2017 Fantasy Baseball, Knocking on the Door: Third Basemen
Third base is a loaded position in fantasy baseball, so it would make perfect sense than the knocking on the door series would be loaded as well. At least one of them would have rated as a top 24 third baseman based on the numbers from last year alone. However, like with so many other players, the ranking wouldn’t have been appropriate. So, we created this separate series to handle those difficult cases of projecting younger players.
Ryon Healy— Oakland Athletics (.305, 13 HR, 36 Runs, 37 RBI, 0 SB, 12 BB)
I’m not really sure where Healy ranks amongst the top third basemen in the game. It isn’t easy enough to simply multiply the numbers by 162 games and call it good. The league will adjust to him and he will have to readjust after that. Expecting a .300 average and 30 home runs so soon is probably a bit optimistic, but doubling the numbers is probably a bit more in line of what you can expect. I would roughly throw out a .275, 25 HR, 80 Runs, 80 RBI line out there as an estimate.
In his minor league career, Healy had a .293/.332/.452 slash line, so that probably seems like a nice ceiling for him. Those kinds of numbers make him a nominal fantasy regular. Some in your league will be tempted to base their rankings off of last season’s numbers. Go ahead and let them pick him too high so you can focus on better players.
Alex Bregman— Houston Astros (.261, 8 HR, 31 Runs, 34 RBI, 2 SB, 15 BB)
Bergman got off to one of the worst starts of anyone in history. In his first two weeks he was hitting under .100 and many thought he would get sent back to AAA. Fortunately for him and the Astros, they were patient and he rewarded that patience by rebounding in a huge way. The overall numbers, don’t look great, but when you remove those first two weeks he was better than even Healy. The fact that he can play shortstop is also a huge deal. He didn’t play enough there last season, but circumstances could change.
The primary circumstance are the usual rumors that happen with a team on the move. The Astros desperately want an ace on top of their rotation and Bregman is their number one trade piece. They don’t want to part with him, but sometimes you have to make decisions you don’t want to when you are desperate. If he gets dealt he could end up moving to second base or shortstop. That only makes him more valuable.
Yoan Moncada— Boston Red Sox (.294, 15 HR, 94 Runs, 62 RBI, 45 SB, 72 BB)
The Sox third base situation is a bit of a soap opera. You have the incumbent Travis Shaw. He put up decent enough numbers and is somehow the third favorite for the position. Pablo Sandoval was signed for 90 million dollars to be the guy and he has done nothing in two seasons to warrant the faith, but he is still owed almost 60 million dollars, so he will get some sort of opportunity to establish himself. That is unless they can find a way to unload him.
Moncada himself signed for 31.5 million, so he is likely to get a long look too. The numbers above came in his stint in AAA. Obviously, for fantasy fans the most intriguing numbers are the stolen bases. If you couple that with double digit home runs then you may have something. If he plays everyday it could be enough to make him a fantasy regular.