2019 Fantasy Baseball Rankings Review – Top 100 players I’m low on
Last week saw the site publish our rankings and as with all consensus ranks, there’s some discrepancies between the rankers. So, it makes sense for me to go through the rankings and look at my top-100 ranked players and explain to you why I’m quite a bit higher or lower on certain players.
We’ve done the five guys I’m higher on so let’s pick out five guys I’m noticeably lower on. I may be lower purely because Alan and Todd like the player more than most, so I’ve tried to stick to five who I’ve ranked down for specific reasons which I’ll explain for each.
|Player||Consensus||My Rank||Alan’s Rank||Todd’s Rank|
Before we start with Juan Soto, I want to make this clear. I do not hate these players. I certainly don’t hate Soto, especially after what he did as a teenager last year. But is he really a 4th round pick? I’d argue against it. In dynasty, he’s probably a first-round pick. For 2019 redrafts, all we can really do is look at last year and estimate similar numbers as even his minor league record is so small it’s difficult to fully predict based on track record. Most projection systems have him hitting 27-30 homers, hitting around .292 and stealing seven bases. Just for comparison reasons, Yasiel Puig is projected for 29-32 homers, around a .272 average and fifteen steals. Puig is going around 4-5 rounds later. Depending where they hit in their respective orders will affect the runs and RBIs they contribute but overall, I’m pumping the breaks on Soto a tad.
Cain is someone I’ve not ranked much below pretty much everyone else and again, he’s not someone I’d be avoiding in drafts. In fact, he is a very good alternative if you target but miss out on Starling Marte. The sole reason I’m a bit down on Cain is due to his groundball rate increasing by 10% with his flyball rate dropping by 10% in 2018. He’s got the speed and plate discipline that it won’t harm him too much. However, he’ll be turning 33 in April and it’s difficult to see his speed improving and if he’s hitting no more than 10 homers, you’re really banking on Cain stealing at 30+ bags again to offer 4th-5th round value.
Matt Carpenter is someone I always seem to struggle to rank high. In part, it’s because I tend to avoid bumping up players too much based on their multi-position eligibility. This year, it’s to do with my reservations about his power outburst last year. His career high 36 homers was partly fuelled by a 19.1% HR/FB so when that comes back down, his projected 25-28 homers is much more likely. Still very nice for a multi-infield position eligible player who will score and drive in plenty of runs too, but he’s going 2-4 rounds earlier than a lot of third and second basemen who have similar profiles and projections.
Greinke followed his 2017 ERA of 3.20 with a 3.21 ERA in 2018. Despite his fastball velocity diminishing, Greinke still has the ability to get strikeouts and has elite command. So, why aren’t I as high on him as most? Well it is mainly to do with his FIP (Fielding Independent Pitching) going from 3.31 to 3.71 meaning even though his ERA was stable, last years was a bit fortunate. Now consider the Diamondbacks lineup this year and his 15 wins in 2018 isn’t likely to be matched either. Whilst Greinke will still more than likely be a very good pitcher and his WHIP especially is in the elite category, everything else will lean more towards someone I want in the 8th/9th round.
Finally, it’s Nick Castellanos. And again, I like him but he’s going far too high for my liking. I get the sense people are expecting a 30+ homer season and a .300 average but again, I’m not paying for it until I see it. Castellanos will bat in the heart of the Tigers lineup and I do expect them to be a bit better than some expect. But despite playing 157 games in each of his last two seasons, he’s hit 26 and 23 home runs and 25 outfielders hit more home runs than him last year. His average jumped up to .298 last year, but he had a BABIP of .361 so I’d expect that to go back nearer the .272 mark he had in 2017. Nowadays a 25 homer, .280 average outfielder isn’t that big of a deal when it comes with next to no stolen bases so you’ll need 90+ runs and RBIs along with him upping the power to warrant taking him earlier than the 9th round. He’s got a nice floor but not a similar projection to outfielders going a couple of rounds later than what people might think.