1) Roy Oswalt, SP, Philadelphia Phillies
Team: Ryan Lester, Lester's Legends | Roster
Oswalt will occupy the third ace role for the Phillies, which means he should have plenty of favorable starting pitching matchups. He dominated in his brief stint with the Phillies going 7-1 with a 1.74 ERA and 0.90 WHIP. Obviously those numbers won't translate over a full season, but I'm expecting 15 wins, 165 strikeouts, a low 3.00 ERA, and a WHIP below 1.20.
2) Rafael Furcal, SS, Los Angeles Dodgers
Team: Tim Heaney, KFFL | Roster
The unsexiest pick I've made. Ever. BA, SB, R and, most importantly, a SS - I filled my needs with the most stable 6 available before another long wait. I'll be sure to backfill his eventual DL stint.
3) Carlos Marmol, RP, Chicago Cubs
Team: Doug Anderson, RotoExperts | Roster
I don't generally like to invest heavily in my closers, but the position is a mess this year. Besides Marmol just might strike out more hitters than Clay Buchholz, who went in round eight. It's an adventure at times with Marmol, but he is the unquestioned starter and offers qualities that are unmatched in baseball.
Pitching coming off the board fast
4) Matt Garza, SP, Chicago Cubs
Team: Pasko Varnica, Mastersball | Roster
His wins category may not improve in Chicago, but now being in the NL and far away from NYY and Boston, his K, ERA and WHIP can only get better.
5) Joakim Soria, RP, Kansas City Royals
Team: Ray Flowers, Baseball Guys | Roster
I really like having one closer I can count on, and Soria is an absolute beast. I also figured that my selection of a closer would cause others to target the bullpen, hopefully letting others I covet to fall to me in the 11th round.
6) Neftali Feliz, RP, Texas Rangers
Team: Joe Hamrahi, Baseball Prospectus | Roster
As you can tell by my last two picks, saves play a significant role in my draft strategy. In my early roto years, I paid little attention to the guys who closed out games, and it cost me. I told myself I'd never let it happen again. Never again.
7) Chris Carpenter, SP, St. Louis Cardinals
Team: Eriq Gardner, Fantasy Ball Junkie | Roster
My first pitcher. It's a pretty good, deep year for pitchers when you can draft a guy in the 10th round who has finished top three in Cy Young voting three out of the last six years. My team is beginning to shoulder a lot of injury risk, which isn't too smart in our league format, but what freaks out one's competitors often represents the best possible path to solid investment upside.
8) Jonathan Papelbon, RP, Boston Red Sox
Team: Harold Nichols, Baseball HQ | Roster
Skills held up in spite of rise in ERA. Unlucky 2nd half hit rate suggests that he should return to form as one of the game's best closers. Has 40 save upside with low ERA and WHIP.
9) Matt Wieters, C, Baltimore Orioles
Team: Jeff Paur, RTSports | Roster
I felt now was a time to get my No. 1 catcher with many top catchers off the board. You can't wait too long on this position in leagues that start two. The pickings get slim in a hurry. I was looking at Miguel Montero or Wieters. I took Wieters because of his potential. He can be a fantasy force if it all comes together, but that is a big "if" for now.
10) Miguel Montero, C, Arizona Diamondbacks
Team: Nicholas Minnix, KFFL | Roster
Another diversion from my now evolving strategy. (Old one: Don't reach for catchers because of scarcity.) I don't think I did for Montero, a player with above-average ability (both in power and average) who has recovered from a knee injury. Amenable choices in two-catcher leagues dry up quickly, and some teams seem more open to interchangeability behind the plate.
11) Mariano Rivera, RP, New York Yankees
Team: Steve Gardner, USA Today | Roster
Closers are starting to come off the board now. Four already in this round. Oh wait ... there's the greatest closer in baseball history. Let's make it five.
12) Adam L. Jones, OF, Baltimore Orioles
Team: Collin Hager, FantasyPros911.com | Roster
I was glad to see him fall to this point. He didn't deliver what many hoped in 2010, but he doesn't have to carry my team as a third outfielder. 20 home runs and 75 RBI will more than do the job and I think there is upside from there.
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