Are Dunn, Rios even worth late picks?

Updated: March 15, 2012, 3:50 PM ET
By Eric Karabell
Some would presume the Chicago White Sox under new manager Robin Ventura have no shot to compete in the American League Central this season. After all, the Ozzie Guillen-led White Sox couldn't win half their games last season, seemed more intent on trading or letting their players walk via free agency this offseason (Sergio Santos, Mark Buehrle, Carlos Quentin) than buying, and the Detroit Tigers got stronger, at least on paper. How can the White Sox compete?

Well, this is why the games are played, and 2012 fantasy leagues are not decided by 2011 statistics. Players produce different numbers, some of them much better than the previous season. Two members of the White Sox lineup had miserable 2011 seasons, as if you weren't aware, in Adam Dunn and Alex Rios. A year ago, fantasy owners had visions of Dunn's first 50-homer season in their optimistic heads, and Rios was coming off a solid 2010 (21 home runs, 34 steals, .284 batting average). Dunn was the 37th pick, on average, in ESPN live drafts; Rios was 52nd.