We are entering the second season of the Fake Teams Dynasty League in 2013, and with that of course came our five-round minor league draft. First, some details about our league:
Setup: 16 team head-to-head (categories) mixed league - $120 salary cap
Categories: R, HR, RBI, AVG, SB, BB, OBP, W, SV, HLD, K, ERA, WHIP, QS
Eligible players: Any player who has signed a contract with a Major League organization, has not been drafted in previous years, and has not made their debut in the Majors.
Other notes: All players drafted in the minor league draft are assigned a $1 for 6 year contract. This contract does not count against the cap or start until they are called up by the owner, which must be done before the player reaches 250 AB or 100 IP in the Majors. For example, a player called up by his owner in the 2014 season would be under contract through the 2019 season, regardless of whether they were drafted in 2012 or 2013.
There are a few other things of note to be aware of with this draft. First, we have cycled through a large number of owners within the first year, so while I will likely discuss other players within their system, bear in mind that there are new owners for a lot of them, which likely means a change in strategy. Secondly, there were a few owners that were replaced during the draft (or after the draft), so some of the picks were completed well after their turn had passed. As a result, the players available when they were able to make their selection were different than if they had taken the pick in turn. Finally, draft picks are tradable in our league, but it does not tend to happen very much. With that in mind, here's the results from the third of our five round minor league draft.
A new wrinkle at this point in the draft: New owners who joined and took over teams which were in the bottom half of the standings received compensation draft picks, with places 9 through 12 potentially having an additional pick at the end of the 3rd round. Three teams received these picks this year, and they are at the end of this post as well.
Another up the middle talent for this team, although it sounds like it is more likely that Seager will be forced to move to 3B at some point in the future. His bat will play there as well as at shortstop, although it would be nice if he could find a way to become at least average at the position.
Gallo set all sorts of records for home runs this season, and has the potential to be an elite power hitter in the Majors. There are concerns about whether his hit tool will keep him from reaching that potential though.
Probably the only relief prospect I would have considered drafting, Rondon is expected to be the closer of the future for the Tigers. Whether that time starts on Opening Day is still up in the air, but it doesn't sound like he has gotten his control issues figured out just yet.
This is probably the pick that I most regret not taking myself. While I had read briefly about Fried when we were drafting, I had not read as much as I should have, or I likely would have rated him higher. It's a bit of a surprise looking back that he lasted even this long in the draft.
I am not a fan of this pick particularly, as Marrero profiles as a better real-life prospect than fantasy one. He is expected to be a batting average, runs, and a bit of speed producer, but not a ton of power. He's also expected to stay at shortstop long-term, but I don't know if I see more than a player in the 10-15 range at his position.
Pick 3.6 - Jackie Bradley Jr, OF, BOS
Pick 3.7 - Delino DeShields Jr, 2B, HOU
Previous Picks: Gregory Polanco, Michael Wacha, Bruce Rondon
After going with a closer candidate with their last pick, this team then took a center field prospect who could be patrolling Fenway Park by midseason, and a potential category winner in DeShields. DeShields got lost a bit in the shuffle this year, despite stealing over 100 bases in 2012. He is still a few years away, but could be amazing for fantasy owners when he arrives.
Stroman is expected to get a shot at the closer's job in Toronto at some point in the future, but that future is a bit stalled at the moment. He is currently serving a 50-game suspension for a banned substance, but he might get that shot again in 2014.
Corcino was taken substantially after their actual time frame for the pick, but there's some nice upside here. He'll need to iron out his issue with free passes, but the scouting reports point to a pitcher who has a very good repertoire.
Buckel is another high floor, low ceiling type of pitchers, and he reached AA last year. He won't turn 21 until late June, but could reach AAA by then despite the low ceiling. He profiles as a back-end of the rotation starting pitcher in the long term.
I'm not really a fan of drafting 1B prospects in a fantasy draft, but Vogelbach may be one of the few exceptions. The kid can absolutely hit anything thrown his way, which is good, because playing defense at 1B could be a no-go, and we may see him traded to an AL team at some point if they can't get his defense in line.
Flores is one of those prospects who seems like he should be too old to be considered a prospect, but he will still play most of the 2013 season at age 21. He can absolutely hit, but there are serious questions about whether or not he can stay at 3B, could move to 2B, or would be forced to 1B or a corner outfield spot instead.
Pick 3.14 - Adalberto Mondesi, SS, KCR
Previous Picks: Albert Almora
Upside, upside, upside. One of former major leaguer Raul Mondesi's kids, Adalberto debuted in the Pioneer League as a 16 year old last year. He's expected to stay at the position long-term, and could be a seven category monster in the Majors. Extremely high risk, but I liked the opportunity after taking a high floor type in Almora.
The numbers from the 2012 season don't tell the whole story on Bonifacio, who played through a wrist injury in the second half of the season. Bonifacio has a prototypical profile for right field, with a great arm and a potential power bat in the long-term. He'll go to High-A to start 2013.
Another pick taken much later, Colome reached AAA last season for 3 starts. He showed the potential to be a high strikeout starting pitcher last season, albeit with an additional risk of walks causing him trouble. The Rays don't have an immediate opening, which is good because Colome could use a season down at AAA ironing out the control issues.
Supplemental Pick 3.A - Taylor Guerrieri, SP, TAM
Previous Picks: Jose Fernandez, David Dahl, Joey Gallo
This was aggravating. Guerrieri was my next name to be drafted, and while a lot of picks were in between my next one and this one, I still had hopes that Guerrieri may be sitting there still. He'll likely get his first full season assignment in 2013, and I'm really looking forward to seeing what he can do.
Miller absolutely destroyed the California League, which given his home park in High Desert isn't a huge surprise. That he kept up the performance in AA Jackson may tell us a lot more, as he could be a double digit home run and stolen base provider along with a high batting average. Miller is not expected to stick at shortstop in the long run, but should still be extremely valuable at 2B as well.
Supplemental Pick 3.C - Lucas Giolito, SP, WAS
Previous Picks: Byron Buxton, Aaron Sanchez, Max Fried
Sigh. With the injury and related Tommy John surgery, I was also hoping that Giolito might continue to fall into the next round, and this may turn out to be the pick of this draft. Giolito was widely viewed as one of the top five talents available for the 2012 draft before he missed nearly all of his senior season with injuries. The Nationals have shown an ability to successfully rehab pitchers from Tommy John, and I like their odds to get Giolito back to his pre-injury form.
Overall, we started to see teams start to deviate from top prospect lists some, and go for prospects that may have additional situational value (Rondon, Stroman). I really saw a ton of names that I was hoping to get to me come off the board in Gallo, Guerrieri, and Giolito, but I was still very happy with my selection of Mondesi. We also saw some owners start to move more towards sure things like Buckel and Flores, even though there were higher ceiling talents still available.