Your Daily Fantasy Rx
Our Philosophy

2006 Top NL Fantasy Prospects
by Tim Polko

Today's Fantasy Rx

As mentioned yesterday, we are presenting prospect lists specifically geared toward fantasy baseball with no consideration of "peak" or "long-term potential" other than what a player will contribute in standard 4x4, 5x5, and simulation leagues.

We ranked players in four lists for this article. The top 150 prospects list is meant for Ultra drafts, the top 42 prospects are intended exclusively for owners in extremely deep leagues who desire the best prospect trade bait, and our top 25 prospects of 2006-07 list is meant for traditional roto leagues with three-round minor league drafts.

For 2006 we have added a new list focusing on simulation leagues based on a player's likelihood of contributing as an everyday player, weighted toward key defensive positions and any pitchers prepared to emerge as viable starters or key relievers within the next two years.

I projected four values for each prospect listed below: his likely value in 2006, his 2006 upside, his likely 2007 value, and his likely long-term upside considering his tools, skills, and age. After averaging these values with heavy weighting toward considerations of 2006 potential and decreasing the relative value of pitchers due to the greater volatility in projecting pitcher development, we arrived at a rough ranking of the prospects in each league.

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

Rule 5 draftees have a ^ next to their names; their placement on the list assumes they remain with their new teams. Ignore these players if they are returned to their former franchise as they have practically no chance of contributing with their old team.

Before beginning, we want to note our appreciation for all the resources made available to everyone interested in minor leaguers, including those from established analysts like John Sickels and Deric McKamey as well as everyone at both Baseball America and Baseball Prospectus. We hope you enjoy these two days of prospects.

Note: We employed MLB rookie guidelines, so no one here has exceeded 130 MLB AB or 50 MLB IP, or has accumulated 45 days on an MLB roster prior to September 1st of any season.

* - denotes players not on a 40-man roster nor considered a prospect due to age

^ - denotes players selected in the 2005 Major League Rule 5 draft

Rotohelp's Top 150 NL Ultra Fantasy Prospects for 2006
1. Jeremy Hermida, OF, FLO
2. Prince Fielder, 1B, MIL
3. Josh Willingham, C, FLO
4. Conor Jackson, 1B, ARI
5. Mike Jacobs, 1B, FLO
6. Ryan Zimmerman, 3B, WAS
7. Corey Hart, OF, MIL
8. Josh Barfield, 2B, SD
9. Nate McLouth, OF, PIT
10. Matt Cain, SP, SF
11. Anderson Hernandez, 2B, NYM
12. Carlos Quentin, OF, ARI
13. Stephen Drew, SS, ARI
14. Chris Young, OF, ARI
15. Ryan Shealy, 1B, COL
16. Chuck James, P, ATL
17. Hanley Ramirez, SS, FLO
18. Dan Uggla, 2B, FLO^
19. Paul Maholm, SP, PIT
20. Brandon Watson, OF, WAS
21. Clay Hensley, RP, SD
22. Scott Olsen, P, FLO
23. Russ Martin, C, LAD
24. Jeff Baker, 3B, COL
25. Reggie Abercrombie, OF, FLO
26. Chris Denorifa, OF, CIN
27. Omar Quintanilla, SS, COL
28. Yusmeiro Petit, SP, FLO
29. Felix Pie, OF, CHC
30. Justin Upton, SS, ARI
31. Ben Johnson, OF, SD
32. Brian Bannister, SP, NYM
33. Joel Guzman, OF, LAD
34. Anthony Reyes, SP, STL
35. Jeff Keppinger, 2B, NYM
36. Chad Billingsley, SP, LAD
37. Troy Tulowitzki, SS, COL
38. Lastings Milledge, OF, NYM
39. Robert Andino, SS, FLO
40. Dan Ormeier, OF, SF
41. Josh Wilson, SS, COL
42. Anthony Lerew, SP, ATL
43. Nelson Cruz, OF, MIL
44. Eric Reed, OF, FLO
45. Andre Ethier, OF, LAD
46. Freddy Guzman, OF, LAD
47. Adam Wainwright, SP, STL
48. Choo Freeman, OF, COL
49. Tom Gorzelanny, SP, PIT
50. Michael Bourn, OF, PHI
51. John Maine, SP, NYM
52. Merkin Valdez, P, SF
53. Jason Hirsh, SP, HOU
54. Ricky Nolasco, P, FLO
55. Joey Devine, RP, ATL
56. James Loney, 1B, LAD
57. Rich Hill, SP, CHC
58. Josh Johnson, SP, FLO
59. Ronny Paulino, C, PIT
60. Jason Stokes, 1B, FLO
61. Ian Stewart, 3B, COL
62. Anibal Sanchez, P, FLO
63. Fernando Nieve, P, HOU
64. George Kottaras, C, SD
65. Brooks Conrad, 2B, HOU
66. Andy LaRoche, 3B, LAD
67. Rajai Davis, OF, PIT
68. Gregor Blanco, OF, ATL
69. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C, ATL
70. Justin Germano, SP, CIN
71. Jose Capellan, RP, MIL
72. Taylor Buchholz, SP, HOU
73. Steven Andrade, RP, SD^
74. Paul McAnulty, OF, SD
75. Angel Guzman, SP, CHC
76. Luke Scott, OF, HOU
77. Alberto Callaspo, 2B, ARI
78. Jeff Salazar, OF, COL
79. Willy Aybar, 3B, LAD
80. Carlos Gonzales, OF, ARI
81. Ryan Braun, 3B, MIL
82. Macay McBride, RP, ATL
83. Jamal Strong, OF, CHC
84. Tyrell Godwin, OF, WAS
85. Dustin Nippert, SP, ARI
86. Geovany Soto, C, CHC
87. Cesar Carrillo, SP, SD
88. Chris Coste, OF, PHI*
89. Bill Bray, RP, WAS
90. Kory Casto, 3B, WAS
91. Fred Lewis, OF, SF
92. Kevin Frandsen, 2B, SF
93. Justin Knoedler, C, SF
94. Mike Fontenot, 2B, CHC
95. Hunter Pence, OF, HOU
96. Chris Duncan, 1B, STL
97. Cody Haerther, OF, STL
98. Junior Ruiz, OF, CIN
99. Chris Resop, RP, FLO
100. Jarred Ball, OF, ARI
101. Enrique Gonzalez, SP, ARI
102. John Gall, OF, STL
103. Travis Bowyer, RP, FLO
104. Delwyn Young, 2B, LAD
105. Todd Self, OF, NYM
106. Jonthan Broxton, RP, LAD
107. John Koronka, SP, CHC
108. Ryan Spilborghs, OF, COL
109. Dwaine Bacon, OF, CHC
110. Hong-Chih Kuo, RP, LAD
111. Matt Capps, RP, PIT
112. Brandon Sing, 1B, CHC
113. Chris Roberson, OF, PHI
114. Jeff Bajenaru, RP, ARI
115. Jay Bergmann, RP, WAS
116. Chris Booker, RP, PHI^
117. Josh Kroeger, OF, PHI
118. Ben Hendrickson, SP, MIL
119. Vinny Rottino, 3B, MIL
120. Jack Taschner, RP, SF
121. Carlos Ruiz, C, PHI
122. Zach Jackson, SP, MIL
123. Seth Smith, OF, COL
124. James Jurries, OF/1B, ATL
125. Skip Schumaker, OF, STL
126. Brayan Pena, C, ATL
127. Ryan Theriot, 2B, CHC
128. Jae-kuk Ryu, P, CHC
129. Chris Carter, 1B, ARI
130. Chris Iannetta, C, COL
131. Carlos Villanueva, SP, MIL
132. Larry Broadway, 1B, WAS
133. Matt Kemp, OF, LAD
134. Eddy Martinez-Esteve, DH, SF
135. Bernie Castro, 2B, WAS*
136. Dave Krynzel, OF, MIL
137. Willie Bergolla, 2B, CIN
138. Cody Ross, OF, LAD
139. Evan MacLane, SP, NYM
140. Angel Chavez, 2B, SF
141. Joey Votto, 1B, CIN
142. Brad Nelson, OF, MIL
143. Travis Hanson, 3B, STL
144. Mike Hinckley, SP, WAS
145. Marcus Sanders, SS, SF
146. Eric Patterson, 2B, CHC
147. Danny Sandoval, SS, PHI
148. Miguel Montero, C, ARI
149. John Van Benschoten, SP, PIT
150. Bryan Bullington, SP, PIT

Rotohelp's Top 42 2006 NL Fantasy Prospects for Long-term Leagues
1. Justin Upton, SS, ARI
2. Jeremy Hermida, OF, FLO
3. Lastings Milledge, OF, NYM
4. Michael Bourn, OF, PHI
5. Conor Jackson, 1B, ARI
6. Prince Fielder, 1B, MIL
7. Joey Devine, RP, ATL
8. Chris Young, OF, ARI
9. Carlos Quentin, OF, ARI
10. Stephen Drew, SS, ARI
11. Freddy Guzman, OF, SD
12. Ryan Shealy, 1B, COL
13. Joel Guzman, OF, LAD
14. Felix Pie, OF, CHC
15. Ian Stewart, 3B, COL
16. Eric Patterson, 2B, CHC
17. Marcus Sanders, SS, SF
18. Corey Hart, OF, MIL
19. Josh Barfield, 2B, SD
20. Matt Cain, SP, SF
21. Ryan Zimmerman, 3B, WAS
22. Nate McLouth, OF, PIT
23. Anderson Hernandez, 2B, NYM
24. Yusmeiro Petit, SP, FLO
25. Anthony Reyes, SP, STL
26. Chad Billingsley, SP, LAD
27. James Loney, 1B, LAD
28. Troy Tulowitzki, SS, COL
29. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C, ATL
30. Kory Casto, 3B, WAS
31. Hunter Pence, OF, HOU
32. Matt Kemp, OF, LAD
33. Eddy Martinez-Esteve, DH, SF
34. Carlos Gonzales, OF, ARI
35. Ryan Braun, 3B, MIL
36. Mike Jacobs, 1B, FLO
37. Josh Willingham, C, FLO
38. Hanley Ramirez, SS, FLO
39. Brian Bannister, SP, NYM
40. Jason Hirsh, SP, HOU
41. Russ Martin, C, COL
42. Cesar Carrillo, SP, SD

Rotohelp's Top 25 NL Fantasy Prospects for 2006
who should merit keeping at $10 in 2007 per traditional rules
1. Jeremy Hermida, OF, FLO
2. Chris Young, OF, ARI
3. Conor Jackson, 1B, ARI
4. Prince Fielder, 1B, MIL
5. Carlos Quentin, OF, ARI
6. Corey Hart, OF, MIL
7. Josh Barfield, 2B, SD
8. Matt Cain, SP, SF
9. Mike Jacobs, 1B, FLO
10. Stephen Drew, SS, ARI
11. Ryan Zimmerman, 3B, WAS
12. Josh Willingham, C, FLO
13. Joey Devine, RP, ATL
14. Nate McLouth, OF, PIT
15. Anderson Hernandez, 2B, NYM
16. Yusmeiro Petit, SP, FLO
17. Anthony Reyes, SP, STL
18. Chad Billingsley, SP, ATL
19. Hanley Ramiez, SS, FLO
20. Paul Maholm, SP, PIT
21. Brandon Watson, OF, WAS
22. Ryan Shealy, 1B, COL
23. Joel Guzman, SS, LAD
24. Lastings Milledge, OF, NYM
25. James Loney, 1B, LAD

Rotohelp's Top 24 NL Simulation Prospects for 2006-07
1. Jeremy Hermida, OF, FLO
2. Conor Jackson, 1B, ARI
3. Prince Fielder, 1B, MIL
4. Josh Willingham, C, FLO
5. Ryan Zimmerman, 3B, WAS
6. Carlos Quentin, OF, ARI
7. Stephen Drew, SS, ARI
8. Chris Young, OF, ARI
9. Matt Cain, SP, SF
10. Josh Barfield, 2B, SD
11. Hanley Ramirez, SS, FLO
12. Yusmeiro Petit, SP, FLO
13. Anthony Reyes, SP, STL
14. Chad Billingsley, SP, LAD
15. Joel Guzman, OF, LAD
16. Scott Olsen, SP, FLO
17. Paul Maholm, SP, PIT
18. Mike Jacobs, 1B, FLO
19. Brian Bannister, SP, NYM
20. Russ Martin, C, LAD
21. Clay Hensley, SP, SD
22. Jason Hirsh, SP, HOU
23. Cesar Carrillo, SP, SD
24. Ryan Shealy, 1B, COL

Top 2006 NL Rookie Sleeper: Carlos Gonzales, OF, ARI

Today's Fantasy Rx: Although I harbor some concerns about how quickly Arizona will cut Tony Clark, Craig Counsell, Luis Gonzalez, and especially Shawn Green, I expect Jackson, Drew, Quentin, and Young will own firm lineup spots by the middle of next season, joining Chad Tracy and Orlando Hudson to form the core of the best young offense in the majors. I simply see no reason not to invest in the Diamondbacks' rookie quartet, and spending picks on younger guys like Carlos Gonzales, Miguel Montero, and Justin Upton also makes sense. Chase Field remains a solid hitters' park capable of nurturing a 900-1000 run offense, and owners in keeper leagues should attempt to add at least one of these prospects to anchor your lineup for the rest of the decade.

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