As we approach the end of Spring Training, there are a number of roster spots and position battles which are slowly winding their way to completion.
It was announced today that Jason Heyward will be the opening day right fielder for the Braves. He now becomes a player draftable in all leagues in my opinion, and I could see a 15-15 season out of him. Be wary because he is still a rookie, but he's about as close to a sure thing as you're going to find in a rookie.
The Yankees named Philip Hughes their 5th starter on Thursday, which will send Joba Chamberlain back to the bullpen as well. I like Hughes for two reasons, one being the skills he's shown, and the other is the fact that he will qualify as a RP to start the season. For owners thinking of punting saves, he's a starter who could fill a RP slot for you.
Jim Edmonds has made the Brewers roster, and is someone worth keeping an eye on in deeper leagues or NL only leagues. He will start the season as the backup to CF Carlos Gomez, but I could see him taking the job if Gomez plays poorly.
Jaime Garcia will be the fifth starter for the Cardinals, and could be a nice upside play in NL-only leagues.
Injuries that are still lingering at this point in the Spring include:
Brian Roberts - He's going to make his debut today, and he won't end up on any of my teams. A speed guy who has been having back problems worries me too much.
Cliff Lee - His abdominals are still bothering him, but I think he's not one to be too worried about yet.
Other small bumps and bruises out there: Dustin Pedroia, Brandon Webb, and Brett Myers. Take all of them with a grain of salt in my opinion.
Players to draft and hold in spite of their injuries:
Erik Bedard - He probably won't be ready until June some time, but if you have a DL spot to stash him on, there's a lot of upside for him.
Carlos Beltran - He should hopefully be ready by sometime in May, and has the potential to still post a 20-20 season in spite of that.