A top the world wide fantasy ranking sit the exact three players you would expect, Mike Trout, Paul Goldschmidt and Bryce Harper. In the top 15 also lies both Charlie Blackmon and Joey Votto, both of whom are in the top 6 – a little higher than projected for both, but not overly surprising that they are producing at the clip they are. The rest of the top 15 are really draft day steals slathered with value, and clearly giving owners many a restful night, followed by Christmas morning like excitement when they log on to check the box scores the following AM. If you drafted anyone of these players with the expectation that they would be in the top 15 offensively you are a true box score prophet, and should be playing fantasy sports in every format.
Here’s how the remaining ten players shape up, and here’s where we are going to land the plane… for now.
#4 – Aaron Judge – late round flyer, maybe a 10th rounder in expert drafts
#7 – Jake Lamb – late round flyer or waiver wire pick up
#8 – Freddie Freeman – outside the 4th round, but that line up scared many off
#9 – Ryan Zimmerman – no way anyone drafted Zim – free agent gold
#10 – Eric Thames – Keep drug testing him while he keeps mashing
#11 – Michael Conforto – Late round flyer, early drop slow start, picked back up
#12 – Mark Reynolds – cut down strike outs and is now fills the stat sheet
#13 – Miguel Sano – on base machine with counting stats in an average line up
#14 – Joey Gallo – Majors HR leader – late round flyer at best
#15 – Adam Duvall – I have no idea how this happened
You know who’s not in the top 15??? Guys you paid a crown for including Kris Bryan, Jose Altuve, Manny Machado, Nolan Arenado and Mookie Betts. Is there a lesson here?? Of course there is… after the top three players – 5-25 is an absolute crapshoot, with half of those players returning value and the other half making you second guess your pseudo fantasy expertise. I’m feeling your pain especially this season. So what do we do with this group of guys?
Court Is In Session
You know Yankees Nation is beside themselves with the success of the youth movement wearing pinstripes and achieving Big Apple type success on both sides of the ball. Brett Gardner who is the 15th ranked OF in the league is really just the tip of the iceberg with this offense. Aaron Judge has been a beast this season while imposing his will on opposing pitchers. I think Judge is the real deal, but if you are paying up for him in daily, make sure the rest of the roster is hitting too. Kudos to you for pulling the trigger on him on draft day as well.
Early Season Smoke & Mirrors
Three guys I’m selling high on are Freddie Freeman, Michael Conforto and Miguel Sano. All three are in offenses that barely have a pulse, and once pitchers start giving them nothing to hit their numbers will steadily decline. Hold only if you think the line up around them will get better. Beware of the hot start and sell high while you can… aside from Freeman of course who likely isn’t worth a hot bowl of soup due to his injury.
Thames – Not Just a River in London
Eric Thames is my super value surprise of the season, because I knew Milwaukee was going to be sneaky good, but I never gave one ounce of pre-credit to Thames for the Brewers offensive prowess. An average hitter thus far in his career, Thames has been the Milwaukee Mauler thus far overshadowing the like of Ryan Braun and young guns Keon Broxton and Domingo Santana. If you have Thames and he is producing, and your high draft picks are already producing, than Thames should be icing on the cake. The problem with icing is that too much makes you sick, so if you have a hole on your roster anywhere, Thames should be dangled like a carrot to a rabbit and traded away while his value has peaked. If you’ve rested your hopes in players like Mike Trout, Freddie Freeman, A.J. Pollock or an under achieving Trea Turner that you probably need to hold.
Trout Gone Fishing
This is a sore subject for me, but the consensus number one pick who was having a career year is now out for 6-8 weeks, meaning you’re likely up the creek unless you have two or more of the guys mentioned above, which is very possible. If I’m a non Trout owner, I’m trying to be a shoulder to cry on for a devastated owner looking to make a desperation move to recoup lost value. I’d give up a mid-tier SP, Closer and offensive player (if you can afford it) for Trout in a minute. You’ll still have him for a third of the season where and he’s still likely to drop 30 bombs, and steal 20 bases. In daily – I’m all over Eric Young Jr. if he’s playing. Super cheap and major league ready… Happy dealing.
Next week, we’ll take a look at some mid to lower tiered players that could save your team, or earn you money in the long run.