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Pat Fitzmaurice

FantasyPros

Jacob deGrom (SP - NYM)
Fri, Apr 1
Player Note on Jacob deGrom (SP - NYM)
The Mets' ace is a legit superstar … when he plays. But now deGrom, who was already coming off injuries to his shoulder and UCL, is being shut down until at least the end of April with a scapular injury. If he returns to something close to full health at some point, he'll deliver a sub 2.50 ERA with piles of strikeouts and a miniscule WHIP. But it's probably wishful thinking to project deGrom for more than 100 innings in 2022.
Nick Castellanos (RF - PHI)
Wed, Mar 30
Player Note on Nick Castellanos (RF - PHI)
"It's a deep drive to left field by Castellanos" has become baseball's best meme, which overshadows the fact that Castellanos has been one of baseball's most underrated power bats over the last half decade. The 29-year-old picked the perfect year to enter free agency, coming off a 2021 campaign with a .576 SLG% and a .938 OPS. The move to Philadelphia should be a good one, as it gives Castellanos a chance to bat cleanup directly behind Bryce Harper.
Bryce Harper (DH,RF - PHI)
Wed, Mar 30
Player Note on Bryce Harper (DH,RF - PHI)
Mr. Consistency. Draft Harper somewhere between 6 and 10 in the first round, leave him in the lineup and count your blessings. In one of the quietest MVP campaigns in recent memory, Harper did Harper-like things in 2021, with 35 homers, 101 runs, 84 RBI and 13 stolen bases. With the Phillies adding Nick Castellanos to provide Harper with some lineup protection, a 100 RBI season with 110 runs is probably Harper's floor.
Ozzie Albies (2B - ATL)
Wed, Mar 30
Player Note on Ozzie Albies (2B - ATL)
Ignoring the COVID-shortened 2020 season, Albies stands alone as the only player to score 100 runs, hit 20 home runs and steal 10 bases over each of the last three full seasons. He's a surefire five-category hitter coming into his prime. If Mookie Betts doesn't maintain 2B eligibility in your league, Albies is the No. 2 second baseman behind Trea Turner.
Ronald Acuna Jr. (DH,RF - ATL)
Wed, Mar 30
Player Note on Ronald Acuna Jr. (DH,RF - ATL)
In any other year, Acuna, Jr. is an easy top-five pick. The five-category star is a set-it-and-forget-it roster heavyweight. But coming off a gruesome mid-summer ACL tear, he's likely to miss most of April and possibly some of May, and Acuna is unlikely to wreak havoc on the basepaths for the first couple months. He's going to rake once he's healthy, but you might want to pass on Acuna unless you get a significant discount on him.
Freddie Freeman (1B - LAD)
Tue, Mar 22
Player Note on Freddie Freeman (1B - LAD)
It seems odd that Freeman has topped 100 RBI only twice in his career, but he should have little problem getting there now that he'll be batting third for the Dodgers, with Mookie Betts and Trea Turner setting the table for him. Freeman has batted at least .295 every year since 2016. He's not a pure slugger, but his line-drive power should produce 25-35 home runs. He'll even throw in a handful of stolen bases. Now that he's landed in a strong lineup, invest with confidence.
Chris Sale (SP - BOS)
Mon, Mar 21
Player Note on Chris Sale (SP - BOS)
Sale returned from Tommy John surgery last year and mostly looked like his old self. His velocity was close to pre-surgery levels, and though his strikeout rate dropped a smidge, he was basically the same ace he's always been. A .358 BABIP against Sale last year suggests he got unlucky, yet he still posted a 3.16 ERA. Health is really the only concern for Sale, who was an All-Star for seven straight seasons from 2012 to 2018. Unfortunately, he's already hurt. A stress fracture in his rib cage will cause him to miss the start of the regular season.
Trevor Story (2B,SS - BOS)
Mon, Mar 21
Player Note on Trevor Story (2B,SS - BOS)
In Colorado, Story was a menace. Away from the mile high air, he's just another guy. Since 2019, Story's batting average has been 80 points lower away from Denver, and his slugging percentage is 150 points lower. He's hit 60.1% of his career home runs at Coors Field, and 62% of his career RBI have come there. Now he'll be playing his home games in Fenway Park, arguably the second-best hitters park in baseball. But while Fenway is good for hitters overall, it actually depresses home runs slightly. Let someone else spend the year complaining that they weren't smart enough to dodge this overpriced bullet.
Kris Bryant (1B,3B,LF,CF,RF - COL)
Fri, Mar 18
Player Note on Kris Bryant (1B,3B,LF,CF,RF - COL)
He hasn't turned into the superstar we thought he was going to become, but he's still got power and will still knock in runs, and now he'll be doing his mashing at Coors Field. Bryant might not have been worth a top-100 selection if he landed in a bad spot, but going to the Rockies gives him a significant value boost.
Nelson Cruz (DH - WSH)
Thu, Mar 17
Player Note on Nelson Cruz (DH - WSH)
This ageless wonder will turn 42 on July 1 but continues to mash. He'll do his mashing for the Nationals this year after signing a one-year deal. Cruz belted 32 home runs last year, which was actually his lowest total for a full season since 2013. He was batting .294 for Minnesota before being traded to Tampa, where he hit only .226 the rest of the way. At his age, the decline could come quickly, but exit velocity, barrel rate and other power peripherals say he's still going strong.
Jacob deGrom (SP - NYM)
Fri, Apr 1
Player Note on Jacob deGrom (SP - NYM)
The Mets' ace is a legit superstar … when he plays. But now deGrom, who was already coming off injuries to his shoulder and UCL, is being shut down until at least the end of April with a scapular injury. If he returns to something close to full health at some point, he'll deliver a sub 2.50 ERA with piles of strikeouts and a miniscule WHIP. But it's probably wishful thinking to project deGrom for more than 100 innings in 2022.
Nick Castellanos (RF - PHI)
Wed, Mar 30
Player Note on Nick Castellanos (RF - PHI)
"It's a deep drive to left field by Castellanos" has become baseball's best meme, which overshadows the fact that Castellanos has been one of baseball's most underrated power bats over the last half decade. The 29-year-old picked the perfect year to enter free agency, coming off a 2021 campaign with a .576 SLG% and a .938 OPS. The move to Philadelphia should be a good one, as it gives Castellanos a chance to bat cleanup directly behind Bryce Harper.
Bryce Harper (DH,RF - PHI)
Wed, Mar 30
Player Note on Bryce Harper (DH,RF - PHI)
Mr. Consistency. Draft Harper somewhere between 6 and 10 in the first round, leave him in the lineup and count your blessings. In one of the quietest MVP campaigns in recent memory, Harper did Harper-like things in 2021, with 35 homers, 101 runs, 84 RBI and 13 stolen bases. With the Phillies adding Nick Castellanos to provide Harper with some lineup protection, a 100 RBI season with 110 runs is probably Harper's floor.
Ozzie Albies (2B - ATL)
Wed, Mar 30
Player Note on Ozzie Albies (2B - ATL)
Ignoring the COVID-shortened 2020 season, Albies stands alone as the only player to score 100 runs, hit 20 home runs and steal 10 bases over each of the last three full seasons. He's a surefire five-category hitter coming into his prime. If Mookie Betts doesn't maintain 2B eligibility in your league, Albies is the No. 2 second baseman behind Trea Turner.
Ronald Acuna Jr. (DH,RF - ATL)
Wed, Mar 30
Player Note on Ronald Acuna Jr. (DH,RF - ATL)
In any other year, Acuna, Jr. is an easy top-five pick. The five-category star is a set-it-and-forget-it roster heavyweight. But coming off a gruesome mid-summer ACL tear, he's likely to miss most of April and possibly some of May, and Acuna is unlikely to wreak havoc on the basepaths for the first couple months. He's going to rake once he's healthy, but you might want to pass on Acuna unless you get a significant discount on him.
Freddie Freeman (1B - LAD)
Tue, Mar 22
Player Note on Freddie Freeman (1B - LAD)
It seems odd that Freeman has topped 100 RBI only twice in his career, but he should have little problem getting there now that he'll be batting third for the Dodgers, with Mookie Betts and Trea Turner setting the table for him. Freeman has batted at least .295 every year since 2016. He's not a pure slugger, but his line-drive power should produce 25-35 home runs. He'll even throw in a handful of stolen bases. Now that he's landed in a strong lineup, invest with confidence.
Chris Sale (SP - BOS)
Mon, Mar 21
Player Note on Chris Sale (SP - BOS)
Sale returned from Tommy John surgery last year and mostly looked like his old self. His velocity was close to pre-surgery levels, and though his strikeout rate dropped a smidge, he was basically the same ace he's always been. A .358 BABIP against Sale last year suggests he got unlucky, yet he still posted a 3.16 ERA. Health is really the only concern for Sale, who was an All-Star for seven straight seasons from 2012 to 2018. Unfortunately, he's already hurt. A stress fracture in his rib cage will cause him to miss the start of the regular season.
Trevor Story (2B,SS - BOS)
Mon, Mar 21
Player Note on Trevor Story (2B,SS - BOS)
In Colorado, Story was a menace. Away from the mile high air, he's just another guy. Since 2019, Story's batting average has been 80 points lower away from Denver, and his slugging percentage is 150 points lower. He's hit 60.1% of his career home runs at Coors Field, and 62% of his career RBI have come there. Now he'll be playing his home games in Fenway Park, arguably the second-best hitters park in baseball. But while Fenway is good for hitters overall, it actually depresses home runs slightly. Let someone else spend the year complaining that they weren't smart enough to dodge this overpriced bullet.
Kris Bryant (1B,3B,LF,CF,RF - COL)
Fri, Mar 18
Player Note on Kris Bryant (1B,3B,LF,CF,RF - COL)
He hasn't turned into the superstar we thought he was going to become, but he's still got power and will still knock in runs, and now he'll be doing his mashing at Coors Field. Bryant might not have been worth a top-100 selection if he landed in a bad spot, but going to the Rockies gives him a significant value boost.
Nelson Cruz (DH - WSH)
Thu, Mar 17
Player Note on Nelson Cruz (DH - WSH)
This ageless wonder will turn 42 on July 1 but continues to mash. He'll do his mashing for the Nationals this year after signing a one-year deal. Cruz belted 32 home runs last year, which was actually his lowest total for a full season since 2013. He was batting .294 for Minnesota before being traded to Tampa, where he hit only .226 the rest of the way. At his age, the decline could come quickly, but exit velocity, barrel rate and other power peripherals say he's still going strong.
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