Fantasy Baseball Today

Yovani Gallardo more than a bench option in Fantasy leagues

By Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com

This post might be a few days late, but I was shocked to see Brewers starting pitcher Yovani Gallardo was started in just 67 percent of Fantasy leagues heading in Week 1, especially since he is a two-start pitcher.

I've been touting Gallardo all spring and I'm not going to stop now, especially after he posted 24 Fantasy points in his first start. I couldn't convince my colleagues Al Melchoir and Scott White to buy into the hype, but hopefully I will have better luck with our awesome Fantasy Baseball audience.

It's true Gallardo didn't have one of his best seasons in 2013, but it was because of a slow start, likely attributed to his participation in the World Baseball Classic. However, he was pretty good down the stretch, going 5-2 with a 3.09 ERA and 1.24 WHIP in 11 starts in the second half.

Gallardo averaged 21.4 Fantasy points over the final seven scoring periods in 2013. If he averaged that over 26 scoring periods last season, Gallardo would have finished with 557 Fantasy points, which would have made him a top 10 Fantasy starting pitcher.

That's what a lot of folks forget. Gallardo might have a high WHIP and walk a lot of batters, but he chews up innings, wins games and usually has a decent strikeout rate -- and that translates to Fantasy points. Gallardo finished with 557 Fantasy points in 2011 and 507 Fantasy points in 2012.

On average this spring, Gallardo was drafted in the 14th round in 12-team formats. I think he's going to end up as a steal for Fantasy owners in 2014.

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