As we move into the fifth and sixth rounds of our first 2015 Fantasy Baseball Rotisserie mock draft of the preseason, everyone has established their base of Fantasy studs.
The power-speed studs are long gone, and the strikeouts kings without any arm issues are off the board.
Now, we're going to start dipping into the hitters that have lost a little luster on their shine either in recent years or they haven't quite made it up to superstar Fantasy status just yet. We should also expect a short run on closers.
Enjoy a couple more rounds of our analysis draft -- and feel free to comment at the bottom on some of the picks!
This 2015 experts mock draft is for a mixed Rotisserie mock draft, with standard 5x5 scoring, 12 teams, with the starting lineup set up this way: 2-Catchers, 1-1B, 1-2B, 1-3B, 1-SS, 5-OF, 1 corner infielder, 1 middle infielder, one utility hitter and nine pitchers.
Each writer was asked to give a sentence or two of analysis for each pick, so you’ll get to see the thinking behind each selection.
6.01 Jason Heyward, OF, St. Louis
Greg Jewett, TheSportsScript.com: To say I am a Heyward apologist is an understatement. But he went 27 HR/21 SB as a 22-year-old. Although his stolen base and power numbers have not aligned that way since, he is still only 25. A fresh start in St. Louis with a better supporting cast and I hear his favorite color is red, so I will buy in at this point. Outfielders are going fast and you adapt and take what if given to you. I am taking Heyward here for a potential 17/17-plus year and will be happy to receive it. Anything more is gravy.
Roster: 1B-Rizzo, 2B-Kipnis, OF-Bautista, SP-Sale/Price
6.02 Albert Pujols, 1B, L.A. Angels
Neil Parker, LockerRoomFantasySports.com: There are times to reach for targets, and there are times to take what is given. Pujols sees oodles of RBI opportunities and still has enough pop to flirt with 30 round trippers. The four-category production Pujols returned last season was good enough for a top-25 finish. A slight regression still screams profit at this stage.
Roster: 1B-Pujols, 2B-Cano, SS-Tulowitzki, 3B-Arenado, OF-J.Upton/Pence
6.03 David Ortiz, DH, Boston
Brad Binns, MoxyBall.com: All the advanced stats seem to indicate that there is no reason for him to slow down. However, the one number that throws caution into the wind is usually pretty predictable: age. Saying that, age has been the knock against Ortiz over the past couple of seasons, causing him to drop in drafts. Only two players have 30-plus HR in each of the past two seasons: Ortriz and Edwin Encarnacion — and I am happy to have both. I’m not worried about tying up my UTIL spot early and as such — I’m pulling the trigger on Ortiz, hoping he has another great year in him.
Roster: 1B-Encarnacion, 2B-Altuve, OF-Dickerson, DH-Ortiz, SP-Scherzer/Kluber
6.04 Jordan Zimmermann, SP, Washington
Alex Kantecki, FakeTeams.com: After taking Stephen Strasburg in the fourth round, I’ll return to Washington for my second starting pitcher. Zimmermann added strikeouts to an already stellar repertoire in 2014, and while you can’t count on 8.2 K/9 again (his career is 7.45), the high floor and freakishly low career walk rate make this a safe and reliable pick. He’s never had an ERA greater than 3.25 since joining the rotation full time in 2011.
Roster: 1B-Abreu, 2B-Rendon, OF-Brantley/Gonzalez, SP-Strasburg/Zimmermann
6.05 Starlin Castro, SS, Chicago Cubs
Brendan O’Brien-Cockson, FantasySquads.com: I am dumbstruck that Johnny Cueto is still on the board, but I’m not entirely comfortable taking another pitcher here with my 6th round pick. I would rather lock up a shallow, fragile position with Castro. He posted a very impressive triple slash of .292/.339/.438 in 2014 with 14 HR and 65 RBI. Yes, there’s a ton of saucy prospects in the infield for the Cubs like Baez, Russell, Bryant, and Alcantra, but Castro isn’t getting kicked to the curb anytime soon. Chicago has him locked up until 2019 with an option for 2020. I anticipate top 5 SS production from Castro this year, and I am happy to snag him here.
Roster: 2B-Kinsler, SS-Castro, 3B-Longoria, OF-Hamilton, SP-Kershaw/Bumgarner
6.06 Dee Gordon, 2B, Miami
Roster: 1B-Martinez, SS-Ramirez, OF-Stanton/A.Jones/Ellsbury
6.07 Brian Dozier, 2B, Minnesota
Roster: 1B-Gonzalez, OF-Gomez/Puig/Harper, SP-Greinke
6.08 Marcell Ozuna, OF, Miami
Lawr Michaels, Mastersball.com: There are so many great young flychasers out there these days, with outfield being as rich and shallow as starting pitching. One of these youngin’s I love is the Marlins’ Ozuna, who as a 24-year-old dropped a .269-22-85 line during his first full season. He is part of what is arguably the best young outfield in the majors (with Christian Yelich and Giancarlo Stanton) on an improving team. Accordingly, he should step it up a bit (though, a repeat is also fine at this point).
Roster: C-Posey/Lucroy, 3B-Donaldson, OF-Cespedes/Calhoun
6.09 Xander Bogaerts, SS, Boston
Andy Singleton, FantasyFiveStar.com: Through six rounds, I am now firmly committed to my ‘Zero Pitching’ strategy. Some who crossover into fantasy football may recognize this from the Zero QB theorem, and the Zero RB strategy, which came onto the scene this past season. In part, this reaffirms my belief in the depth at pitching. It also allows me to play around with, as Neil put it, my fake team. It’s time to forget about the ‘reach’ tagline and just grab the players you believe in. As a Yankees fan, it sucks that I believe in Xander this much, but as a prospect hound I am truly excited. He slumped as a 21-year-old rookie, as could be expected, but that shouldn’t dull his shine. He is poised for a big breakout if he can maintain some consistency. 2.5 of his 6 months in 2014 were awesome, and showed why he was so highly regarded. The tools are there, and now he got his feet wet.
Roster: 1B-Cabrera, SS-Reyes/Boagaerts, 3B-Seager, OF-Springer/Marte
6.10 Kenley Jansen, RP, L.A. Dodgers
Jim Finch, FantasyAssembly.com: Jansen is one of just four relief pitchers to record a K/9 of at least 13.0 in his first five seasons as a major leaguer. The other three, Craig Kimbrel, Aroldis Chapman and Billy Wagner. By taking Jansen, I’ve locked down the closer role combined with my previous two picks. I’ll also get a combined ERA below 2.00, WHIP around 1.00 and 300-plus strikeouts in just under 200 innings. That’s better than Kershaw who can put up numbers to anchor any staff. I’ve sacrificed a few positional picks doing things this way, but I’m confident I can fill things in nicely throughout the draft.
Roster: 1B-Goldschmidt, SS-Desmond, 3B-Frazier, RP-Kimbrel/Chapman/Jansen
6.11 Carlos Santana, 1B/3B, Cleveland
Chris Zolli, FantasyPros.com: At this point, it is best to pick up a man I would like to call “Swiss Army Knife” (use that with friends and credit me). Many catchers are valuable with their C/1B eligibilty, making them worthy of a pick rounds before they would be picked. Santana is valuable as a 1B/3B-eligible player, with a great chance for him to be catcher eligible soon, as well. Add that to the fact that he is a hugely successful hitter, and that makes him the ideal pick at the end of the Round 6. Santana struggled mightily in the first half of 2014, but from July 20th on, he had an .871 OPS and had 47 walks compared to 40 strikeouts. He has a career .809 OPS and averages 23 home runs — for a catcher those are elite numbers. For a catcher with that kind of eligibility and a peaking Indians lineup, Santana is a total steal at this point.
Roster: 1B-Freeman, 3B-Santana, OF-McCutchen/Kemp, SP-Hernandez/Darvish
6.12 Joey Votto, 1B, Cincinnati
Steve Pimental, FantasyAlarm.com: I think Votto’s decline in power has been overstated, especially in the context of declining power throughout baseball. Votto’s batting average is more valuable than ever, and I think he flirts with a .300 average and 20 home runs.
Roster: 1B-Votto, 3B-Beltre, OF-Trout/Braun, SP-Wainwright/Lester
Rounds 1 & 2 | Rounds 3 & 4 | Rounds 7 & 8 | Rounds 9 & 10 | Rounds 11 & 12 | Rounds 13 & 14 | Rounds 15 & 16 | Rounds 17 & 18 | Rounds 19 & 20
Let us know what you think about these picks in the comments below. Enjoy our first 2015 Fantasy Baseball experts mock draft of the year!
Jon Lester Photo Credit: Keith Allison
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