Fantasy Baseball Analysis: Cubs Within the Cracks

Well, it's fantasy baseball season and I am now in the middle of my self-created Draft Week. If you're anything like me, you can't help but draft Cubs. And -- you know what? -- 2010 is the year of great values on Cubs players. Watch these guys drop really low in your draft, and then snag them much later than their counterparts of equal value:

Derrek Lee
Despite his monster 2009 campaign, many fantasy managers refuse to bite on Lee. Granted, no one expects a repeat of 2009, but he'll still be highly valuable -- especially in a format where you can start two first basemen. Lee will be one of the last quality first basemen drafted, probably two rounds before (the equally undervalued) Carlos Pena.

Carlos Zambrano
I'm still pretty flabbergasted about this one. At Cubs Stats, we're pretty pro-Zambrano, often noting how his 2009 season was in fact better than his previous three seasons. People who think Big Z was a big disappointment in 2009 don't understand sports stats and are therefore sports fools. Grab Z as your #3 or #4 starter and profit immensely.

Aramis Ramirez
In some drafts, Ramirez is falling well below the average crop of third basemen. In other drafts -- like the one I was in today -- Ramirez goes a round or two early. If you have filled most of your infield, and Aramis is still available, he's probably the best pick possible. Even if he gets injured and only plays 350 ABs, he'll offer 350 high quality ABs.

Ted Lilly
Because of his well-known injured status, most people avoid him. But those of us who follow the Cubs closely, and who are more familiar with Lilly's past injuries, are keen to the fact he may miss only a handful of starts -- maybe just two. He could be a super great value in the later rounds.

Ryan Theriot
Theriot is one of our self-professed favorite Cubs, here at Cubs Stats, so I really try to avoid discussing him too much, because I like his averageness and contract value more than I probably should. That being said, if ever I approach the end of the draft, I turn to Theriot if I need: a starting shortstop, a backup shortstop, a healthy shortstop, or some steals and doubles. Look for Theriot late too.

Alfonso Soriano
I'm not sold on a Soriano rebound, but neither is anyone else. I went ahead and picked him up with like the 230th overall pick simply because one of these things is not like the other:

Courtesy Fangraphs.

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