Fantasy Baseball Thoughts: Josh Hamilton, Albert Pujols, Tommy Hanson and Others

Before I get started on some fantasy baseball thoughts, I want to apologize if you attempted to access Fake Teams last evening and could not. SB Nation's hosting site had some issues, and they worked through them as fast as they could. I hope you continue to come back to Fake Teams as we are building a very nice fantasy community here, and we want to see it continue to grow. As always, if there is anything that you feel we are not covering, let us know in the comments section or send me an email.

Last night brought us some terrible news about Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton. The Dallas Morning News reported that Hamilton was seen drinking in an area bar. Here's more from Gerry Fraley from the DMN:

According to individuals familiar with the episode, Hamilton drank alcohol on Monday night in an area bar. The circumstances that led to Hamilton's use of alcohol could not be determined.

In a statement, the Rangers said they were ``aware of a situation, but we don't have further comment at this time.''

This was Hamilton's second alcohol-related relapse in just over three years. In January, 2009, he drank to excess in a bar in Tempe, Ariz.

I hope this doesn't lead to a relapse for Hamilton, as his return to baseball a few years ago was a great story and fantasy owners want to know that he isn't having any personal issues that could cause more of these during the season. It is also bad timing for Hamilton who is eligible to become a free agent at the end of the 2012 season.

The Braves reported yesterday, via MLB.com, that starter Tommy Hanson's shoulder is feeling fine and he should have no limitations during spring training. I don't know about you, but I am steering clear of Hanson and Marlins starter Josh Johnson this season. Hanson missed 68 days to the DL due to right shoulder tendinitis last season, while Johnson missed 135 days to the DL due to right shoulder inlfammation. Back in 2007, Johnson missed a toatl of 166 days to the DL and ended up having Tommy John surgery the next season. Does he have shoulder surgery in his future? I am not taking that risk. Hanson was shut down twice last year with problems with his right shoulder, and I worry they may linger into 2012, so I won't be drafting him this season.

Justin Bopp over at MLB Daily Dish has more on this story.

More fantasy baseball thoughts after the jump:

Edwin Jackson finally signed with the Nationals yesterday. Who thought the Nationals were even in the conversation? I didn't. I think the Nationals are a legitimate contender for the Wild Card in 2012, and have a solid 1-4 in their rotation with Stephen Strasburg, Jordan Zimmerman, Gio Gonzalez and now Jackson. They have a solid back end of the bullpen as well, with Drew Storen and Tyler Clippard handling the 8th and 9th innings.

Is it me or has the Yoenis Cespedes ordeal taken forever? Jason wrote a nice piece yesterday on where Cespedes should be drafted this season. Check it out. I personally would take all of the outfielders included in the Kevin Goldstein survey before Cespedes. Its quite possible Cespedes will need time in the minors before playing a big league game in 2012.

A few days ago, I was checking out Albert Pujols' player comps over at Baseball-Reference, and his "similar" players include several Hall of Famers. What I wanted to see was at what age these players started their downslide in performance. Guys like Hank Aaron didn't stop hitting for power till he was 40 years old. Heck, he hit 40 homers at the age of 39. No steroids either.

But, what I found was that Ken Griffey Jr., Mickey Mantle, Jimmie Fox and Frank Robinson all started the down side of their careers around their age 32 and 33 seasons. How old is Pujols? 32 years old. Something to think about leading up to draft day. I am not saying not to draft Pujols, but there will come a season, possibly soon, that he disappoints fantasy owners.

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