The start of the 2014 fantasy baseball season is getting closer and closer which means figuring out plans for your draft. Each individual plan is different, and perhaps the most important factor in developing a clear strategy is what draft pick an owner has. That’s why it is best to plan for every possible situation and work on doing mock drafts in which you start from every possible draft position. This series of articles will assist you in planning out what to do in the first three rounds of a ten-team draft from each spot in the draft order. I went and did several mock drafts to see what would happen when I was drafting all the way from first to tenth overall. I begin with the obvious (having the No. 1 pick overall), and my picks in each round.
2014 Fantasy Baseball Draft Prep - Top 3 Rounds
Round 1: Trout or Cabrera?
This is going to be the decision of every fantasy owner who gets lucky enough to have the first pick. It boils down to a couple of questions. Do you want a player who has all five tools and gives you stolen bases, or a player who has four tools and no stolen bases but is going to produce better numbers with the tools that he has? I would be picking Trout first overall before Cabrera because of the loss of Prince Fielder in the Detroit lineup. There will be no arguments from anyone if Cabrera is the No. 1 pick, though. It is basically 1A and 1B, but I would give Trout the slight advantage.
Round 2: More Offense or Pitching?
After that first pick, it is a long wait until the 20th overall selection. Odds are that Clayton Kershaw is off the board, as well as Justin Verlander. This means an interesting decision: if Verlander is available, then that’s the pick to make. He isn’t going to have another terrible season. If pitching isn’t your plan for the second round, a solid pick would be Bryce Harper or Fielder. Both of those players are likely going to be there, and while a Harper pick gives you two outfielders right away, you know you have two of the best to start 162 games and not have to worry about switching them out. That said, I would take Fielder.
Round 3: What You Didn’t Pick in Round 2
If you went with offense with the second round, then get a starter in the third round especially since it is 18 selections before your next pick. There is no way that many of the studs are going to be still remaining at pick 40. Go after someone like Verlander or Felix Hernandez or even Yu Darvish. If pitching was the plan with pick 20, then pick 21 can be used on someone like Fielder or Matt Kemp or even Troy Tulowitzki. There are positions where you want to reach a round or two early to get someone like shortstop. I would be selecting Darvish with this pick.