2011 AL Fantasy Top 10

On Sunday I showed the RotoValue NL top 10 for a 10 team league with 23 starting players per team (2 C, 3 corner, 3 middle, 5 OF, 10 pitchers). Today I’ll doing the same for a similar AL: also a 10 team league, but now with 24 starters (adding 1 DH).  I assume a $260 salary cap per team, and a 4 person bench purchased at auction.
First the traditional 4×4 format:

Player Pos Price
Jacoby Ellsbury OF $41.45
Curtis Granderson OF $35.11
Justin Verlander P $34.19
Jose Bautista 3B/OF $32.74
Adrian Gonzalez 1B $30.84
Miguel Cabrera 1B $30.67
Dustin Pedroia 2B $30.09
Robinson Cano 2B $29.42
Ian Kinsler 2B $27.42
Jered Weaver P $26.56

Jacoby Ellsbury is the clear fantasy MVP, hitting for power, average, and stealing bases.
Curtis Granderson had even more power than Ellsbury, but his .262 average keeps him from being the Roto MVP.
Justin Verlander led the AL in wins, WHIP, and (barely) ERA, but starters don’t get saves, so those are the only three categories where he contributes. Hence Ellsbury is clearly worth more, and even Granderson, despite the rather mediocre batting average, has a little more value. Jose Bautista led the league in HR and had a .302 average, but trailed Granderson significantly in SB and RBI. Next come a pair of power-hitting first basemen with quite similar stats, Adrian Gonzalez and Miguel Cabrera. Gonzalez was worth a tiny bit more, as his edge in RBI outweighed Cabrera’s 3 more HR and better batting average.
Dustin Pedroia contributed across the board, like his teammate Ellsbury, but was a little worse in each category. Robinson Cano just missed becoming the first second baseman to lead the AL in RBI since Brett Boone in 2001, but added a .300 average and 28 HR. Then came Ian Kinsler, whose .255 average was poor, but who added 32 HR and 30 SB.
Jered Weaver rounded out the top 10, finishing 2nd in ERA and WHIP, and tied for 3rd in wins.
Now the 5×5 top 10:

Player Pos Price
Jacoby Ellsbury OF $37.75
Curtis Granderson OF $34.66
Justin Verlander P $33.93
Jose Bautista 3B/OF $30.33
Dustin Pedroia 2B $29.94
Ian Kinsler 2B $29.67
Robinson Cano 2B $29.63
Miguel Cabrera 1B $29.37
Adrian Gonzalez 1B $29.23
Jered Weaver P $25.96

The same 10 players occupy the top spots, but they’re more closely bunched. Granderson led the league in runs by a wide margin, and so is much closer to Ellsbury in this format. Verlander remains 3rd, and clearly the top pitcher, as he led the league in strikeouts along with wins, ERA, and WHIP.
Ian Kinsler gets the biggest boost from switching to 5×5, as he was 2nd in the league in runs, and gained over $2 in value to move up to 6th. As with the NL, switching to 5×5 brings down the prices of the very best players.

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