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RotoAuthority Draft & ADP Analysis

The RotoAuthority draft was recently held, and you can find the draft results and reader votes for best draft here (my team is Men With Wood). My final pre-season ADP article will look at the RotoAuthority draft results and compare to ADP (courtesy of fantasypros.com):

Round One

  • Miguel Cabrera - His status was up in the air due to facial injuries when the draft was held, so he slipped to the third pick compared to his place at the top of the ADP board at 2.1. All indications are that he will be ready for Opening Day and is safe to draft with the top pick. "Ill Tempered SeaBass" had a nice third pick in the draft.
  • Carlos Gonzalez - The player with the lowest ADP at 16.8 (No. 19 highest ADP) taken in the first round at No. 10 overall. "Up" selected Gonzalez over Justin Upton, who went two slots later at No. 12 overall.  Although ADP favors Justin Upton (ADP of 14.5, which is the No. 14 highest ADP), Carlos Gonzalez has a higher batting average ceiling and may have more RBI opportunities hitting in Coors Field; Ron Shandler's Baseball Forecaster lists Upton at $27 and Gonzalez at $35.

Round Two

  • Carlos Santana - "Jeter's Gift Baskets" selected Santana at No. 20 compared to his ADP of 39.8. Although this may appear to be a massive reach, in two-catcher leagues catchers are drafted significantly higher than their ADP positions. Even in a deep catcher year, punting the position in two-catcher leagues is not a viable strategy. The run of starting pitchers began right after Santana was selected, but "Jeter's Gift Baskets" was able to round out his rotation late with Brandon McCarthy at No. 260 overall and Jeremy Hellickson at No. 197 overall.

Round Three

  • Felix Hernandez - As I discussed here, drafting an elite starter in the top rounds is an excellent idea because a 200-inning starter will have about 13% of your total innings (assuming 1500 inning limit) and a 600 at-bat hitter will have about 7% of your at-bats. I want to lock in 13% of my innings with quality stats since I have flexibility to find cumulative hitting statistics elsewhere, including by streaming at-bats. "Brewsterville Bruins" was in a perfect slot at No. 35 overall to grab whatever top-tier starting pitcher fell to the end of the third round.  In this case, that starter was King Felix (ADP of 28.6).

Round Four

  • David Wright - "Up" selected Wright at No. 39 overall compared to his 32.6 ADP, and this selection may pay significant dividends now that Wright has played in a Spring game and appears ready for Opening Day.
  • Ryan Zimmerman - "Francisco Scaramanga" drafted Zimmerman at No. 43 overall, a slight value compared to his 39.9 ADP. Given the sudden drop-off in quality at third base after the first few tiers, grabbing any third baseman at value in the first six rounds is advisable.
  • Michael Young - Although Young's selection by "Gramma Nutt Crushers" at No. 48 overall compared to 61.0 ADP may appear to be a reach, Young qualifies in Yahoo at first base, second base and third base, and he meets the multi-position eligibility target discussed here for streaming hitters in daily leagues with short benches.

Round Five

  • Zack Greinke - Although taking a second starter in Round 5 was not my plan entering the draft, when Greinke was available at No. 50 overall (46.9 ADP) after starters such as Jered Weaver and David Price had already been selected, I could not pass him up. He had the lowest SIERA in MLB among qualifying starters last year and, as I discussed here, is my pick to end up as a top-five starter.  He is also blowing away hitters in the Spring with an insane 28/2 strikeout-to-walk ratio.
  • Shin-Soo Choo - Tim Dierkes' "RobertCop" was concerned Choo would not fall to him in the sixth round and selected Choo No. 56 overall compared to 82.2 ADP. Choo is falling under many radar screens with owners forgetting he had back to back 20/20 with .300 batting average seasons in 2009 and 2010. Hopefully you are able to snag him a round or two later in drafts with owners that have forgotten how good a healthy Choo may be this year in his age-29 season.

Other Selections

  • Craig Kimbrel - The first closer -- Kimbrel -- was not selected until the first pick of the eighth round to "Depressed Fan" at No. 85 overall compared to 57.2 ADP. As I discussed here, do not start a closer run in your draft even if a closer is ranked as the highest remaining player on your draft sheet. Closers taken in Rounds 12 and 13 are just as likely to match Krimbrel's saves total given the random nature of the stat (Jason Motte at No. 144 overall; Brian Wilson at No. 149 overall; Jordan Walden at No. 151 overall; Sergio Santos at No. 152 overall). Having said that, if you are going to select Kimbrel, then No. 85 overall is the place to do it.
  • Sean Marshall - Tim Dierkes' "RobertCop" had one of the best picks of the draft with Marshall at No. 248 (compared to 247.0 ADP) after Ryan Madson was lost for the season. Taken in the 21st round, Marshall is a good example of the late-round flyer with big upside that owners should target. Rather than selecting a boring hitter in rounds 20+, take a high-upside hitter or starter or a setup man that is an injury away from shooting up in value but can still be easily released for a hot hitter during the season or kept to provide strong strikeout rates, and/or healthy ratio contributions.

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