Who Should I Draft?

Javier Baez or Whit Merrifield (2019)

 
Experts' Pick
 
  Javier Baez
2B,3B,SS - CHC
Javier Baez
Whit Merrifield
1B,2B,CF,RF,DH - KC
Whit Merrifield
Expert
Recommendation
91%
Recommended by
51 of 56 experts
9%
Recommended by
5 of 56 experts
Rankings 
   
ECR# 18# 29
Best Rank# 6# 19
Worst Rank# 33# 119
   
ADP 
   
Composite# 18# 32
Best Rank# 16# 29
Worst Rank# 23# 36
   
Projections 
   
Runs8785
Home Runs3014
RBI9665
Stolen Bases1734
Batting Average.276.287
   
Misc 
   
Injury Alert--
   
Expert Ranks 
   
Brandon Funston
The Athletic
# 15# 34
   
Andy Behrens
Yahoo! Sports
# 13# 29
   
Scott Pianowski
Yahoo! Sports
# 15# 20
   
Staff Rankings
FullTime Fantasy
# 16# 30
   
Brad Richter
Going For 2
# 10# 27
   
Michael Beller
Sports Illustrated
# 14# 36
   
Alan Harrison
The Fantasy Fix
# 16# 24
   
Steve Gardner
USA Today
# 18# 27
   
Site Projections
RotoChamp
# 16# 23
   
Grey Albright
Razzball
# 6# 49
   
Greg Smith
The Fake Baseball
# 20# 35
   
Tim Young
Brewer Rat
# 11# 33
   
Jeff Boggis
Fantasy Football Empire
# 19# 26
   
Eno Sarris
The Athletic
# 19# 54
   
Muntradamus
Beast Dome
# 9# 119
   
Al Melchior
The Athletic
# 18# 50
   
Scott White
CBS Sports
# 20# 24
   
Dalton Del Don
Yahoo! Sports
# 11# 25
   
KJ
Fantasy Team Advice
# 17# 32
   
Nando Di Fino
The Athletic
# 9# 77
   
Luke Gloeckner
Mr. Cheatsheet
# 21# 31
   
Dave McKay
The Fantasy Sports Brain
# 22# 28
   
Andrew Gould
FantasyPros
# 19# 24
   
Rudy Gamble
Razzball
# 13# 34
   
Wayne Bretsky
BretskyBall
# 29# 49
   
Jake Ciely
The Athletic
# 15# 27
   
Joe Bond
Fantasy Six Pack
# 18# 29
   
Chris Meaney
The Athletic
# 17# 25
   
Andy Singleton
Expand The Boxscore
# 16# 25
   
Andrea LaMont
Lenny Melnick Fantasy Sports
# 7# 25
   
Justin Klein
The Fake Baseball
# 23# 29
   
Chris Meyers
Athlon Sports
# 19# 30
   
Paul Sporer
FanGraphs
# 33# 37
   
Nick Pollack
Pitcher List
# 21# 28
   
Bill Dubiel
RotoBaller
# 18# 36
   
Nick Mariano
RotoBaller
# 21# 27
   
Bobby Sylvester
FantasyPros
# 15# 41
   
Tyler Thompson
Fantasy Six Pack
# 21# 30
   
Jason Johnson
Understanding Fantasy Baseball
# 15# 23
   
Donkey Teeth
Razzball
# 6# 23
   
Dan Harris
FantasyPros
# 22# 23
   
Pierre Camus
RotoBaller
# 22# 34
   
Andrew Seifter
FantasyPros
# 14# 25
   
Max Freeze
Freeze Stats
# 20# 25
   
Brandon 'B_Don' Myers
Razzball
# 11# 28
   
Kyle Richardson
The Fantasy Headliners
# 18# 30
   
Jacob Gibbs
SportsLine
# 22# 34
   
Mick Ciallela
Fantrax
# 19# 22
   
Ariel Cohen
FanGraphs
# 18# 26
   
Austin Bristow II
Pitcher List
# 19# 33
   
Todd D Clark
The Fantasy Fix
# 15# 32
   
Justin Mason
FanGraphs
# 22# 19
   
Heath Cummings
CBS Sports
# 24# 23
   
Joe E Gentile
Fake Teams
# 29# 23
   
Heath Capps
Fake Teams
# 32# 25
   
Mario Mergola
Sporfolio
# 33# 30
   
  Javier Baez
2B,3B,SS - CHC
Javier Baez
Whit Merrifield
1B,2B,CF,RF,DH - KC
Whit Merrifield
2018 Stats 
   
   
At Bats606632
   
Runs10188
   
Hits176192
   
Singles93134
   
Doubles4043
   
Triples93
   
Home Runs3412
   
RBI11160
   
Stolen Bases2145
   
Caught Stealing910
   
Walks2961
   
Strikeouts167114
   
Batting Average.290.304
   
On Base Pct.326.367
   
Slugging Pct.555.438
   
On-base Plus Slugging.881.806
   
  Javier Baez
2B,3B,SS - CHC
Javier Baez
Whit Merrifield
1B,2B,CF,RF,DH - KC
Whit Merrifield
2019 Projections 
   
   
At Bats582596
   
Runs8785
   
Hits161171
   
Singles93116
   
Doubles3338
   
Triples54
   
Home Runs3014
   
RBI9665
   
Stolen Bases1734
   
Caught Stealing69
   
Walks3347
   
Strikeouts159104
   
Batting Average.276.287
   
On Base Pct.315.339
   
Slugging Pct.507.432
   
On-base Plus Slugging.822.771
   
  Javier Baez
2B,3B,SS - CHC
Javier Baez
Whit Merrifield
1B,2B,CF,RF,DH - KC
Whit Merrifield
News 
 Javier Baez went 2-for-4 with a three-run homer in the Cubs' 5-3 win over the Mets on Sunday.
Elliott Baas
Sun, Jun 23rd
Kansas City Royals outfielder Whit Merrifield went 2-for-5 with a solo homer in a 3-2 loss to the Indians on Monday.
Matthew Terelle
Tue, Jun 25th
 Javier Baez went 2-for-4 with a solo home run, a triple, two RBI, and two runs scored in the Cubs' 7-4 win over the Mets on Thursday.
Elliott Baas
Fri, Jun 21st
Kansas City Royals outfielder Whit Merrifield went 2-for-4 with a run in a 6-1 win over the Twins on Sunday.
Matthew Terelle
Sun, Jun 23rd
 Javier Baez went 1-for-3 with a single, a steal, and a run scored in the Cubs' 7-3 win over the White Sox on Wednesday.
Elliott Baas
Thu, Jun 20th
Kansas City Royals first baseman Whit Merrifield had a monster game in a 9-0 win over Seattle on Tuesday. Merrifield went 3-for-4 with two homers and six RBI in the win.
Matthew Terelle
Wed, Jun 19th
 Javier Baez went 2-for-5 with a two-run home run and two runs scored in the Cubs'10-1 win over the Rockies' on Wednesday.
Elliott Baas
Thu, Jun 13th
Kansas City Royals first baseman Whit Merrifield went 1-for-4 with an RBI and a steal in an 8-6 win over the Twins on Sunday.
Matthew Terelle
Mon, Jun 17th
 Javier Baez went 1-for-4 with a two-run home run in the Cubs' 3-1 win over the Cardinals on Friday.
Elliott Baas
Sat, Jun 8th
Kansas City Royals outfielder Whit Merrifield went 4-for-5 with a solo homer and two runs scored in a 5-4 loss to the Twins on Saturday.
Matthew Terelle
Sun, Jun 16th
Notes 
 Baez was excellent last year, hitting 34 homers with 21 steals, 101 runs and a league-leading 111 RBIs. While he is surely a star, every projection model sees those numbers regressing in 2019, especially his batting average which was propped up by a .347 BABIP
Bobby Sylvester - FantasyPros
With the Royals not expected to compete in 2019, there is little doubt that Merrifield will surpass 40 stolen bases again. He doesn't have much in the way of power, nor will he score a load of runs in this offense, but the batting average should end up around .300 once again
Bobby Sylvester - FantasyPros
 Baez fits into a similar category of player as Francisco Lindor and Trevor Story: shortstops coming off of 30-20 seasons who have sky-high upside but also a bit of risk. The biggest risk for Baez is that his elevated strikeout rate leads to some regression in last season's .290 batting average. He also may not run quite as much after stealing just three bases in the second half last year. Still, Baez should be able to at least produce a .270-30-15 kind of season, which would be enough to keep him among the elite fantasy options at shortstop.
Andrew Seifter - FantasyPros
Merrifield followed up his breakout 2017 campaign with another excellent fantasy season in 2018, hitting .304 with 12 homers and a league-leading 45 stolen bases. Fantasy owners shouldn't expect him to hit .300 again -- his .352 BABIP was among the league's highest -- but he should settle in at around .280-.285 and again produce 10-15 HRs. His run and RBI totals may not be great in a weak-hitting Royals lineup, but you're really paying for the steals, and Merrifield should again have the green light on the base paths early and often for a team that will need to manufacture runs.
Andrew Seifter - FantasyPros
 Despite recording the second-worst swinging strike (18.2%) and outside-swing (45.5%) rates, Baez managed to hit .290. Among 17 hitters with a contact rate of 70.0% or lower in at least 300 plate appearances, Aaron Judge was the only one besides Baez to bat above .266. That's a better baseline for 2019. Given his middling 4.5 walk %, he might not reach base enough to steal another 21 bases. Don't pay full freight for an encore.
Andrew Gould - FantasyPros
Do not draft as OF, use at 2B
Michael Florio - Fantrax
  Merrifield not only absconded an MLB-high 45 steals but also batted .304 with 12 homers and 43 doubles. That's borderline extinct skill set justifies his spot as an upper-echelon pick, but beware some regression. His batting average rose despite modest drops in contact and strikeout rates, and no speedster should hold a 14.7% infield-fly rate. Still, there aren't many .280, 12-35 hitters either.
Andrew Gould - FantasyPros