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8 Early ADP Standouts (2020 Fantasy Baseball)

Jan 15, 2020

Fernando Tatis Jr.’s 2019 production might be unsustainable

A player’s performance compared to our expectations of him is arguably the biggest factor in your fantasy roster’s success. Selecting someone whose output far exceeds their draft price can help push your team to new heights. In contrast, drafting an athlete who finished the season ranked much lower than you took him can sink your squad, especially if that player was an early pick.

With spring training still ahead of us, there’s bound to be some swings in average draft position (ADP) between now and Opening Day. However, it’s not too early to take a look at some athletes who stand out as being either way undervalued or overvalued. Our featured experts have examined the latest ADP data to find out who those players are. They share their thoughts below.

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Q1. What one hitter or starting pitcher stands out as being drafted too soon based on early consensus ADP rankings and why?

Fernando Tatis (SS – SD): 19th Overall ADP
“I’m rubbing my eyes to discern whether or not people are actually taking Tatis in the middle of the second round. His .410 BABIP was the highest in all of baseball and a full 100+ points above stars like Mike Trout, Alex Bregman, and Cody Bellinger. Likewise, his HR/FB rate was 32%, which is astronomical and also entirely unsustainable. We have many questions about power/speed rookie Luis Robert because of the holes in his swing, but his K-rate was nowhere near as high as Tatis’ and Robert’s career minor league batting average was 30 points higher. I don’t see much of a difference between these two besides the ADP being 90 picks apart.”
– Bobby Sylvester (FantasyPros)

Jack Flaherty (SP – STL): 26th Overall ADP
“Flaherty is currently being drafted as the eighth pitcher off the board at No. 26 overall. Sure, he has now established himself with his nasty slider, but the four-seamer still only tops out around 95 MPH. Not to take anything away from his outstanding second-half performance where he held batters to a paltry .139 average and had the league’s best ERA (0.93) and WHIP (0.70), but I would rather snag a top bat in that range and wait on guys like Charlie Morton (50th overall ADP), Lucas Giolito (55th) or Chris Paddack (58th). A larger sample size is needed to have that much faith in selecting him in Rounds 2 or 3.”
– Todd D Clark (The Fantasy Fix)

Jonathan Villar (2B/SS – MIA): 33rd Overall ADP
“Villar going in the first three rounds is crazy to me. I know last season he was fantastic, hitting 24 home runs and stealing 40 bases, but are we back on the bandwagon that Villar is a fantasy stud? Don’t forget he has fooled us once before. He hit 19 home runs and stole 62 bases in 2016, only to return in 2017 and hit 11 homers and steal 23 bases. Even last year at the break, he was at 10 home runs and 17 steals, which means he had an epic second half. The metrics say there is a lot of regression coming for Villar and playing for Miami is not going to help anyone either.”
– Joe Bond (Fantasy Six Pack)

Anthony Rendon (3B – LAA): 18th Overall ADP
“The easy thing to say is that he’s moving to a pitchers’ park. I will whisper, for fear of being scorned, that Rendon has eclipsed 30 homers just once in his career. Yes, that was last year, but I’m not drafting Rendon on the heels of a career year. Expect negative regression in every category that he helps in.”
– Carmen Maiorano (FantasyPros)

Q2. What one hitter or starting pitcher stands out as being drafted too late based on early consensus ADP rankings and why?

Lourdes Gurriel Jr. (2B/SS – TOR): 164th Overall ADP
“I don’t say this for hyperbole, but I sincerely believe that Gurriel is going a full five rounds too late. He was an absolute rockstar from the moment the Jays called him back up. The reasons no one noticed were that he wasn’t a top prospect, he had already lost his rookie eligibility, and he didn’t compile enough at-bats to build up imposing counting stats. However, consider that once Toronto promoted him on May 24, he finished the season with 20 homers, five steals, and a .292 batting average. Folks, that translates to 46 homers, 115 runs, 99 RBIs, 12 steals, and a near .300 batting average over a full season! And if that isn’t exciting enough, he also qualifies for multiple positions.”
– Bobby Sylvester (FantasyPros)

Ramon Laureano (OF – OAK): 95th Overall ADP
“Laureano is an absolute bargain in Round 8 or 9 where his current ADP lies. There is obvious 25/25 potential with enough at-bats and if patience is learned at the dish, look out. If he can accumulate close to 600 plate appearances batting out of the two-hole behind Marcus Semien and in front of Matt Chapman, the 100-run plateau could be achievable. Why grab Starling Marte in the third or fourth when you can have the same player five rounds later? His current ADP is 95th overall and 62nd out of hitters so take advantage of what others are missing out on.”
– Todd D Clark (The Fantasy Fix)

Max Kepler (OF – MIN): 136th Overall ADP
“Kepler being drafted in the 12th round is a massive steal. Do I think he’s going to repeat his 2019 season? No. But we are talking about a guy who is in his prime and is part of an offense that should still do very well, especially with the recent signing of Josh Donaldson. Even if he regresses by 10%, he will hit at or above 30 homers and 80 RBIs, which is close to what Steamer has him projected for. He should be drafted a few rounds higher.”
– Joe Bond (Fantasy Six Pack)

Willie Calhoun (OF – TEX): 179th Overall ADP
“I have Calhoun several rounds ahead of his ADP. The Rangers’ outfield isn’t so crowded anymore and Calhoun did enough in the second half last year to earn a full-time job. While the new park in Texas won’t be as advantageous to hitters due to the dome, I’m still expecting 30+ homers with 170 combined runs and RBIs.”
– Carmen Maiorano (FantasyPros)

Thank you to the experts for naming their ADP standouts. Be sure to give them a follow on Twitter and subscribe to our podcast below for more advice all season long.

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