Are you tired of columns telling you that the smart "pickups" each week are players who are already owned in your league and more often than not sold for real money at auction? If you're hard-core, then this is column is for you: real-world pickups for deep AL- or NL-only leagues.
Michael Bourn, OF, PHI -- Speedy fifth outfielders are already claimed in the deepest leagues, but Bourn may still be available in many in semi-deep leagues. Now that Jayson Werth has hit the DL, Bourn will see a spike in playing time that could make his stolen-base potential even more valuable. With swipes in both halves of Friday's doubleheader, he's already stolen 13 bases in only 59 at-bats, without getting caught. He could easily provide another 15 steals over the second half of the season. Bourn has no power and will never be a high-average hitter in the majors, but his defense is excellent and his plate discipline is solid, which is enough for the twenty-four-year old to be a useful reserve outfielder for years to come. His fantasy value, of course, is in his legs. Not only did Bourn steal 163 bases in 1,552 at-bats in his minor-league career, he did so at an 85 percent success rate, and compiled a .379 on-base percentage to boot. Bourn should complete the process of seizing the fourth outfielder role from Werth while the latter is on the disabled list, and is a solid pickup for both 2007 and future seasons.