Last Year's Bums Team

It's nearly always the case that the market overreacts to recent performance, and so often players who were disappointing last year wind up being good values. This was the case with Vernon Wells, Alex Rios, Josh Hamilton, Vlad Guerrero, Geovany Soto, Delmon Young, Chris Young (AZ), Corey Hart, Aubrey Huff, Francisco Liriano and Ervin Santana among others in 2010. The key is to target players who are mostly healthy, reasonably assured of playing time and underperformed expectations a year ago for whatever reason. Here's my preliminary list for 2011:

C: Matt Wieters, Russell Martin, Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Alex Avila
1B: Derrek Lee, Carlos Lee, Lance Berkman, Matt LaPorta, Carlos Pena
2B: Gordon Beckham, Chone Figgins, Ben Zobrist, Aaron Hill
3B: Alex Rodriguez, Aramis Ramirez, Pablo Sandoval, Mark Reynolds, Ian Stewart, Chipper Jones
SS: Jimmy Rollins, Alcides Escobar, Jason Bartlett, J.J. Hardy
OF: Justin Upton, Denard Span, Dexter Fowler, Alex Gordon, Julio Borbon, Manny Ramirez, Michael Brantley
SP: Javier Vazquez, Josh Beckett, A.J. Burnett, Homer Bailey, Randy Wells, Mark Buehrle, Rick Porcello
RP: Joe Nathan, Jonathan Broxton

I almost think you could invest blindly in these guys, i.e., just bid $1 more than the room for as many of them as your budget allows, and you'd probably finish in the money. I'll have more thoughts over the next few weeks as to which players I like in particular, but this underperforming 2010 group as a whole will very likely deliver more than its collective draft day price.


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