Last night, the draft for the 2008 edition of the YBFBL was held, and by my count, 10 of the 14 teams were present. (Great turnout). I led the league wire-to-wire during the regular season last year thanks mostly to 21st round pick BJ Upton, and I’m pretty sure I won the regular season title in 2006 as well. I’ve gone out without a whimper in the postseason each year, mostly because my team was never deep enough offensively. I plan to change that this year.
Usually, I go into my fantasy draft targeting six or seven key players hoping to land four or five of ‘em. From there, I just wing it and build the rest of my team around those guys. This year, I tried something different. I went in with a set strategy that I’m happy to say I stuck to despite several tempting opportunities to digress. Basically, I loaded up on offense early, and waited until the very end of the draft to grab pitchers–preferably high upside guys. My thinking is that hitters are generally known commodities and can be difficult to obtain during the season, but pitching is so unpredictable that there will certainly be a few quality arms available in free agency along the way. (I grabbed Fausto off the waiver wire last year). Problem is that if my team stinks, I look like an idiot.
I got stuck with the first overall pick in the scissor style draft, meaning I had to wait roughly 15 minutes in between making back-to-back picks; it was quite the ordeal. (The draft started at 9 p.m. and ended at 11:30-ish). Thanks to Patrick for once again putting this together. My roster is after the jump.
C: Kenji Johjima (9th round)
1B: Nick Swisher (6)
2B: Brandon Phillips (2)
3B: A-Rod (1) – It was either him or Melky.
SS: Khalil Green (12) – 97 RBI last year … who knew?
OF: Adam Dunn (3) – Contract year … 50 HR?
OF: Gary Sheffield (4)
OF: Nick Markakis (5)
UTIL: Jim Thome (8)
BN: Rickie Weeks (7) – If he stinks, I can blame it on Keith Law.
BN: James Loney (10)
BN: Jeremy Hermida (11)
SP: Ian Snell (13)
SP: Rich Harden (14)
SP: Matt Garza (15) – I hope the AL East isn’t too rough on him.
RP: Kerry Wood (16)
RP: Heath Bell (20)
P: Gil Meche (17) – As soon as I picked him, I regretted it.
P: Ubaldo Jimenez (18)
P: Mike Mussina (19) – contract year rebound? Hope so–and not just for the sake of my fantasy team.
P: Pat Neshek (21) – Bill Smith, I’d appreciate it if you went ahead and traded Joe Nathan before the season starts.