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2020 NFBC ADP – Finding Value at Shortstop

For most of us fantasy baseball players, draft season is yet to get underway. But that does not mean we don’t have access to real live draft data as on NFBC, over 100 live drafts have taken place. So, we’re going to look at the Average Draft Position (ADP) of a few players who have comparable peers at significantly different prices to try and eek out as much value as possible.

Let’s take a look at two shortstops next and their 2019 numbers;

Name ADP PA R RBI HR SB AVG OBP SLG
Amed Rosario 130 655 75 72 15 19 .287 .323 .432
Kevin Newman 195 532 61 64 12 16 .308 .353 .446

 

As stolen bases become a scarcer commodity in fantasy, finding players who can get you some steals without harming your ratios elsewhere is more important than ever in drafts. These are two shortstops who fit that profile. Most players will be aware that shortstop is the strongest position in terms of depth early in the drafts (15 shortstops currently have an ADP under 100 on NFBC) so most middle-infield spots will be filled by the secondary group of shortstops like Rosario and Newman.

Newman missed almost all of April due to a lacerated finger, otherwise he’d have had a similar number of plate appearances to Rosario and given the ratios, their counting stats would be near identical. Their 2019 batted ball profiles are near identical too with less than 1% differences in their flyball, groundball and line-drive rates. If they have identical counting stats and Newman has the edge in batting average, surely he’d be getting drafted earlier. So why isn’t he?

2019 was Newman’s first full season as a major leaguer and his minor league numbers would lead you to think his double-digit home runs last year were an anomaly. In 394 minor league games across four seasons, Newman hit 15 home runs. That’s total! So 12 in 130 games for the Pirates was unexpected. But Newman has shown he can clear the fences and his Steamer projection has him hitting 9 in 134 games so there’s no reason he can’t hit 12 in a full season.

Rosario only has one more full season in the majors and his minor league numbers also suggest a power surge isn’t forthcoming as he had only 17 homers in 452 games before his 2017 call-up to the Mets. Rosario is only 24 years old (Newman is 26) so you can argue he has yet to reach his power potential. Steamer is projecting 15 homers over 150 games in 2020 for Rosario and he does appear to have the slight edge on Newman for power.

Steamer projects their stolen bases to be around the same with Rosario 20 SB in 150 games and Newman 18 SB in 130 games meaning an equal number of games could see both reaching the 20 steals mark.

With Newman having a slight edge on his batting average too, their ADPs should be much closer. Given their places in their team’s lineup, maybe Newman should actually be drafted before Rosario. Here are the total number of games they each started in their respective line-ups last year;

Kevin Newman

Lineup spot

Amed Rosario

74

Batting 1st

38

0

Batting 2nd

16

0

Batting 3rd

0

0

Batting 4th

0

0

Batting 5th

2

2

Batting 6th

15

30

Batting 7th

51

10

Batting 8th

29

0

Batting 9th

1

 

If you want to draft Rosario and are looking at some speed from an all-round contributor as the middle rounds hit, I’d suggest waiting the extra four or five rounds and going with Newman instead.
While Newman is batting leadoff in more than half of his games, Rosario finds himself in the bottom half of the order more often than not. The Mets should put up better offensive numbers than the Pirates but if last years’ trends continue into this season, Newman’s volume should match Rosario’s so the runs and RBIs which were so similar last year won’t be much different between the two by season’s end.

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