The AL Central gives us some interesting options at First Base for 2013 fantasy baseball. The positional break down also makes me wonder how many people are actually named Prince that have no nobility rights whatsoever. Off the top of my head I can think of three: Prince Fielder, Prince Jackson, Prince, oh yeah, and Prince Charles. Come on, no way Charles actually ever sees a throne that’s not in a bathroom..
For this article though, lets just stick with the Detroit Tigers Prince. In Fielder’s first season in Detroit, he put up 83 runs, 30 HRs, 108 RBIs, and a .313 AVG. A very solid season, but also a little disappointing to some who think Fielder could be hitting 40 plus homers if he played in a smaller ballpark. Look for Fielder to put up 98 runs, 33 HRs, 115 RBIs, 0 SB, and a .301 AVG. Good numbers, but oh my, how many home runs would he be hitting if he played his home games in Yankee Stadium?
The Kansas City Royals give us two interesting options at First Base. There’s Eric Hosmer, who is coming off a 2012 where he could arguably be one of fantasy’s biggest busts, and Billy Butler who, thanks to interleague play, will continue to receive first base eligibility for years. Expect Butler to continue to move towards the top tier of first baseman and put up 81 runs, 25 HRs, 101 RBIs, 1 SB, and a .298 AVG. While Hosmer won’t be the bust he was in 2012 and will continue back on the path as one of fantasy’s top young first baseman. Expect Hosmer to put up 79 runs, 19 HRs, 19 RBIs, 11 SB, and a .276 AVG.
Chicago White Sox Paul Konerko just seems to be turning out big season after big season. It seems like at least five years ago, fantasy baseball experts were predicting the demise of Konerko as a fantasy option. Boy, has he proved everyone wrong. Expect Konerko to put up 74 runs, 25 HRs, 77 RBIs and a .280 AVG in 2013. The great thing about Konerko is you can draft him really late in most leagues.
The Cleveland Indians will be using Nick Swisher at first base. Swisher brings his outfield eligibility along with him to Cleveland, which inflates his draft position as it is always nice to have a little flexibility on your roster. When I sat down to write this I expected to predict a down year for Swisher now that he is in Cleveland, but as a switch hitter, and hitting in Cleveland as opposed to Yankee Stadium, his numbers shouldn’t be drastically affected. Also, surprisingly, the Indians might actually have a stronger lineup than the New York Yankees, giving Swisher more protection. Look for Swisher to put up 79 runs, 23 HR, 84 RBI, 2 SB, and a .265 AVG.
As a fantasy player is there anything to like about the Minnesota Twins Target Field? Not only has the ballpark zapped Joe Mauer of his power, their first baseman Justin Morneau can’t seem to stay healthy in it, and his numbers have also dropped across the board. Look for Morneau to put up 68 runs, 17 HRs, 69 RBIs and a .270 AVG.
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