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Avia S-199 in Israeli Air Force Service

The draft of aught-seven

We drew lots to determine the draft order of the three first-place finishers. I drew the last spot, so I drafted tenth, and then eleventh is a serpentine draft.

I’m reasonably happy with the outcome. I’m short on steals, but not so short that can’t get a few points out of the category. I expect to win home runs and RBIs, and to finish top-three in batting average.

I think my pitching is strong, especially my starting pitching. I had my heart set on Jake Peavey or Billy Wagner for my first pick, but they’d been snatched up. I took John Smoltz – and then I made a mistake. Somehow, my eye overlooked the available Trevor Hoffman and I took Bob Wickman instead. Luck will play a larger role than talent in deciding which of those closers will produce better numbers, but Hoffman does have the edge, and I should have had that edge on my roster.

By picking the next available closer, I set of a chain reaction. Other teams started picking closers, and leaving more on the table. I wound up with two closers who are reasonably safe and should help me to five points or so in saves. I think my starting staff is a force of nature. I have seven starters, two of them fairly dubious, but most teams have four or five dubious starters. With seven, I can sub in and out of the line-up depending on weekly match-ups. I didn’t draft with much eye to the two weeks of accumulated statistics, but in the long run, these arms will win out. I expect to finish near the top in wins, ERA, and WHIP.

I was disappointed to lose Greg Maddux, but I made up for it with a very late grab of Ken Griffey. Jr. I hate my middle infield, but you have to hate something in a league this deep – and at least I have all full-time players. Well, except for Matt Murton, who was my second mistake. He has the talent to hit near 20 HR and 10 SB in 400 at-bats, but he may not have the opportunity. I took him a bit early, I think.

My last pick was cheap: Jeremy Affeldt, for his five good innings and one win. He goes to the reserve list tomorrow.

Here’s what I wound up with:

C Josh Bard SD
C Miguel Montero ARI
1B Lance Berkman HOU
2B Mark DeRosa CHC
SS Jack Wilson PIT
3B Miguel Cabrera FLA
CI Edwin Encarnacion CIN
MI Adam Everett HOU
OF Carlos Beltran NYM
OF Andruw Jones ATL
OF Willy Taveras COL
OF Matt Murton CHC
OF Ken Griffey Jr. CIN
UT Kevin Kouzmanoff SD
UT Preston Wilson STL

SP John Smoltz ATL
SP Chris Young SD
SP Chuck James ATL
SP Clay Hensley SD
SP Anthony Reyes STL
SP Orlando Hernandez NYM
RP Bob Wickman ATL
RP Salomon Torres PIT
RP Russ Springer STL
RP Jeremy Affeldt COL

My reserves are Tony Graffanino MIL, Woody Williams HOU, Jorge Julio FLA, and Matt Wise MIL. Wise will replace Affeldt on the active list tout de suite. Springer’s the one who should have been reserved, but I didn’t know he’d been so crap so far.

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