Forgot Log-in or  Password? |  Help  Not a member, Register Now!
      
Fantasy Football Today
Fantasy Football Today Blog
Gameday Inactives
2014 Draft Prep Guide
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Get Your Draft Board
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Scores
Fantasy Games
Playoff Challenge
Commissioner
Prize Leagues
Free
Office Pool Manager
Game Pick'em
Player Challenge
Fantasy Baseball Today
Fantasy Baseball Today Blog
2015 Draft Prep Guide
Mock Drafts
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Rankings
Projections
Schedules
Probable Pitchers
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injuries
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Message Boards
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Downloadable Draft Kit
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
No Fantasy Teams Found
 
 
 

2012 Fantasy outlooks: Los Angeles Dodgers

  •  

The Dodgers' offseason has been more notable for the team's ongoing bankruptcy and pending sale than for its personnel moves. Even when there has been actual baseball-related news, Dodger fans have been give little reason to improve their blue mood. Center fielder Matt Kemp narrowly lost out on the National League Most Valuable Player award to Ryan Braun. Rotation mainstay Hiroki Kuroda bolted for the Yankees, even after insisting that if he couldn't work out a deal with the Dodgers he would rather return to Japan than play for another major league team. The Dodgers also failed to retain a pair of injury-plagued relievers -- Jonathan Broxton and Hong-Chih Kuo -- who had nonetheless been integral parts of the team's bullpen in recent years.

Follow us, Like us, Join us
Want more? Join the discussion on our Facebook page and Google+ and follow us on Twitter for additional insight while interacting with a community geared toward Fantasy Baseball.

In spite of the financial turmoil and uncertainty off the field and a paltry .375 team slugging percentage on the field, the Dodgers ended the year on a 25-10 run that put them three games over .500 for the season. The offense perked up slightly, but it was the pitching staff that kicked into high gear over the season's final weeks. NL Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw led the way, going 8-0 with a 0.96 ERA over his final nine starts.

Kershaw and Kemp will be back to lead the Dodgers in 2012, and for the most part, the supporting cast is set going into spring training. After two seasons in which he was hampered by injuries, right fielder Andre Ethier enters this season with a clean bill of health and a chance to recapture his momentum. James Loney and Juan Uribe will return and are charged with handling the infield corners, Dee Gordon will begin his first full year as the Dodgers' regular shortstop, free agent Mark Ellis will take over for power-deprived Jamey Carroll and Aaron Miles at second base, and journeyman A.J. Ellis will replace Rod Barajas behind the plate. That leaves left field as the only unsettled position heading into camp, and veteran Juan Rivera and young slugger Jerry Sands are the top candidates to win the job.

Chad Billingsley and Ted Lilly will join Kershaw at the top of the rotation, and Aaron Harang was signed to replace Kuroda. Meanwhile, Chris Capuano will hold down the fifth starter's job, at least until prospect Nate Eovaldi is ready to take it over or Rubby De La Rosa (Tommy John surgery) is able to make a late-season return. Javy Guerra and Kenley Jansen will battle it out this spring over who gets to close out games, while former National Todd Coffey will join a mostly familiar corps of relievers.

Despite their strong finish, the Dodgers were not much of a factor last season, and a lot has to break their way for 2012 to be any different. Ethier will need to stay healthy and find his power stroke again, Gordon has to find a way to get on base more often, and with Kuroda gone, Billingsley and Lilly will need to improve their production. Maybe some of this will happen, but more will have to go in the Dodgers' favor for them to keep up with the Diamondbacks, Giants and possibly even the Rockies in the NL West.

Injury-risk sleeper...Andre Ethier, OF

The last two seasons have not been kind to Ethier, as he was derailed by a broken pinkie in 2010 and by a right knee injury last year, on which he wound up having surgery last September. Entering 2012 with his health woes behind him, Ethier may be able to pick up where he left off three years ago when he hit 31 home runs and drove in 106 runs. Even through his injuries, Ethier has shown good gap power and strike zone judgment, but his home run production has suffered. As last season wore on and Ethier's knee injury worsened, he hit a progressively higher proportion of ground balls each month. With better health, there is little reason to think he can't hit at least 25 homers. While owners may still be reluctant to trust him, Ethier should still provide a good return on a mid-round pick in standard mixed leagues.

Bust...Chad Billingsley, SP

Check out our Fantasy Baseball podcast!
Stay a step ahead of your competition in 2014 by checking out our popular Fantasy Baseball Today podcasts. Adam Aizer, Scott White and Al Melchior will entertain you and help you dominate all season.
Latest episode | Subscribe!

Billingsley had been a beacon of consistency for four years running, so when he posted his first non-winning record (11-11) and a career-high 4.21 ERA, Fantasy owners couldn't be blamed for thinking that 2011 was just a blip on the radar screen. However, Billingsley's strikeout rate has been in decline over the last three seasons, and even more concerning, his swinging strike rate plunged in both 2010 and 2011. Now that Billingsley isn't missing as many bats, his wildness is hurting him even more, and there are no signs suggesting he will improve on either his ERA or his WHIP (1.45) from a year ago. Rather than looking for Billingsley to return to being the top 20 pitcher he was just a few years ago, Fantasy owners should regard the 27-year-old as a late-round or waiver wire option.

Head-to-Head hero...James Loney, 1B

Fantasy owners who found Loney enigmatic a year ago must have found his 2011 season mind-blowing. Loney came out of the gates ice-cold, hitting .210 in April, and he didn't start hitting for power until the middle of August, whereupon he smashed four homers in an eight-game span. Loney's power binge was too short-lived to take seriously, but he showed real improvement in a different way over the latter three-fifths of the season. He cranked up his line drive rate, which enabled him to bat .322 with 24 doubles from June 10 forward. Loney has always been a decent gap hitter with strong contact skills, but his growing penchant for hitting doubles gives him some extra caché in Head-to-Head leagues. In those formats, Loney is worthy of a mid-to-late round pick, whereas it may be a stretch to target him as a late-round flier in standard mixed Rotisserie leagues.

2012 Los Angeles Dodgers Fantasy Outlook
Projected Lineup Pos. Projected Rotation
1 Dee Gordon SS 1 Clayton Kershaw LH
2 Mark Ellis 2B 2 Chad Billingsley RH
3 Andre Ethier RF 3 Ted Lilly LH
4 Matt Kemp CF 4 Aaron Harang RH
5 James Loney 1B 5 Chris Capuano LH
6 Juan Rivera LF Alt Nate Eovaldi RH
7 Juan Uribe 3B
Bullpen Breakdown
8 A.J. Ellis C CL Javy Guerra RH
Top bench options SU Kenley Jansen RH
R Jerry Hairston 3B/OF RP Matt Guerrier RH
R Tony Gwynn OF RP Scott Elbert LH
R Adam Kennedy IF RP Todd Coffey RH
Rookies/Prospects Age Pos. 2011 high Destination
1 Nate Eovaldi 21 SP Majors Triple-A
Hard-throwing Eovaldi has an outside shot at the rotation out of spring training. More likely he will have some work to do in Triple-A.
2 Zach Lee 20 SP Class A Class A
Lee will probably be on the fast track, but he still won't arrive until next year at the earliest. He projects to be a top-of-the-rotation starter.
3 Allen Webster 21 SP Double-A Double-A
Webster, a ground ball pitcher, stumbled in Double-A and will likely repeat the level. He could reach the big leagues this year, though.
4 Tim Federowicz 24 OF Majors Triple-A
Despite a Pacific Coast League power spike, it's not clear how well Federowicz's bat will play in the majors. He could split time with A.J. Ellis sometime this year.
5 Alfredo Silverio 24 OF Double-A Triple-A
If Jerry Sands flops in his next big league trial, perhaps Silverio will get a shot in left field this year. Good long-term keeper option either way.
Best of the rest: Chris Reed, SP; Garrett Gould, SP; Chris Withrow, SP; Joc Pederson, OF; Alex Castellanos, OF;l Angel Sanchez, SP; Gorman Erickson, C; Angelo Songco, OF; Blake Smith, OF; Shawn Tolleson, RP; Aaron Miller, SP; Scott Van Slyke, OF; Jonathan Garcia, OF; Steve Ames, RP; Jake Lemmerman, SS; Stephen Fife, SP.

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us on Twitter @CBSFantasyBB or Al Melchior at @almelccbs . You can also send our staff an e-mail at fantasybaseball@cbsinteractive.com .

Get player news notifications, manage your team and check scores
- all updated in real time. Download the CBS Fantasy App.

  •  
 
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre
 
 
Player News
Astros' Hinch says Springer felt 'like he'd been in a car wreck'
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(12:44 pm ET) After crashing into the right-field wall and leaving the game early on Tuesday, Astros right fielder George Springer will not be in the lineup on Wednesday, manager A.J. Hinch told MLB Network Radio. 

Springer underwent tests for a concussion after leaving in the seventh inning. Hinch said they would get the test results back today. A replacement for Springer in Wednesday's lineup has not yet been announced. 


Giants' Casey McGehee feeling the heat from fans
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(12:43 pm ET) Giants third baseman Casey McGehee can't quite put things together yet at the plate, leading to manager Bruce Bochy to sit him in Tuesday's game. Over the weekend, McGehee was hit with a smattering of boos when he struck out with a chance to drive home runs. He said he understands, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

"I have no hard feelings toward anybody who got on me last night," McGehee said. "There were times last night, if I were up there, I'd have booed myself. I'm looking forward to the day I get things going and the boos turn around."

McGehee, who is hitting .181 with three RBI in 72 at-bats, thinks he's starting to have some better at-bats.

"I felt especially on the weekend I was swinging the bat pretty good," he said. "The trick is to just keep going. I've been down and out, counted out, before. The only way I know how to do it is to keep showing up, preparing, keeping my nose down and keep working.

"I guarantee you there wasn't one person in the stands who was more frustrated or disappointed than myself. It's not easy. (Booing) is not something you look forward to. At the same time, I'm frustrated, too."


Ottavino seeking opinions; Axford, Betancourt could close for Rockies
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(12:32 pm ET) Rockies closer Adam Ottavino, who could be facing Tommy John surgery, is expected to receive "another opinion or two" on his injured right elbow, manager Walt Weiss told MLB Network Radio on Wednesday.

"Tough news for us and tough news for Adam, we still are getting another opinion or two, but doesn't look great," Weiss said.

Ottavino was placed on the 15-day DL last week with a right triceps injury. Weiss indicated that John Axford and Rafael Betancourt are two options for the Rockies in the ninth inning in Ottavino's absence.

"We have Axford and he's closed a lot of games in this league," Weiss said. "We still have Betancourt as well"


Rockies' Weiss not seeing same production from Carlos Gonzalez
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(12:32 pm ET) Rockies outfielder Carlos Gonzalez hasn't quite figured things out at the plate to start 2015. Gonzalez is hitting just .200 with two home runs and six RBI in 85 at-bats this season, something manager Walt Weiss is a bit surprised to see happening, according to MLB Network Radio.

"We haven't seen him clicking like he has in the past and we're hoping that's right around the corner," Weiss said.

Gonzalez is currently hitting for the worst average of his career after hitting over .300 in 2012 and 2013.


Rangers' Josh Hamilton expected to start rehab assignment next week
by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(12:26 pm ET) Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton is scheduled to play his second extended spring training game Wednesday after getting a day off Tuesday, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

Hamilton, who is currently on the 15-day DL with a shoulder injury, is expected to begin his rehab assignment with Triple-A Round Rock next week.


D-Backs switch Mark Trumbo, A.J. Pollock in batting order
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(12:25 pm ET) Diamondbacks right fielder Mark Trumbo will bat second for the first time in his career in Game 1 of Wednesday's day-night doubleheader against Colorado.

Trumbo, who is hitting .083 through his first three games in May, will flip spots in the batting order with A.J. Pollock. Pollock, who is hitting .071 (1 for 14) over his last four games, will bat cleanup.

Arizona is considered an underdog (+115) in Game 1, according to VegasInsider.com.


Cardinals OF Randal Grichuk (back) takes BP Tuesday
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(12:24 pm ET) Cardinals outfielder Randal Grichuk took batting practice on Tuesday for the first time since going on the disabled list on April 17 with a back injury. The next step for Grichuk is to head to the team's training facility in Jupiter, Fla. to play in extended spring training games starting Friday, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Grichuk will likely head to Class A Palm Beach for a quick rehab assignment before returning to St. Louis, though he may be able to skip that step if all goes well. It has not been announced exactly when the Cardinals expect Grichuk to be activated from the DL.


Angels SP Tyler Skaggs (elbow) hoping to throw off mound by July
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(12:16 pm ET) Angels starter Tyler Skaggs, who is recovering from Tommy John surgery, has been taking a planned week off from his rehab, and will resume throwing on Monday. He's currently slated to start having bullpen sessions by July 1, according to The Orange County Register.

Skaggs made 18 starts for the Halos last season, going 5-5 with a 4.30 ERA before going down with an elbow injury in August. He is not expected to return to a big-league mound until 2016. 


Dodgers' Kenley Jansen could join the club early next week
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(12:15 pm ET) Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen, on the disabled list recovering from left foot surgery, could be ready to join the club as early as next week, depending on how he responds to back-to-back outings, according to the Orange County Register.

Jansen, who tossed a scoreless inning of work on Sunday, will make his third appearance with Class-A Rancho Cucamonga on Wednesday, and is scheduled to pitch again on Thursday.


Dodgers OF Yasiel Puig still not cleared to run the bases
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(12:11 pm ET) Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig has yet to receive clearance to run the bases as part of his workouts in Los Angeles, manager Don Mattingly said Tuesday, per the Orange County Register.

Puig has been on the 15-day disabled list since April 26 with a hamstring injury. He won't be able to start a minor-league rehab assignment until he can run the bases.


 
 
 
Rankings