Surprise players can carry both a fantasy baseball squad and a major league baseball team to a championship.

Owners and managers may have hunches regarding certain players, but they remain pipe dreams until the production actually comes to fruition.

The true value of these players comes in their unexpected contributions, usually at very low salaries. A cheap all-star, in many ways, can be considered more valuable than a high-priced superstar.

Just as fantasy leagues are often won in the late rounds, division titles and championships are often decided not by the $20 million a year slugger, but by the bargain bin pitcher who turns into a solid #3 pitcher.

Or the early-season injury replacement that earns an everyday job.

The 2010 MLB season has produced numerous surprise players, and it is no coincidence that many of these players are on teams that have outperformed their preseason prognostications.

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