Who would have expected a year like Jeter gave fantasy owners in 2009?
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) -
In the third of an eight-part series, we will look at the 2010 TSN Fantasy Rankings for shortstops.
From this group there were nine players with 20-or-more stolen bases, five with 100-or-more runs scored and three 20+ HR guys, but only three players (the top- three listed below) accomplished all three feats in 2009.
1) Hanley Ramirez, FLA (ADP 2) - The shortstop position has a "big dog" in Ramirez, who has separated himself from the field. Despite that, he was a bit disappointing in 2009 because the move to the third spot in the Marlins batting order stifled his ability to run. He was the only shortstop to knock in 100 runs.
2) Troy Tulowitzki, COL (ADP 9.8) - Tulowitzki exploded onto the scene in 2007 only to disappoint owners' high expectations in 2008. He bounced back last season with a 101 run, 32 HR, 92 RBI 20 SB effort that will push expectations sky high again. This time, I think he'll repeat last numbers and remain the No.2 shortstop.
3) Jimmy Rollins, PHI (ADP 26.8) - Rollins was hitting just .205 on July 1st yet still produced a 100-run season with 21 HR. 77 RBI and 31 steals. If he gets off to a mediocre start instead of a horrible one, he could challenge the top two guys at the position.
4) Derek Jeter, NYY (ADP 34.5) - Who would have expected a year like Jeter gave fantasy owners in 2009? After his worst season in five years in 2008, Jeter responded by leading his team to a World Championship and many fantasy owners to their title with a 107 run, 18 HR, 30 SB, .334 batting average performance. He has a lot of wear and tear on that soon-to-be 36-year-old body (2,276 games, 10,446 plate appearances including playoffs), but he'll likely put up another solid season and qualify as a high second-tier shortstop. He just won't be the huge bargain he was last preseason.
5) Jose Reyes, NYM (ADP 34.7) - As this piece is being written, Reyes is reportedly being checked out for a thyroid problem. As long as all goes well, I'm expecting Reyes to have a solid 2010 after an injury-filled and disappointing 2009.
6) Stephen Drew, AZ (ADP 143.8) - Drew was a popular choice last spring after a 91-run, 21 HR effort in 2008, but fell short of his and fantasy owners' goals last year. His low current ADP could make him a bargain if he returns to 2008 form as expected.
7) Jason Bartlett, TB (ADP 89.8) - Bartlett is getting a lot of respect for a player who has hit more than five homers in a season just one time. A solid batting average (.320) and 90 runs scored are the source of this enthusiasm, but you'll have to overpay to get him and I'm not sold yet that 2009 wasn't just a "career" year.
8) Asdrubal Cabrera, CLE (ADP 113) - Batting between Grady Sizemore and Shin- Soo Choo puts Cabrera in an enviable position. He sees a lot of good pitches and will hit for a .300+ average just like last year. He could also add 90 runs scored and 20 stolen bases.
9) Alexei Ramirez, CWS (ADP 112.4) - Ramirez did a lot of things very well for a second-year player, scoring 71 runs, hitting 15 HR, knocking in 68 runs and stealing 14 bases. Despite that, he disappointed fantasy owners after his spectacular rookie season. The White Sox have an improved lineup which should help.
10) Yunel Escobar, ATL (ADP 111.1) - Escobar was ranked No.199 during the 2009 preseason, but has moved up significantly after a solid year in which he hit .299 with 89 runs scored, 14 HR and knocked in 76 runners. He doesn't steal bases which stifles his ability to move further up the charts.
Just Missed - Elvis Andrus, TEX (ADP 107.8) ; Rafael Furcal, LAD (ADP 168.3); Marco Scutaro, BOS (ADP 157.5).