Ranks 11-20 for 2012: Still thinking hitters 

January, 19, 2012
The general reaction to last week's blog entry detailing my first set of top 10 rankings for the 2012 fantasy baseball season wasn't at all shocking. Sure, in many leagues first basemen Joey Votto, Adrian Gonzalez and Prince Fielder, in some order, will end up being first-round picks. And truth be told, there's nothing wrong with selecting them early. You'll see their names below in my second round.

In fantasy sports, a successful draft often comes down to value, not final results. The difference in the No. 5 first baseman and the No. 15 option isn't a small one, but when compared to the same range at each of the other infield positions, there's no contest. Gaby Sanchez is sitting there in Round 15. The middle infield pool an hour into your draft won't be as much fun to sift through, unless you're a really big fan of Jason Bartlett. Well, I'm not.

If leaving out a few first basemen from my top 10 was the story last week, I suppose the absence of Justin Verlander, Roy Halladay and Clayton Kershaw from Round 2 is this week's hot topic. Hey, I'm fine with taking those fellows early. They are stellar pitchers and certainly worth it. But I feel pretty good about the depth of starting pitching this season. For instance, Jaime Garcia, Anibal Sanchez and Colby Lewis had pretty good 2011 seasons, and yet they still didn't finish among the top 50 starting pitchers on the ESPN Player Rater. There's depth. What concerns me in the first few rounds of a draft is missing out on offense. Choosing first basemen and starting pitchers just does not seem like wise draft allocation.