Today we cover the Top 5 Atlanta Braves that you need to know for draft day 2010. The Braves have one of the better starting rotations in baseball even after trading Javier Vazquez, and have added closer Billy Wagner to solidify their bullpen.
1. Brian McCann-McCann is probably the 2nd or 3rd catcher taken off draft boards in mixed leagues the past few years as he will provide 20+ homers and 90+ RBIs with a solid BA. He was a 4th round pick in a recent mixed league draft I participated in.
2. Tommy Hanson-Hanson sparkled in his first major league season going 11-4 with a 2.89 ERA and an excellent 1.18 WHIP. He's a future ace, making the trade of Javier Vazquez a little easier to swallow for Braves fans.
3. Nate McLouth-McLouth's performance in 2009 was a little disappointing to fantasy leaguers who were looking for him to improve upon, or at least duplicate his 2008 season where he went 26-94-23-.276. Was his 2008 season his peak power season? Well, it was his age 27 season.
4. Yunel Escobar-I think 2010 will be Escobar's breakout season power-wise. He should improve upon his 14-76-89-.299-.377-.436-.812 slash stats from 2009.
5. Chipper Jones-does Chipper have one more solid season left in his aching body? Time will tell, and I will say yes. Chipper turns 38 in April...wow 38 years old.....and he is looking to improve upon his 18-71-.264 line in 2009. He will be undervalued in 2010 drafts.
Sleeper Alert: Martin Prado-Prado will begin the season as the Braves starter at 2B. As I have written previously, he could turn some of his 38 doubles into HRs in 2010. He has good pop for a second baseman as evidenced by his 38 doubles and 11 HRs in 450 ABs.