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sleepers...

Postby Yoda » Fri Jan 18, 2008 2:43 pm

My methodology is to look at age, pedigree, performance and career progression over the last few seasons with any significant improvement in 07 (emphasis in second half). My definition of a sleeper is a player/pitcher who drastically outperforms his draft position or cost. While it is still very early and I do not have enough data to determine where these guys will go in the draft, I thought it would be fun to start discussing.

Shallow sleepers:
Scott Kazmir - TB tweaked his mechanics in the first half. You should focus on 06 and second half 07. Still a slight injury risk but expect a Cy contender this year especially if TB is able to field a better team.

Matt Cain - 07 numbers make him look much worse than he actually was due to his horrendous teammates. Turned it up in the second half and with a little luck, should easily be a top 20 pitcher with a potential to be top 10.

Phil Hughes - devastating leg injury affectively killed his season while pitching a no-hitter in Texas. Former top prospect in baseball, his season was overshadowed by other rookie phenoms namely Lincecum, Gallardo, Dicek, Joba, Buchholz, etc. His status hasn't changed but his perceived value should be significantly lower than that compared to 2007 breakout pitchers.

Dustin McGowan - I contemplated on leaving him off but his upside is too high not to. Armed with absolutely filthy off speed pitches and a 95+ heater, this former top prospect has been under the radar due to injuries and inability to locate his pitches. Something clicked Post ASB and he finished the season with a bang. He could end up being everyone's favorite sleeper so he may no longer qualify by draft time so be careful not to overpay.

Medium sleepers:
Kevin Kouzmanoff - was abysmal in pre ASB but turned it around completely. .317/.366/.524 post ASB is much more in line with his MiLB numbers and suggests what he is capable of going forward. Petco is still a pitcher's park but it isn't as bad for right handed hitters. 3B is a deep position so he should be available later in the draft.

Adam Jones - absolutely broke out as a 21 yo at AAA in 07. Remains to be seen if he gets a chance to play or not but his power is real and he should continue to grow under the right circumstances. Playing time is key.

Matt Kemp - wasting away on the Dodgers bench, he is by far the most talented OF on the team (including Andrew Jones). Again being held back by Dodgers management, playing time is key for this rising star. 30-30 candidate if given a chance.

Stephen Drew - his 07 numbers are not impressive on the surface. However, 100/60 K/BB is pretty impressive for a 24 yo in his first full MLB season. Park and the young exciting lineup are in his favor. His amateur and MiLB numbers are very impressive. Should turn some of those 28 2B into HRs in 2008.

Deep sleeper:
Josh Fields - you can pick this guy apart when looking at his stats. He Ks too much and doesn't make good contact. But if you are looking for cheap power, then this is the guy to have off your bench. His playing time is questionable with a crowded OF and Crede blocking him at 3B. In a full season, you can chalk up 30 HR. He did display some speed in the minors but hasn't shown this ability yet in the big leagues.

Lastings Milledge - former top 10 prospect in all of baseball. Has amazing tools and showed some promise with limited playing time. With a starting role and some seasoning, expect him to be a good power/speed guy off the bench but will still go through some growing pains.

Wily Mo Pena - hard to believe this kid is still only 26 going into 07. Again, limited with playing time in his career, he finally has a chance to show what he can do with a full time gig. He put up an impressive .293/.352/.504 after the trade to the Nats. In a more hitter friendly Nationals Park, expect more of the same from this young slugger.

Daric Barton - most people like this kid but not fantasy owners due to the lack of power he displayed in his young career. He won't hit 40 HRs but based on his brief MLB stint, I think he has a real shot at 20 as soon as 2008 based on the fact that he hit 47 2B and 13 HR between AAA/MLB in 2007. He is a near lock perennial .300 hitter with some power potential. If he can turn some of those 2B into HRs.

Zach Greinke - no I never joined the fan club but he did spend quite some time on my roster both at the beginning and at the end of the season. This junk baller was very impressive both during and after his bullpen stint, upping his velocity to upper 90s. He still figures to go through some growing pains but is only 24 in 2008 so you can still expect him to make a dramatic turn around one of these days.
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Re: sleepers...

Postby Pogotheostrich » Fri Jan 18, 2008 2:52 pm

I don't think anyone is sleeping on Kazmir. He led the league in K's last year. I don't think many are sleeping on Cain either. His team is awful and W's will be hard to come by. McGowen is a nice sleeper.

I also think Kemp is being overrated. They guy has tons of talent but he doesn't even have a starting job right now.
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Re: sleepers...

Postby acsguitar » Fri Jan 18, 2008 3:07 pm

Cain, kemp, hughes, drew sleepers? I don't think so.

Sleeper = Marcus giles
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Re: sleepers...

Postby deerayfan072 » Fri Jan 18, 2008 3:22 pm

Kazmir is going way too early to be a sleeper
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Re: sleepers...

Postby Grounded Polo » Fri Jan 18, 2008 3:24 pm

I used an 8th rounder on Kazmir last season.
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Re: sleepers...

Postby sycamore » Fri Jan 18, 2008 3:29 pm

Pogotheostrich wrote:I don't think anyone is sleeping on Kazmir. He led the league in K's last year. I don't think many are sleeping on Cain either. His team is awful and W's will be hard to come by. McGowen is a nice sleeper.

I also think Kemp is being overrated. They guy has tons of talent but he doesn't even have a starting job right now.

Kouzmanoff hit 300 + after early May and may bat 3rd in the order .He is a nice sleeper
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Re: sleepers...

Postby horatio » Fri Jan 18, 2008 3:30 pm

Kurt Suzuki.
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Re: sleepers...

Postby Bloody Sox » Fri Jan 18, 2008 3:35 pm

Sticking with sleepers who Yoda defines as guys "who drastically outperforms his draft position or cost", there are a LOT of pitching sleepers/values this year - all the more reason to stick to hitting in the first 7-8 rounds of the draft.

Dice-K: I think his stock will fall quite a bit going into 2008, but his 2007 wasn't as bad as people make it out to be. With one year of adjustment under his belt, and given the great two month stretch he had in the middle of the year before tiring down the stretch, I can see him giving 3rd or 4th round value for a 7th round pick.

James Shields: I get the sense no one really buys into this guy yet. He was great last year, and recovered from a tough middle of the season to be very good down the stretch. I see him giving 5th round value for a 7th round pick.

Rich Hill: Only a decent season overall in 2007 but it was his first full year and there were a lot of great flashes - I think he'll keep progressing nicely. Another guy who doesn't seem to get much love. I can't get a good feel for where he'll be drafted (12th round?), but I think he'll give 6-7th round value.

Phil Hughes: See Yoda's post. If I can get him after the 12th round I'll be happy.

Dustin McGowan: See Yoda's post. If I can get him after the 12th round I'll be ecstatic.

Clay Buchholz: Not just based on the no-hitter... this kid just has it. Great command, great fastball, GREAT curveball. If he gets a spot in the rotation, he could easily win 15 with a sub-4.00 ERA. Considering he can be had very late, he has huge upside and could provide a lot of value if the hype doesn't get too out of control. Unfortunately I live in Boston and likely won't get him too late.

Ubaldo Jiminez: Only 3 out of 18 starts giving up more than 3 ER. He can be had very late, and has a big upside. Obviously you have to deal with the Coors factor, but based on last year with Atkins, Hawpe, and others - it didn't do much for the bats until June.
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Re: sleepers...

Postby talldarkandnerdy » Fri Jan 18, 2008 4:10 pm

I like Jason Bay and Jeremy Hermida going into this year. As others have said, its still early and thus hard to tell exactly where they will go, but I think they both will go later than they should.
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Re: sleepers...

Postby abrage22 » Fri Jan 18, 2008 8:54 pm

talldarkandnerdy wrote:I like Jason Bay and Jeremy Hermida going into this year. As others have said, its still early and thus hard to tell exactly where they will go, but I think they both will go later than they should.


i like bay also this year ;-D ... am also a fan of wells, he's going very late in some drafts, and if he can hit like he did 2 years ago and before that he would be a steal, and i think he will hit like he did, he just had an off year last year. ;-D ;-D ;-D
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