Using this preview: Some players will be spotlighted and there will be some knee-jerk rankings of each teams lineup, rotation and bullpen. Team previews, born from a desire to design a better cheat sheet, will start with the American League East and finish in the National League West. More previews here.
American League Central
- Stud: Justin Mourneau, 1B– Expect 30 homers, 100 RBIs, 100 runs and a .290 average.
- Bust: Joe Maurer, C — He’s not going to bust, he’ll just cost way more than he’s worth. Yes, he’s a catcher who hits for high average and scores 100 runs. But, there are better players to be had where you’ll have to pick him.
- Sleeper: Denard Span, OF — His numbers last year could lead you to believe he’d score 100 runs drive in 80, steeal 40 bases and hit 12 homers, all while hitting in the .290s. He might not meet those expectations, but he’s not going terribly high in ESPN’s mock drafts either.
- Prospect to watch: Kevin Mulvey, SP — He’s not going to be the next Johan Santan or Francisco Liriano, but he could be a Kevin Slowey type. He’s not on the fast track to the majors, but expect him to be there by the end of the year.
- Wild Card: Michael Cuddyer,,OF — A couple years ago he was a 20 homer, 100 RBI, 100 run, .280 hitter with a .866 OPS. if he does that again he’ll be one of the best values in the draft. however, he did decline from 2006 to 2007 and last year only played in 71 games.
- Starter you may not know but should: Alexi Casilla, 2B — Based on last year’s numbers Casilla could be a 15 homer, 15 steal guy with 100 RBIs, 100 runs and a .280 average. Those are best case scenario numbers.
C — Beyond Mourneau there are too many questions to give this team a top-line grade.
B — Francisco Liriano could be a stud, but it’s no sure thing. Slowey and Scott Baker are excellent pitchers, but they won’t win you strikeouts.
B — Any group with Joe Nathan at the top is good, but Jesse Crain, Luis Ayala and youngster Jose Mijares makes it even better.
To read all of Chinstrap Ninjas team previews, go here.