Todd-o-logue: Don't Draft Fantasy Team Killers

Todd FarinoCorrespondent IMarch 29, 2009

MESA, AZ - MARCH 03:  Alfonso Soriano #12 of the Chicago Cubs hits a solo home run against the Oakland Athletics during the first inning of the spring training game at HoHoKam Park on March 3, 2009 in Mesa, Arizona. The Cubs defeated the A's 6-4. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

I'll pose this question to start. Do you want to be able to walk up to your friends and say, "championship"? Well, I can't guarantee you will win a championship this year, but I can tell you how you can avoid winning a championship.

Avoid winning? Who would want to do that?

There are certain players that kill fantasy teams and they can do it several ways. Some just cost too much draft capital and others are far too risky. I'll state this now, I've never seen a manager win a championship with Jose Reyes.

Now I'm not saying that all teams with Jose Reyes on the roster over the past several years have never won a title. I'm saying, I've just never wittnessed it. That being said there are just players who kill your team and keep you chasing the league leaders.

Here is a list of players I would recommend avoiding in 2009 ONLY if you want to win a championship.

Jose Reyes

What will this No.1 draft pick give us in 2009? Will he bat .300? Maybe, maybe not. Will he steal 60+ bases, probably not. Will he hit 18 home runs? Unlikely.

Too many what ifs for a top five draft pick. Avoid him and grab a far more certain pick like Ryan Braun, Jimmy Rollins, Grady Sizemore, or David Wright.

Alex Rodriguez 

This guy is a mess. He's going through a divorce, banging Skeletor, his "cousin" was poking him in the butt, and that probably led to a torn labrum in his hip. Why would any sane person invest a No. 1 draft pick in that mess. Walk away from the light drafters.

Ryan Howard

Listen, I like Ryan Howard. I love the home runs, but he is a average killer. You can find home runs all over the draft, and you won't have to chase average for 8 straight picks after taking him.

Maybe you are addicted to getting 50 home runs with one player, but average counts as well and a possible .250 average is nearly as bad as 40+ home runs is good.

CC Sabathia 

I loved Sabathia last year, but that was when he was with the lovable bunch in Cleveland. That's right, when his team played 57 games against the Kansas City Royals, Chicago White Sox, and Minnesota Twins.

In 2009, Sabathia and America's favorite team to hate the Yankees have to play 76 games against hardened powerhouse offenses like the Boston Red Sox, Tampa Bay Rays, Toronto Blue Jays, and even the Baltimore Orioles.

You might not respect a couple of those teams, but the American League East is a bitter rivalry amongst all teams in the division and it's a different game. I wouldn't use a second or third round pick on this team killer.

Alfonso Soriano

First off, do we really know how old this guy is? Unofficially he is 33, but he gets hurt like he's 50. Soriano is in a decline and we all know this. If you want to invest a second or third round pick in this guy, prepare to lose.

You will get your 25 home runs and 12-15 stolen bases, but you will also sweat buckets every game and cover your eyes when you check the daily injury lists! SAY NO TO SORIANO!

Chipper Jones

Another player that can kill a fantasy team. Managers are drafting him in the 5th round and I'm asking why? Chipper pulls a groin taking a pee!

He takes a poop and strains his abdomen! Jones has averaged 124 games per year over the past 3 years. He's 37 entering this year and he is just too risky. Take a young player like Chris Davis in the 5th. You'll thank me later.

Felix Hernandez

King Felix, really? More like King Overrated. This guy has the skills, but he hasn't matured as an ace should have at his age and he's on a terrible team. The Mariners offense is so bad that Russell Branyan is starting at first base! If you draft him, write the loss off on your taxes.

Kerry Wood 

I loved him last year, but this year he's a mess. You can only get so many closers in the draft, so don't waste your time on this guy. If you end up losing your roto league by six points and you lost the saves category by seven, you can blame this injury prone, cry-baby of a closer for losing your championship.

In reality, not any one of these guys will kill your dreams of a championship, but they are simply not worth their ADP.

There are a ton of great steals in the draft and those are the players who win championships. I've always said, finding the breakout players is how you win championships, not overpaying for risky studs.