Fantasy Baseball Early Round Sleepers

Hot Stove New YorkSenior Writer IMarch 30, 2009

PHILADELPHIA - OCTOBER 29:  Chase Utley #26 of the Philadelphia Phillies celebrates with the World Series trophy after their 4-3 win against the Tampa Bay Rays during the continuation of game five of the 2008 MLB World Series on October 29, 2008 at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

Since it is way too easy to throw out basement picks and hoping for a long shot to hit, let’s talk about two guys who should be considered first or second round talent but are going outside the top two rounds.

1. Chase Utley, (2B-PHI): Utley has been THE premier second baseman in baseball for the last four years. A couple of injuries set him back in the second half of last year, but he is back in top form to start the 2009 season.

Utley is 30-years-old and in his prime. Anybody who gets Utley outside the top-15 should be licking their chops. A second baseman with 100-30-100-.300 is self explanatory.

2. Carl Crawford, (OF-TAM): Carl Crawford was another victim of the injury bug last year, and a bad hamstring is the achilles heel of the base-stealer.

From 2003-2007, Crawford put up a .300 batting average and stole over 50 bags per season. He only played 109 games last year. Crawford says he feels “great” and is ready to terrorize the basepaths.

If he hits 20 home runs and steals 50 bases, there is no reason he should go outside the first two rounds, if not late in round one.