Howard Bender (aka. Mock Draft Army) and the guys over at Fantrax were kind enough to invite me to participate in another mock draft in prep for the 2017 season. There was a lot of talent in the room including: Mastersball's Lawr Michaels, Fantasy Alarm's Colby Conway, and Fantasy Alarm / Big Guy Fantasy Sports's Nate Miller. It was the first serious mock draft of 2017 for me and the results were promising.
It was a relatively standard format: 25 round, 1 catcher league. I was drafting from the 7th slot and ended up with a team that looked like this:
Click here for a complete roster grid of the results of the draft.
Now, i'm not going to go into every pick in great detail, however I will hit on a few picks that I felt were impactful.
5th Round - Ryan Braun. I was very close to taking him in the 4th. a few pitchers went off the board though, and i felt like if I missed Cueto, then i'd be too far behind in pitching... so i passed on Braun. I was very happy to see he fell another round.
10th round - Eric Hosmer. Hosmer, to me, is a guy that doesn't get a lot of love. He's a first baseman that doesn't have a ton of power like many others, and gets overlooked because of that. Over the last 2 seasons though, his slash line is strong enough from a fantasy perspective to provide significant value; and I expect the same from him in 2017.
18th Round - Robbie Ray. Getting a pitcher with 200k upside anywhere is a plus, but even better when it's in the later rounds. A lot of people expect Ray to take a step forward this season and 18th round value felt like a steal at the time.
Some other picks in the draft that were not mine, but that I found interesting:
2nd round, 13th overall pick - Noah Syndergaard. I love Thor, but this is as early as I've seen him go. I understand his stock is on the rise, but I don't think I could take him this early, especially before Scherzer and Bumgarner.
6th round, 65th overall pick - David Dahl. Dahl has a really nice 63 games last year and has upside for sure in Colorado, but I don't know if I could have taken him that early especially considering some other outfield options still on the board.
Andrew Miller in the 11th round, and Cody Allen in the 13th. Saves aren't everything, but in a roto league with limited pitching slots, they are meaningful. With the announcement that Allen will be the Indians closer, i found it interesting that he went 2 rounds later than his setup man Andrew Miller. Don't get me wrong, Miller is unhittable at times, but will likely have much more real life value than fantasy value for a standard scoring league.
Looking back, I'd say the pick I was least happy with was Melancon. Not because I don't like him or the value... I do, but I was expecting a run on closers to happen, and it just didn't. I could have had Schwarber who I was also debating on taking and looking back, would have liked much better. I was also able to get Kimbrel 2 rounds later which would have been sufficient as my first closer.
All together, I was pleased with the team. With this draft now in the books, I'm already looking forward to the next one. Stay tuned for more mocks and analysis.