March 16, 2012; Tampa, FL, USA; Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) prior to the game against the New York Yankees at George M. Steinbrenner Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE

Drafting The Nationals

We don’t generally delve too much into fantasy baseball around these parts. There’s no particular reason for it other than the simple fact that it just isn’t the focus of this site. But, considering the vast percentage of people who do participate in fantasy baseball drafts, we certainly can’t overlook the games either.

Last year I took part in two leagues. Both were intended to be keeper leagues but for a variety of reasons were dissolved rather than continued into this coming season. One of them I was a little disappointed about, as I had assembled a pretty respectable roster, but the other I can’t say that I’m heartbroken over. Besides, I have a pair of leagues to replace them this season. And I had my drafts for each within the past few days.

Each and every person I’ve ever competed against in fantasy baseball has their own strategy when it comes to drafting and roster moves. And I’ve always been a believer that everyone has certain players that they find themselves tending to target year in and year out. For me that’s been Ben Zobrist for the past few seasons. His position versatility is immensely valuable. But there were a few Nationals who made their way onto one of my rosters this year. That’s yet another reason to keep a close eye on what these guys are doing at the plate.

The first of the two drafts was last Thursday for a league hosted through Yahoo. Michael Morse ended up being my 4th Round selection (#74 overall) to fill my left field void. He still carries first base eligibility, however, from last year which may come in handy. My current first baseman is Miguel Cabrera, who’ll I’ll move to third in due time in an effort to improve my team overall. Having Morse will let me pick from a broader pool of players (left fielders and first baseman) in an effort to fill that opening in the lineup.

As for the second of my two leagues, this one hosted via ESPN, I ended up with a few more Nationals on my roster. Drew Storen was taken in the 8th Round (#108 overall) to be my second closer alongside Milwaukee’s John Axford.

I also picked up Bryce Harper in the 12th Round (#164 overall). One fellow owner thought I had jumped a little early on taking him, just to stash him on the bench until he is called up to Washington, but I was actually a little surprised that Harper had not been selected earlier in the draft. He’s such a rare talent, I’d of expected someone to risk a roster spot to hold him on their bench. I was right, I was that someone it would seem.

In the 14th Round (#192 overall) I landed Danny Espinosa. With my last pick of the draft, the 26th Round (#360 overall) I took a chance that former National Tommy Milone puts up some good numbers. He appears to have won a spot in Oakland’s starting rotation. He’s the only player involved in the Gio Gonzalez trade who made the A’s roster right out of the gate.

Which Nationals did you end up drafting for your fantasy baseball team this year?

Tags: Bryce Harper Danny Espinosa Drew Storen Fantasy Baseball Michael Morse Tommy Milone Washington Nationals

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