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
 
 
 

First base tiers for Draft Day 2013

Senior Fantasy Writer
  •  

First base. It's the granddaddy of deep. Big bats as far as the eye can see.

The Tiers Approach to Draft Day
Tiering is a method of doctoring positional rankings so that players of similar value are bundled into groups. A new group begins whenever the next player down in the rankings has a vastly different projected outcome from the player preceding him. Reducing a position to five or six tiers instead of 30 or more individuals gives you a blueprint to follow as your league's draft unfolds. Naturally, the position to target is the one whose active tier is closest to completion. -- Scott White

Tiers: C | 1B | 2B | SS | 3B | OF | SP | RP

But it can burn you if you get too comfortable waiting around for leftovers. See, for as many options -- and I mean legitimate, potentially high-end options -- as it offers, a significant number of them are eligible at other, not-so-deep positions.

What's "a significant number?" Well, of the first 20 players I've ranked at the position, seven are eligible somewhere other than first base. (And that's not counting David Ortiz and Victor Martinez, who technically aren't eligible even at first base. Look, I had to put them somewhere. Tiering the only two relevant DH-only players by themselves wouldn't help you gauge where to draft them, would it? Don't worry: I put an asterisk (*) next to their names in the tiers, in case you forget.)

Chances are that second position, whatever it is, is what they'll be drafted to play. First base is deep, after all. Why not fill the shallower positions first? But the danger in that line of thinking is everyone thinks that way. Unless you anticipate the upper tiers depleting faster here than at other positions, you'll find yourself drafting from a lower tier than you had intended.

The Elite: Albert Pujols, Joey Votto, Prince Fielder, Buster Posey, Edwin Encarnacion

The Near Elite: Adrian Gonzalez, Joe Mauer, Allen Craig, Billy Butler, Carlos Santana, Mark Teixeira, David Ortiz*

The Next Best Things: Paul Goldschmidt, Freddie Freeman, Ike Davis, Anthony Rizzo, Victor Martinez*

The Fallback Options: Paul Konerko, Mike Napoli, Ryan Howard, Mark Trumbo, Nick Swisher, Justin Morneau, Adam LaRoche, Corey Hart

The Last Resorts: Eric Hosmer, Adam Dunn, Kevin Youkilis, Chris Davis, Todd Frazier, Lance Berkman, Michael Cuddyer, Kendrys Morales, Brandon Moss

The Leftovers: Mark Reynolds, Brandon Belt, Michael Young, Garrett Jones, Yonder Alonso, Logan Morrison, Matt Carpenter, Adam Lind, Justin Smoak, Chris Parmelee, Mitch Moreland, Tyler Colvin, Chris Carter

After ranking head and shoulders above the rest for the better part of a decade, Pujols has slowed down enough that first base can finally have a first tier as deep as the rest of the position. Lots of early-round types here. Some might quibble over my inclusion of Posey and Encarnacion in The Elite, but the bottom line is I'm willing to go the extra round or two to nab Encarnacion over someone like Craig. To me, that's a surefire indication that they belong in separate tiers.

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!

Slotting Mark Teixeira with The Near Elite was almost painful for me. I really don't want him as my starting first baseman this year. If early draft data is any indication, he might very well be the last of that second tier to go off the board, which might be what compels me to draft him in the fifth or sixth round when I'd prefer to direct my attention elsewhere and target an Ike Davis or Rizzo type later. So in essence, I'd be protecting myself from myself by dropping him a tier, and sometimes, that's exactly the way to go.

But ultimately, I opted against it here. It's not like I take literally the last remaining player in every tier. If only Butler and Teixeira remain, I'm probably grabbing Butler because I'm not expecting either to get back to me. And if only Teixeira remains and I honestly have no other direction to go at any other position, I probably am taking him, so it's not brazenly dishonest.

Is it a perfect? Not at all, but unless I intend to give Teixeira his own tier, I can't expect him to fit perfectly anywhere.

Konerko was another tweener for me, but ultimately, I decided he didn't belong in the same category as Goldschmidt or Freeman, who performed up to the level of Teixeira on a per-game basis in Head-to-Head leagues last year. Do Davis and Rizzo? Well, they have about the same upside as Goldschmidt and Freeman, even if they're not as far along. Konerko, on the other hand, is due for a steep decline in his age-37 season and showed signs of it in the second half last year. Frankly, I'm not sure I wouldn't prefer Howard or Trumbo to him.

Hart's inclusion in the The Next Best Things was iffy, given that his recent knee surgery will likely cost him the first two months, but let's be real here: He's getting drafted in all leagues. The same isn't necessarily true for any of the players in the next tier.

The name of that tier, The Last Resorts, is a little harsh at a position as deep as this one. Dunn hit 41 homers last year, for crying out loud, and Chris Davis and Moss are big power threats in their own right. Hosmer is just a year removed from being the top breakout candidate at the position, and it's not like he's a lost cause at age 23.

Chances are that tier will litter the late rounds of most drafts. How else are you going to fill that DH or utility spot? What passes for a sleeper at first base would likely be a mainstay at second base or shortstop.

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us on Twitter @CBSFantasyBB or Scott White at @CBSScottWhite . You can also e-mail us 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
Reds' Michael Lorenzen tosses three one-run innings Thursday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:57 pm ET) Reds pitching prospect Michael Lorenzen surrendered one earned run on four hits in three innings in Thursday's 13-2 win over the Indians.

"It went good," Lorenzen said after the outing, per MLB.com. "My fastball command was good. The tempo was good. That was the most important thing for me -- tempo and fastball command. I was able to go out there and accomplish my goal for the day."

Lorenzen came into Thursday's start having allowed no hits and six walks in two innings in his previous appearance. He threw 45 pitches in Thursday's game and another 20 in the bullpen to reach his pitch-count target.

"I worked on some breaking balls," Lorenzen said. "I gave up some two-strike hits with my breaking ball. I didn't finish them. They were a lot better in the bullpen with a couple of adjustments that I made."

The Reds are looking at Lorenzen for a long-relief role but could use him as a starter at some point this season.

"That gives him a chance to get to 80-85 [pitches] in his next outing, which to me, means he's ready to start," manager Bryan Price said before the game. "You can safely say he could throw 90-95 pitches in his first start of the season."


White Sox 3B Conor Gillaspie says plantar fasciitis is not an issue
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(9:57 pm ET) After initially being bothered by plantar fasciitis at the beginning of spring training, White Sox third baseman Conor Gillaspie said he is over the injury, reports MLB.com.

"It's fine," Gillaspie said. "First thing [in the morning] and last thing at night, it's kind of sore, but as far as affecting me playing, it doesn't. It did a little bit when I first got here, but it has gone away. Credit to [White Sox head athletic trainer] Herm [Schneider] for working hard with me every day on that."

While Gillaspie will likely be dealing with discomfort in his foot for most of the season, he said it's nothing he can't manage.

"The workload lessens as you get into the season as far as practice hours go. Obviously, I'm hoping that calms it down a bit, having a little less to do," Gillaspie said. "It's not a big issue."


Mets' Matt Bowman shines in spot start vs. Nationals
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:48 pm ET) Mets pitching prospect Matt Bowman surrendered just two hits and one walk in five scoreless innings while striking out four in Thursday's 8-3 win over the Nationals.

"He was extremely impressive against a very good team," manager Terry Collins said after the outing, per MLB.com. "These guys, like all pitchers, are starting to get in shape. They're starting to get their stuff going and you see what they really have, and what they can really feature. I can understand why he's very much liked around here and how he showed up in this camp. From what I saw tonight, the command of his stuff, the poise, he's a pretty impressive-looking pitcher."

With the Mets set to open the regular season against the Nationals, the team held Opening Day starter Bartolo Colon out of Thursday's matchup and opted to use Bowman, who has posted a 1.80 ERA in 10 innings this spring.


White Sox SP Brad Penny allows six runs vs. Dodgers
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:34 pm ET) White Sox pitcher Brad Penny struggled in Thursday's spring loss to the Dodgers, giving up six earned runs on eight hits and three walks in four innings while striking out two.

"I went out there and I was kind of letting it go, throwing more than pitching," Penny said after the outing, per MLB.com. "I got behind. I was working on the cutter today, which I thought was better than it has been. So, just too many balls over the plate."

Penny is competing for a spot in the team's opening rotation while Chris Sale is sidelined. He's put together a 6.89 ERA in 15 2/3 innings this spring.


Angels' Jered Weaver strikes out eight Thursday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:25 pm ET) Angels pitcher Jered Weaver allowed four runs (three earned) on six hits in 5 1/3 innings while racking up eight strikeouts in Thursday's spring start against the Cubs.

Weaver brought a 1.69 ERA into the outing and though that mark rose more than a full run Thursday, the starter has posted an excellent 18:1 K:BB ratio in his last three starts. He's on pace to deliver his best spring numbers since 2008.


Cardinals' Kevin Siegrist has trouble holding runners Thursday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:18 pm ET) Cardinals pitcher Kevin Siegrist allowed two stolen bases in his inning of work Thursday while surrendering one earned run. He's made mechanical adjustments this spring to try and quicken his delivery, MLB.com reports.

"He got a little longer today for some reason," manager Mike Matheny said. "I don't know if he's trying to put a little more [velocity] on it or exactly what it is. I think he was thinking a little more about his stuff. Those are things that we hadn't seen much from him this spring."

The run was the first Siegrist has allowed in six innings this spring, and he's racked up seven strikeouts while issuing only one walk.


Giants OF Justin Maxwell competing to earn a spot
by Dave Peters | CBSSports.com
(9:17 pm ET) Giants outfielder Justin Maxwell is working to win a spot on the team's bench, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

Maxwell has a fan in manager Bruce Bochy, who has liked him since he came out of college. The 31-year-old has a batting average of .267 with two doubles, one triple, one home run, six RBI and 11 strikeouts. 

There is a clause in his minor-league contract that will let him out of his deal is he is not named to the 25-man roster.


Nationals' Gio Gonzalez tosses five scoreless innings vs. Mets
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(8:53 pm ET) Nationals pitcher Gio Gonzalez allowed just two hits and three walks in five scoreless innings while striking out five in Thursday's 8-3 loss to the Mets.

Gonzalez has held the opposition scoreless in three of his four spring outings while posting a 2.63 ERA and 13:6 K:BB ratio in 13 2/3 innings. He could make two more spring starts before making his regular-season debut.


Diamondbacks P Chase Anderson strikes out four Thursday
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(8:47 pm ET) Diamondbacks pitcher Chase Anderson started Thursday's game against the Padres and surrendered one run over six innings.

Anderson gave up six hits while walking two and striking out four batters. It was Anderson's longest outing of the spring. Anderson has pitched 14 2/3 innings this spring and given up three runs.

Anderson is competing for a starting role in the rotation, but he said he's hasn't been informed if he's in the rotation, reports MLB.com.

"They haven't said anything to me," Anderson said. "They just told me to do the best I can. I'm just going to keep pitching. That's all you can do. It's going to come down to the wire, which I think is good for our team, our organization."


Mariners' Roenis Elias surrenders six runs vs. Brewers
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(8:43 pm ET) Mariners pitcher Roenis Elias allowed six earned runs on eight hits and three walks in three-pluss innings while striking out one in his team's 15-1 loss to the Brewers Thursday.

Elias came into the game with a 3.86 spring ERA but endured his worst Cactus League performance, giving up four runs in the first inning alone and being charged with two of Milwaukee's three fourth-inning runs. He's competing for the final rotation spot with Taijuan Walker, who has tossed 18 scoreless innings this spring.


 
 
 
Rankings