Thursday, March 29, 2012

Early Auction Call Outs - American League

Below is a list of players that I think might be overvalued based on the expert auction results (CBS, LABR, Tout Wars) in A.L.-only and might be good call outs to suck money out of the room early.

Brett Lawrie Expert Auction Prices: CBS $30, LABR $28, Tout Wars $29
Do I like Lawrie in keeper leagues? Absolutely...and he should be the #1 or #2 guy you should target in A.L.-only to build around if you wind up dumping. In one-and-done leagues, though, these bids make almost no sense. If Lawrie earned his average salary in 2011's context, he'd be the 12th best hitter in the American League. Can that happen? It's not out of the question, but it seems like a poor bet. Keep in mind that last year was the first year Lawrie hit for average in his professional career, and most of that average came in the hitter friendly PCL. If Lawrie hits .270 this year, it will be nearly impossible for him to earn $29. Don't get sucked into the hype.... at least not in one-and-done leagues.

Robinson Cano CBS $33, LABR $39, Tout $37
Cano is the best second baseman in the American League this year and I have no problem paying top dollar for top talent. The two reasons I don't like this price are 1) there's a ceiling on what Cano can earn (he earned $36 in 2010 and $32 last year and 2) there are a lot of quality options in the mid-tiers this year. I don't mind going to $35 on Cano, but anything past that makes me queasy.

Eric Hosmer CBS $28, LABR $25, Tout $28
Hosmer isn't as egregious an example of a young player overpay as Lawrie, but he's up there. Part of the problem is that first base is absolutely stacked this year. I don't see why you'd pay $28 for Hosmer when there are about half a dozen first basemen you could get who are more certain to put up big time stats. Adrian Gonzalez went for $5 more than Hosmer in Tout Wars, Prince Fielder went for $2 more, and Mark Teixeira went for $1 more. For 2012 only, I'd rather have any of those guys at those prices (keeping in mind that I don't like that Teixeira price either).

Carlos Santana CBS $27, LABR $24, Tout $28
Like Cano, Santana is the best player at his position. And, unlike Cano, the position is thin enough to justify overpaying somewhat. However, the CBS and Tout prices are too rich for my blood. Even if Santana bumps his average to .260 and his HR/RBI/runs all jump slightly, he only jumps from a $17 to a $21 player in 2012. Just for fun, I plugged a 35 HR, 100 RBI, 100 run, .260 season in for Santana. That would make him a $25 player. Do you think that's realistic? If so, go nuts. I'll take the opportunity to stretch my legs when it's time to bid.

Paul Konerko CBS $21, LABR $26, Tout $28
I won Konerko in CBS, so I obviously don't think he's a terrible buy at the LABR/Tout prices. However, you can see the difference. Unlike a lot of the players listed here earning potential isn't the issue; Konerko earned $26 last year. But I do believe in chopping a couple of dollars off for age and/or risk. As I mentioned under Hosmer, first base is a thick position this year. I don't see the need to chase certain guys and Konerko just happens to be one of them. Twenty-four dollars is my stopping point for him.


Jintman said...

I agree with you on Lawrie. If your going to pay full price or more on a player, it has to be a reliable producer. As much as I like Lawrie, those prices leave no upside or profit potential. I agree on Hosmer but I would be willing to go just a few $s below those prices. I think he will produce close to that value and maybe a buck or 2 profit.

Mike Gianella said...

No arguments on Hosmer. This is a tough list to compile for expert leagues because in 90% or more of all cases these guys are within $2 of my price. Hosmer is a little bit more over my price than that...but not that much more.