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Fantasy Baseball Draft 2014: Team Preview - Philadelphia Phillies

Jason's Fantasy Baseball Analysis: Team Preview - Philadelphia Phillies

March 6, 2014

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Team Previews - Philadelphia Phillies

The Phillies once posted a formidable fantasy roster, but now they have become a roster full of very risky veteran players. The Phillies are still counting on their old vets to lead them to the playoffs, but fantasy owners would be wise to not follow this strategy. However, there are still are few bargains on this team, and fantasy owners must be sure to choose wisely before investing in the Philadelphia Phillies.

Can't Miss Picks: Cliff Lee has been one of the best pitchers in baseball for a very long time, yet he is hardly ever mentioned in the same context as the other great pitchers. Lee ran into some very bad luck in 2012 when he recorded only 6 wins, but he rebounded nicely last year as he recorded 14 wins to go along with a stellar 2.87 ERA and a 1.01 WHIP. Lee should once again be a reliable fantasy ace who is well deserving of an early round pick.

Fantasy Baseball Draft 2014: Team Preview - Philadelphia Phillies

Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Sleepers and Value Picks: Chase Utley has become a very underappreciated fantasy 2nd baseman. Utley's numbers have decreased as he has gotten older, but the main reason for his decreased fantasy value is his injury risk. Utley had a very hard time staying on the field from 2010 - 2012, but he was able to play in 131 games last year. Utley credits his new durability to his new offseason training routine, and he repeated that same training this offseason. On average, Utley is being drafted as the 14th second baseman which is quite low for a player that is capable of 20 homers 80 RBI to go with a .280+ batting average. Utley is once again undervalued heading into the 2014 season, and he is a great option for fantasy owners that plan on waiting to draft a second baseman.

Breakouts: Ben Revere had a very volatile season last year. Revere started out incredibly slow, and then he got hurt once he finally find his groove. Revere will be looking to put it all together this year, and there is reason to believe the 25 year can have a breakout season in 2014. Revere has proven to be a quality hitter( .285 career average) that does not strike out much, and while he needs to improve his walk rate and OBP, fantasy owners in rotisserie leagues should seriously consider drafting Revere for his combination of speed and average.

Busts: Cole Hamels and Marlon Byrd - Cole Hamels is being labelled as a bust in this article because he is not going to be healthy to start the season. Since there are positive reports being released about Hamels (although the latest news stated he had a setback), someone in all fantasy leagues will jump on Hamels in the 6-8 round range because he appears to be a bargain at that price. Hamels injury is a very tricky one and it could bother him all season. Fantasy owners should avoid Hamels in drafts and attempt a midseason trade for him if he shows signs of being fully recovered. Marlon Byrd, on the other hand, is simply an aging veteran coming off a career year, and it's highly unlikely he will reproduce his numbers from last season.

Bounce Back Candidates: Ryan Howard and Jimmy Rollins are two players that will get drafted from the Phillies as bench players with potential upside. As good as these guys have been in their careers, it is hard to recommend drafting either of them as a fantasy starter. That said, Jimmy Rollins still has some speed left in his legs, and he could be a serviceable fantasy shortstop if he can raise his batting average this year. As for Ryan Howard, he simply needs to stay healthy and stop being an easy out for left handed pitchers. Howard says he is finally healthy, and his power potential makes him worth a very late pick.

For Fantasy Baseball Updates and Insights follow Jason on Twitter @TheSuperCommish



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