In my early stages of prepping for the 2018 fantasy baseball draft season and I am already noticing a few great values. I am looking at fantrax.com ADP data, as of 2/9/18. Some of these guys are small values and some are core guys that can win a championship. Most of them will be rostered by the winner of your league I’m sure. I am here to make sure that winner is you.
Josh Donaldson – ADP 26 – First round pick for the past couple years. Missed 49 games in 2017 and still managed to hit 33 homers and 78 RBIs due to his .559 slugging percentage. Donaldson had his 2nd best OPS of his career but is somehow being discounted at the draft table. Take the value and run to a championship.
Justin Verlander – ADP 40 – Elite pitcher for over a decade. Continued that dominance into 2017 by posting 3.36 ERA and racking up 219 Ks in 206 IP. I feel like Verlander is just outside of the tier 1 for SP, but i think he is at the top of the list for SP 2. Given the team upgrade, he could potentially end the season as the highest rated SP in your league. Get him where you can.
Roberto Osuna – ADP 89 – Osuna might be one of the best closers in the game, but he plays in a tough division and ballpark so he’s not as coveted as others. Even with those obstacles, Osuna has posted a career 2.86 ERA and 0.905 WHIP with 240 Ks in 207.2 IP in his first three seasons. These numbers added to his 95 saves (37.5 avg SV in 2016-17) make him an excellent value at pick 89 when the first closer off the board is going 45 picks earlier.
Adam Eaton – ADP 138 – Eaton is one year removed from a brutal injury to his knee. Before his knee injury, he was getting cozy at the top of the lineup for his new team. Eaton scored 24 runs in 23 games and was on pace to post the highest on base percentage of his career (.393 vs .358 career). Eaton will give you a few stolen bases, a few homers, a solid average and great runs scored. He should be going off the board much earlier, since he gives you stats that are tough to find at this spot of the draft.
Bradley Zimmer – ADP 177 – Zimmer has blazing speed and has a stolen base success rate of 18/19. His one “caught stealing”? He was picked off by a pitcher. He has the talent to be a 4 category contributor, with speed being his greatest asset. He will always be a slight batting average drain, but he has the speed and skills to steal 40 bags and hit 20 homers. Think Starling Marte, without PED issues and lower BA. Those are very valuable stats in 2018s landscape.
Scooter Gennett – ADP 222 – Let me be clear. I am not saying Scooter will repeat his 2017 numbers. But IF he can retain some of the magic he found in Cincy last season, this is too good of a deal to pass up. Second base is very thin this season. If you didn’t get one of the top guys, Scooter is a great guy to take a flier on.
Andrelton Simmons – ADP 222 – Similar logic to the Scooter pick. Shortstop is crazy thin as well. Simmons posted his best full season on base percentage (.331), stolen base total (19), RBI (69), runs scored (77), and OPS (.752) in 2017. He did that while only striking out 67 times in 589 at bats. The Angels have boosted their lineup with the additions of Kinsler, Cozart, and a full season of Upton. All of this adds up to… BUY SIMMONS ON THE CHEAP.
Nick Senzel – ADP 290 – Senzel was the top college bat drafted in 2016 (2nd overall pick). He has risen through the ranks of the Reds farm system very rapidly. His .315/.393/.514 triple slash line in 187 career MiLB games has lots of people very excited about what he can do in 2018. You might have to wait a month to reap the rewards of this pick, but he will give you a little bit of everything. Dare I say he is a Paul Goldschmidt-lite player????
Jose Reyes – ADP 346 – At this point in the draft, you are just picking guys that you think have swag or whatever. Reyes is the guy I’ll be targeting. Put aside all of his off the field issues for a second. The guy just hit 6 homers with 19 runs scored and 8 stolen bases in September alone. Yes the rest of his year was pretty brutal, but this is a guy who was once a first round pick essentially every year. If he can bring September into 2018, you will look like a genius when you’re sitting on a goldmine. Thank me later.