What do you think of Josh Beckett this season? He took a major hit last year and was never completely healthy. -Mark, Omaha
I think he is a good sleeper pick. I don’t think he is close to elite anymore, but there is still potential. It will help that Lester has established himself as a top-10 SP in the league and a top of the rotation guy, so Beckett won’t face so many aces.
As low as you are on Jose Bautista, what are your projected numbers for him this season? Just how low can he fall? -Danny, Oklahoma City
I wouldn’t be surprised to see him around 20 HR and 70 RBI. But you are probably going to have to pay for him with a 35/100 type draft slot.
Out of last year’s rookies, who has a chance to be as successful or better this year? -Francis, Cleveland
I think Buster Posey is an excellent catching option, as is Carlos Santana. I’d be cautious with Jaime Garcia and your expectations. Don’t be surprised to see something in the 12-10 range, around 3.75 ERA. I expect Heyward to be a typical youngster. He will have flashes of brilliance, but be ready for some major slumps. He should end the year around .275, 20, 80, which are certainly useful numbers. And don’t be surprised to see Domonic Brown impress people.
I’m in a 14-team keeper league with fairly deep rosters. The guy who owns Strasburg isn’t keeping him (we keep 5 per team), would I be crazy to draft him late and stash him all year? -Taylor, Idaho
No. Make sure you are getting him very very late, but if you have deep benches, as you say, I think he could be a top-20 starting pitcher in 2012. And if someone has your idea and takes him earlier than you, don’t sweat it. I wouldn’t want to use anything but a late pick on a guy who won’t be useful for at least a year.
Can you name some guys not being talked about enough right now? -Kimberly, Arizona
The first guy that comes to mind is Madison Bumgardner. He looks like the third starter in the Giants rotation, and is a bargain if you can get him in the late-mid rounds. I also think Ryan Braun might fall into the second round of some drafts, and that’s a steal if you can get him. Andre Ethier might turn out to be a bargain this year. On the opposite note, Matt Kemp looks really overrated to me so far in mocks I’ve seen.