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September 9, 2013

Fantasy Freestyle

The Other Guys, Part One

by Mike Gianella


Three years ago, Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg charmed America in the buddy/cop comedy “The Other Guys.” Ferrell’s fish-out-of-water routine combined with Wahlberg’s exasperated tough-guy act was something that had never been seen before in the annals of cinema, and the on-screen result of the unlikely pairing was cinematic gold.

In fantasy baseball, and particularly in keeper leagues, analysts always take a look at the hot prospects down on the farm that are getting called up for the first time in September. This is useful from a knowledge perspective, but from a decision making standpoint often isn’t very helpful. Xander Bogaerts is a keep at $10 next year if he makes the Red Sox out of camp; even if he’s on the bench, it’s likely he’ll be kept for the anticipated rewards down the road.

Today, I thought I’d look at some of baseball’s “other guys”. These are players who can fit a lot of descriptions, but often are afterthoughts this time of year. In keeper leagues with reserve lists, many of these players have to be activated or cut before the season is over, so it is definitely worth taking a look at this less-scrutinized pool of players. More than a few might have value, even if they aren’t as high profile as Bogaerts.

These recommendations are primarily geared toward AL-only and NL-only fantasy players. This week, I’ll look at the American League. Next Monday, I’ll examine the National League.

Brett Anderson
I hate the term sleeper for a variety of reasons that are too long to get into here. However, Anderson fits the bill. His injury this year wasn’t arm related, giving him the benefit of rest without having to recover from something that would directly impact his throwing. I will be skeptical about Anderson’s health until he puts up back-to-back 200-inning seasons, but there is no questioning Anderson’s talent or his stuff. Even in a mixer, I’d stash Anderson if I were out of the running and hope that he can put up 150-plus innings in 2014. At the very least, he makes for a decent trade chip if he’s healthy in March.

Engel Beltre
If the Rangers let David Murphy walk, perhaps there is a chance for Beltre to slot into the Rangers outfield next year. It’s more likely that Beltre is a fourth outfielder. The light power/heavy speed combination is intriguing for fantasy, though, and all players like this need sometimes is an opportunity. If Beltre does claim a share of a job, a 10 HR, 20 SB season isn’t out of the realm of possibility. While Beltre’s numbers have been up and down and his MLB numbers have been disappointing, keep in mind that Beltre is 23 years old. There are some holes in his game, but it’s also possible that Beltre hasn’t reached his ceiling yet.

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<< Previous Article
Premium Article Daily Roundup: Around ... (09/09)
<< Previous Column
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Han... (08/26)
Next Column >>
Fantasy Article Fantasy Freestyle: Ten... (09/10)
Next Article >>
Premium Article The Prospectus Hit Lis... (09/09)

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