KANSAS CITY, MO - MAY 16: Manager Ned Yost #2 of the Kansas City Royals looks on from the dugout during the game against the Chicago White Sox on May 16, 2010 at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
There are countless factors outside of a hitter’s ability that can contribute to your decision to draft him in a fantasy baseball head-to-head (H2H) points league, with each hitter’s team being perhaps the most important.
Whether it’s a hitter’s surrounding lineup, his home and division stadiums or his manager’s philosophy and approach to scoring runs, there are plenty of things outside of his control that can lead to his success and positive or negative impact on your fantasy baseball H2H points league team.
Therefore, it’s important know which MLB teams offer the most potential for scoring points in the 2012 season as it could be the determining factor between choosing one position player or another.
See the highest scoring 2011 MLB teams after the jump:
2011 Fantasy Baseball H2H Team Offensive Point Leaders:
Notes on Team Leaders:
It’s no surprise to see Texas as the top scoring team from 2011 as it was one of only three teams with over 200 HR and one of only three to strike out less than 1000 times. Everyone in the Rangers lineup is worth drafting in most leagues, including Yorvit Torrealba in two catcher leagues. The same could be said for the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox.
Without a doubt, Kansas City is the most surprising team with 3531 points, more than St. Louis, Detroit, Philadelphia or Milwaukee. Their success can be attributed to the team’s 153 SB, which bodes well for the future point potential of Alcides Escobar and Lorenzo Cain, as well as their 1006 strikeouts. Last season marked the second in a row in which Kevin Seitzer’s hitters were among the five lowest in terms of strikeouts which could lead to an improved approach at the plate from youngsters such as Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas and Alex Gordon.
I would expect to see St. Louis drop from the Top 5 with the loss of Albert Pujols, while the addition of Prince Fielder to the lineup should boost Detroit into the Top 5 in 2012, considering he scored over 100 more points than Victor Martinez in 2011.
Similar to the Royals, the Mets are another surprise amongst the Top 10 as they hit the fifth fewest HR in 2011. A lot of their overall success can be attributed to Jose Reyes and his 559 points, but there is reason to believe they can maintain their point potential with healthy seasons from David Wright and Ike Davis and the drawn in fences at Citi-Field.
While the Cincinnati offense appears to be elite in the real world, it is below average in terms of H2H point potential. The dropoff can be attributed to the team’s high strikeout total as well as their place amongst the bottom 10 in terms of doubles, triples and stolen bases. The team’s overall lack of speed could result in fewer RBI opportunities for stars such as Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips, while the poor plate discipline of Jay Bruce and Drew Stubbs directly impacts their point potential.
As if Petco wasn’t enough to dissuade you from San Diego hitters, the team’s lack of plate discipline led to 1320 strike outs in 2011.
If all else is equal between two players, you’ll obviously want to avoid the hitter from the Mariners, Padres, Pirates, Giants, Twins and Astros, with the Nationals being the possible exception as there should be improvement from Jayson Werth as well as healthy seasons from Ryan Zimmerman and Adam LaRoche.
In terms of pitching, you'll want to stock up on Texas starters like Matt Harrison, Colby Lewis and Neftali Feliz in later rounds as they should cost very little but will have an excellent chance of accumulating points via the wins multiplier. It also doesn't hurt that they face the Mariners and Athletics quite often. Conversely, you'll likely want to avoid most pitchers from those two teams, other than Felix Hernandez of course.
There doesn't seem to be much incentive to draft Baltimore pitchers either. The rotation lacks an ace, receives league average offensive support and has to face the second, third and seventh highest scoring offenses on a regular basis. Almost any pitcher from the AL East not named Sabathia, Price or Lester will come with some risk and you'll want to monitor their matchups closely.
Were you surprised to see any of the point totals from some teams in 2011? Feel free to comment on this post or ask any H2H points league questions below.