The New York Yankees followed up their record setting 27th World Championship with 95-67 record in 2010, including a playoff run than ended with a loss to the Texas Rangers in the ALCS.
The Bronx Bombers and their mammoth payroll continue to be the scorn of the American League, however their counterparts in Boston have adopted the Yankee method of fiscal gluttony, adding two of the three biggest names in the hot-stove season. It is safe to say that the AL East is going to be an exciting race this year, with the Yankees and the Red Sox battling it out along with their neighbors to the north in Toronto.
From a fantasy perspective the Yankees are filled with offensive talent, while lacking a great amount of depth in their pitching rotation. CC Sabathia and the venerable Mariano Rivera are the two most valuable fantasy pitchers to own on the team, with question marks surrounding the remaining starting rotation.
Eric Chavez, Pedro Feliciano, Freddy Garcia, Anduw Jones, Russell Martin, Rafael Soriano
Alfredo Aceves, Lance Berkman, Andy Pettitte, Javier Vasquez, Kerry Wood
Who to Target
With a stellar .319 average and 109 RBI's in 2010, Robinson Cano supplanted himself as the most valuable second baseman in all of fantasy baseball. In addition to his high average, Cano also hit the second most home runs of any second baseman last season, just behind Florida's Dan Uggla. As the top player in a somewhat shallow position, Cano has earned the seventh spot in our top 200 rankings. He has proven over the past few years that he is a consistent offensive threat, and the combination of an excellent supporting cast and a hitter friendly ballpark make him an excellent first round choice.
First Baseman Mark Teixeira is the second highest ranked (15th overall) Yankee on our Kramerica Sports 2011 Top 200 Fantasy Baseball Rankings. As a career .286 hitter who has averaged 126 RBI and 37 home runs in each of his 7 major league seasons, it is clear to see why he is ranked so high in 2011. The one big knock against Teixeira is that he is a habitual late starter and tends to have atrocious April and Mays. The slugger makes up for his early shortfalls throughout the season, however he can really place a burden on a fantasy squad at the start of the season.
Ranked just behind Tex is Alex Rodriguez, the fantasy mainstay who has fallen from the top of the rankings over the past few years. Although his stats are certainly down from his banner season in 2007 in which he set career marks in home runs and RBI's, A-Rod is still an excellent run producing third baseman who may be undervalued at his current ranking of 17th overall. For example, he hit 8 more home runs and drove in 21 more runs than the top rated third baseman Evan Longoria in 2010. The main difference is that Longoria stole 11 more bases and hit for a slightly higher average.
The top Yankee pitcher in our Kramerica Sports 2011 Fantasy Baseball Starting Pitcher Rankings is CC Sabathia, the larger than life southpaw ace of the club. With 40 wins over the past two seasons and a career 3.50 ERA, Sabathia is an excellent number one starter in 12 mixed leagues. For more detailed analysis on why Sabathia is such an excellent starter, be sure to check out my article CC Sabathia, Yankees: Undervalued on 2011 Fantasy Baseball Draft Boards.
With 47 stolen bases and 97 runs scored in 2010, Brett Gardner does not fit the typical mold of a true sleeper. He was a fantasy darling for many league winners last year – including yours truly - yet for some reason he has fallen in numerous mock drafts this season. At the time of publication, Gardner was ranked 186th overall on Mock Draft Central's ADP listing. In my opinion this is way to low, especially considering the fact that there have been numerous rumblings that he will supplant Jeter as the team's leadoff hitter.
Keep in mind that Gardner put up his excellent stats as the 9th batter in the lineup for most games last season. A move to the top of the lineup would make him a heck of a value at 186th overall.
AL East Fantasy Scouting Reports
AL Central Fantasy Scouting Reports
AL West Fantasy Scouting Reports
NL West Fantasy Scouting Reports
NL East Fantasy Scouting Reports
NL Central Fantasy Scouting Reports
Andrew Swanson is the founder and president of Kramerica Sports LLC, the home of free fantasy news, rankings and advice. In addition to his work as the featured writer for Kramerica Sports, Andrew has a weekly fantasy football segment on ESPN radio 101.7 The Team.. You may contrat Andrew through his website or Twitter @ KramericaSports
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