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Re-Drafting the 2011 Fantasy Baseball First Year Player Draft - Bryce Harper, Chris Sale, Jacob deGrom, Manny Machado and more

This is the second edition of a series here at Rotoballer from Benjamin Chase. The series explores previous First-Year Player Drafts and potentially redrafts those FYPDs, with the information we've received since from drafted players and international signees that would have been eligible.

You may be worried about future FYPD drafts by reading this series or gain more confidence that star players can be found throughout the FYPD (and in free agency afterward). Plenty of opinions can be generated from these looks back!

To look back, here's a link to the 2010 re-draft piece. We will go 20 deep and then analyze a few players just beyond the full redrafted first round of a 20-team FYPD. Enjoy!

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2011 FYPD Redraft

1. Bryce Harper, OF, Washington Nationals

Harper was the no-doubt top overall selection in the 2010 MLB draft out of junior college, Harper was still 17 when he was drafted, but he had graduated high school early and spent a year hitting with a wood bat in junior college to make himself an even more attractive top overall selection.

Harper rocketed through the minors and made his debut with the Nationals in 2012 after a total of 130 minor league games and 34 Arizona Fall League games before his MLB debut at 19. Since, he's been a consistently elite performer, with 20+ home runs in eight of his 12 seasons, with one of the three years he missed the 2020 season.

Harper only ranks tops in runs scored among those eligible for the 2011 FYPD, but he's second in home runs and RBI while also ranking third in steals, giving his owners plenty of value.

2. Manny Machado, 3B, Baltimore Orioles

Frequently tied along with Harper as a member of the same draft class, Machado was picked by Baltimore third overall out of high school in Miami. He also debuted in 2012, like Harper.

Machado has led all eligible players in bWAR, home runs, and RBI. He also ranked second in RBI. A significant amount of Machado's edge in bWAR comes from his defense, which is why he's the second choice, but it's really Harper at 1A and Machado at 1B.

3. Chris Sale, SP, Chicago White Sox

Sale was a rare guy that likely created issues in 2010 dynasty leagues because he went from the 13th overall selection by the White Sox into the Chicago bullpen that same season, striking out 32 and posting a 1.98 ERA in 23 1/3 innings of relief.

The White Sox used Sale as a reliever in 2011 before releasing him as a starter in 2012. He tallied the most wins (117) and strikeouts (2,118) among all 2011 FYPD eligible arms, making him an easy choice for this spot, even if he totaled just 11 appearances from 2020-2022.

4. Christian Yelich, OF, Miami Marlins

The Marlins snagged Yelich with the 23rd overall selection in the 2010 draft out of high school in California. He made it to the majors in 2013 and was a consistently strong gap-to-gap hitter with the Marlins until 2017.

An offseason trade to Milwaukee after 2017 seemed to unleash Yelich, as he won the 2018 NL MVP and finished second in 2019, when he arguably had a better season. He's struggled with back injuries since, but at 31, he's still got time to put up a third wave on his career.

5. Jacob deGrom, SP, New York Mets

A ninth-round selection out of Stetson in 2010, deGrom has been incredibly elite since reaching the majors in 2014. He has posted the best ERA along with the second-most wins and strikeouts and the second-lowest WHIP among all eligible pitchers.

6. Noah Syndergaard, SP, Toronto Blue Jays

The Blue Jays drafted Syndergaard in the compensation round, 38th overall out of high school in Texas. He was traded as part of the R.A. Dickey trade with Toronto before debuting in the majors. While Syndergaard burned quickly and brightly, like teammate Matt Harvey, unlike Harvey, he's been able to have a second life on his career, returning to make 25 appearances in 2022 after nearly two years away.

7. Nick Castellanos, 3B, Detroit Tigers

Castellanos was selected 44th overall by the Tigers out of high school in Florida. He got a September call-up in 2013 and took over in the Tigers lineup in 2014. Finding a defensive home has been a challenge, but he's consistently hit ever since. He's only had 30+ home runs once, but he has the third-most homers in the class.

8. J.T. Realmuto, C, Miami Marlins

Drafted by the Marlins in the third round in 2010, Realmuto quickly converted from infield to catcher. The transition led to a longer minor league road for the backstop, but once he took over as a starter in 2015, he's been arguably the best catcher in the league on both sides of the ball. His consistent bat at the catcher position places him here.

9. Rougned Odor, 2B, Texas Rangers

Odor was signed by the Rangers in January 2011 out of Venezuela. He had claimed a starting job in the Texas infield by the time he was 20, and he's had some elite seasons of power, with three 30-homer seasons, but also has struggled with batting average, leading to his life now as a power bench bat already in his late-20s.

10. Carlos Martinez, SP, St. Louis Cardinals

Originally signed by the Boston Red Sox in 2009, Martinez's deal was voided, and the Cardinals signed him a few months shy of his 19th birthday out of the Dominican. Roughly three years after he was signed, Martinez was in the majors as a reliever.

The Cardinals struggled to define his role, but he tended to find success whether as a starter or a reliever until injuries significantly affected his raw stuff, but by then, Martinez had established himself with top-5 numbers in wins, saves, and strikeouts in the class.

11. James Paxton, SP, Seattle Mariners

Paxton was drafted by the Blue Jays in the first round in 2009, but he chose to return to the University of Kentucky and fell to the Mariners in the fourth round in 2010. His career has been marred by injuries, never achieving 30 starts in a single season, but when he's been on the mound, he's put up impressive overall stats.

12. Kole Calhoun, OF, Los Angeles Angels

Calhoun was selected in the eighth round out of Arizona State. He sped through the minor leagues and debuted with the Angels in 2012, but it took until 2014 for him to secure a full-time role. He wasn't an elite producer, but more of a steady fantasy option from 2014-2020.

13. Whit Merrifield, 2B, Kansas City Royals

After a very productive college career with South Carolina that culminated in a walk-off hit to win the 2010 College World Series, Merrifield was plucked in the ninth round by the Royals. After debuting in 2016, Merrifield was one of the most productive hitters in baseball through 2021, leading all hitters in this redraft in stolen bases, with the third-highest batting average.

14. Hector Neris, RP, Philadelphia Phillies

Signed by the Phillies in April 2010 out of the Dominican Republic, Neris would have been first eligible for the 2011 FYPD. Struggles with the home run ball have kept Neris from being a full-time closer during his career, but he's posted impressive ratios and posted the second-most saves among all pitchers in this group.

15. Robbie Ray, SP, Washington Nationals

The Washington Nationals drafted Ray in the 12th round out of high school in Tennessee. He was moved to the Tigers as part of the Doug Fister trade and then moved to Arizona in the three-team trade that sent Didi Gregorius to the Yankees. The Diamondbacks dumped Ray in a salary dump deal in 2020, and he had an incredible 2021 season.

While he's moved around plenty, Ray has always been a strong source of strikeouts, but he's struggled to control his raw stuff, leading the major leagues in walks in 2020 before his big 2021 season.

16. Addison Reed, RP, Chicago White Sox

Chicago's third-round pick in the 2010 draft, Reed, like Chris Sale, was up quickly, taking over as the White Sox closer in 2012. He had a short MLB career, making his last major league pitches in 2018, but he was the only pitcher in the draft to clear 100 saves in his career, totaling 125.

17. Taijuan Walker, SP, Seattle Mariners

The 43rd overall selection in the 2010 draft out of high school in California, Walker moved quickly through the minors, debuting in 2013. Like former teammate Paxton, injuries stunted his ability to truly show what he could do on the mound before a mid-year trade in 2020 when he was elite down the stretch for the Blue Jays. He's produced top-10 wins and strikeouts among 2011 FYPD pitchers.

18.  Andrelton Simmons, SS, Atlanta Braves

When the Braves drafted Simmons in the second round, many teams thought he could be a better pro prospect on the mound. Instead, Simmons turned in the best defensive showing at shortstop since Ozzie Smith. His offensive numbers were never elite, but his defense had him on the field enough to rank in the top 10 in the class in steals and runs scored.

19. Ketel Marte, SS, Seattle Mariners

Most view Marte, a 2010 international signee by the Mariners out of the Dominican Republic, as a one-trick pony who had an uber-elite 2019 season, but Marte's put together top-10 bWAR among this class due to his flexibility and playing multiple defensive positions, which has allowed him to be a fantasy asset.

20. Yasmani Grandal, C, Cincinnati Reds

Grandal was the 12th overall selection from the University of Miami. He made his debut in 2012 with the Padres after being acquired in the big package San Diego received for Mat Latos from Cincinnati. While never sporting a great average, Grandal has produced 20+ home runs five times as a catcher, which gives him tremendous fantasy value at a typically shallow position.

Others in consideration: Mark Canha, Corey Dickerson, Adam Eaton, Matt Harvey, Kevin Kiermaier, Drew Smyly, and Jameson Taillon.



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