Preps Talk

Fantasy baseball outfielder rankings

Fantasy baseball outfielder rankings

By David Ferris
CSNChicago.com

The following players qualify at outfielder in standard fantasy leagues. Rankings are based on a 5x5 scoring system (batting average, runs, home runs, RBIs, stolen bases).
                        
1. Mike Trout, Angels    
NOTE: No offense Miggy, but Trout's the MVP.
2. Ryan Braun, Brewers    
3. Andrew McCutchen, Pirates    
4. Josh Hamilton, Rangers    
5. Alex Rios, White Sox    
6. Adam Jones, Orioles    
7. Matt Holliday, Cardinals    
8. B.J. Upton, Rays    
NOTE: Team is done, but he's driving for next paycheck.
9. Jason Heyward, Braves    
10. Michael Bourn, Braves    
11. Curtis Granderson, Yankees    
NOTE: A three-category guy this year.
12. Austin Jackson, Tigers    
13. Angel Pagan, Giants    
NOTE: Most underrated player in baseball?
14. Allen Craig, Cardinals    
15. Josh Willingham, Twins    
16. Giancarlo Stanton, Marlins    
NOTE: Knees are tricky, but pop is ridiculous.
17. Jay Bruce, Reds    
18. Yoenis Cespedes, Athletics    
19. Matt Kemp, Dodgers    
20. Carlos Gonzalez, Rockies
NOTE: Might be done for year.     
21. Carlos Beltran, Cardinals    
22. Martin Prado, Braves    
23. Adrian Gonzalez, Dodgers
NOTE: Not as much fun from up close.     
24. Norichika Aoki, Brewers    
25. Justin Upton, Diamondbacks    
NOTE: Has the thumb been right all year?
26. Alex Gordon, Royals    
27. Carlos Gomez, Brewers    
28. Corey Hart, Brewers    
29. Alfonso Soriano, Cubs    
NOTE: Much better season than many realize.
30. Ben Zobrist, Rays    
31. Nelson Cruz, Rangers    
32. Shin-Soo Choo, Indians    
33. Josh Reddick, Athletics    
NOTE: Average cratering in second half.
34. Andre Ethier, Dodgers    
35. Torii Hunter, Angels    
36. Hunter Pence, Giants    
37. Ichiro Suzuki, Yankees    
38. Desmond Jennings, Rays    
39. Alejandro De Aza, White Sox    
NOTE: Underrated spark to their offense.
40. Shane Victorino, Dodgers    
41. Bryce Harper, Nationals    
42. Jason Kubel, Diamondbacks    
43. Jacoby Ellsbury, Red Sox    
44. Juan Pierre, Phillies    
45. David Murphy, Rangers    
46. Coco Crisp, Athletics    
47. Dexter Fowler, Rockies    
48. Garrett Jones, Pirates    
49. Ryan Ludwick, Reds    
50. Ben Revere, Twins    
51. Cody Ross, Red Sox    
NOTE: Perfect swing for Fenway.
52. Justin Ruggiano, Marlins    
53. Jon Jay, Cardinals    
NOTE: Defense needed; they're weak on corner.
54. DeWayne Wise, White Sox    
55. Nate McLouth, Orioles    
NOTE: Don't laugh, Buck trusts him.
56. Mark Trumbo, Angels    
NOTE: Bad habits back in second half.
57. Nick Swisher, Yankees    
58. Jayson Werth, Nationals
NOTE: No pop yet, but average is nice.     
59. Tyler Colvin, Rockies    
60. Drew Stubbs, Reds    
NOTE: Trouble with the slider.
61. Michael Brantley, Indians    
62. Howie Kendrick, Angels    
63. Will Venable, Padres    
64. Dayan Viciedo, White Sox    
65. Jonny Gomes, Athletics    
66. John Mayberry, Phillies
NOTE: Cashing in late on pedigree.    
67. Rajai Davis, Blue Jays    
NOTE: A speed play, that's it.
68. Michael Saunders, Mariners    
69. Denard Span, Twins    
70. Carlos Lee, Marlins    
NOTE: Makes contact but zero pop.
71. Brandon Belt, Giants    
72. Matt Joyce, Rays    
73. Justin Maxwell, Astros    
NOTE: An underrated, ownable Astro.
74. Brandon Moss, Athletics    
75. Cameron Maybin, Padres    
76. Delmon Young, Tigers    
77. Colby Rasmus, Blue Jays    
NOTE: Is the grow-up season ever coming?
78. Trevor Plouffe, Twins    
79. Seth Smith, Athletics    
80. Michael Morse, Nationals    
81. Chris Denorfia, Padres
NOTE: A terrific play against lefties.     
82. Yonder Alonso, Padres    
83. Mitch Moreland, Rangers    
84. Jarrod Dyson, Royals    
85. Jeff Francoeur, Royals    
NOTE: At least you're not paying him.
86. Scott Hairston, Mets    
87. David DeJesus, Cubs    
88. Gregor Blanco, Giants    
89. Gerardo Parra, Diamondbacks    
90. Brennan Boesch, Tigers    
91. Roger Bernadina, Nationals    
92. Jesus Guzman, Padres    
93. Tyler Greene, Astros    
94. Donovan Solano, Marlins    
NOTE: Utility grab, will run freely.
95. Tony Campana, Cubs    
96. Darin Mastroianni, Twins    
97. Steve Lombardozzi, Nationals    
98. Ty Wigginton, Phillies  

High School Lites Week 9 football roundup

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High School Lites Week 9 football roundup

High School Lites featured plenty of great action on Friday night as NBC Sports Chicago had highlights of many of the area's top matchups. Some playoff dreams came to fruition while others crashed and burned. 

Watch tomorrow as the IHSA playoff brackets are revealed tomorrow on NBC Sports Chicago+ at 8 p.m. Be sure to also follow us on Twitter @NBCSPreps for all of the latest IHSA football scores and highlights. 

DRIVE: Prairie Ridge: Episode 10

Wintrust Athlete of the Week: Back of the Yards QB Jeremiah Harris

St. Xavier Team of the Week: De La Salle Meteors

Friday's Top 25 Games

No. 1 Lincoln-Way East 18, No. 19 Bolingbrook 14 

No. 2 Prairie Ridge 55, Dundee-Crown 14

No. 3 Maine South 56, Niles West 9

No. 4 Marist 42, Joliet Catholic 14

No. 5 Lake Zurich , Mundelein

No. 6 Phillips 53, Clark 0

No. 9 Homewood-Flossmoor 50, Sandburg 14

No. 10 Barrington 40, Conant 19

No. 11 Huntley 45, McHenry 7

No. 12 Naperville Central 35, Lake Park 21

No. 13 Hinsdale Central 42, Hinsdale South 14

No. 24 St. Charles North 35, No. 14 Batavia 28

No. 16 Wheaton North 20, Waubonsie Valley 10

No. 17 Crete-Monee 52, Cahokia 8

No. 18 St. Rita 47, Marmion 14

No. 20 Lyons 31, Oak Park-River Forest 14

No. 21 Nazareth 48, Marian Catholic 7

No. 22 Oswego 30, Plainfield Central 0

Mount Carmel 35, No. 23 Providence 34

Other Highlights

Tinley Park 29, Evergreen Park 0

T.F. South 21, Oak Forest 14

Glenbard North 24, Neuqua Valley 14

St. Edward 29, Wheaton Academy 28

Marian Central Catholic 44, St. Patrick 21

Saturday's Top 25 Games

No. 7 Loyola vs. Brother Rice

No. 8 Glenbard West vs. Proviso West

Cubs will be open for business as Theo Epstein weighs trading hitters for pitching

Cubs will be open for business as Theo Epstein weighs trading hitters for pitching

Theo Epstein answered questions from the Chicago media for more than an hour on Friday afternoon at Wrigley Field, but the most interesting part might have been what the Cubs president didn’t say, something along the lines of: These are our guys.

Or at least Epstein didn’t give the same full-throated endorsement of The Core that he delivered after engineering the Jose Quintana trade with the White Sox this summer, getting an All-Star pitcher without giving up anyone from the big-league roster.

Whether it’s the way the Los Angeles Dodgers dominated the Cubs throughout the National League Championship Series that ended Thursday night, the inconsistencies and frustrations during a 43-45 first half of this season or the reality of losing 40 percent of the rotation, you walked out of that stadium club press conference thinking big changes could be coming.

“We’re going to pursue all avenues to get better,” Epstein said.

The Cubs already understood this would be a challenging time to dramatically reshape their pitching staff, with Cy Young Award winner Jake Arrieta, Big Boy John Lackey and All-Star closer Wade Davis about to become free agents.

The Cubs don’t really have many (any?) high-end, headliner prospects left to trade after borrowing heavily from their farm system to acquire Aroldis Chapman for last year’s World Series run and get Quintana to help solidify the rotation through 2020.

All of Major League Baseball is looking beyond this winter and preparing for the monster free-agent class that will hit the open market after the 2018 season.

Meaning it’s time for the Cubs to make some difficult decisions about all these young hitters they’ve collected.

“It may or may not be,” Epstein said. “Those choices, they’re not unilateral things. You can’t sit there and decide: ‘Hey, this guy, we’re moving him.’ Because you don’t know what the return might be. You don’t know how the different moving parts might fit together.

“I think going into the offseason prepared to make some tough choices and execute on them — and keeping an open mind to anything — is appropriate under the circumstances where we have some obvious deficits and we have some real surplus with talented players who are really desirable.”

Let’s assume All-Star first baseman Anthony Rizzo, MVP third baseman Kris Bryant and catcher Willson Contreras are essentially untouchable.

The Cubs used the ninth overall pick in the 2015 draft on Ian Happ with the explicit idea that the college hitter should be on a fast track and could be flipped for pitching later: Is it time to sell high after the rookie just put up 24 homers and an .842 OPS?

During an exit meeting with Albert Almora Jr., Epstein said he couldn’t promise an everyday job in 2018, though the expectation would be more responsibilities: Think anyone else would be interested in a potential Gold Glove center fielder who’s already playoff-tested?

Do you want Addison Russell or Javier Baez as your everyday shortstop for the next four years? Is there an American League team willing to bet big that Kyle Schwarber will crush 40 homers a year as a designated hitter?

The Cubs have to ask themselves those types of questions, which could mean getting outside of their comfort zone and taking on some riskier pitching investments and sapping the strength that has turned them into the dominant force in the NL Central.

“We’ve really benefitted from having two or three extra — and ‘extra’ in quotes because they’re not really extra — starting-caliber players on the roster,” Epstein said. “That helped us win 97 games in ’15, 103 last year, 92 this year. That’s as big a part of the club as anything.

“Having an Addison Russell go down and being able to move Javy Baez to shortstop — that’s an obvious example of it. But those things show up every week for us. There’s a day where someone can’t make the lineup and someone else slides in and you’re still starting eight quality guys. That’s huge.

“Sooner or later, you reach a point where you have to strongly consider sacrificing some of that depth to address needs elsewhere on the club. There’s no sort of deadline to do that. But I think we’re entering the phase where we have to be really open-minded to that if it makes the overall outlook of the team and organization better.”

Translation: The Cubs are open for business. Make your best offer.