluster 2008 season, when he managed only 428 at bats. His average draft position of 93 coming into the 2009 season should be bumped up quite a bit for the mid-season draft after posting a line of 34 RBI, 37 runs, 11 home runs and a .348 batting average.

4. Carl Crawford, outfield, Tampa Bay Rays: Carl Crawford always seems to be taken in the first round, but not this year.

People are waiting for his power to catch up to his speed (one home run, 28 stolen bases this year), but I know that is not what kind of player he is; he is capable of a 20 home run season. His average draft position was 29 coming into this season, but so far he is ranked No. 9 in the Yahoo game.

3. Torri Hunter, outfield, Los Angeles Angels: Hunter is having a career year for the Angels and is putting up great numbers for his fantasy owners. If he keeps it up, he’s on pace for career highs in almost every category.

2. Evan Longoria, third base, Tampa Bay Rays: This guy is one of the young studs in MLB. He came into the 2008 season with so much hype that I thought there was no way this kid could deliver the numbers everyone was predicting. Well, I was wrong – just look at this year’s line so far: 33 runs, 11 home runs, 49 RBIs, two stolen bases and a .333 batting average.

I’d spend a first round pick on him anytime.

1. Zack Greinke, pitcher, Kansas City Royals: Boy, it’s nice to see a Kansas City Royal ranked No. 1 in the Yahoo game. Some speculated that Greinke was worth a lot more than his average draft position of 154 would indicate. He has put on a show this season with 73 strikeouts in 66 innings of work. The 0.82 ERA isn’t anything to sneeze at, either. Obviously, he is going to be a first-rounder in the mid-season draft.

Players to keep an eye on: Michael Cuddyer, Casey Blake, Billy Butler, Juan Rivera, Melky Cabrera, Willy Aybar and Jose Guillen.

Thanks for reading, and look for a Hot or Not list with the top pickups for next week.

Craig resident and Fantasy Fix columnist Christopher Gingrich can be reached at hops2008@gmail.com.


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