Fantasy Baseball: Never Too Early to Prepare

Johnny SheaCorrespondent IJanuary 28, 2008

With the baseball season on the horizon, it is never too early to prepare your team for its best season yet.

It was difficult, but I managed to arrange a guide for your Top 20 Picks in 2008.


1. Alex Rodriguez

Producing sick numbers with 54 HR and 156 RBI, while maintaing a .314 BA, A-Rod racked up the AL MVP Award, the RBI and HR titles, and an enormous paycheck. The honor of being top pick for your fantasy baseball team is another thing A-Rod can check off his "To-Do" List.


2. Hanley Ramirez

Possibly one of the most underrated players in the league, Ramirez was one homerun shy of the 30-50 club. He produced 81 RBI as a leadoff man, with a .332 batting average. Ramirez looks forward to having an even stronger year in '08.


3. Matt Holliday

The NL MVP, Holliday quietly produced a wonderful season in 2007. He hit for 36 dingers, 137 RBI—and all the while, he produced a BA of .340. Did I mention he led his team to the World Series? Matt can do it for your fantasy team too.


4. David Wright  

Although the Mets fell short of the playoffs last season, it was not David Wright's fault. He hit for 30 HR, 107 RBI, maintained a .325 average, and swiped 34 bases. David Wright is a five-tool player and a future star.


5. Jimmy Rollins

The leadoff hitter for the Phillies, Rollins led Philadelphia over the Mets and to the NL East crown. He scored 139 runs, hit 30 homers, had 94 RBI, and stole successfully 41 times. Rollins won the NL MVP and is a remarkable power-hitting shortstop.


6. Albert Pujols

Pujols produced 32 homers and 103 RBI, and 2007 was an off year. Albert can produce MVP-caliber numbers in 2008.


7. Alfonso Soriano

He hit for five triples, 33 homers, and 70 RBI at the top of the order. Soriano looks forward to having a better year in 2008. I cannot wait to see what kind of numbers he will produce.


8. Miguel Cabrera

Cabrera proved to be one of the league's most dominant hitters in 2008, hitting .320 with 34 home runs and 119 RBI for a team that produced very few runs. Miguel is sure to have an equally dominant season in 2008, if not even better.


9. Chase Utley

If not injured late in the season, Utley may have won the MVP award in the National League. He hit 48 doubles, 22 homers, and 103 RBI in a season shortened by injury. Utley is sure to produce similar numbers this season.


10. Magglio Ordonez

Magglio may even deserve to be listed higher than #10. He batted an incredible .363 with 28 HR and 139 RBI. Magglio will be tough competition for the AL MVP award in 2008, even against A-Rod.


11. Jake Peavy

Peavy is the number-one pitcher in this season's Top 20, and he is very deserving of that honor. He went 19-6 with a 2.54 ERA with a WHIP of 1.09. It is clear that Peavy will produce similar MVP numbers in 2008. Just imagine the Cy Young race if Santana joins the NL.


12. Jose Reyes

Reyes finished the season with a dismal performance, showcasing a lack of maturity and effort. However, he is still one of the elite players of the Major Leagues. He produced 78 SB last season, and can help your team dominate the stolen bases category.


13. David Ortiz

Ortiz did not have his best season in '07, but he turned it on late to give the Red Sox a championship ring. Big Papi still produced monster numbers, however. He hit 35 HR and 117 RBI, maintaining a .332 average. Ortiz will be bigger and better in '08, so be prepared for ridiculous numbers.


14. Josh Beckett

The only 20-win pitcher in the major leagues, Beckett pitched his way through the playoffs and led his team to a World Series championship. With 194 strikeouts and a 3.27 ERA, Beckett will put up similar numbers in '08 and will be a strong candidate for the Cy Young. 


15. Johan Santana

He finished with a decent 15-13 record last season and a solid 3.33 ERA. It was not Santana's best, but he will be driven and refocused in 2008.  Look for him to put up strong numbers for your fantasy squad.


16. Vladimir Guerrero

Vlad led the Angels into the playoffs, batting .324 with 27 homers and 125 RBI. He also won the HR Derby Contest, proving his remarkable power. Vlad should bring his best this season.


17. Ryan Howard

With 47 dingers and 142 RBI, Howard can really produce. I would have placed him higher, but because of his lack of speed and runs scored, he sits at the #17 spot. Regardless, Howard is one of the top power hitters in the league.


18. Ichiro Suzuki

Ichiro is a uniquely dominant force in the Majors. He hit for seven triples, scored 111 runs, and best of all, maintained an astonishing .351 average. Ichiro will provide excellent speed, batting average, and health for your team.


19. Prince Fielder

Fielder is very young, and will continue to produce fantastic numbers as his career unfolds. He hit 50 home runs in 2008, along with 119 RBI. Fielder proved to be someone to pay serious attention to last year—and this year, he will be a star.


20. Carlos Beltran

Although age is beginning to creep up on Carlos, he will remain an All-Star centerfielder in '08. With 33 HR and 112 RBI, Carlos is a five-tool player who can even swipe your team some bases. Carlos deserves the 20th spot.


There it is, your Top 20 draft picks for Fantasy Baseball 2008.

I wish you a season full of homeruns, RBI, low ERA—and most of all, enjoyment.


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