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Why Were They Underrated?

Let's look at players who had huge fantasy seasons in 2008, yet were drafted fairly late or not at all.  We'll attempt to determine why these players were underrated.

  • Tim Lincecum (11th round).  4.00 ERA, less than one full season of experience, plays for Giants.
  • Cliff Lee (undrafted).  Awful/injured in 2007.
  • Dustin Pedroia (15th round).  Projections underestimated power, speed, AVG.
  • Josh Hamilton (12th round).  Health concerns, half-season under his belt and years off before that.
  • Ryan Ludwick (undrafted).  Role, AVG, health in question; power underestimated.
  • Nate McLouth (23rd round).  Hadn't played a full season yet; plays for Pirates.
  • Aubrey Huff (28th round).  Mediocre in 2007.
  • Ervin Santana (28th round).  Awful in 2007.
  • Kevin Youkilis (15th round).  Underestimated power, RBIs, AVG.
  • Joakim Soria (13th round).  Sophomore; plays for Royals.
  • Ryan Dempster (undrafted).  Underestimated health, pretty much all skills.
  • Carlos Quentin (undrafted).  Injured, ineffective in '07; role in question.
  • Ricky Nolasco (undrafted).  Health, role in question; plays for Marlins.

Looks like one reason players are underestimated is a lack of experience.  2008 rookies who may be underrated: Joey Votto, Chris Davis, Chris Dickerson, Chase Headley, Ian Stewart, Matt Joyce, Jay Bruce, Jair Jurrjens, Joey Devine, Clayton Kershaw, Max Scherzer, and Johnny Cueto.  Not sure if he's a rookie but you have to love Nelson Cruz.

Pitchers with good stuff who were bad (ERA over 4.50): Daniel Cabrera, Justin Verlander, Cueto, Aaron Harang, Javier Vazquez, and Brett Myers.

Who else is on your list due to inexperience, injury, role concerns, a small market, or plain old breakout potential?

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