That’s the best word to use when I was compiling my top second base prospects. I just kept staring at the list, trying to figure out if I was impressed or if it was just kind of a bland position for fantasy.
I’m kind of closer to the latter than the former.
Perhaps it’s because this is coming after the top first base prospects, and there are legit future All-Stars on the list, as well as fantasy studs.
There are a few names that are intriguing with second base, but by and large, it’s a non-impressive position with fringe fantasy value in 12-team leagues.
We’ll take a look at the top five second base prospects for fantasy purposes, what they bring to the table, and when they will arrive.
A quick note first before we dive in, though. As always, with dynasty leagues, it’s hard to have a one-size-fits-all approach, as league setups are different, as are teams as far as contention windows. The approach taken with these pieces is to highlight the top prospects overall at the position for fantasy, with a nod to those who are closer to contributing at the big-league level. It won’t, though, elevate someone like Royce Lewis above Marco Luciano due to proximity.
Let’s get to it.
Jeter Downs (2B/SS – BOS)
The Player: Downs will have the added pressure of not only playing in Boston but as being the key return piece in the absurd Mookie Betts deal. Downs calling card is his ability to get on base, with some added power. You’re looking at a .280 average with 22/18 power/speed outcome.
ETA: Mid-2021 once the Red Sox realize that Michael Chavis isn’t the answer.
MLB Comp: Javy Báez with less power but with a much better approach (s/o @RotoClegg)
Note: Downs elevates the ball a crazy amount for someone of his stature. That should help him maximize his power potential.
Vidal Brujan (2B – TB)
The Player: While there’s no true big impact player for fantasy in this group, Bruján is going to make a serious impact as a base stealer. He has 80-grade speed, and the hit tool is solid enough that we don’t have to worry about another Billy Hamilton here. If he can maintain an 8-9 percent walk rate, you’re looking at a guy who can steal 40 bases with a .270 average and 12 homers.
MLB Comp: Rafael Furcal
Note: Brujan stole 10 bases to lead all players in the Dominican Winter League this offseason.
Nick Gonzales (2B – PIT)
The Player: Nick Gonzales may have the best pure hit tool out of all of the players drafted this past year. He’s hit at every single level, but he has more of a doubles spray approach than a profile that’s going to translate into power – especially out of his 5’10 frame. Can Pittsburgh develop an impact player? Gonzales projects as a .300 hitter with 10 homers, 15 steal potential.
MLB Comp: Keston Hiura
Note: Gonzales hit .432 his sophomore year at New Mexico State. He could be the first Pirate to win the batting title since Freddy Sanchez in 2006.
Michael Busch (2B – LAD)
The Player: Always trust the Dodgers. Busch is the next in line of soon-to-be impact players in Los Angeles. He isn’t good defensively, and he will only steal a handful of bases – if that – but his hit tool and his power are what drives his fantasy value. He’s a 55-hit, 55-power guy, which will play at second base. You’re looking at .280 with 24 homers.
MLB Comp: Max Muncy
Note: MLB’s Jonathan Mayo ranked Busch’s power as the best at his position among prospects.
Aaron Bracho (2B – CLE)
The Player: Our first teenager on the list appears with Bracho. He has 50-grades across the board, with the exception being his hit tool, which is 55. The next couple of years will be big for Bracho’s development, but he projects to be a .285 hitter with 20 home run power and 12-15 steals.
Jorge Polanco with more speed
Note: There is a lot of competition in the middle infield over the next couple of years with Andres Gimenez, Amed Rosario, Tyler Freeman, Gabriel Arias, and Brayan Rocchio. Bracho will need to set himself apart from the others or hope for a trade.
Find more on 2021 MLB Top Prospects:
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