Tout Wars NL-Only Experts League Draft Recap

PEORIA, AZ - FEBRUARY 27: Cameron Maybin #24 of the San Diego Padres poses for a portrait during a photo day at Peoria Stadium on February 27, 2012 in Peoria, Arizona. (Photo by Rich Pilling/Getty Images)

As I did yesterday for the Tout Wars AL-only Experts League draft, today I will recap, by position, some of my thoughts on the results of the auction draft. You can view the live chat hosted by Baseball Prospectus' and DRaysBay's Jason Collette here, as well as the auction results spreadsheet with rosters for each team here.

Make sure you check out the transcript from the live chat as I was quite active in the chat with Jason, Mike Lombardo and others.

So let's get to my recap:

Catcher

As I stated in the live chat over at Tout Wars site yesterday, USA Today's Steve Gardner bid up Mets catcher Josh Thole to $8, and I wondered why spend that much on him when you can get Reds catcher Devin Mesoraco for a similar price. How much did Mesoraco go for? $8.

As expected, the top three catchers in terms of auction price were Brian McCann -$21, Buster Posey - $19 and Miguel Montero - $18. I think McCann will be the only catcher, of the three, to be worth his draft day price at the end of the year. I guess some of the experts are buying Ron Shandler's upside on Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina, as he was bought at $15 yesterday.

More of the Tout Wars NL-only Experts league draft recap after the jump:

First Base

Reds first baseman Joey Votto was the most expensive first baseman drafted, as he was bought for $41, which comes as not surprise to many. What was a surprise was the prices for guys like Mets first baseman/outfielder Lucas Duda who was bid up to $20 by Steve Gardner from the USA Today.

Diamondbacks first baseman Paul Goldschmidt came off the board at $18, Giants first baseman Brandon Belt was bought at $12 (good value) and Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard was auctioned at $15. Goldschmidt will have to hit 25 HRs and hit .270 to be of value at that price. Dodgers first baseman James Loney went for $17 which seems pretty high to me. I am curious how much he will go for in my NL-only keeper league auction next Friday.

Second Base

Braves second baseman Dan Uggla was the most expensive second baseman off the board, with Brandon Phillips going for a dollar less at $27, and Brewers second baseman Rickie Weeks going for $23. They all seem to be fair prices, with Weeks injury risk the only thing that would hold me back from bidding him up over the $20 barrier.

The middle tier second baseman went a bit higher than I expected, including Ryan Roberts at $16, who i think had a career year in 2011, Jose Altuve for $17-he's never played a full season in the big leagues, and Neil Walker went for $19. Some are high on Walker as he is slated to bat cleanup for the Buccos in 2012, but I wouldn't have been involved in the bidding over $15.

Phillies injured second baseman Chase Utley went off the board at $10, and if he can come back by June, which is a big question mark, he could outperform his draft day price.

Shortstop

There was some money spent on shortstops yesterday as Hanley Ramirez went for $39, Troy Tulowitzki went for $37, Jose Reyes went for $30, Starlin Castro went for $27 and Dee Gordon went for $22. I am surprised that Hanley went for a higher price than Tulo, and that Castro came so close to $30 in this auction. Gordon's price is not surprising, as he went for $24 in the LABR draft, but he will need to reach my projection for him in the steals category to be of value at $22.

Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond went for $18 yesterday, and I think he is the most likely to underperform his draft day price this season.

Third Base

Most of the third baseman were auctioned for prices right around where I expected, with Ryan Zimmerman going for $29, Pablo Sandoval going for $27 and Aramis Ramirez going for $23. What shocked me the most was the Mets third baseman David Wright coming off the board at just $22. He has been injury prone the last few years, but he could easily be the top NL third baseman if healthy.

Mat Gamel going for $17 and Chase Headley at $20 tells you that if you want a third baseman, grab one of the top tier guys, because these two have no chance performing to their draft day price in 2012.

Outfield

The outfielders you would expect to go for $35+ went for $35+, including Matt Kemp ($42), Ryan Braun ($39) and Carlos Gonzalez ($39) and Justin Upton ($38), but there were a bunch of others who went for just under $35:

Andrew McCutchen -$34

Jay Bruce - $34

Giancarlo Stanton - $32

Hunter Pence - $33

Matt Holliday - $32

Shane Victorino - $29

Michael Bourn - $29

Cameron Maybin - $28 - YES $28!!

Michael Cuddyer - $28

Again, when deciding whether to go $35 on Andrew McCutchen or $28 on Cameron Maybin or Michael Cuddyer, I will overbid on McCutchen every day. Now, McCutchen was auctioned before either Maybin and Cuddyer, but you have to think about relative value when deciding to bid up one guy vs another on draft day. Buy the top tier guys, because someone always overpays for guys like Lucas Duda, Mat Gamel, and Cameron Maybin.

Pitchers

As I stated in the live chat, finally this experts league got the draft day values right for the top tier starters, including:

Clayton Kershaw - $32

Roy Halladay -$29

Cliff Lee - $27

Zack Greinke - $27

Tim Lincecum - $25

Some guys who may not earn their draft day prices are Cory Luebke ($18), Adam Wainwright ($20), Brandon Beachy ($16), Tommy Hanson ($16) and Josh Johnson ($16). Guys who could outperform their prices are Cole Hamels ($23), Mat Latos ($16), and Johnny Cueto ($12).

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