If you look really hard throughout the internet, only one other Cardinal has been written about this week. Obviously, the article is about David Freese’s fantasy impact in 2010.
Uh huh – Fantasy Baseball (but feel free to talk about downing a case of Natty Light and driving through Maryland Heights without getting caught as “a fantasy” below in the comments).
If you’re a big dork like me, you noticed Eric Karabell’s article on ESPN.com the other day. It’s listed as an Insider article, but the full version is currently all there. Even if you couldn’t give a fuck about fantasy baseball – or you do give a fuck or two about fantasy baseball, but have no intentions of drafting an almost 27 year old rookie “prospect” – be sure to at least click the link, just to get the satisfaction that ESPN was finally nice to you.
In a 10-team mixed league, I can’t say it matters … yet. Freese shouldn’t be drafted in that format, because there are plenty of third basemen to go around, so why go with someone who still hasn’t really earned his organization’s endorsement. I mean, Freese never really got a legit audition after Glaus was hurt last April, and the team sent myriad underwhelming options to third base before ultimately trading for Mark DeRosa. But I think Freese will do much like DeRosa in 2009 … if given the chance.
Ultimately, I think Freese is ready to hit in the big leagues, and the fact the Cardinals spent crazy money on Matt Holliday should urge the team to forgo spending money for a third baseman, choosing instead to have Freese fill the job. I wouldn’t draft Freese over DeRosa, not yet. But I would take the chance on him, assuming he wins the job, and grab him before such players as Casey Blake, Mark Teahen, Garrett Atkins, Kevin Kouzmanoff and Brandon Inge. There’s upside here with Freese, 25-homer upside. If you’re in a deep league or an NL-only version, I’d certainly keep Freese on your radar screen.
I find it interesting though, that of all the guys who could have been written about – guys who are getting the call-up and/or being given a shot to win Major League jobs this spring – he chose Freese.
Because of the constant content they put out, and how often they go out on a limb, most fantasy experts could probably have a higher success rate in death pools than telling you what sleepers to target in the 20th round this year. So I take Karabell’s thoughts with a grain of salt, but it kind of gets you excited that someone outside of us or any of the not-as-great-as-us Cardinal blogs are writing about David Freese’s offensive potential. Side ramble: maybe some other time we can talk about this more, but Brendan Ryan in the two hole gets me none excited. None. Hopefully Freese emerges, can take some walks, and could successfully hit in front of that guy who usually hits third.
And with the Holliday signing, it looks like he’ll finally get his chance to play every day. At least it’ll come before he starts getting gray hairs (I think…). Someone remind me – why did Joe Thurston get 463 innings at 3B last year, while Freese was called up in September for 41?