First Base

March 20, 2006
March 20, 2006

Table of Contents
March 20, 2006

SI Bonus Section: Golf Plus
Fantasy Baseball Preview 2006

First Base

Candidates who can hit 30 home runs and drive in 100 runs abound

[This articlecontains a table. Please see hardcopy of magazine or PDF.]

This is an article from the March 20, 2006 issue Original Layout

1.NLAlbert Pujols, Cardinals.3304111712916 
2.NLDerrek Lee, Cubs.3354610712015 
3.ALMark Teixeira, Rangers.301431441124 
4.ALPaul Konerko, White Sox.28340100980 
5.NLRyan Howard, Phillies.2882263520With Howard hammering balls into the rightfield windtunnel at Citizens Bank Park, Mike Schmidt's club record for home runs (48) isin jeopardy.
6.NLTodd Helton, Rockies.3202079923 
7.NLAdam Dunn, Reds.247401011074 
8.ALRichie Sexson, Mariners.26339121991 
9.NLLance Berkman, Astros.2932482764 
10.NLCarlos Delgado, Mets.30133115810 
11.ALJason Giambi, Yankees.2713287740Made a surprising comeback from a disastrous 2004,leading AL in on-base percentage (.440); short porch at Yankee Stadium makeshim a 40-homer threat.
12.NLMike Jacobs, Marlins.3101123190 
13.ALLyle Overbay, Blue Jays.2761972801 
14.NLAdam LaRoche, Braves.2592078530 
15.NLTony Clark, Diamondbacks.3043087470 
16.ALChris Shelton, Tigers.2991859610 
17.NLPrince Fielder, Brewers.28821020 
18.ALJustin Morneau, Twins.2392279620 
19.NLNomar Garciaparra, Dodgers.283930280A lifetime .320 hitter who moves over from shortstop,he hasn't played a full season since 2003 and has competition from Hee SeopChoi and Olmedo Saenz.
20.NLNick Johnson, Nationals.2891574663 
21.ALDan Johnson, A's.2751558540 
22.ALBen Broussard, Indians.2551968592 
23.NLLance Niekro, Giants.2521246320 
24.ALCasey Kotchman, Angels.278722161Hit for a high average in the minors and is expectedto develop power sooner rather than later; he'll challenge for Rookie of theYear honors.
25.NLRyan Klesko, Padres.2481858613 
26.NLSean Casey, Pirates.312958752 
27.NLConor Jackson, Diamondbacks.2002880 
28.ALKevin Millar, Orioles.272950570 
29.ALKevin Youkilis, Red Sox.27819110 
30.ALDoug Mientkiewicz, Royals.2401129360 


Chris Shelton

When you see aprospect bash 18 home runs and hit .299 in two thirds of a season--despitecalling cavernous Comerica Park home--the fantasy juices start flowing. YetShelton, 25, might still be had cheap because few figure that a Rule 5 pickupout of the Pittsburgh system can be that good, and he hadn't shown much powerbefore last year. In 365 at bats in Double A and Triple A dating to 2003, hehit a total of eight homers. But Shelton is worth a middle-round pick becausethe Tigers, who are tired of waiting for Carlos Peña to mature as a hitter, aregoing to give him every chance to succeed--and because Shelton quickly became afavorite of new manager Jim Leyland. A 25-homer, 95-RBI season is probablyShelton's ceiling, considering his big home park.


ADRIAN GONZALEZ,Padres The knock on the slick-fielding former No. 1 pick (2000) is that hedoesn't have enough power, but his line drive stroke is perfectly suited forSan Diego's gap-hitters' park.

VAL MAJEWSKI,Orioles The prized prospect missed '05 with a torn labrum after hitting .307with 15 homers and 14 steals in Double A the year before. A strong start inTriple A will get him to the majors.

ANDY PHILLIPS,Yankees As a fill-in for Jason Giambi and Bernie Williams (at DH), the powerhitter (47 home runs in Triple A since 2004) should match or exceed the retiredTino Martinez's 17 homers in '05.