SiriusXM Host League

Last Wednesday I participated in a league conducted on the SiriusXM Fantasy Channel (Sirius 210, XM 87) in which the participants were all hosts from the channel. The league is a 12-team mixer and was a snake draft with weekly transactions (a point of controversy heading into the draft vs. daily transactions).

Here's my team and some brief commentary:

1.10. Giancarlo Stanton I was hoping Albert Pujols would fall to me (Peter Schoenke took him at 1.9) but I was fine with Stanton. Huge power upside and I had no problem taking him late first round.

2.3. Jose Bautista This took care of my power and the only other players I considered here were Bryce Harper or one of the three top SPs. Knowing that typically starting pitching isn't addressed early in these expert drafts, I figured I could nab one of those three starting pitchers in round three.

3.10. Justin Verlander My plan was to try and get two of the top three starting pitchers in rounds three and four but Peter took Clayton Kershaw in front of me after Strasburg had gone earlier in the round. Remember that Verlander's ratios mean so much considering how many innings he?s thrown the last two seasons.

4.3. Ian Desmond I'm all-in on Desmond if you?ve heard me on the radio or read any of my previous pieces. He recorded 25 home runs and 21 SBs while hitting .292 last season and that was only in 130 games. In retrospect, I should have gone with Jacoby Ellsbury here; a slight chance Desmond would have been waiting for me in round 5.

5.10. Cliff Lee At pick #58 overall, I could pass this up. His ratios, in particular his WHIP, has arguably been the best in baseball over the last three seasons. A very fluky number were his wins last year.

6.3. Chase Headley I'm not in love with Headley but at pick #63 I thought this was decent value. Maybe the home runs were an anomaly but people said that when Jose Baustista broke out too. Remember this draft was before any thumb trouble. Sigh. The pick I should have taken? Martin Prado who for some reason qualifies at 2B, SS, OF or Aaron Hill.

7.10. Wilin Rosario I love the upside here as he should be the main catcher for the Rockies from the start this season. He appeared to me to handle breaking stuff better as the season went on and 28 home runs from a catcher is tough to come by.

8.3. Aroldis Chapman I'm not sure if I want him to be a starter or a closer at this point. If he closes, is there a huge difference between him and Craig Kimbrel who went 33 picks earlier?

9.10. Ike Davis Why not get some more power? Davis was a different player after he got over the Valley Fever (which is an excuse I can totally buy for his slow start) and has the upside to hit 40 home runs this season. I also doubt the batting average is as big as a drag as it was last season.

10.3. R.A. Dickey You know there's that guy at the top of everyone's queue who everyone is passing over and you think you'll feel funny for taking him? I didn't. Dickey at pick #123 overall was too good to pass up, even being in the American League.

11.10. Josh Rutledge I know, he doesn't walk but he qualifies at both middle infield positions and has a nice speed/power combo. Had Tim Lincecum queued up here (who I have everywhere else) but was taken before me.

12.3. Jon Lester I'm on board with giving him a mulligan for last season considering the circus that was the Boston Red Sox. Has looked great so far in spring training.

13.10. Carl Crawford At this point I was lacking speed big time and was willing to gamble on Crawford. The news at this point was he was scheduled to take some batting practice after getting shut down. In a league like this, even if was to miss some time (which appears to be minimal at this point) I thought it was a decent value.

14.3. Jim Johnson Needed a closer, Johnson was there. Not a big K guy but excellent ratios the last two seasons.

15.10. Lance Lynn Another one of "my guys" this season, love the potential for Lynn given his strikeout rate. Hopefully he maintains that rate and improves the ratios a little.

16.3. Justin Morneau A Rotowire favorite, try and keep the "trade to the Yankees" rumor going.

17.10. Brandon League So many leagues I've done so far have had Kenley Jansen going earlier than League which I don't understand. League has been anointed the close by Don Mattingly and was given almost a $23 million extension in the offseason. That means there's a decent leash there.

18.3. Ichiro Suzuki I needed some more speed and I was a little worried about my overall batting average. Had outstanding numbers after coming to the Yankees.

19.10. Lorenzo Cain If he stays healthy, I put his floor at 15 home runs and 25 stolen bases.

20.3. Josh Beckett At pick #243, I couldn't pass on Beckett who should be better away from Fenway and has passed the eye test so far this spring.

21.10. Jed Lowrie If he can only stay healthy, I'd be interested in seeing what he can do over a full season. The Oakland infield is crowded but I can't think they traded for him to ride the pine.

22.3. Jose Veras Should be the closer for the Astros. Seems to be lost in most of the default rankings. This gives me three closers with possibly four if Chapman goes to the bullpen.

23.10. Billy Hamilton Wish I knew what the plan was with him. Thought this was time to start buying lottery tickets.

24.3. Trevor Plouffe Another one of "my guys", was figuring out big league pitching before he got hurt. Was not hurt by Target Field either.

25.10. Jurickson Profar If he gets off to a hot enough start, is Elvis Andrus dealt in-season? An injury to Andrus or Ian Kinsler could give him everyday at-bats.

26.3. Jordan Pacheco Qualifies at catcher. Decent numbers for a #2 catcher this late but will likely be cut for an every day player.

27.10. Aaron Hicks Decent pedigree and should get the center field job to start the season.

28.3 and 29.10. Brandon Beachy and Cory Leubke My pitching staff is solid and I don't see me needing anyone to stream in initially. Hopefully that will last a few weeks until there's a better timetable on the return for both of these guys.

C- Wilin Rosario

C- Jordan Pacheco

1B- Ike Davis

2B- Josh Rutledge

3B- Chase Headley

SS- Ian Desmond

CI- Justin Morneau

M- Jed Lowrie

OF- Giancarlo Stanton

OF- Jose Bautista

OF- Carl Crawford

OF- Ichiro Suzuki

OF- Lorenzo Cain

UT- Aaron Hicks

P- Justin Verlander

P- Cliff Lee

P- Aroldis Chapman

P- R.A. Dickey

P- Jon Lester

P- Jim Johnson

P- Lance Lynn

P- Brandon League

P- Josh Beckett

B- Trevor Plouffe

B- Billy Hamilton

B- Jurickson Profar

B- Jose Veras

B- Brandon Beachy

B- Cory Leubke

Strengths : My pitching staff. Have to think a top-3 finish for pitching is in the cards. Will likely deal a closer to address other needs if Chapman goes to the bullpen. Plenty of power that will lead to RBI.

Weaknesses : Not a ton of speed and batting average could be a concern. Not thrilled with Pacheco at catcher. Counting on too many lottery tickets.

What do you think?


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