In this fantasy edition, we’ll cover players who are poised for breakout seasons. We covered under valued players yesterday
1. Justin Upton, OF, Arizona Diamondbacks: We covered Upton yesterday, but he is my #1 breakout pick for the 2010 season. The 22-year-old Upton hit 26 home runs and stole 20 bases in only 138 games last season. He also posted an impressive batting average(.300) and slugging percentage(.532). Upton has a world of talent. If he plays the entire season, consider 30-30 to be his basement. Upton is being selected in the 3rd-4th rounds(25 Average Draft Position(ADP) in fantasy drafts when he has 1st Round potential. Consider that a good value.
Projection: .295 BA, 35 HRs, 105 RBIs, 32 SBs, 100 Rs
2. Shin-Soo Choo, OF, Cleveland Indians: In 2009, Choo quietly had a great season with Cleveland. Choo hit 20 HRs, drove in 86 runs, scored 95 times, and stole 21 bases. He also hit .300 on the season. Choo will support your fantasy team in all five offensive categories. Owners must also take into account that Choo posted most of these numbers without Grady Sizemore(injured) in the lineup. Sizemore is expected to be 100% this season, which only enhances Choo’s fantasy value. 100+ RBIs are not out of the question. Choo’s ADP is 67th overall right now. However, owners are taking one dimensional players, like Manny Ramirez and Michael Bourne before him. By pass these players and hop aboard the “Choo Choo” train.
Projection: .305 BA, 22 HRs, 100 RBIs, 22 SBs, 93 Rs
3. Matt Wieters, C, Baltimore Orioles: Fantasy owners were expecting the world and then some from Wieters during his rookie campaign last season. In 354 big league at-bats, Wieters hit 9 HRs with 43 RBIs. This isn’t exactly setting the world on fire, but given the sample size, it’s respectable from a rookie. Alike all rookies, Wieters was a little tentative after first coming up. I don’t expect that be to be a problem during his sophomore campaign. Wieters posted a .288 BA last year, proving that he could have Mauer-Esq value at the catching position. Wieters should get 500+ ABs this year and won’t disappoint. His current ADP of 95 makes him the 4th catcher drafted and worthy of 9th-10th round selection. I’m calling for a huge boost in Wieters’s numbers in 2010.
Projection: .300 BA, 22 HRs, 95 RBIs, 80 Rs
4. Brett Anderson, SP, Oakland Athletics: Another player that we covered yesterday, but this kid is also due for a breakdown campaign. Don’t be fooled by Anderson’s 2009 ERA of 4.06. The 22-year-old Anderson had a great second half last season. In 14 starts after the All-Star break, Anderson posted a 6-4 record, striking out 86 hitters in only 80 innings. After mid-season, Anderson’s ERA dropped from 5.45(June 29) to 4.06(Oct 1). Anderson also benefits from playing in the spacious Oakland Coliseum. Anderson’s ADP of 150 is a no-brainer for a 15th round selection.
Projection: 15 wins, 180 Ks, 3.85 ERA
5. Clayton Kershaw, SP, Los Angeles Dodgers: The 22-year-old Kershaw has dazzled so far on the Major League level. In 171 innings last season, Kershaw struck out 185 hitters and posted a minuscule 2.79 ERA. Kershaw only won 8 games last season, so most fantasy owners will be a little wary about selecting him on draft day. Don’t be one of those owners. Kershaw’s 9.74 K/9 rate should increase in 2010. Kershaw has mastered his 95 MPH+ fastball and his curve ball. He has spent this Spring Training working on a slider as well. The slider is just another feather in this kid’s cap. Kershaw’s ADP of 94 makes him the 19th starting pitcher selected in drafts. That’s a huge steal and I’ll take him over Yovani Gollardo or Tommy Hanson any day of the week. I’m expecting Cy-Young type numbers from Kershaw this season.
Projection: 15 wins, 220 Ks, 2.60 ERA
Who are some of your break out players this season?
All ADP values are credit of: KFFL
Photo Credit: news.yahoo.com