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Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Updated: January 4, 11:41 PM ET
Fantasy Predictions 2009: You heard me

By Matthew Berry
ESPN..com

What does 2009 hold in store for the world of fantasy sports? We surveyed our team of fantasy analysts and editors for the answers. Check out all twelve completed surveys by using the drop-down menu. (Some surveys were abridged to protect the innocent.)

Your name:
Matthew Berry

But you wish to be referred to as:
The Talented Mr. Roto; Man who defeated Nate in Pigskin Pick'em

You're a shameless, unabashed fan of:
The Redskins; Lakers; "Beverly Hills, 90210" (both new and old)

But we shouldn't hold it against you because:
I lived in Washington until I was 12, spent the last 15 years in Los Angeles and because I like attractive women with dramatic problems. Either that or I am secretly a 15-year-old girl.

Your fondest sports wish for 2009 is:
Redskins win the Super Bowl … Lakers beat the Celtics in the Finals in four … I never have to say the name "Brett Favre" again.

Why will this happen/not happen?
Because they are the Redskins. Because the refs won't allow a Finals sweep (see Game 2, 38-10 free throw difference) and because Favre will ho and hum the next five months before deciding to retire. And then ultimately play again.

Any sport, what is your biggest sleeper pick for 2009?
Jorge De La Rosa. Double-digit wins and an ERA under 3.50. You heard me.

How high would you reach for that sleeper in a standard ESPN draft?
Fifteenth round. That's about as high as you need to go for a Rockies pitcher.

Which player are you buying into but is most likely to disappoint you?
Darren McFadden. Again.

Which player are you not buying but is likely to disappoint everyone else?
Antonio Bryant

Any sport, who will be the best rookie to emerge in 2009?
John Tavares. I don't know anything about him, except that my Canadian editor won't shut up about him and has replaced the picture of his four kids with an 8x10 glossy of this guy. What the heck is an Oshawa, anyway?

... but everyone will think it's going to be?
David Price. World Series hype. It's faaaaantastic.

Who will be …

Michael Turner
The Burner opened a lot of eyes with his 2008 season and should get better.
… the first player drafted in fantasy football leagues? Adrian Peterson
… the player everyone wishes they had drafted? Michael Turner
… the first player selected in the NFL draft? I could tell you, but then you wouldn't sign up for Insider to read Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay's analysis. What can I say, I'm a company man.
… the first rookie drafted in fantasy football leagues? I could tell you, but I just finished thinking about this season about 14 seconds ago and I'm just not in the mood.
… the first player drafted in fantasy baseball leagues? Hanley Ramirez
… the first pitcher? Tim Lincecum
… the first rookie? David Price
… the player who'll start his season in Triple-A to everyone's frustration? Matt LaPorta
… the NHL's top scorer? I don't know much about hockey, but I do know that if I answer every question with "Sidney Crosby," I have a pretty good chance of being right.
… the NBA's MVP? LeBron James
… the 2009 Sprint Cup champion? Whoever Christopher Harris says.

Mad Gabs

Fill in the blanks any which way you want to create 10 more predictions for 2009.

  1. In 2009, Bill Simmons will grow eight inches of facial hair for losing to me in the SimmonBerry league.
  2. There is no way that Naomi will break up Annie and Ethan. Those two kids have to stay together. They've just gotta.
  3. Jonathan Stewart will be this year's Brandon Jacobs.
  4. Brett Favre will take up way too much of my time. Again.
  5. If I date only sane girls in 2009 then I'll be happy, but woefully short on column material.
  6. There will be at least 50 players that steal 20 bases ...
  7. ... but only 20 players that hit at least 30 home runs.
  8. Matthew Berry will prominently feature a player in "Hate" that will then go out and have the best game of his career.
  9. This is the year that Anne Hathaway finally has the restraining order lifted.
  10. 2009 will forever be remembered as the year Yankees fans stopped whining about the Carl Pavano and Jaret Wright contracts and started whining about the A.J. Burnett boondoggle.

The Name Game

A-Rod or Hanley Ramirez? Hanley
Tim Lincecum or Johan Santana? Lincecum
Evan Longoria or Garrett Atkins? Evan
Chase Utley or Dustin Pedroia? Chase
Manny Ramirez or Mark Teixeira? Big Tex
Tom Brady or Peyton Manning? Brady
Michael Turner or LaDainian Tomlinson Turner
Randy Moss or Calvin Johnson? Moss
Antonio Bryant or Marques Colston? Colston
Brandon Jacobs or Marion Barber? Jacobs
DeAngelo Williams or Clinton Portis? Portis
Chris Paul or LeBron James (for the rest of the season)? LeBron
Danny Granger or Dirk Nowitzki (for next season)? Granger
Derrick Rose or Kevin Durant (for their careers)? Rose

Playing with Numbers

Baseball

Francisco Rodriguez saves: 38
A.J. Burnett wins: 9
CC Sabathia's ERA: 3.10
Yovani Gallardo wins and strikeouts: 12, 180
Manny Ramirez home runs and RBIs: 34, 110
Matt Holliday home runs and RBIs: 29, 115
Mark Teixeira home runs and RBIs: 33, 129
Jay Bruce batting average and home runs: .295, 25
Rafael Furcal average and steals: .305, 37
Rafael Furcal average and steals against the Braves: .908, 20

Football:

Adrian Peterson yards and touchdowns: 1,500, 12
Drew Brees yards and touchdowns: 4,700, 36
Tom Brady yards and touchdowns: 4,500, 38
Kurt Warner starts: 14
Braylon Edwards yards, touchdowns and drops: 1,100, 7, pi
Chad Ocho Cinco yards and touchdowns: 950, 5
Chad Ocho Cinco ridiculous statements: pi

Speak now or forever hold your peace

What question do you wish you had been asked on this survey?

Does Megan Fox repeat as Maxim's hottest woman in the world?

And the answer is?

No

What question are you glad you weren't asked?

Will you get a new producer for your podcast or will you be stuck with Pod Vader again?

Sucker! Now you have to answer.

Sadly, I have to face the fact that Pod Vader isn't going anywhere.