Most Accurate Fantasy Baseball Experts

Mar 8, 2018

One expert was substantially higher on Judge than everyone else

We are far enough into Spring Training that Jason Kipnis has already knocked six homers. That means drafts are quickly approaching and you are cramming in as much preparation as possible so you can ace your draft. Here at FantasyPros, our endeavor is to eliminate the “work” that comes with getting ready for draft day. Whether it’s via our free mobile apps or award-winning draft tools, there are several ways we can help. Another useful tool is our annual expert accuracy assessment. With your draft right around the corner, now is the time to highlight which experts were the most accurate in their rankings last season.

Before we get to the results, here are a few quick notes about the accuracy study:

  • In total, draft rankings from 56 fantasy experts were analyzed
  • All of the rankings tracked used a standard 5×5 Roto setup.
  • The experts were rated by comparing their preseason rankings to our Player Rater that evaluates performance across the season (see: full methodology).

Without further ado, here are the experts with the most accurate fantasy baseball rankings.

Expert Accuracy Standings

Top Fantasy Baseball Experts
 Rank  Expert
 1.  KJ – Fantasy Team Advice
 2.  Rudy Gamble – Razzball 
 3.  Tim McCullough – RotoExperts 
 4.  Bill Dubiel – RotoBaller
 5.  William Singer – Fox Sports 
 6.  Dennis Esser – Coach Esser 
 7.  Steve Gardner – USA Today
 8.  Ryan Fowler – Independent 
 9.  Luke Gloeckner – Mr. Cheatsheet 
 10.  Josh Shepardson – Fantasy Cruncher 

See the full field of experts (56 total) | Combine top experts into consensus rankings

Congratulations to KJ (Fantasy Team Advice) for putting together the most accurate set of expert rankings in 2017. You will find KJ’s name sprinkled throughout our top expert table for this year’s surprises and busts. It is not as though he posted a bunch of wild rankings and just happened to hit on a number of big ones. Rather, KJ somehow (time machine?) made a couple dozen bold rankings and hit on nearly every single one of them. This led to KJ finishing in the top 12 in six different positions including the top 5 for catchers, second basemen, outfielders and starting pitchers. That type of consistency is absolutely phenomenal in such a volatile sport like baseball. Let’s take a look at some of his best picks.

KJ managed to foresee countless surprise performances among starting pitchers. His impressive predictions at the position included, but were not limited to having Alex Wood ranked 33 spots higher at a positional level than the expert consensus, Robbie Ray (+33 vs consensus), Gio Gonzalez (+18 vs consensus), Dallas Keuchel (+14), James Paxton (+11), Gerrit Cole (+8) and Rich Hill (+7). In case you were wondering, that is just about the entire list of pitchers who outperformed expectations and KJ’s rankings nailed them all. On the flip side, he also warned off anyone who would listen on Aaron Sanchez (-27 vs consensus), Julio Teheran (-23) and Matt Harvey (-16).

It didn’t stop there, though, KJ cleaned up on the offensive side of things too. Perhaps his top prediction of the year was ranking Aaron Judge a full 25 spots above the expert consensus at a positional level. As you would imagine, he was by far the most accurate expert on Judge. Beyond him, KJ was also the most accurate of 56 experts with his rankings on Marwin Gonzalez (+9 vs consensus), Jose Ramirez (+4 vs consensus), Avisail Garcia (+33!), Eddie Rosario (+36!), Elvis Andrus (+4), Whit Merrifield (+8), Ender Inciarte (+11) and Yasiel Puig (+20!). He was very nearly the top expert on just as many players ranging from JD Martinez and Mike Zunino to Justin Upton and Andrew McCutchen.

It may be an understatement to say that this level of insight is the equivalent of building a near-perfect March Madness bracket. Spectacular work, KJ!

Major props are also due to three experts who were able to post their second consecutive top 10 finish in the expert accuracy rankings.

Exceptional work, guys, that is an incredible accomplishment!

Surprise Players

Last season was no different than any in the past seeing that we had plenty of players performing far beyond the expectations. Whichever fantasy team was able to gather three or four of these assets likely came out on top in the end. Below are the experts that had the best read on each player (they had him ranked closer to their actual final rank than anyone else). Our Expert Consensus Rankings (ECR) are compared in the table below to the top expert’s rankings to show just how far out on a limb each pundit went with their ranking.

 Player Pos  Top Expert  Rank*  ECR
 Mike Zunino C Al Melchior (Fantrax) 11 20
 Cody Bellinger 1B Bobby Sylvester (FantasyPros) 26 43
 Whit Merrifield 2B KJ ( Fantasy Team Advice) 28 36
 Jose Ramirez 3B KJ ( Fantasy Team Advice) 7 11
 Joey Gallo 3B Bobby Sylvester (FantasyPros) 24 32
 Elvis Andrus SS KJ ( Fantasy Team Advice) 9 13
 Aaron Judge OF KJ ( Fantasy Team Advice) 59 84
 J.D. Martinez OF Nick Pollack (Pitcher List) 5 18
 Domingo Santana OF Site Projections (RotoChamp) 34 60
 Ender Inciarte OF KJ ( Fantasy Team Advice) 38 49
 Luis Severino SP Mario Mergola (Sportfolio) 56 108
 Zack Greinke SP Bill Dubiel (RotoBaller) 18 24
 Gio Gonzalez SP Rudy Gamble (Razzball) 45 66
 Ervin Santana SP Site Projections (RotoChamp) 41 73
 Robbie Ray SP Rudy Gamble (Razzball) 26 52
 Alex Wood SP Mario Mergola (Sportfolio) 48 100
 James Paxton SP Chris Towers (CBS Sports) 22 41
 Drew Pomeranz SP Bill Dubiel (RotoBaller) 37 58
 Raisel Iglesias RP Brandon Funston (Fantasy Spin) 10 22

 *Ranks are at the position level


On the opposite end of the spectrum, here are the notable disappointments from 2017 along with the experts that went against popular opinion with their rankings, correctly predicting them to vastly underperform the consensus expectations.

Player Pos  Top Expert  Rank*  ECR
 Russell Martin C Muntradamus (Beast Dome) 15 3
 Miguel Cabrera 1B Jeff Boggis (Fantasy Football Empire) 7 3
 Rougned Odor 2B Mario Mergola (Sportfolio) 9 6
 Kyle Seager 3B Muntradamus (Beast Dome) 9 4
 Aledmys Diaz SS Andrew Eggers (FantasyCouch) 18 9
 Gregory Polanco OF Mario Mergola (Sportfolio) 37 15
 Kyle Schwarber OF Dan Marcus (Fantasy-Phenoms) 75 21
 Jose Bautista OF Jason Johnson
(Understanding Fantasy Baseball)
47 24
 Jon Lester SP Greg Smith (The Fake Baseball) 13 8
 Johnny Cueto SP Dan Marcus (Fantasy-Phenoms) 16 10
 Masahiro Tanaka SP Rudy Gamble (Razzball) 32 18
 Rick Porcello SP Greg Smith (The Fake Baseball) 48 27
 Kevin Gausman SP Muntradamus (Beast Dome) 68 38
 Seung-Hwan Oh RP Heath Capps (Fake Teams) 14 5

That wraps up our analysis of 2017’s expert draft rankings. Congratulations again to KJ from Fantasy Team Advice and the rest of the top experts!

Lastly, be sure to follow us on Twitter and Facebook to stay on top of our latest updates and advice. We have plenty in store leading up to and during the baseball season. Stay tuned!

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25Charlie Blackmon (COL)CF
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