Fantasy Toss Up: Clayton Kershaw vs. David Price

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Clayton Kershaw and David Price are two young studs expected to make an incredible impact on their respective teams roster. But which one would you rather have on your fantasy team?

The Fantasy Rankings

CBS has Price at 133 and Kershaw at 188.
Yahoo Big Board mentions neither.
ESPN has Kershaw at 198 and Price at 207.

Both pitchers are ranked similarly, a mid to late round high risk / high reward play.


David Price: 4.90 ERA, 4-5, 79 IP, 59 Ks, 1.49 WHIP
Clayton Kershaw: 4.23 ERA, 6-6, 115 IP, 102 Ks, 1.45 WHIP

The projections are pretty blah for both Kershaw and Price, but especially bleak for Price. I can't say from the stuff that I saw these two pitcher possess last year that either projection is remotely accurate.

Surrounding Lineup

David Price is on the defending AL Champs, but that might be a bit misleading. The Rays bullpen was infused with his presence last year which helped bridge the gap to the end of the game. Without him, the bullpen will be a bit more unreliable. Additionally, the Rays lineup wasn't a dominant offensive squad last year, just a quality one. Adding Pat the Bat will help, but still in the AL East there won;t be much margin for error.

The Dodgers lineup on the other hand is missing a Manny. The fortunes of many a Dodger pitcher will be tied to Scott Boras desire to take a smaller contract than he originally promised Manny. If Manny signs than the Dodgers lineup will be solid throughout. If not, than Matt Kemp, Andre Ethier, and James Loney better change into their massive RBI shoes.

Question Marks

The biggest questionmarks for both pitchers are workload. How many innings do their franchises plan on letting them throw? If you're drafting a pitcher chances are you want them to get a good workload. The longer they are in the game, the more chance they will have of coming away with a victory and building up strikeout totals. The difference between the two may simply come down to who throws more innings.

The Verdict

The edge for me goes to Kershaw. The reason for the edge are first and foremost workload. Kershaw threw 168+ innings last year between Triple A and the Dodgers. Meanwhile, Price's biggest workload came two years ago when he was a Senior for Vandy and totaled 133+ innings. Additionally Kershaw gets an edge in the competition he's going to face. The NL West will again be poor while the AL East consists of two powerhouses. Finally assuming the Dodgers sign Manny, their lineup will be just as dynamic as the Rays lineup.

Both pitchers could easily be lights out this year and pay off big dividends, but if I'm going to jump at just one of these left handed studs it's gonna be Kershaw.

Posted by Simon at 2:02 PM   Digg! submit to reddit BallHype: hype it up!


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