Off we go to Australia. Ok, not with the Seattle Mariners. The Ms still have another week of Spring Training in Peoria, AZ. The Mariners don’t have their first game until March 31st, so we will have to wait another week before we reap the rewards of the Seattle Mariners on our Fantasy Baseball rosters. Let’s take a look at the last week of Spring Training and how that will effect our Fantasy Baseball drafts.
LATE ROUND GEMS
This week has brought healthy news to the Seattle Mariners. Starting pitcher Hisashi Iwakuma removed the splint on his finger and is now throwing light tennis balls with no pain. He won’t be ready for the start of the season, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t pick Iwakuma up in your fantasy baseball drafts.
Iwakuma finished third overall in votes for 2013 Cy Young Award, and this injury will likely allow you to sleep on his fantasy pick for your draft. A healthy Iwakuma would normally be an early round pick, but with an ADP of 113 you can wait on picking up his talents until the 9th or 10th round.
Iwakuma will only miss three weeks of the regular season which is the equivalent to just four or five starts. Don’t sleep too long on his pick, but enjoy grabbing Iwakuma in later rounds after all your friends pass on him.
Dustin Ackley was the number two overall pick in the 2009 amateur draft, but has yet to live up to all the hype. Ackley was asked to change from playing outfield and first base in college, to playing 2B for the Mariners. Pressures of hitting leadoff and even third in the lineup served to mess with Ackely’s confidence level too early in his career.
Ackley’s struggles have been narrowed down to being a problem between the ears. This Spring has shown us fans that his confidence is back. Ackley is currently batting .438 during spring training and is showing promise hitting lower in the lineup minus all the pressures.
The best part is that Ackley played at least five games at 2B last year. This allows you to plug his name into the second base fantasy position. If Ackley can continue his current hot streak into the regular season and play out some of that hype that came with his draft pick; he could be a major sleeper in this years fantasy drafts.
The final player on this week’s Mariners fantasy profile is promising catcher Mike Zunino. The Mariners knew what they were getting when they used their third overall pick on Zunino in the 2012 amateur draft. The catcher position has a decent drop off of talent afters names like Buster Posey, Joe Mauer, and Carlos Santana.
Zunino shouldn’t be a starter in your fantasy catcher position to start the season, but he’s worth a late round pickup in Franchise leagues where you can keep players for the future. Look forward to confidently plugging his name into your catcher position later this year and for future years to come.
The Seattle Mariners are full of young talent that will be great additions to your Keeper Leagues. Don’t wait too long on them in your drafts, as their high upside is becoming common knowledge. Good luck during your final week of drafting, and we’ll connect next week to cover Mariners Opening Day and fantasy expectations.