The FAAB winner in Jeff Erickson's NFBC 15-team mixed league was Cleveland Indians DH Travis Hafner with a whopping 37.2% of the $1,000 FAAB budget. While this seems high for a player a few seasons removed from fantasy relevence, the bid makes sense given the time of year.
How many big hitters are available in the free agent pool? How many could hit 30 HRs over a season? Close to none in deeper leagues. A gamble on Travis Hafner makes perfect sense because he could come back to the player he used to be. With less than four months left, the FAAB is collecting interest.
Other interesting bids, and ones I personally like better than the Hafner one, were Colorado Rockies OF Carlos Gonzalez (22.5%), Chicago White Sox OF Scott Podsednick (8.8%), and Washington Nationals closer Mike MacDougal (8.6%). Of those three, Podsednik looks like the safest to produce what you expect - Runs, AVG and SBs.
I admit to liking Carlos Gonzalez as a post-hype prospect but do not expect him to provide a ton of 2009 production. The large FAAB bid is understandable on the same grounds as the Hafner one - time is running out and a gamble on a potential 20 HR hitter.
Mike MacDougal is the latest in a congo line of Washington Nationals closers - Joel Hanrahan, Joe Beimal, Julian Tavrez, Kip Wells, Joel Hanrahan. MacD hasn't been good for so long, I can see not falling for the tired,crying wolf act that has been the Nats' closing role, but someone will keep that job. MacDougal's predecessors set such a low bar, he need only be 4.50/1.40 to hold it.