A players draft round usually is a good indication that they were underrated or overrated for the season. As of now here’s my first five list of fantasy baseball players who are poised to make big/small impacts this upcoming season. These are players who will help you in Dynasty formats, Keeper Leagues and possible Re-Drafts.
Who’s going to be this years Yasiel Puig? Will it be Yasiel Puig again? Wil it be Wil Myers? (Bad Typo) Who’s going to be this years Alex Rios? That is a question that could be considered facetious every other year. Fantasy Baseball is easy when you find those helpful late round flyers. Someone like Josh Donaldson could take you from playoff contender to championship round. These are some players I wouldn’t mind reaching for early or in some cases staying away from as they’ll likely be over drafted. And if you play in Salary Fantasy Baseball Leagues, drafting Robinson Cano would be shooting yourself in foot as well as the guard in the foot, while robbing the bank that is the Seattle Mariners. Don’t feel bad for them! They willingly signed him to that contract. The Yankees wanted to go a different direction – and they did by signing Tanaka.
Take A Chance On Me in 2014: Matt’s First Five Players to Target to Help Your Fantasy Baseball Team
Nick Castellanos, Tigers 3B:
The best thing that could happen to Nick was a trade of a corner infielder. That corner infielder was in fact Prince Fielder. Oh the almost alliteration! Nick moves back to the hot corner where he is projected to be a Gold Glove winning third baseman. His outfield experiment proved he’s serviceable but, doesn’t use his skill set properly. The job is essentially his to lose come march. He’s proven the Minors is not a challenge for him as he breezed through Single-A hitting above .400 for a couple of months. His average will be there it’s just a matter of time that the gap power starts to go over the fence.
The lack of home runs in his track record shouldn’t discourage you, he’s got that mobster sounding name to go along with sneaky solid power potential in waiting.
Like Joe Pesci in Casino, he’s got the right name and some serious scary hit’ potential. 2014 Projection: Four WebGems and 18 home runs while maintaining a .270 BA.
Matt Adams, Cardinals 1B:
The stature of a prototypical beer league ringer. Mr. Burns might replace him in favor of Cap Anson on your company softball team. But he shouldn’t, Matt Adams has a lightning struck secret weapon sitting on his shoulder – his bat. He is on the verge of being a young star first baseman. Adams belted 18 home runs in 318 ABs last season and now has a clear path to everyday starting lineup duties in 2014. In those limited ABs Adams had a BABIP of .337 which could produce a drop in his career .284 BA. Prone to the swing and miss Adams isn’t projected to be a big BA guy. His career BABIP sits at .332 based on very limited ABs (410PA), Suggesting he may sustain an above league average BABIP. You don’t always get a major league caliber player (from Slippery Rock University) in the 23rd round, So far Adams look to be a steal.
Matt Davidson, White Sox 3B:
It was always a waiting game for Davidson. When are the Dbacks going to stop playing Willie Bloomquist everywhere and call him up. They’ve since done that – and have since issued a trade involving the young third baseman. The White Sox traded closer Addison Reed for Matt Davidson. While Davidson doesn’t possess elite upside or have the skills to take a team to a World Series by himself. He does however have the necessary attributes to take the third base job and make it his from day one. A former Futures Game MVP, He projects to be a power hitting – low average third baseman who ranks amount the top ten in fantasy counting stats. He might be the most un-sexy name in the third basemen crop this year. Sort of like being Ross from Friends. Annoying average delivery, but succeeds in the end. Pro-tip: He marries Rachel. C’mon it’s been ten years! If you haven’t got around to see it, You were never going to.
Byron Buxton, Twins CF:
The greatest thing since sliced bread. Sliced bread being invented in 2009, Byron Buxton is the unquestionable top prospect in the game and has high ceiling projections in nearly every facet of his game. The Minnesota Twins are notorious for taking time with their prospects. They’ve already issued a Spring Training invite to Byron Buxton and top prospect colleague Miguel Sano. Rallying the base supporters and giving everyone a sneak peek into their elite talent waiting in the wings.
Despite the invitation; All indications are that Buxton will start the season in Double-A with a chance of hitting himself into a cup of coffee in the majors around August. News broke today that Byron is 100% healthy after a November bone bruise. He’s not projected to actually make this years Twins club but he’s on my radar for keeper leagues of all sizes. SG at Replacement Level Yankees Weblog gives Buxton a full season CAIRO projection of 57/7/43/.264/24 This is based on 450+ ABs which is highly improbable. This projection gives an idea that his tools will play right away in the big leagues. Draft and stash him for 2015, anything you get this year can be counted as a bonus.
George Springer, Astros OF:
George Springer may have had the quietest season of any top prospect. The Astros future OF posted 37 home runs, 45 steal .303 BA – a mammoth line. The Astros acquired Dexter Fowler from the Rockies this off-season but have stated, it will not block Springer’s ETA at all. In fact the only OF spot that’s not open if Dexter Fowler’s CF. George will have a chance to make the roster this spring and if not he should be a huge May call up. If seems I repeating myself but here’s another top prospect who whiffs far too much. While his Minors BB rate is a respectable 12.2%, his K rate is a staggering 26.5 in over 1,400 Minor league ABs. He will need to shrink the discrepancy between those two percentages to survive at the big league level. CAIRO gives Springer a 2014 projection of 52/18/49/17/.243. Given enough at bats for the young outfielder I wouldn’t bet against him making those numbers being his actual line.