Reader Mock Draft Analysis: Rounds 1-4

Last week, Eno Sarris put up a post asking our wonderful readers to participate in a mock draft. As usual, the readers came through. Since this is a website that makes a living doing analysis, it would only be fair if we looked at the reader mock draft and offered our opinions. Here’s a look at some of the early rounds of our reader mock draft.

Round 1

Team Pick
ballsdeep Miguel Cabrera
PirateInTheBay Troy Tulowitzki
San Jose Athletics of Oakland Jose Bautista
32 Albert Pujols
The Fighting Hellfish Matt Kemp
The Drew Henson`s Robinson Cano
Smada Adrian Gonzalez
Boo-urns Evan Longoria
Hebrew Hammer Joey Votto
Kadjilliounaire Jacoby Ellsbury
Lucky Strikes Justin Upton
Prone to Bone Prince Fielder

Best Pick
Hard to really argue with any of the picks in the first round, but I like Evan Longoria with the eighth pick. Longoria is coming off a down season in which he hit just .244/.355/.495, but his .239 BABIP is bound to rise. Even though many were disappointed by his season, he still managed to hit 31 home runs. Plus, he plays at a shallow fantasy position. There’s certainly risk involved with the pick, but Longoria has the best chance to outperform his draft slot in round one.

Riskiest Pick
Taking Adrian Gonzalez with the seventh pick should work out fine for Smada, but I’m not entirely sure he’s better than Joey Votto or Prince Fielder. All of those guys are probably in the same tier, and it’s tough for whichever owner has to make the first choice. I like Votto and Fielder more, but that’s just my opinion.

Round 2

Team Pick
Prone to Bone Hanley Ramirez
Lucky Strikes Mike Stanton
Kadjilliounaire Roy Halladay
Hebrew Hammer Carlos Gonzalez
Boo-urns Dustin Pedroia
Smada Jose Reyes
The Drew Henson’s Curtis Granderson
The Fighting Hellfish Mark Teixeira
32 Clayton Kershaw
San Jose Athletics of Oakland Justin Verlander
PirateInTheBay Cliff Lee
ballsdeep Felix Hernandez

Best Pick
I liked The Drew Henson’s pick of Curtis Granderson in round two. Granderson changed his approach against lefties this past season and saw some incredibly results. After struggling against lefties throughout his career, Granderson hit .272/.347/.597 against them. I’m cautiously optimistic about his power surge too.

Riskiest Pick
Shortstop is incredibly shallow, but I think Hanley Ramirez was the riskiest pick here. A shoulder injury really limited his effectiveness last season, and we’re not entirely sure how healthy he’ll be entering this season. At the same time, Ramirez has been an elite player in the past, and is probably the biggest ceiling of any player taken in this round. It’s a risk, but it will be a huge payoff if it works out.

Round 3

Team Pick
ballsdeep Adrian Beltre
PirateInTheBay CC Sabathia
San Jose Athletics of Oakland Tim Lincecum
32 Ian Kinsler
The Fighting Hellfish Andrew McCutchen
The Drew Henson`s Cole Hamels
Smada Josh Hamilton
Boo-urns Jay Bruce
Hebrew Hammer Matt Holliday
Kadjilliounaire Carlos Santana
Lucky Strikes Starlin Castro
Prone to Bone David Wright

Best Pick
Andrew McCutchen seems like a nice choice at this point in the draft, simply because you know he’ll produce. I like Adrian Beltre, Ian Kinsler and Josh Hamilton, but all three of them have injury issues. McCutchen hasn’t had those problems over his career, and he still has some upside left in his development. I like it.

Riskiest Pick
Carlos Santana has loads of talent, but taking him in the third round was a risk. He has nice upside, but is he really that much better than Mike Napoli, a healthy Buster Posey and Brian McCann? While it was probably too early to grab a catcher, Santana will play first base when he doesn’t catch, and should rack up more plate appearances than any other catcher. Still, I probably would have waited on one of the other options.

Round 4

Team Pick
Prone to Bone Carl Crawford
Lucky Strikes Brett Lawrie
Kadjilliounaire Ryan Zimmerman
Hebrew Hammer Jered Weaver
Boo-urns David Price
Smada Zack Greinke
The Drew Henson’s Brian McCann
The Fighting Hellfish Brandon Phillips
32 Elvis Andrus
San Jose Athletics of Oakland Ryan Braun
PirateInTheBay Paul Konerko
ballsdeep Mike Napoli

Best Pick
Ryan Zimmerman seems like an easy bet to outperform his draft slot. Zimmerman was limited by an injury early this past season, which suppresses some of his numbers. He’s a good bet to get back to 20-30 home runs again and regain his status as a top option at third.

Riskiest Pick
Ryan Braun is an interesting selection considering his current status. If he somehow wins his appeal, and doesn’t have to serve a fifty game suspension, he’s the steal of the draft. If not, this pick will hurt. Paul Konerko also looks like a risky choice here. He’s been phenomenal the past couple of seasons, but he’s getting old. He’s definitely a regression candidate unless he can stave off Father Time again.

Four rounds into the reader mock draft, I like Lucky Strikes’ and Boo-urns’ rosters the best. It’s only four rounds, of course, but both teams got off to a nice start.

What do you guys think? Those of you that participated in the draft, care to defend your picks?

Chris is a blogger for He has also contributed to Sports on Earth, the 2013 Hard Ball Times Baseball Annual, ESPN, FanGraphs and RotoGraphs. He tries to be funny on twitter @Chris_Cwik.

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Brad Johnson

I like the format here.