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High Fives: All-Star breakouts

Brandon Funston
Yahoo Sports

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Brandon
Funston
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Mike
Harmon
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Matt
Romig
Yahoo! Sports' trio of fantasy experts will each offer up, on a regular basis, a look at their top five lists dealing with a variety of topics.

This week's topics: Roto all-stars, first-half headliners, post-break breakouts and the future of fantasy

2005 first-half fantasy all-star team: Infielders
Brandon Says: Mike Says: Matt Says:
C – Jason Varitek, Bos
1B – Derrek Lee, ChC
2B – Brian Roberts, Bal
3B – Morgan Ensberg, Hou
SS – Miguel Tejada, Bal
C – Jason Varitek, Bos
1B – Derrek Lee, ChC
2B – Brian Roberts, Bal
3B – Morgan Ensberg, Hou
SS – Felipe Lopez, Cin
C – Brandon Inge, Det
1B – Derrek Lee, ChC
2B – Brian Roberts, Bal
3B – Morgan Ensberg, Hou
SS – Felipe Lopez, Cin
2005 first-half fantasy all-star team: Outfielders and pitchers
Brandon Says: Mike Says: Matt Says:
OF – Bob Abreu, Phi
OF – Carlos Lee, Mil
OF – Andruw Jones, Atl
SP – Roy Halladay, Tor
RP – Chad Cordero, Was
OF – Bob Abreu, Phi
OF – Miguel Cabrera, Fla
OF – Carl Crawford, TB
SP – Jon Garland, ChW
RP – Chad Cordero, Was
OF – Andruw Jones, Atl
OF – Cliff Floyd, NYM
OF – Carlos Lee, Mil
SP – Chris Carpenter, StL
RP – Chad Cordero, Was
Top 5 fantasy players who defined the first half
Brandon Says: Mike Says: Matt Says:
  1. Derrek Lee, ChC

    From 7th-round fantasy selection to legit Triple Crown threat

  2. Brian Roberts, Bal

    His 30/30 numbers from 2B have been a joy ride for his early adopters

  3. Dontrelle Willis, Fla

    Willis and Jon Garland have polarized fantasy community – you're either a believer or a non-believer

  4. Carlos Beltran, NYM

    Beltran's is the face I'll choose to represent all the underperforming stars of '05

  5. Danny Kolb, Atl

    Kolb's is the face I'll choose to represent all the closers gone bad in '05

  1. Brian Roberts, Bal

    Five-tool surprise in '05 just keeps dominating. Hitting .399 against righties

  2. Dontrelle Willis, Fla

    Big wins and five complete games. Add a sub-2.00 ERA and big Ks

  3. Derrek Lee, ChC

    A one-man gang for much of the first half in Chicago and a Triple Crown contender

  4. Carlos Beltran, NYM

    The poster boy for top draft picks gone awry in '05

  5. Roger Clemens, Hou

    He's got a ridiculous 0.20 ERA on the road at 42!

  1. Barry Bonds, SF

    To what degree has the steroid scandal influenced the decline in homers? Will Bonds play in 2005? Questions on a lot of minds

  2. Dontrelle Willis, Fla

    Part of a long list of surprise aces that includes Garland, Carpenter, Myers, etc.

  3. Randy Johnson, NYY

    NY's original five-man rotation is just 26-25 on the season with an ERA well over 4.00

  4. Derrek Lee, ChC

    Ninth first baseman taken in average draft turns out to be best player in fantasy

  5. Carlos Beltran, NYM

    Bust? Or were fantasy owners guilty of inflated expectations?

5 players to watch for a big second half
Brandon Says: Mike Says: Matt Says:
  1. Adrian Beltre, Sea

    Good sign: Some of his HRs have started going out to opposite field

  2. Mark Prior, ChC

    Hasn't walked a batter since his return from the DL

  3. Marcus Giles, Atl

    Took him a while, but he's finally hinting at the 20/20 skills we expected from this 2B

  4. Lance Berkman, Hou

    Past 16 games have been Berkman-like: .383, 3 HR, 17 RBI, 17 R

  5. Ichiro Suzuki, Sea

    We'll look back at the end of the season and marvel at what could have been had he not hit .243 in June

  1. Aubrey Huff, TB

    Three homers and seven RBIs in six July games are the start of something big

  2. Moises Alou, SF

    The imminent return of Bonds means huge opportunities ahead

  3. Adrian Beltre, Sea

    Historically a monster in the second half; he's already got three homers in six July games

  4. Frank Thomas, ChW

    Has 11 HR in 25 games since return from DL. Could be huge if healthy

  5. Eric Chavez, Oak

    The young A's are getting their legs under them. He'll roll to meet his annual power production

  1. Travis Hafner, Cle

    Dialed in like few others right now. Benefiting from Victor Martinez' resurgence as well

  2. Wily Mo Pena, Cin

    Homering once every 12.7 ABs over last two seasons. Big power numbers in store if healthy

  3. Joe Blanton, Oak

    Who would have guessed the A's were upgrading to a Big Four?

  4. Frank Thomas, ChW
  5. Rickie Weeks, Mil
Top 5 MLB players under 25 with the brightest fantasy future
Brandon Says: Mike Says: Matt Says:
  1. Miguel Cabrera, Fla

    His maturity at such a young age is reminiscent of Albert Pujols

  2. Carl Crawford, TB
  3. Joe Mauer, Min

    Has done nothing to disprove the notion that he'll soon hit .300 with 25-30 HRs out of the catcher spot

  4. Jake Peavy, SD

    Has given up fewer walks and has seen his Batting Average Against improve every season

  5. Rickie Weeks, Mil

    A notch above the bright future fantasy values of middle infielders Jose Reyes and Jorge Cantu

  1. Miguel Cabrera, Fla

    At just 22, this guy is primed to assault the record books

  2. David Wright, NYM

    3B with 30 HR/100 RBI potential and will young core around him

  3. Jake Peavy, SD

    One ERA total title in the bank and years of pitching in friendly Petco ahead

  4. Grady Sizemore, Cle

    Already has 34 extra-base hits and 11 SB and Tribe is just starting to roll

  5. Rickie Weeks, Mil

    Speed, pop and a great batting eye at 22

  1. Miguel Cabrera, Fla

    Ridiculous offensive upside for a 22-year-old

  2. Rickie Weeks, Mil

    Minor league manager says he has more power than 260-lb. slugger Prince Fielder. He can run, too

  3. Carl Crawford, TB

    If he could only draw a walk …

  4. Jake Peavy, SD
  5. Jeremy Bonderman, Det

    Like Peavy, explosive stuff and a pitcher's park for an office

Reader response to last week's High Fives
Ok, for your top 5 biggest risks, I would agree with the majority, but your still forgetting a huge risk that's not getting any attention at all. That risk is Shaun Alexander from the Seattle Seahawks … I was shocked to see that none of you fantasy "experts" had him on your list for biggest risks. I mean, come on, the guy has released statements to the press saying he has no intention of ending his holdout until his demands of a long-term contract are met. I think TO has a better chance of ending his holdout and playing than Alexander does. – Kimp, Galloway, NJ


How could all three of you leave Shaun Alexander off your list of Top 5 safe-bet picks? Over the last four seasons, he has averaged over 1,400 yards rushing, and at least one touchdown per game, while losing less than three fumbles per year. The man has not missed a game in five seasons. Give him some love! – Josh, Florence, KY

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