2013 Heritage vs. Vintage #8 – Fantasy Squad Keepers

5 04 2013

Last Wednesday I had my annual fantasy baseball draft.  I will focus my next two posts on my team picks.  We are allowed to keep up to 4 players each year.  Previously this has meant keep your best 4 players and losing your first, second, third, and fourth round picks if you keep all 4.  But we threw a wrinkle in this year, and you also have the option to keep a guy in the same round you drafted him in the previous year.  Free agent pick ups count as 18th rounders.  So somebody got to keep Mike Trout this year as an 18th rounder.  These were my keepers this year, and one notable non-keeper to start out.

Six years ago, my team was mired in last place, but I had some trade bait.  I gave up Justin Morneau, Josh Beckett and some other decent players for 1 player and some junk.  It was a coup – the guy I traded with won the title that year.  But that one guy was Albert Pujols, featured here on his 2013 Heritage card.

2013 Heritage Pujols

Trivia question – Who was the only player to walk 100 times in 2012?

Trivia answer – Adam Dunn – 105.

Card #470 in Heritage.  Let’s see who is the 1964 Topps equivalent…

1964-24304-F

Trivia question – What’s the NL Homer mark for a rookie?

Trivia answer – Frank Robinson – 38 in 1956.

Winner:

Tie.  I don’t generally support picking Yankees, but I do like this Bouton card.  It’s a very typical shot from this era, but it works.  Bouton is best known for his controversial book “Ball Four”, but he the back of his card is pretty impressive here – he was coming off a 21-7 this was right after this in one of his two really good seasons.  The Pujols card isn’t bad.  And in honor of 6 years of excellence, I wanted to pick you, Albert!  But I like the Bouton card too much to give “El Hombre” the complete win, so I’m doing a wash!

2013 Heritage leads, 14.5-11.5

**********

Next is the guy who I basically kept over Pujols.  Kemp was the best fantasy player two years ago and he was on that track again last year before he got hurt.  I thought long and hard about keeping Albert over him.  The three guys after this were such good value picks that I could only take one top-level keeper.  The injury factor makes me nervous!  But I still went with the much younger Kemp.  By the way – his 2013 Heritage card is much better than this one.

2013 Heritage Kemp

Trivia question – Who were the NL Home Run kings in 1963?

Trivia answer – Hank Aaron and Willie McCovey (44).

Card #450 in the set matches with the exact guy I thought Topps should go with…

1964 Steve Barber

Steve Barber!  Orioles pitcher!  OK, not so much.  Barber was actually coming off a 20-win season.

Trivia question – Who were the NL Home Run kings in 1963?

Trivia answer – Hank Aaron and Willie McCovey (44).

Winner: Kemp.  Kemp is still awesome, even though this isn’t his best card out there.  He does look kind of intimidating.  Plus, Barber’s hat looks stupid the way he’s wearing it.

2013 Heritage leads, 15.5-11.5

**********

So that was the only “keeper” in the traditional sense of the term.  Or at least what I’m used to.  Next up is a guy I got to keep as an 18th round pick – and who won a major award last year.  The first knuckleballer to win a Cy Young award, R.A. Dickey.  I picked Dickey up as a free agent early last year, and the rules are that equates to an 18th round keeper.  This is card #464.  Note the trivia question is a duplicate from one I showed in an earlier post.

2013 Heritage R A Dickey

Card #464 in 1964 Topps is Dallas Green.  This is kind of funny, because last year I kept Roy Halladay, a former Cy Young winner, and his corresponding player was Dallas Green.  This is the future Phillies, Mets, and Yankees manager / GM Dallas Green.  Green once played the game, but not super well.  Certainly not well enough to be compared to 2 Cy Young winners in back to back years!  But, at least he was associated with the team each guy was on, and he’s a notable name like Dickey and .  I emphasize “was”, because Dickey is shown here as a Blue Jay.

1964-24018-F

Trivia question – Who won Homer title with the fewest HR’s?

Trivia answer – I can’t find a Green card with the back scratched on the internet, but the correct answer since 1900 is Tommy Leach of Pittsburgh in 1902, who led the league with 6.  Since the end of the dead ball era, the answer is Cy Williams, who led the NL with 15 in 1920.

Winner:

Dickey looks kind of haggard in that picture, but I kind of like that!  Plus, Dickey is the first knuckeball pitcher to win the Cy Young.  Heritage is extending its lead.

2013 Heritage leads, 16.5-11.5

**********

I had two other keepers.  I picked up Adam Jones in the 9th round last year – so keeping him at that level was a no-brainer given his breakout 2012 campaign (though the end of the year wasn’t as good as the start).

2013 Heritage Adam Jones

Adam has card #433.

1964 Topps Yankee team 433

So of course, it makes perfect sense to match Jones up with the Yankees team!  I guess if Baltimore had actually dethroned the Bombers last year, this would be kind of funny.  But instead, this reminds me that Topps not only didn’t match teams of individual players up all that often; they completely left out team sets!

Winner:

I like the Jones card a lot.  But I’m dinging Heritage here.  Topps just wanted to give a young stud a spot in the high numbers.  But they weren’t true to the original set.  I’ve been lenient, but not gonna do it here.

2013 Heritage leads, 16.5-12.5

**********

My last keeper was a 19th rounder – David Freese.  This was really where I drafted him last year.  I think he’ll be good; he just needs to get off the DL!

2013 Heritage David Freese

His trivia question is also one I’ve already shown previously.  Freese has card #160.

1964 Topps Ken Boyer

Finally, a spot on comparison!  The starting 3rd baseman for the Cardinals paired up with the starting 3rd baseman for the Cardinals.  Boyer was about to win the NL MVP when this card was released.

Trivia question – Who hit 2 homers in his first major league game?

Trivia answer – Bob Nieman of the St. Louis Browns – September 14, 1951.  At the time Boyer’s Card came out, Nieman was the only player to have accomplished this feat.  But in the 1964 season, that changed, as Bert Campaneris also accomplished the feat.  Mark Quinn has since done so (1999).

Winner:

I like the Freese card, but the Boyer is a real beauty.  It’s an easy winner.  If Freese gets healthy and has the year Boyer had in 1964, my fantasy team will do quite well.  But that would be bad for my Reds!

2013 Heritage leads, 16.5-13.5

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