Previously The Fantasy Fix reviewed and gave projections for the 2011 Red Sox rotation. Now its time to dive in and analyze the Fenway Fearsome positional players.
Don't forget to check out our 2011 Fantasy Baseball Draft Kit
Mixed League Rotisserie Auction Values in Parentheses
Jarrod Saltalamacchia ($4)
Salty has bounced between three MLB teams in his career and has less than 900 AB in four seasons of work. Injuries and inconsistency are major concerns. If the stars align, he could be good for some home runs, but otherwise I would stay way clear of him come draft day.
Jason Varitek ($2)
Varitek is like an ole Timex watch… he takes a licking and keeps on ticking. He is back for his 14th season with the BoSox and still has some pop. Pretty much fantasy irrelevant at this point though.
Adrian Gonzalez ($34)
Attention! Monster Year Approaching!! All signs point to Mr. Gonzalez having a huge year in Boston. Getting out of Petco Park, switching to the A.L., a much better league for hitters and great lineup protection, all add up to big numbers across the board. I am forecasting 35 HR, 125 RBI and a .310 Batting average. He's a top five overall first baseman.
Dustin Pedroia ($33)
Pedroia ranks just a notch below Robinson Cano and should be drafted as the No. 2 overall second baseman in mixed leagues. He had posted career numbers last year until a foot injury sidelined him for the remainder of the season. Dustin is a five-category player and a gamer who plays hard every day. Do not fear the lingering effects of the foot injury. Average draft position for him this year is in the third round.
Marco Scutaro ($8)
Scutaro played 150 games last year and finished with 92 runs (14th in the A.L.) as well as posting a .275/11/56 line. Not bad numbers but nothing to get excited about. He will not lead off this year and is 35 years old and his value is limited, so stay away.
Jed Lowrie ($12)
(Also qualifies at 2B) I love this guy now we need Terry Francona to share the love. Lowrie missed most of last year with an injury. When he did play he showed some pop hitting nine home runs in only 171 AB. Give him 500 appearances and you project to 27 HR/70+ RBI and a boatload of runs. He has so much more upside than Scutaro. It's hard to say how Francona will divvy up playing time though. Watch the spring training news and if he is named the starter we can bump him up to a top-10 mixed league middle infielder. Take a chance on him just not too early.
Kevin Youkilis ($27)
With Adrian Gonzalez now on board the Yuk man will move back to third base. In most formats, he will need to play 20 games there to qualify, so take that into consideration when drafting him. He was on the way to his best season ever last year before a thumb injury ended his season. He is a third round pick in 10-12 team leagues. Hitting in the middle of this lineup he should be a solid four category player. Solid pick!
Carl Crawford ($39)
I have Crawford as a top-three player across the board. How could you not? He is coming off his best statistical year ever. 300/19/90 47 SB and 110 runs and in now is in an absolutely stacked lineup. His ADP has averaged between the third and fifth pick in overall mixed league drafts. The question though is, how much do you value an OF pick in the first round?
Jacoby Ellsbury ($23)
When healthy this guy is a three-category star (2009 stats–70 SB, 94 R, 60 RBI and .301 BA). Ellsbury missed most of last year and may slide a bit on the fantasy radar come draft time this year. The key factor here is to project where Terry Francona will hit him in the batting order. If he leads off, his stats get a major boost. While if he bats in bottom three, his production would drop by a third. Tough call...
J.D. Drew ($10)
By now you know what you are going to get from Drew. A .260/23/74 line and about 450 AB. He gets hurt and can't hit lefties (.208 last year). Hitting in this lineup though, he still has value and makes a good late-round pick.
Ryan Kalish ($1)
Kalish got some playing time last year due to the Red Sox many injuries. Ryan posted pedestrian numbers, but one number that sticks out are his SB's with 10 in only 163 AB's. Projected to be in a bench role though, so stay away until either Drew gets hurt or traded.
Mike Cameron ($1)
A forgotten man and pretty much a fourth OF now. He's 38 and coming off a hernia injury. Cameron probably has a little pop left in the bat but not enough to make any fantasy relevance.
David Ortiz ($18)
OK lets face it, how many of you guys dropped him after the terrible April he had last year? I'm one of you! Although I was able to pick him back up in some leagues and watched him go crazy from May until the end of the year, posting .286/31/98 across the board. Big Papi continues to roll along even at 35 years old. Hitting in this lineup can only mean another strong season for him. Of course, the DH only position limits him, so keep that in mind.
Written exclusively for www.thefantasyfix.com by John Marino