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Your Daily Fantasy Rx
The Top 150 AL Fantasy Prospects
by Tim Polko

Today's Fantasy Rx

We switched our site to a new server yesterday and expect this change will fix the update difficulties that have plagued some of you. We apologize for the inaccessibility of our archive for a few hours Friday afternoon.

Every year we purchase the standard prospect resources. We pick up the Stats Minor League Scouting Notebook, Future Stars, and now the Baseball America Prospect Handbook, as well as all the spring baseball preview magazines that I've reviewed here. Baseball Prospectus publishes a Top 40 list plus honorable mentions, Baseball Forecaster lists a few dozen rookies to know each year, and even Rotisserie League Baseball has a decent minor league section. Mat Olkin's Baseball Examiner, Team One Baseball and Masters of Baseball are some of the other resources for minor league information that we've only begun using fairly recently. We know there are dozens of other sources out there that we haven't found or don't have time to read, but we've grown comfortable with these in the past.

Unfortunately, to the best of our knowledge, not a single one of these publications prints a Fantasy Prospect list with players ranked exclusively for use in fantasy drafts. Everyone, even the more statistically-oriented authors like John Sickels, appears to rank their lists focusing on prospects' long-term upside.

For fantasy baseball purposes, we don't need to know if Mark Prior will be the next Roger Clemens over the next twenty years. We're only interested in knowing if he can turn in a 2002 season like Kerry Wood's 1998 or other similar outstanding rookie performances.

When we launched this site, we knew we'd run a prospect list each year, but we also wanted to offer something different to our audience. Our goal here is to offer you a fantasy prospect list for this season that accomplishes two purposes.

First, we want to give you a list of players that will contribute this season. Traditional Ultra leagues will draft over a hundred prospects each year, and we see no reason to draft rookie leaguers unlikely to contribute in the majors in 2002. We want an accessible roster of solid farm talent that has a decent chance of seeing time on our fantasy roster this year because we want to win this year.

Second, owners draft prospects with higher future upside to have an available arsenal of trade bait. However, we also don't want A-ball players like St. Louis' Rick Asadoorian who aren't likely to see the majors until 2005 at the earliest. Looking at a potential deal from our trade partners' perspective, we know they'll likely want talent that will help them in 2003 as no one wants to lose two seasons in a row. You rebuild your team, when necessary, with an eye on winning the following year. If you pick up a great keeper that can help you for several more seasons, you should consider that an unintended benefit of that trade.

We're going to provide two lists for each league. The first, our official Top 150 Prospects for each league, will list, in order of projected Draft Value, the best fantasy prospects in each league. This list is geared towards traditional Ultra rosters with free transactions, so you may want to avoid certain players if you have to keep them on your active roster, especially pitchers who might see some growing pains when they first reach the majors. Every player on the list is ranked by expected 2002 fantasy value.

The second list will be our Top 42 prospects for each league, specifically tailored to those leagues with a maximum of 3 prospects per team, as per official "book" rules. We expect every player on each of these lists to be worth keeping on your regular roster at $10 in 2002. Most of these prospects will be potential offensive starters as relatively few rookie or even second year pitchers will be worth $10 in most leagues.

We've designed these lists so that you can draft the best 2002 contributors. We expect almost every player in the first hundred to receive a call-up some time this year, while the last fifty or so include a couple dozen prospects who, while they might not see the majors this year, should have a good shot at some significant playing time in 2003. The Top 42 is about evenly split between those players likely to see at least a few months of playing time this year with those that will contribute more next season.

A few players on the first list will be minor league veterans who only need a chance to succeed in the majors. Each of these players is identified with an asterisk for those of you only interested in drafting more traditional prospects.

We've only listed a couple players that didn't appear at AA or higher last year, as we don't expect many players to contribute to a fantasy team after beginning the year at AA; Adam Dunn was one of the few exceptions to this rule.

Before we begin, we want to once more note our appreciation for all of the resources made available to us through the work of established minor league experts like John Sickels, Tony Blengino, Deric McKamey, and everyone at Baseball America.

We hope you enjoy these two days of prospects.

Note: We did not take service time into consideration when determining rookie status as many leagues still allow players to be drafted as minor leaguers even if they've exceeded 45 days on a minor league roster. Every player listed has 130 or less career major league AB and 50 or less major league IP.

* - denotes players not on a 40-man roster nor considered a prospect due to age's Top 150 AL Fantasy Prospects for 2002
1. Carlos Pena, 1B-L, OAK
2. Hank Blalock, 3B-L, TEX
3. Nick Johnson, 1B-L, NYY
4. Eric Hinske, 3B-L, TOR
5. Jorge Julio, RHP, BAL
6. Ryan Drese, RHP, CLE
7. Joe Crede, 3B-R, CHW
8. Casey Fossum, LHP, BOS
9. Eric Byrnes, OF-R, OAK
10. David Riske, RHP, CLE
11. Jeff DaVanon, OF-S, ANA
12. Nate Cornejo, RHP, DET
13. Jon Rauch, RHP, CHW
14. Bobby Kielty, OF-S, MIN
15. Michael Cuddyer, OF-R, MIN
16. Mike Rivera, C-R, DET
17. John Stephens, RHP, BAL
18. Willie Harris, UT-R, CHW
19. Justin Miller, RHP, TOR
20. Esteban German, 2B-R, OAK
21. Dustan Mohr, OF-R, MIN
22. Sean Douglass, RHP, BAL
23. Joe Borchard, OF-S, CHW
24. Adrian Hernandez, RHP, NYY
25. Bart Miadich, RHP, ANA
26. Mark Ellis, IF-R, OAK
27. Justin Duchscherer, RHP, OAK
28. Juan Rivera, OF-R, NYY
29. Orlando Hudson, 2B-S, TOR
30. Matt Ginter, RHP, CHW
31. Jesus Colome, RHP, TB
32. Adam Johnson, RHP, MIN
33. Chad Harville, RHP, OAK
34. Mark Teixeira, 3B/1B-S, TEX
35. John Lackey, RHP, ANA
36. Greg Wooten, RHP, SEA
37. Corey Thurman, RHP, TOR
38. Jeremy Affeldt, LHP, KC
39. Gabe Gross, OF-L, TOR
40. Tom Wilson, C-R, TOR
41. Mike Colangelo, OF-R, OAK
42. Joaquin Benoit, RHP, TEX
43. Jason Grabowski, UT-L, OAK
44. Colby Lewis, RHP, TEX
45. Mario Ramos, LHP, TEX
46. Jeff Austin, RHP, KC
47. Ryan Ludwick, OF-R, TEX
48. Eric Munson, 1B-L, DET
49. Mickey Callaway, RHP, ANA
50. Josh Phelps, C-R, TOR
51. Mark Lukaswiewicz, LHP, ANA
52. Jerrod Riggan, RHP, CLE
53. Chad Ricketts, RHP, TOR
54. Marcus Thames, OF-R, NYY
55. Matt L. Miller, LHP, DET
56. Mike Moriarty, IF-R, BAL*
57. Juan Moreno, LHP, TEX
58. Mike MacDougal, RHP, KC
59. John Bale, LHP, BAL
60. Angel Berroa, SS-R, KC
61. Joe Lawrence, UT-R, TOR
62. Roy Smith, RHP, CLE
63. Jason Romano, OF-R, TEX
64. Brian Bowles, RHP, TOR
65. Justin Kaye, RHP, SEA
66. Kris Foster, RHP, BAL
67. Oscar Salazar, IF-R, DET
68. Brandon Claussen, LHP, NYY
69. Tim Raines, Jr., OF-R, BAL
70. Corwin Malone, LHP, CHW
71. Craig Monroe, OF-R, DET
72. Mike Smith, RHP, TOR
73. Juan Pena, LHP, OAK
74. Kevin Mench, OF-R, TEX
75. Tim Hummel, IF-R, CHW
76. Reed Johnson, OF-R, TOR
77. Erick Almonte, IF-R, NYY
78. Earl Snyder, UT-R, CLE
79. Bobby Seay, LHP, TB
80. Miguel Olivo, C-R, CHW
81. Travis Driskill, RHP, BAL*
82. Mike Restovich, OF-R, MIN
83. Brendan Donnelly, RHP, ANA
84. Ken Harvey, 1B-R, KC
85. Brian Shouse, LHP, KC*
86. Brad Thomas, LHP, MIN
87. Scot Shields, RHP, ANA
88. Alfredo Amezaga, SS-S, ANA
89. Alex Graman, LHP, NYY
90. Delvin James, RHP, TB
91. Scott Cassidy, RHP, TOR
92. Matt Guerrier, RHP, CHW
93. Rick Kirsten, RHP, DET
94. Matt Riley, LHP, BAL
95. Sun-Woo Kim, RHP, BOS
96. Omar Infante, SS-R, DET
97. Juan Diaz, 1B-R, BOS
98. Matt J. Miller, RHP, OAK*
99. Jason Conti, OF-L, TB
100. Brian Fitzgerald, LHP, SEA
101. Lee Marshall, RHP, BAL*
102. Brandon Berger, OF-R, KC
103. Steve Kent, LHP, TB
104. Mike Ryan, OF-L, MIN
105. Todd Sears, 1B-R, MIN
106. Larry Barnes, 1B-L, ANA
107. Jeff Farnsworth, RHP, DET
108. Danny Kolb, RHP, TEX
109. Juan Pena, RHP, BOS
110. Mario Valenzuela, OF-R, CHW
111. John McDonald, UT-R, CLE
112. Drew Henson, 3B-R, NYY
113. Carl Crawford, OF-L, TB
114. Pasqual Coco, RHP, TOR
115. Travis Hafner, 1B-L, TEX
116. Steve Lomasney, C-R, BOS
117. Rafael Soriano, RHP, SEA
118. Dernell Stenson, OF-L, BOS
119. Jason Hart, 1B-R, TEX
120. Erik Bedard, LHP, BAL
121. Justin Morneau, 1B-L, MIN
122. Chris Snelling, OF-L, SEA
123. Geronimo Gil, C-R, BAL
124. John-Ford Griffin, OF-L, NYY
125. Andres Torres, OF-S, DET
126. Miguel Ascencio, RHP, KC
127. Jose Flores, IF-R, OAK*
128. Josue Espada, IF-R, KC*
129. Casey Kotchman, 1B-L, ANA
130. Antonio Perez, SS-R, SEA
131. Joe Valentine, RHP, DET
132. Kenny Kelly, OF-R, SEA
133. Angel Santos, IF-S, BOS
134. Rodrigo Lopez, RHP, BAL*
135. Joe Mauer, C-L, MIN
136. Jacques Landry, OF-R, OAK
137. Seung Song, RHP, BOS
138. Dewon Brazleton, RHP, TB
139. Lew Ford, OF-R, MIN
140. Victor Martinez, C-S, CLE
141. Jimmy Gobble, LHP, TOR
142. Ryan Dittfurth, RHP, TEX
143. Luis Ugueto, IF-S, SEA
144. Kenny Baugh, RHP, DET
145. Jorge Sosa, RHP, TB
146. Bobby Jenks, RHP, ANA
147. Josh Hamilton, OF-L, TB
148. Alex Escobar, OF-R, CLE
149. Jeff Heaverlo, RHP, SEA
150. Ryan Anderson, LHP, SEA's Top 42 AL Fantasy Prospects for 2002
...who also should be worth keeping at $10 in 2003

1. Carlos Pena, 1B-L, OAK
2. Hank Blalock, 3B-L, TEX
3. Nick Johnson, 1B-L, NYY
4. Eric Hinske, 3B-L, TOR
5. Jorge Julio, RHP, BAL
6. Ryan Drese, RHP, CLE
7. Joe Crede, 3B-R, CHW
8. Casey Fossum, LHP, BOS
9. Jon Rauch, RHP, CHW
10. Michael Cuddyer, OF-R, MIN
11. Mike Rivera, C-R, DET
12. Willie Harris, UT-R, CHW
13. Esteban German, 2B-R, OAK
14. Joe Borchard, OF-S, CHW
15. Adrian Hernandez, RHP, NYY
16. Justin Duchscherer, RHP, OAK
17. Juan Rivera, OF-R, NYY
18. Orlando Hudson, 2B-S, TOR
19. Mark Teixeira, 3B/1B-S, TEX
20. John Lackey, RHP, ANA
21. Greg Wooten, RHP, SEA
22. Gabe Gross, OF-L, TOR
23. Ryan Ludwick, OF-R, TEX
24. Eric Munson, 1B-L, DET
25. Josh Phelps, C-R, TOR
26. Angel Berroa, SS-R, KC
27. Jason Romano, OF-R, TEX
28. Brandon Claussen, LHP, NYY
29. Tim Raines, Jr., OF-R, BAL
30. Juan Pena, LHP, OAK
31. Kevin Mench, OF-R, TEX
32. Tim Hummel, IF-R, CHW
33. Reed Johnson, OF-R, TOR
34. Erick Almonte, IF-R, NYY
35. Mike Restovich, OF-R, MIN
36. Alfredo Amezaga, SS-S, ANA
37. Drew Henson, 3B-R, NYY
38. Carl Crawford, OF-L, TB
39. Travis Hafner, 1B-L, TEX
40. Jason Hart, 1B-R, TEX
41. Justin Morneau, 1B-L, MIN
42. Andres Torres, OF-S, DET

We hope you find these as useful as we will for our AL drafts.

Today's Fantasy Rx: Don't miss our NL Top 150 Fantasy Prospects tomorrow.

Click here to read the previous article.

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