Garret Atkins (3B): Sure he’s no David Wright in terms of skill or what he’d do playing in a place that wasn’t a hitter’s paradise, but since he is he’s an outstanding choice as a third baseman. If he comes back to match last year’s numbers – something I’d expect him to do he’s an elite fantasy third baseman. Last year - .329-29-120-117 with 4 steals to boot.
Matt Holliday (OF): Thanks to the air at Coors Matt is a strong four category (or weak five category) wonder who’ll even contribute double digit steals to your team. It’s hard not to like last year’s .326-34-114-119-10 performance and since the Rockies held on to Todd Helton this offseason there isn’t much reason to think that he can’t come close to those numbers again.
Todd Helton (1B): It might be a bit of a stretch to still call Helton a 2nd category player – but I’d hate to knock him down too far with his skills and the fact that he’s still hitting at Coors. He’s lost the power and he never really had much speed, but Todd is still a strong three category guy who won’t hurt you in any category – unless he’s traded. It’s unlikely he’ll waive his no trade clause in the middle of the season so he’s a fairly safe option – just not one of the best ones at the position anymore. Plus there is always a chance for a bounce back season.
Jeff Francis (SP): If he were pitching anywhere else Francis would probably be a true ace type pitcher, but he isn’t and while his ERA might scare you, you owe it to yourself to take a look at his splits. Even if you don’t throw him full time and avoid his starts at Coors he can contribute to your team.
Brad Hawpe (OF): Another guy making his living off Coors Field’s altitude – his season last year .293-22-84-67-5 makes him a better than average choice when searching for a mid to late round outfielder. He could end up with less protection than last year but he could end up moving up in the order – especially if Todd Helton battles injury again.
Brian Fuentes (CL): A solid closer (3-4, 3.44, 30 Saves, 1.16 WHIP) who’d rank higher and would have better stats if he pitched elsewhere. He strikes out better than a batter an inning which is a plus, but his chances for saves may well be limited by starting pitching and by the number of non save situations which Coors seems to engender.
Brian Lawrence (SP): Once a solid second level pitcher Lawrence has been plagued by health issues and hasn’t yet shown that he can regain the form that made him a better than average pitcher. He’s never been overpowering and he’s not likely to enjoy pitching at Coors, but he’s always been a smart pitcher and he knows how to mix up speeds, but that might not be enough to give him any fantasy value. He’s worth keeping an eye on however, especially in deeper leagues.
Aaron Cook (SP): His numbers look like mediocre American League standard (9-15, 4.23,1.40 with 92 K’s) but that’s actually pretty good for a guy who pitches half his games at Coors. Sit him at home and pitch him on the road and you might well find that he’s a useful fantasy commodity in deep leagues.
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