Everything is relative in fantasy baseball.
If you stapled the typical shortstop's fantasy numbers -- 10 homers, 50 RBI, .265 average, 10 steals -- on an outfielder you would look somewhere else come draft day.
But the beauty of fantasy baseball is you can't load up on 15 outfielders. You have to have a shortstop and maybe two if your league uses a middle infield spot as well.
The number of shortstops in the American League who can actually help your fantasy team is small. The days of Cal Ripken, Alex Rodriguez, a young Derek Jeter, Nomar Garciaparra, Miguel Tejada and Robin Yount bashing the baseball around American League ballparks is long gone.
But there are still a few who can make the difference between a fifth-place team and a league champion. Why not get one? There is always a productive outfielder sitting on the waiver wire, right?
If you want a shortstop that can actually help your fantasy team, instead of one that simply won't kill it, you have to act quickly. In most drafts, once an elite shortstop is taken, there is usually a run on the position because a panic situation starts.
You don't, after all, want to be left starting Nick Punto or Juan Uribe at short.
A look at the Top 10 shortstops in the American League for 2013 . . .