Here we go again, and you thought you were done having to think about steroids and PEDS when drafting your fantasy baseball team. Not so fast. Thanks to Biogenesis you need to pay attention to all of the players who have been linked to the company. So that includes Ryan Braun, Gio Gonzalez, Nelson Cruz, Jesus Montero, Melky Cabrera, Jhonny Peralta and Alex Rodriguez.
When drafting you need to approach each of these players on a case by case basis. Prior to Braun being linked to Biogenesis, he was a consensus top-three pick, but what about now?
You should definitely take Mike Trout ahead of him, and possibly even consider taking Matt Kemp ahead of him. You can’t win your fantasy league in the first round, but you can definitely lose it.
Is Braun going to be suspended? There is probably a 10 percent chance it could happen. Sure, that is not that high, but losing your first round pick for 50 games sure will kill your shot at winning your league. Is Trout likely to regress a little and will Kemp miss time due to injury, most likely, but neither will be the equivalent of being suspended for 50 games. Let somebody else take the gamble on Braun.
All of the players named in the report have vehemently denied the allegations, but where there is smoke there is fire. Again, we are probably only dealing with a 10 percent chance any of these players get suspended, but why risk it?
Let’s examine all the other players named. Gonzalez is coming off a career year, and his draft value is likely to be inflated in most leagues. On the flip side, Cruz is coming off a down year, and his draft value is likely to be at the lowest it has ever been. Taking a late flyer on him might be a wise choice, as he was due for a bounce back season, so taking him in the later rounds could be worth the gamble.
Montero was a sleeper for many people last season, and should improve this season, especially with the fences being moved in at Safeco Park. He is probably the toughest decision of all these players.
Outside of the last two seasons, Cabrera has been waiver wire fodder and would only be worthy of a very late round gamble. Peralta should only be drafted in the deepest of leagues and only as a middle infielder.
Then we come to Rodriguez, who for the first time since he put on a Seattle Mariners uniform should go undrafted. Even without these allegations, Rodriguez would have only been a late round flyer, and sitting on most leagues waiver wires. Now he is just a waste of a bench spot. Don’t even clog up your valuable DL spot with the former MVP.
Lastly, consider the cases of Manny Ramirez and Melky. As soon as the MLB announced the two of them had tested positive for PED use, they were suspended immediately. So as soon as MLB wraps up their investigation into Biogenesis, expect any suspensions to be handed out immediately.
These are some of the biggest names in the sport, so fantasy owners should draft them all with caution this spring.