New York Mets – 2010 Fantasy Favorites, Sleepers, And Uncertainties

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My projections are fairly optmistic but I do believe these players will perform as long as they are on the field.  2010 will be the first year they are able to do just that.

Players are listed below in order of projected rank (based on Head to Head/Rotiserrie 5 – 5 Category Leagues).

David Wright – Before last year David Wright was a projected top 3 fantasy player putting up stats to prove it.  Unfortunately Wright’s stats were hurt from playing in pitcher friendly Citi Field.  Furthermore, Wright was left unprotected because of a snowballing number of injuries to the most potent portion of the lineup (Jose Reyes, Carlos Beltran, Carlos Delgado).  While his power numbers slid, he proved he was an offensive threat by hitting over .300.  With that said, the addition of Jason Bay along with the hopes that Reyes and Beltran can come back and stay healthy can only help Wright’s statistics.

2009 Statistics: 10 HR, 72 RBI, .307 AVG, 27 SB, 88 R  

2010 Projected Statistics: 28 HR, 109 RBI, .311 AVG, 25 SB, 103 R

Johan Santana – Much like the offense, the Mets pitching staff suffered their fair share of injuries.  The most notable was Johan Santana.  In 2009, once the Mets were out of playoff contention, Santana’s season ended so he could get surgery to remove bone chips in his left elbow.  Johan is back and ready for opening day but there is some skepticism about his ERA and WHIP rising.  While it is something to consider, one must also look at Johan’s 2009 season.  There were at least 7 times that Johan left the game in position to get a win only to see his bullpen blow it.  Unfortunately, this years bullpen (outside of KROD) doesn’t look much better.  Nevertheless, if Johan is 100% he will be in the running for Cy Young and will prove he’s good enough to anchor any fantasy pitching staff.

2009 Stats:  13 W, 3.13 ERA, 146 K, 1.21 WHIP

2010 Projected Stats: 17 W, 3.05 ERA, 198 K, 1.17 WHIP 

Jason Bay – He had a phenomenal season and is still in his prime.  Jason Bay returns to the Mets as an established power threat.  Many analysts fear the confines of Citi Field, but I don’t think it will hurt Bay’s numbers.  Aside from the claims made by Omar Minaya that the park suits Bay’s swing, it can be said that most parks do and while 81 games are played at home there are still another 81 away.  After he replaced Manny Ramirez, Boston fans were satisfied with Bay’s numbers.  I believe fantasy owners and Mets fans alike will be content with Bay’s production filling the void left by Carlos Delgado.

2009 Stats: 36 HR, 119 RBI, .267 AVG, 13 SB, 103 R

2010 Projected Stats: 31 HR, 115 RBI, .278 AVG, 17 SB, 93 R 

Jose Reyes – Jose Reyes is the catalyst of the Mets offense.  The loss of his bat and legs in the the lineup has hurt the Mets in the past.  The good news – It appears that Reyes’ leg and thryoid issues are a thing of the past.  However, his true value won’t be reestablished until he stays healthy for a full season.  Slated to be ready a week after opening day, a healthy Reyes will put top fantasy stats.  Furthermore the SS position isn’t that deep this year.  A lot of people are down on Reyes leaving the door open for a sleeper pick if he drops past the 3rd round.

2009 Stats: 2 HR, 15 RBI, .279 AVG, 11 SB, 18 R

2010 Projected Stats: 9 HR, 59 RBI, .291 AVG, 51 SB, 105 R   

Carlos Beltran- It’s astonishing to think that last year we were looking at 4 Mets players ranked in the top 20 of most fantasy league draft boards.  Of the four, Beltran has fallen the most.  Beltran underwent knee surgery in January and will not be ready to return to the lineup until May (at the earliest).  What’s important to look at is that when Beltran was in the lineup the Mets were a .500+ ballclub.  Putting aside his questionable durability, Beltran is a veteran who can hit for power and average and still steal a couple of bases.  He will slip to the middle rounds so make sure you keep him on your watch list.

2009 Stats: 10 HR, 48 RBI, .325 AVG, 11 SB, 50 R

2010 Projected Stats: 21 HR, 85 RBI, .289 AVG, 17 SB, 89 R 

Francisco Rodriguez – One of the team’s new slogans is We Believe in 8 Inning Games.  It’s hard to not interpret this negatively.  It’s quite possible that the Mets might be blown out before the 6th inning (in games not pitched by Santana).  My hope is that the Mets are playing and contending in 9+ inning games.  He started off strong last year but ultimately fell victim to lack of run support and bullpen help.  If we have learned anything about K-Rod it’s that he performs better under pressure and when the games actually mean something.  If the team can stay healthy, the saves and strikeouts will come.

2009 Stats: 3 W, 3.71 ERA, 73 K, 1.31 WHIP, 35 SV

2010 Projected Stats: 3 W, 3.26 ERA, 70 K, 1.30 WHIP, 42 SV

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Luis Castillo (Deeper Leagues/NL ONLY) – It’s my opinion that the 2b position is fairly deep this year.  Everyone has their own draft strategy and if you decide to ignore the position in the early rounds, Castillo will be available later.  He is the starting second baseman on the Mets depth chart and hold on to that for the entire season (barring injury).  He hit over .300 so if you need a boost in hits and steals keep him on your watch list.

2009 Stats: 1 HR, 40 RBI, .303 AVG, 20 SB, 77 R

2010 Projected Stats: 3 HR, 46 RBI, .297 AVG, 22 SB, 94 R 

Jeff Franceuor (Deeper Leagues/NL ONLY) – He will hit in the 6th or 7th spot.  Let’s not forget that he was able to put up some eye opening numbers for the Mets last year.  We have seen his potential.  If your in need of an OF with some power you will find him at the end of the draft or on the waiver wire throughout the season.

2009 Stats: 15 HR, 76 RBI, .280 AVG, 6 SB, 72 R

2010 Projected Stats: 19 HR, 88 RBI, 2.77 AVG, 5 SB, 79 R

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Below are a couple of players that I am optimistic about.  They are young and have a lot of talent but are still major question marks. 

Mike Pelfrey? – He should be a free agent in most leagues.  I’m only mentioning his name because the team needs a #2 starter to step up.  This year he is protected by an major league lineup.  He has the most upside and could be a sleeper for Wins if he gets off to the right start.

2009 Stats:  10 W, 5.03 ERA, 107 K, 1.51 WHIP

2010 Projected Stats: 14 W, 4.49 ERA, 143 K, 1.42 WHIP 

Johnathon Neise? – On a team with no #2 or #3 starting pitchers in the rotation, Neise was the only one to perform close to a #3 (for Mets standards) this spring.  Maine, Pelfrey and Perez were incredibly dissapointing.  At least keep this guy on your watch list.

Spring Training Stats: 1 W, 1 L, 6.52 ERA, 1.83 WHIP, 17 K (19.1 Innings Pitched)

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Rookie to Watch: Ike Davis – I understand that the team has placed a lot of faith in Murphy, but after the performance Davis put up this spring most fans know its only a matter of time before the 1b position is given to “the future”.  Due to Murphy’s injury, Mike Jacobs will get the starting job, but look out for Davis to get the call up any time after June.

Spring Training Stats: 3 HR, .480 AVG, 10 RBI, 7R, 0 SB (25 At bats)

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