Tulo isn't a suckers play either.
yeah he really is. First off if the words positional scarcity are coming out of your mouth in the 1st round you are simply bad at fantasy baseball so that is a non issue.
Don't think those words did come out of my mouth. But I'm sure you know, there a lot of different websites and baseball magazines that rank TT either in the later part of the first round or early in the 2nd round. Not to mention, his MDP is 14 - just outside the first round. What, are all those fantasy writers and players "Suckers"?
Your point about scarcity...it means that you don't reach and grab a mediocre middle infielder in the first round just due to scarcity. I'd agree with that. That's where scarcity is overrated. But if Tulo hits to his potential, his numbers would be liveable for an outfielder or first baseman.
Tulo has had groin issues and injury problems in general and is starting to go out of his prime so there is no reason to expect more than a handful of SB, maybe like 8 tops. The lineup isn't particularly good so you wouldn't expect elite R/RBI even in that park. Good but not elite. He has always profiled as more of a 30 HR guy than a 35+ guy and he is a career .292 hitter and that is a skill that usually peaks early.
But your pick here is Giancarlo Stanton. I like GS and I have him in a league. But let's be fair. GS has injury problems of his own and is in an even weaker lineup and does not have the crutch of the best hitter's park in baseball. TT is 28 (how is that past your prime) and had .300+ Batting averages in 2010 and 2011. GS won't steal bases either. Fowler - Rutledge and Cargo should be good enough to provide him plenty of RBI opportunities.
Lets compare that to the next safest MI which is probably Pedrioa.
His 2 year average is roughly .300 AVG, 90 R, 18 HR, 78 RBI, 23 SB. Those lines are not all that different at all and that is not counting Pedrioa hitting 2nd most likely instead of leading off. Project him batting 2nd and it is more like 85 RBI which easily puts that line the same as Tulo. So you are praying Tulo stays healthy to get the same stats as Dustin Pedrioa. Kinsler is in that mix as well, no reason to think Reyes can't match Tulo. Basically you are always better going with a different position at the end of the 1st and just take the MI that falls to you in the 2nd.
If you want to play that game, you can play it forever. Robinson Cano compare to Dustin Pedroia. RC has around a .310 -30 HR - 110 RBI ,few SB - 3 year average vs. Pedroia being around .300 as you said with around 20 HRs and projects to 90 RBIs from batting 3rd and gives you 20-25steals that Cano doesn't. So shouldn't Pedroia go closer to Cano (who usually projects to 4th overall vs Pedroa (somewhere in the 2nd, maybe 3rd round)? Plus Cano has that hanging steroid issue that all good cafe'ers have been reading and the Yanks have some lineup concerns. So there Pedroia is undervalued. But take any other first rounder, other than the top 3 and you can find a cheaper substitution elsewhere.
If you don't grab a middle infielder by the late first round or early 2nd...chances are Cano, Pedroia, TT and Reyes will all be gone. Then anything left over will probably not give you enough value to take until the mid rounds. It's a real gamble. You may get stuck with 2 middle infielders of questionable value.
TT is risky. I might not take him either. But he's not a "sucker's play." If someone wants to gamble and grab Tulo with his first pick, it's a gamble but a decent calculated risk.