Monday, February 26, 2018

The Fantasy Man's 2018 Fantasy Baseball OF Outfield Rankings

The Fantasy Man's 2018 Fantasy Baseball OF Outfielders Rankings

Not going to bore you with too much opinion in paragraph form here. There's a large group of breakout/sleeper potential as you scroll down.  I'm living between the low hype 30 year olds and that breakout/sleeper group.  So many good players up top, but if you believe in groups 3-5 (includes that small speed group), then you can load up on position scarcity and pitching up top the draft.

The Elite:

Mike Trout - Elite.
Bryce Harper - What happens when you're going for the richest contract in sports history?
Mookie Betts - Betts or Blackmon? Finkle and Einhorn?
Charlie Blackmon -  Blackmon or Betts? Einhorn and Finkle?
Giancarlo Stanton - Load up on power early - Fantasy Man specialty with a late first round pick
Aaron Judge - Grab 100 HR and 220 RBI with the wraparound pick in a 12 teamer, love it!
JD Martinez - Will be a beast in BOS and my back up if I miss on Stanton
George Springer - Can't go wrong here leading off for top offense considering his power/speed

Power/Speed or Power/Hype:

Andrew Benintendi - Love the .300+ BA upside but today he's a more expensive AJ Pollock
Cody Bellinger - Love the upside but feel like he peaked power wise as a rookie
AJ Pollock - If there's a year for a major breakout, this is it - nice power/speed/BA combo
Tommy Pham - Slightly younger and less injury prone AJ Pollock but is he real?
Christian Yelich - Lefty in a hitters park and potent lineup that likes to run, breakout incoming
Marcell Ozuna - Peaked last year and doesn't run but will still pad stats
Starling Marte - 5 cats if he can get 18+HR with 40SB
Lorenzo Cain - Cheaper version of Starling Marte with maybe slightly more power but less bags
Byron Buxton - Everyone on him as sleeper, nervous he's not consistent yet
Rhys Hoskins - Mega power, dual eligibility but same concern as Buxton - over hyped

There's a lot going on in this next group.  I'm intrigued with undervalued 30 year olds who seem to be pushed aside for better-hyped younger players. They're all in the middle of their prime, former hyped all stars and being passed over for guys like Tommy Pham (although he's 29), Rhys Hoskins, Byron Buxton and even Ronald Acuna. I get the upside of those guys but you can make a nice living loading up on these experienced players as the hyped players are being plucked off the board.

Undervalued Power 30 year olds:

Yoenis Cespedes - sort of forgotten a bit in drafts, Mets lineup quietly looking potent, like the value
Kris Davis - HR/RBI machine, low BA and SB but useful to pad power if you have BA elsewhere
Justin Upton - Big year least year, professional hitter, destroys lefties and he's only 30, undervalued
Jay Bruce - Same has Upton minus the lefties, also only 30 and undervalued
Andrew McCutchen - 25-30HR is fine but .275 BA and only 10 SB seems a little overvalued
Ryan Braun - Stock decreased, viewed as old but still capable of a really solid season
Adam Duvall - 40HR power, lighting quick bat but .240 type BA ( I do think there's BA upside here)
Adam Jones - Super automatic with stats, durable, nice floor of .270/25/80
Eric Thames -  Big power,

I put these two in its own tier because they should be drafted based on need.  I usually don't think of them in ADP terms.  I draft when I feel like I need to draft them depending on strategy and how my team is looking as I draft category-wise. If I load up on say Stanton/Judge or Stanton/Martinez end of 1st round, I'm looking for Gordon or Billy Ham sometime in the 6th -10th rounds.

Billy Hamilton - He'll cover half your SB's, get a .270+BA and he's so money
Dee Gordon - Hamilton with a .300 BA and dual eligibility

Upside? Breakouts? Undervalued? 

Yasiel Puig - Breakout incoming.  I'm just going to leave this here....
Ian Desmond - Injury risk keeps price down but obvious 25/20 in Coors
Ian Happ - They say he's special and low BA last year will keep price down, buying opportunity
Eduardo Nunez - Signed with Boston, will start year at 2B, appears fully healthy
Avisail Garcia - .300 BA with power upside on the cheap - upside wins championships
Nick Castellanos - Touted on many sleeper lists, break out possible but its no longer sneaky
Michael Conforto - Mets offense looking sneaky solid, should lead off, nice value here
Chris Taylor - Multi-positional, will lead off with .280/20/20+ ability
Kevin Kiermier - Big sleeper IMO and cheaper than Taylor for same or more output
Domingo Santana - Assuming he plays full time there's some nice low key BA/power upside here
Eddie Rosario - One of those guys you look last years stats and go... "Really? I better bump him up"
Manuel Margot - SD was dreadful last year, dude has talent, power and speed on the cheap
Trey Mancini - By this time next year he should be up in that second tier, good thing hype is low
Bradley Zimmer - Power/speed combo but likely comes with a low BA and some injury risk
Marwin Gonzalez - Multi-positional, 20/90 safe projection with a few steals
Ender Inciarte - Speedster who delivers solid BA and maybe a few dingers, lite Brett Gardner
Adam Eaton - BA, OBP, Runs, SB but dude is always hurt

Fill in your 4th and 5th OF spots with the ultimate post-hype players.   This seems to be my personal OF sleeper group.  I'll be surprised if we don't get at least 3 gems here:

Gregory Polanco - Stock is way down.  Darryl Strawberry upside or JD Drew downside?
Odubel Herrera - One of my favorite sleepers in all of fantasy baseball and sooo cheap
Nomar Mazara - He's only 22, fairly safe 20/90 floor, only way is up
Kyle Schwarber - K's a ton, power is legit, destroyed the minors, only 24 - gamble for cheap
Randal Grichuk - There's 40 HR upside in TOR, poor man's Kris Davis
Brett Gardner - Sneaky power, leads off for what 'might be' the greatest offensive lineup in history
David Dahl - Its simply health at this point, still young, 20/20 upside in Coors
Joc Pederson - If he plays mostly everyday there's some huge upside here
Steven Souza - Just traded to ARI and ballpark raises his appeal slightly
Max Kepler - Only 25, takes walks, makes contacts, doesn't K a ton and has power but bad vs lefties
Charlie Tilson - Just feels like a .270/12/25 type of player, Like a Kevin Kiermaier lite
Aaron Hicks - .270/20/10 seems like a floor to me, talent is there, will play CF every day
Mitch Haniger - Could be serviceable in all cats, deliver .280+ BA, maybe 20 HR if he stays healthy
Corey Dickerson - DFA'd last week tells me to pass for now but also creates buying opportunity
Nick Williams - Should play every day in 2017
Stephen Piscotty - Forgotten man, hurt all last year, good contact skills, 20HR power
Aaron Altherr - Should be 4th OF depending on where Hoskins/Santana play
Hunter Renfroe - Stock way down, mucho power bat but possible platoon, def stash
Michael Taylor - K's a ton, Robles in the wings but has power/speed combo
Lewis Brinson - Should be a bright spot in Miami, was highly touted last year and no hype this year
Matt Kemp - Like him most over the group below for 450AB, 25+HR
Scott Schebler - Low BA but power is legit

Rookies/Prospects you might want to think about and stash.  Acuna will be costly and rightfully so but the rest should be cheap stashes late in drafts...

Willie Calhoun - This guy rakes but apparently god awful withglove which limits opportunity
Ronald Acuna - Buy and stash, he's legit
Austin Hays - Looks like he's going to start year in the majors
Jesse Winker - Thought are he could unseat Billy Hamilton at lead off, is an OBP machine
Victor Robles - No room to play every day, stash candidate
Toescar Hernandez - Needs an injury
Clint Frazier - Dude can rake but needs a trade at this point
Eloy Jimenez - Only 21, 6'4" should develop power, needs time in AA and above

Fillers that have some name value, maybe start the year hot, reserve picks you can plug-in in a pinch or simply turn around and have a Jorge Posada-like Age 37 rebound year out of nowhere...

Carlos Gomez - Signed in Tampa, 5th OF or Bench stash for me
Carlos Gonzalez - Could be steal of the draft or just continue to free fall
Jose Bautista - Maybe 25HR+ pulling ball in Tampa?
Melky Cabrera - Nice serviceable player
Kole Calhoun - AL Only guys for me
David Peralta - Nice real life player but not enough stats
Mark Trumbo - still low BA power option, just no hype
Michael Brantley - Always hurt, worth a bench play
Dexter Fowler - Auto stats
Jackie Bradley - Feel like we're all holding on to that one good season
Yasmany Tomas - Is he going to play every day?





Friday, February 16, 2018

The Fantasy Man's 2018 Fantasy Baseball 3B Third Base Rankings

The Fantasy Man's 2018 Fantasy Baseball 3B Third Basemen Rankings

Not much surprise here.  I seem to align myself with Machado and Ramirez. I like Machado because there's a ton of room for upside rather than grabbing someone whose already shown the top production.

Nolan Arenado - Beast, top 5 pick, Coors field, position scarcity, you get it all here
Manny Machado - Last years numbers may have some pass, but upside wins fantasy championships
Jose Ramirez - 5 cats, potent lineup, only 25, multi positions, seems the safest of the bunch
Josh Donaldson - Feels like a rebound year, 30+HR but just lacks the SB
Kris Bryant - Solid all around and still with some room to grow
Anthony Rendon - Injuries derailed 2016, last year was a nice uptick but I feel like there's more...

This group is ripe.  Many players here could easily bump up top by seasons end like Bregman, Devers and Shaw.  I like to use Gallo to load up on power if I plan for BA elsewhere. I like also like stacking Gallo with Giancarlo Stanton (early pick) and Miguel Sano (slightly later pick).  Monster power to stack all 3.

Travis Shaw - This is my target if I miss above, hitter park, potent lineup, steals bases, big power
Joey Gallo - I feel there's some BA upside (not a lot but some), mega power, RBI's and some bags
Miguel Sano - Power with high BA upside and will be slightly undervalued at the draft
Nick Castellanos - Showing up on breakout lists but doesn't steal bases
Matt Carpenter - If healthy could offer some nice profit as he seems very undervalued in drafts
Alex Bregman - Can easily launch himself into top group, upside here, invest in keeper leagues
Rafael Devers - Legit prospect could be rookie of year.  I like but I'm not overpaying for a prospect
Justin Turner - This guy hits, middle of order, durable, low hype, potent lineup, safe play here
Jake Lamb - King of the bad 2nd half, I think he puts it together while everyone down on him
Marwin Gonzalez - Safe versatility at .290/20/90/5 and should play everyday
Kyle Seager - I see him falling in drafts, SEA park hurts but you know what you're getting
Adrian Beltre - Decent value in drafts but I'm just glazing over him as to not deal with the ? marks

The usual question mark group. This is where you find your cheap power late in drafts.  Franco, Baez and Chapman my favorite sleepers from this group.  I like Chapman here as he's a bit forgotten after the Matt Olsen hit parade late last season.

Maikel Franco - Youth, power upside legit, Hoskins steals thunder, but never had team around him
Todd Frazier - 35+HR power, RBI's but with low BA
Evan Longoria - He's a bust for me every year and the the days of being considered elite are gone
Eugenio Suarez - Nice undervalued pick here in a hitters park
Zack Cozart - 20HR+ power but I can't decide if he's just another JJ Hardy
Javier Baez - Still like him with 500+ AB and super cheap thinking he's a starter by 2019
Matt Chapman - Power upside here, BA may hurt but nice value as Matt Olsen will overshadow
Tim Beckham - Nice power upside, maybe a few bags, maybe a .270 BA

The Rookie and Prospect class this year at 3B is quite strong. Spring training performances will dictate who's a starter out of camp.  Nick Senzel is by far the most talented of the bunch this early.  Andujar will have some fantasy trade appeal if he gets some more hype out of ST for the Yankees.

Nick Senzel
Johan Camargo
Jeimer Candelario
Miguel Andujar
Rio Ruiz

The rest of the bunch.  These guys all have position eligibility and maybe another one or two things to like....

Hernan Perez - has speed and pop
Yangervis Solarte - projected for 20+HR in TOR
Wilmer Flores - destroys lefties
Sean Rodriguez - always has a good hot streak in him when healthy
Jedd Gyorko - power option with some BA if he gets playing time

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

The Fantasy Man's 2018 Fantasy Baseball SS Shortstops Rankings

The Fantasy Man's 2018 Fantasy Baseball SS Shortstop Rankings

Shortstop as usual feels weak but like 2B, I like the upside of many of the players that could be had on the cheap.  Players like Chris Taylor, Javier Baez, Addison Russell, Orlando Arcia and Marcus Semien all offer some kind of power and or speed combo and all have youth on their side.  Middle infield this year is tricky but there's some breakout candidates hidden below.  Either way, I'm treating Trea Turner as top 4 pick overall in any draft.  If I have the last wraparound pick, I look to grab any two of Correia/Machado/Ramirez to soak up some position scarcity early.  Lindor falls in the last 2nd early 3rd for those with the top pick and the second wraparound.

Trea Turner - Full season could net you 20HR/60SB - no brainer top 4 pick overall for me
Carlos Correia - .300/30/100/90 but lacks SB in a top 1st round pick
Manny Machado - Same as Correia but .290BA+ upside with 6-10 SB
Jose Ramirez - Contributes heavily to all 5 cats and is cheaper than Correia/Machado
Francisco Lindor - The value over Correia/Machado lies here. Same power, more speed, but less BA
Corey Seager - .295/22/77 in 2017 but was hurt all year, nice upside with health

Quality group here as I like the idea of loading up power with Story, I think he's better than a .243 BA. I also feel Bogearts has more to offer than what we've seen so if he falls in my lap cheap I'll sleep at night...

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Elvis Andrus - This guy was a monster, cool if its real but I'm not buying it until he does it again
Didi Gregorious - Left power in Yankee Stadium, solid average, potent lineup - makes sense
Trevor Story - Dude has 35 HR power but risk a - .260 BA. If he hits .270+ you'll profit
Xander Bogearts - Most peg for a bust as projections are weak but I actually like a sneaky break out

This is the group where The Fantasy Man does his damage.  So much upside here. I'm happy with any one, two, or three of these guys soaking up my middle infield. really like the versatility in this group as well...

Eduardo Nunez - 30 SB upside, .300BA potential, multi position eligibility but is a bit injury prone
Jean Segura - Contributes in all cats but could reasonably expect .300/12-15HR/23-26SB
Chris Taylor - I like the .280/20/20 potential batting leadoff for a potent lineup
Marwin Gonzalez - I'm a believer in the power, the playing time, and the multi position eligibility
Paul Dejong - Another out of nowhere performance I have trouble deciding if it was real
Addison Russell - I bump up because talent is there, still only 24 and will be overlooked heavily
Javier Baez - The opportunity factor is keeping his price low. I believe in the break out ...
Orlando Arcia - power/speed combo who makes contact, only 23 but bats low in the order
Marcus Semien - Capable of a 25+/15 season with sub .270 BA but on the cheap, poor mans T Story
Tim Anderson - power/speed combo with contact issues, only 24, bats lead off, hitters park = upside
Jose Peraza - Still has the 40SB potential, will start the year at SS, and is seemingly overlooked

Here's your speculation group.  Some real nice prospects.  We've seen Swanson's stock take a dip after underperforming as a rookie last season.  His stock is so low that you can stash him for a buck in most mixed auction keeper leagues.  Otherwise, I'm passing over these guys because I can't be bothered honestly :)

Dansby Swanson - Nice low hype after dismal rookie season, still talented though
Ahmed Rosario - All 'pedigree' but hasn't shown any power, his hype costs too much
JP Crawford - All hype in minors, but hasn't proven anything including power or speed
Ketel Marte - BA/Speed is enticing but likely hit at the bottom of order, feels like O Arcia of '17
Jorge Polanco - Could get a .275/15/15+ out of him with some good BABIP, only 24 and the starter

These guys are serviceable and likely the first ones you'll pick up off the waiver wire after a hot start in April.  Tulo has obviously talent but the injury risk is just too much to deal with. They are play almost every day and are simply serviceable, better in AL or NL Only formats.

Brandon Crawford - $1-$3 production is serviceable
Tim Beckham - Offers 20HR/70RBI upside but has contact issues
Troy Tulowitzski - Health, cough cough, oh I broke my hamstring
Yangervis Solarte - For when Tulo breaks his hamstring, 20+HR in TOR with good BA
Alcides Escobar - I expect more of the same unless he pulls an Elvis Andrus 2017 out of his rear
Andrelton Simmons - Great real life player but just doesn't accumulate enough in mixed leagues


Monday, February 12, 2018

The Fantasy Man's 2018 Fantasy Baseball 2B Second Base Rankings

The Fantasy Man's 2018 Fantasy Baseball 2B Second Basemen Rankings

I think there's quick perception that 2B is weak this year and looking at the this list, it feels like that could be obvious. You have your top 7 or 8, a few questions marks, and then its anyone's guess from there.  However, I think this is fairly deep.  I could see this being a position where if I miss out on overpaying for Jose Altuve I'll just wait until the end of the draft and scoop up a Jason Kipnis, Ian Kinsler, Javier Baez, Starlin Castro, Jonathan Villar, or Kolten Wong and totally sleep well at night.

This first group is obvious.  You can make a case to bump down Robinson Cano since he's 35 but the dude still mashes, never gets hurt, and will contribute in everything but SB, including OBP. So here you go, the obvious...

Jose Altuve - #2 pick in draft all day and yes, I'm paying $50 in an auction
Jose Ramirez - .300BA/30HR/20SB/100R/85RBI upside, still only 25 and nice discount to Altuve
Brian Dozier - Difference from Ramirez is BA, but offers more power
Daniel Murphy - Has knee thing, news hasn't updated yet but nice discount for early drafts
Jonathan Scoop - Dozier upside with better BA but minus the speed in a hitters park
Robinson Cano - He's 35 this year but he's durable and still contributes above average in top 4 cats

This is my target group below if I miss on Altuve. I love the multi position eligibility of Eduardo Nunez, Chris Taylor and Marwin Gonzalez.  Taylor is going to lead off with that power/speed combo and Gonzalez has shown ability to hit for power and batting average with a 5-10 SB.  Great news is that both players are rarely chosen before the 10th round which is about where Taylor goes. Gonzalez's ADP is 185 which to me is criminal. You can get Nunez in rounds 6-8 but I like Taylor as the better value a few rounds later.

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Eduardo Nunez -Multi eligibility .300/20/30 upside, injured knee late 2017, 6-7th round ADP
Chris Taylor - Multi eligibility .280/20/20 guy leading off in a potentate lineup. Yes please!
Marwin Gonzalez - Multi eligibility, found power stroke last year, really nice value for production
Dee Gordon - BA and speed is what you get here, will play CF and pad your SB cat
Whit Merrifield - Late bloomer feels like a .290/15/25 season but I don't like the lineup behind him
Rougned Odor - Question mark, 30/15 combo but can hit .200, BA upside here but risky for cost
Scooter Gennett - This guy cracks me up .295/27/97 last year out of nowhere. He's only 27 but I don't see the repeat, but thats just me.

There's some heavy upside in this group for sure.  Everyone here has talent and opportunity, but huge questions marks.  Personally, I love the upside of Javier Baez with full playing time.  I love the value with Jonathan Villar with playing time as his stock is super low.  And Starlin Castro is a nice fallback option if you get desperate.

DJ LeMahieu - Bump down because he lacks HR/RBI/SB. Not enough there for me to take seriously
Jason Kipnis - I like how he's low hype this year, he's only 30, should be a nice value if healthy
Ian Kinsler - Most will just pass over like Kipnis and he's still get you 20/10+ or close, another value
Starlin Castro - He hasn't padded stats, but there's hidden upside here on the cheap at age 27
Paul Dejong - This is my biggest ? in the draft this year, total crapshoot performance goes either way
Javier Baez - I want to be onboard when this guy gets 500+ AB, could be the year, nice sleeper value
Jose Peraza - Lacks the power but plenty of upside if he has a full-time position
Ian Happ - Feels like the Joc Pederson of 2B, mega power, some speed, walks, but K's a ton
Ozzie Albies - Could be 20/20, could be 10/10. They say he's special, don't overpay unless dynasty
Yoan Moncada - Nice power/speed upside but will fan 30% of the time
Jonathan Villar - Research spring news, if he rights ship he's steal of the draft #yourwelcome
Kolten Wong - There's upside here in both power and speed, decent BA, OBP for stupid cheap
Josh Harrison - Solid and serviceable player who contributes to all 5 cats especially if he bats up top
Yangervis Solarte - Move to TOR + 400 AB could get you 18-22 HR with a .280+ BA
Wilmer Flores - 25+HR power and destroys lefties, 400+AB will return nice value
Cesar Hernandez - BA, runs and SB if he leads off as a full-timer
Logan Forsythe - Last year we were talking about a 20HR/.260/8SB guy before injury season
Chris Owings - Dude was white hot to start the year then broke a finger, ARI need to trade Drury
Brandon Drury - Its Owings or Drury, rumors say Drury on the block
Austin Barnes - Has 2B/C eligibility which is crazy, versatility worth a late flier unless he's a starter then bump up

If you need to get crazy with prospects, these two jump off the page. Bump them up in dynasty leagues with Albies, Moncada and Happ. These two are the type I'll save an active roster spot for a buck in keeper leagues.  Torres more hyped but Kingery should be around for a buck or so..

Gleyber Torres - Has opportunity to break camp with team but will cost you in draft value
Scott Kingery - Hit 26HR in AAA, 20+SB guy, only 23 - stock is rising, better value than Torres

This group is, well, its a group.  In their heyday.... I mean, they were good, might still be, but we don't really know.  And they all offer something with 400+ AB besides age :) but I'm not in the mood to rank them because they'll likely just sit on your bench ...

Jose Reyes 
Neil Walker
Brandon Phillips
Ben Zobrist
Dustin Pedroia
Joe Panik
Cory Spangenburg
Jed Lowrie
Asdrubal Cabrera



Friday, February 09, 2018

The Fantasy Man's 2018 Fantasy Baseball 1B First Base Rankings

The Fantasy Man's 2018 Fantasy Baseball 1B First Basemen Rankings

Wow, so much deep.  There's nothing new or fancy you're going to learn with this group. It's deep, so you don't have to stress about missing out on any of the top 5.  I find myself gravitating towards Jose Abreu if he drops into 4th but I don't hesitate to pass as I'll scoop Eric Hosmer in the late 5th, 6th or possibly later.

Usually in these early mid rounds (5-9), everyone starting to pivot to pitching, grab a top catcher, maybe a closer run starts, reliable SB's are pretty much gone, etc.  Thats why the unsexy picks like Hosmer, Miggy, Will Myers, and Joey Gallo may fall in some drafts. They all have a flaw of some kind but it's just fear in my opinion. Outside of Miggy, you have 3 fairly young players here you can lean on for 4+ categories while you build your star power at other positions.

Paul Goldschmidt - Top 1B, beyond elite, could pick as high as #3 or spend upwards of $50+
Freddie Freeman - Lefties in ATL is a thing and I believe he's worth of a late 1st round
Joey Votto - ADP like Votto late 1st, Freeman early 2nd so you can go either way
Anthony Rizzo - I bump him to 4th simply because Freeman/Votto better home parks
Cody Bellinger - Mucho hype, he's legit, will put up a big year, but not sure the value is there
Jose Abreu - Near elite, hitter park, slightly better lineup and potentially obtainable in the 4th rd
Will Myers - He's a 20SB guy! What else you need? 27 prime, 30hr+ power, upside depends on team
Eric Hosmer - 5 cat 1B and consistently falls to the 5th/6th rd maybe further
Edwin Encarnacion - Usual power, sweet lineup, BUT he's 35 and only 3 cats
Rhys Hoskins - Upside is great, hype is greater, but value is gone - same boat as Bellinger
Matt Olsen - Bellinger/Hoskins boat w/ slightly less hype and likely cheaper, mega power, meh BA
Miguel Cabrera - Risky but I like the chances of a bounce back, if he's healthy will be a value
Buster Posey - Dual eligibility play here but power is a question mark, otherwise I'd bump up a few

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If I whiff on the above, then I'm looking down in this next group.  There's so many options that you shouldn't feel the need to overpay. 1B is filled with value goodness this year.  Gallo will crush your BA but you can plan for that while you take advantage of his power, SB's and dual eligibility for example. Why pay for the hype of Rhys Hoskins who hasn't even played a full year yet when you have proven options you can get below for cheaper? Why over pay for Hoskins when you can get a proven Carlos Santana who makes better contact and will get you an OBP above .360 for much cheaper? Just a thought. I know everyone loves their prospects :)

Joey Gallo - BA crusher but you can plan for it and take advantage of power/speed
Carlos Santana - Moves to a hitters park, contact/OBP guy, I like the upside at 31
Nelson Cruz - DH only but you know what you're getting
Matt Carpenter - Some injury concern but the dual eligibility and the fact he's lofting the ball is nice
Justin Smoak - He's huge into the launch angles, barrels and all that - I like a repeat here for less
Greg Bird - I'm a yankee homer and this guy healthy and left in Yankee Stadium is gold
Justin Bour - Fear is Bour has no team around him, let him drop and scoop late for .280/30/90
Eric Thames - Classic hot start, crap middle, hot SEP 2017 - Fine late pick with dual eligibility
Ryan Zimmerman - Another launch angle guy so I like the power consistency here
Logan Morrison - Another launch angle guy with exceptional OBP skills

Next group here is just full of questions marks. I like these guys in my DH spot or utilize them at other positions if they have dual eligibility.  They all have some kind of upside but come with risk, so lets look at both. Really like some kind of sneaky bounce backs from Chris Davis and the power, Ian Desmond back to 20/20, and Ryan Healy who was all the rage this time last year. You could sit back all draft and just wait for this group on the cheap to fill your 1B, CI and DH/U and feel totally fantastic about it.

Marwin Gonzalez - 5x eligibility, opportunity but was 23HR/90RBI real?
Trey Mancini - Nice upside here, fantasy experts breezing over this guy, sleeper alert for more HR
Ryan Healy - Cheap dual eligibility, last year was solid - traded to SEA, there's forgotten upside here
Chris Davis - He's only 31, everyone down on this guy, still has power in a hitters park, sooo cheap!!
Ian Desmond - The fear is last years injury history and ground ball rate, another late target for me
Hanley Ramirez - I love a bounce back here
Josh Bell - Only 25 with upside but BA potential looking weak with no SB
Brandon Belt - Hurt last year, only 29 prime, there's a surprise here if healthy
Ryan McMahon - My vote for ticket on Bellinger/Hoskins/Olson boat with no hype and 4 cat upside

Best of the rest here....

Mitch Moreland - Serviceable cheaper Brandon Belt
Mark Reynolds - Usually has a nice run at some point in season
Yuli Gurriel - Hits in the clutch, seems to get RBI's in bunches
Albert Pujols - Skills are diminishing but still maybe good for 25HR
Yonder Alonso - I don't know man, was the surge real? I'm not paying to find out w/ options above
Jose Martinez - Not a ton of power here
Adrian Gonzalez - Total crapshoot but might just hold spot for Dominic Smith
Matt Adams - Left power but likely a platoon
Joe Mauer - Stop it.  Had that one good year
Dominic Smith - Has offensive upside but I think his defense is atrocious
CJ Cron - Power Al Only guy
Brad Miller - If healthy has some pop, launch angle guy
Chase Headley - Clubhouse guy, not sure how to score that in fantasy
Adam Lind - Is he still playing?
Brandon Moss - If you're drafting Moss you're doing something wrong

Thursday, February 08, 2018

The Fantasy Man's 2018 Fantasy Baseball Catchers Rankings

The Fantasy Man's 2018 Fantasy Baseball Catchers Rankings

I wouldn't quite call this first group a tier but more so a group of catchers I'd simply draft, at minimum, as my first catcher in a 2-C league. This position is mega weak and diamonds in the rough are tough to come by here. You can make a case to get two of these guys and call it a day. That's how bad this position is.

One idea I love is to plan to grab Gary Sanchez early and then scoop up Salvador Perez mid draft (10th rd) as he seems like a less sexy pick in the earlier rounds.

Gary Sanchez - No question #1 and worthy of a late 2nd / early 3rd round mixed league pick
Wilson Contrereas - 21HR & 74RBI in 377AB in 2017, only 25, could get 1B/OF eligibility
Buster Posey - Fairly safe .300+avg with HR upside over 2017's 18HR
Salvador Perez - Safe 25HR/75RBI/.265 FLOOR and ONLY 27 - Best C value on board
JT Realmuto - Only 26 but no offense around him, take advantage of the FUD and get a discount
Wellington Castillo - 20HR/53RBI in 341 in 2016, better situation in CWS, upside here w/ 400+ AB
Brian McCann - Still only 33, injuries derailed him last year, potent lineup, I see an uptick
Yadier Molina - Listen, he's 35, he's a pro hitter, solid, steals bases and he's super cheap.
Mike Zunino - Power is there, contact better, whiffs a lot - he's my cheap sleeper, I'll deal with BA

Get yourself a Dirty Baseball Sign (WHAT??) at Kraftman's Ship. Tell your wife you need one in the dining room!

In any fantasy baseball snake draft or auction, I have to have at least one of these guys.  I find myself gravitating towards Sal Perez as he's just so reliable, he's fairly durable, and he's only 27.  We know catchers develop as better hitters later in their career and Perez seems like he's been around forever and I simply like that combination.  He also slips down the draft a bit and you can grab him usually in or after the 10th round.  That's a nice value considering he's a top 4 catcher and he's super reliable.  Yadier Molina is another one that will slip later in drafts but provide solid and safe production in every category. If I whiff on Sanchez/Posey/Contreras, I'm looking to pair Perez with Molina as my top pairing option for value.

This next tier are players I feel have some upside or something special about them assuming 400+ AB of full health but there's also too many question marks. These are also likely your ideal second catcher options..

Austin Barnes - Looks legit but depends on Yasmani Grandal, bump up if traded
Wilson Ramos - Could be a .270/20HR/70RBI type season if stays healthy and gets 400+ AB
Matt Wieters - Maybe there's a potential Joe Mauer/JD Drew type season? Talent is there
Austin Hedges - Legit power, .300+BA in minors, I like the upside and opportunity for under $5
Travis d'Arnaud - My favorite sleeper to surprise, only 28, and cost low, definite end game target
Evan Gattis - 25-30 HR is there with 400+ AB as a DH and back up catcher
James McCann - 1st full season upcoming could be a solid .260/20/60
Tucker Barnhart - 4 year deal and primary backstop means opportunity, could do worse for $1-$3

After that, your guess is as good as mine.  Pick your poison.  Want to invest in upside youth?  You have...

Francisco Mejia - Major league ready, could play 3B potentially, $1 stash since he's blocked
Chance Sisco - Showing as the starter, light on power currently, and Caleb Joseph in the way
Jorge Alfaro - Legit power, maybe low contact, good defense, rocket arm if he breaks camp
Danny Jansen - Darkhorse prospect sleeper, awesome plate discipline, could be up this year

What about your platoon guys...

Alex Avila - Experienced a small power surge in 1st half last season, was it real?
Cameron Rupp - Stock is down, Alfaro/Knapp hype, could be sneaky deep sleeper
Caleb Joseph - Same situation as Rupp
Yasmani Grandal - Tough one, depends on Austin Barnes spring training
Manny Pina - Has BA upside but 2 other serviceable catchers on roster
Kevin Plawecki - Has upside but I see him as only a handcuff to d'Arnaud if he doesn't take step
Devin Mesoraco - If healthy and Barnhart gets hurt he could be a nice cheap stash
Tom Murphy - Nice power upside and low on radar. Ianetta just a stop-gap
Yan Gomes - Has comeback power potential written all over, more of a stash for me
Bruce Maxwell - There's power upside here, some youth, but still a platoon for now - cheap stash


When you just need to fill a roster spot in an AL or NL only league...

Francisco Cervelli - Dude makes contact, could provide decent BA in a full season
Russell Martin - Maybe if healthy you can bump him up, best hitter of this group
Robinson Chirinos - Has some power upside in a hitters park
Chris Ianetta - Maybe you can bump him up in COL, 20HR+ power but still 'meh'
Martin Maldonado - Full timer but light bat
Christian Vazquez - Full timer, light bat but steals a few bases
Roberto Perez - Light bat here, does have some clutch hitting ability which could lead to upside
Tyler Flowers - Has little spurts here and there
Jason Castro - I don't see any type of breakout outside of what we've seen recently







Tuesday, July 30, 2013

NL King - NL Sellers

With the non waiver trade deadline tomorrow the 31st at 4PM Eastern Standard time let's look at the NL sellers in MLB as it can effect a lot of NL only leagues.

Colorado - Cuddyer & De la Rosa
They have not called themselves sellers but are 5 games under 500 and 8 games behind in the loss column on the 1st place Dodgers & 2nd wild card team in the Reds. If someone offers something special for De la Rosa (free agent after the season) or Cuddyer (1 year left on his contract after this year) the Rocks I believe will heavily consider it.

Cubs - DeJesus, Schierholtz & Gregg.
Gregg is definitely moved for the best prospect Theo Epstein can get. Seems like the Cubs want to trade Schierholtz why I don't know as he is having a really good year and Cubs hardly have any outfielders and Schierholtz is not expensive. Maybe the Cubs going to make a big splash in free agency with a guy like Ellsbury or Choo. DeJesus if not moved by the deadline could still get moved in August.

Miami - Pierre, Ruggiano & Cishek.
For whatever reason the Marlins who are awful team and should cash in on Cishek say they will hold on to him unless they are blown away. I didn't realize Cishek was the next Mariano Rivera. Pierre is a goner if anyone wants him & with young OF's the Marlins have if they can get anything for Ruggiano he is a goner too.

Milwaukee - Aoki, A.Ramirez, Gallardo, Lohse, Axford.
Aoki & Lohse only gets moved for a huge package, Aramis Ramirez still a bit ways away from getting back on the field. So if he gets moved it will be in August and he would easily clear waivers with his dollars owed next season. Seems like a lot teams cooled off on Gallardo as his stuff is way down this year. Axford is a goner.

NY Mets - Buck, Byrd & Parnell.
Mets want to finish the season strong so will only trade Byrd & Buck if they get a prospect they really like. Also Mets would only think of trading Parnell if they can get a big package.

Philadelphia - M.Young, Rollins, C.Lee & Papelbon
Young is a goner and would be great fit for many AL teams. Rollins is a long shot for many reasons and have to get his approval as he is a 10-5 man, Cliff Lee given the dollars owed to him going forward I can only see the Dodgers or Red Sox. Papelbon does not seem to have a lot of interest given his contract, if Tigers are not interested I am not sure who is.

San Diego - Quentin, Denorfia, Volquez, Street & Gregerson
This team has to get a lot better before they can think about contending.

San Francisco - Pence & Lincecum
Pence is a goner if they can get a really good package & Lincecum might just be time to move on

Clock is ticking. Follow me on Twitter @ TheNLKing

NL King - CJ Lizza


Friday, July 26, 2013

NL King - Will the W.Sox Help NL Only Leagues?

With the MLB non waiver trade deadline coming this Wednesday July 31st it appears the only team in the AL that can help NL only leagues is the Chicago White Sox. The White Sox have a trio of players dangling on the trade market. Let's look at them.

Jake Peavy: 8W, 4.28 ERA, 1.14 Ratio, 76K in 80IP
Having a good season although has been injured during the course of this season. Very capable of being a front line starter in fantasy baseball especially in the NL IF he can stay healthy. Word is the Braves, Cardinals & Dodgers are in the mix for a trade for Peavy. Peavy salary for this year & next (14.5 Mil) can be a stumbling block in a trade with any team given his injury history.


Alex Rios: 12HR, 49RBI, 51R, 21SB, .276 Avg
Having a very good season although after an excellent 2012 season. Can bring power & speed to an NL only lineup. There are not a lot of those guys around. Word is the Pirates are in the mix and I would think the Giants as well. Rios is signed through next season.


Alexei Ramirez: 1HR, 26RBI, 42R, 21SB, .283 Avg
Use to be a guy who would hit in the mid to upper teens in HR's but his power swing has gone away. Still can really help a NL only fantasy team in Runs & Stolen Bases. The Pirates & Cardinals are in the mix. Ramirez is signed through the 2015 season.

Will the W.Sox help NL only fantasy leagues? Stay tuned.

Follow me on Twitter @ TheNLKing

NL King - C.Lizza

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

NL King - Marlins OF Prospects Up & Prospects from Garza Trade

Marlins: Christian Yelich & Jake Marisnickcalled up.

Two of the Marlins top prospects, both outfielders, are getting the call today. I am sure they will see everyday AB's for the immediate future and if they do well for the rest of the season.

Yelich (21) back in Spring Training was the Marlins 2nd best prospect (Jose Fernandez was #1) and the 15th best prospect in all of MLB according to Baseball America. Yelich has played in 3 levels this season at Rookie Ball, High A and most recently AA. Yelich in 61 games at the 3 levels had 236 AB's, 9HR, 33RBI, 38R, 5SB, .275 AVG, .359 OBP. Yelich had 13 doubles & 7 Triples. He projects to be core bat for the Marlins and has a chance to be a star player both in real life & in fantasy.

Marisnick (22) back in Spring Training was the Marlins 4th best prospect and the 70th best prospect in all of MLB according to Baseball America. Marisnick has played at 2 levels this season in high A & AA. Marisnick in 70 games at the two levels this season had 280 AB's, 12HR, 46RBI, 45R, 11SB, .289 AVG, .350 OBP. Marisnick had 14 doubles & 3 triples. Another exciting young player for the Marlins, probably won't be as good as Yelich but extremely talented in his own right.

The Marlins want to see if these two extremely talented kids are ready for the majors now. If they are they will be occupying 2/3 of their outfield for years to come including opening day next season. If these two kids show they are ready I think it really opens the door for a Stanton trade come this off-season at the winter meetings. It's perfect storm to trade Stanton for the Marlins this off-season. It's a weak free agent class so many teams are going to look at trades to improve their team. Stanton is under team control for 3 more seasons after this year and will just be 24 in November. Stanton is also arbtration eligible for the first time this off-season a fact I am sure the Marlins are very aware of. Stanton has so much talent that the Marlins would get a huge package for him and this winter (with almost every MLB team bidding) & will be the optimunal time to trade Stanton.

Cubs: Garza Trade

In terms of the Matt Garza trade to the Texas Rangers the Cubs got back 3 youngsters in Mike Olt (3B), CJ Edwards (SP) & Justin Grimm (SP). Olt has had a rough season this year in AAA has he has experienced vision problems. Obviously the Cubs must feel he is passed those problems. Olt is only hitting .219 in AAA but he does have pop (12 HR's & 17 Doubles) and he does walk (OBP .318). However Olt does have 95 K's in his 242 AB's this year in AAA. Keep in mind Olt did have a big season last year in AA so maybe his bout with vision issues is the result of his poor average & high K's. So if Olt is passed that the Cubs could have at least got a very good power hitter. Olt will be 25 at the end of August so while the Cubs are assigning him to AAA Iowa I do believe sometime soon Olt will get called up and finish the last 6 to 8 weeks at Wrigley. In terms of long term future with the Cubs if Olt is a player it will probably be in the outfield because remember the Cubs 1st round draft pick, 2nd overall Kris Bryant is a 3B. Also in the deal the Cubs received starter pitchers Justin Grimm & CJ Edwards. Grimm is being sent to AAA Iowa as well and projects as back of the rotation starter at best. Edwards is a big key to this deal while he is only 21 and in high A he is already one of the Cubs top pitching prospects if not their best pitching prospect. Cubs have kids in the system but they are all really position players.

Follow me on Twitter @ TheNLKing and pass the word.

NL King - C.Lizza

Monday, July 22, 2013

NL King - Red Sox Misnomer, Harvey 200 Mil & Boras, Garza, LAD 4OF's & A.Ramirez

Okay we have five topics to get today so let's do it.

Boston Red Sox Misnomer:
So after 100 games the Red Sox are in 1st place with a 60-40 record (.600 winning percentage) and in 1st place in the NL East with the best record in the American League and 2nd best record in baseball. Over the all-star break I heard many baseball interviews including one with NY Mets GM Sandy Alderson & one with NY Mets owner Jeff Wilpon talking about what the Red Sox did in terms of these shorter term deals in free agency and look where they are now. This couldn't;t be farther from the truth. First off while they didn't give 7 year deals to these players in particular Victorino, Napoli & Dempster they did give them aggressive contracts given their age, with the exception to Napoli whose medical reports were just awful. Ironically it's only Napoli who is having a good year (83G, 13HR, 62RBI, 50R, .258Avg). Victorino has missed a 1/3 of the season and his stats are 4HR, 26RBI, 39R, 13SB, .290 Avg. Ryan Dempster has given the Red Sox innings (115+) but is 5-8 with a 4.28 ERA. The Red Sox are in 1st place because of the core players they already had going into the season plus the young players they had in the system. I am talking about Pedroia, Nava, Ellsbury, Ortiz, Lester, Buchholz, Doubront and the re-emergence of John Lackey. Have their free agents contributed yes but if teams such as the NY Mets indicated that these kind of deals on 33-37 year olds are the way to go because look at the Red Sox record they are in for a bad surprise.

Matt Harvey & Scott Boras:
In a recent article that Matt Harvey did in Men's journal he floated the notion of a 200 Million Dollar contract. Looks like the young star has some very high hopes of his future earnings. Many of the Met fans might think and wisely lets get Harvey locked up long term now before his arbitration kicks in. Keep in mind what his super agent Scott Boras recently said when asked about this by Joel Sherman of the NY Post: "When the team wants to go into these situations and what the true value of the player is are not often that close." Harvey is not eligible for arbitration until after the 2015 season.

Matt Garza is Still a Cub:
Guess what it's Monday the day of Matt Garza next start and he is still a Cub. As much as the Cubs want to move Garza as soon as possible they are not going to do so until they get the package they want. Keep in mind they have until July 31st to trade him and it appears that as many as 10 teams are involved. The Cubs just need one of those teams to blink. I be careful on any trade discussions anyone says they know what's going on. On Friday night it was reported a deal between the Cubs & Rangers was 99% done and both sides were looking at medical records. Then it came out the Cubs were not getting their package. Garza will be traded and soon but someone will have to step up with a strong offer.

Dodgers 4 OF's:
Now that Matt Kemp is back (although hurt his ankle in the 9th inning in yesterdays game, for now considered day to day, ankle injuries are tricky) how is Dodger Manager Don Mattingly going to play his 4 OF's in Puig, Kemp, Crawford & Ethier. Mattingly is in a pennant chase and has to play his best players. That means Puig & Kemp play every day. Then it's between Crawford & Ethier for the last spot but I think Crawford at the top of the lineup is very important to the Dodgers. But even if Ethier is the odd man out he should get at least 4 starts a week. Lets face it Crawford has had a lot of injuries and probably be a smart move giving him a couple of days off a week where Ethier could start in his place. Also by giving Kemp & Puig one day off a week you keep them fresh and give Ethier playing time. This will be a situation that will have to be resolved in the off-season and that won't be easy given Ethier's escalated contract over the next 4 years.

Aramis Ramirez on the Trading Block?
Been hearing reports with Aramis Ramirez coming back early this week that the Brewers are going to shop him and they are a lot of interested parties. All that could very well be true and if you can get a team like the Dodgers involved where they do not care about payroll they may not be a problem. But keep in mind that Aramis Ramirez who has had an injury riddled year is 35 and has 1 more guaranteed year left on his contract where he will make 16 Million Dollars next year with a team option for 2015 that includes a 4 Million Dollar buyout. So Ramirez is guaranteed 20 Million dollars on his contract after this season. That could be a major stumbling block.

Follow me on Twitter @ TheNLKing and pass the word.

NL King - C.Lizza