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Fantasy Baseball Player Notes

2022 Fantasy Baseball Draft Notes

Kyle Tucker Note
Kyle Tucker photo 11. Kyle Tucker RF
This former uber-prospect didn't disappoint in his first full MLB season, delivering the goods in five categories. There's room for more, as Tucker played 140 games and was typically slotted in the bottom half of the Astros' batting order. Tucker's contact rate is on the rise, he makes plenty of hard contact, and his flyball rate is what you're looking for in a power hitter. Tucker will probably never bee among the stolen base leaders, but he swiped 14 bags last year and has 20 SB upside. Tucker might just be scratching the surface of his talents. He figures to go somewhere close to the first-round/second-round turn, but he's destined to be a perennial first-rounder.
40 weeks ago
Yordan Alvarez Note
Yordan Alvarez photo 21. Yordan Alvarez LF,DH
Power is his calling card, and Alvarez didn't disappoint in that department last year, mashing 33 HRs with 104 RBI. He had a healthy .277 batting average in 2021 and has a career mark of .290, so the power doesn't come at the expense of BA. The power peripherals are outstanding - he's in the 97th percentile in average exit velocity, maximum exit velocity and hard hit percentage. There could be a 50 HR season lurking here. Alvarez has just one SB in 233 career games, and he's had surgery on both knees. But if those granddad knees hold up, you're likely to be please with your return on investment.
40 weeks ago
Jose Altuve Note
Jose Altuve photo 54. Jose Altuve 2B
After a forgettable short season in 2020, Altuve tied a career high with 31 home runs last year, scored a career-high 117 runs and had 83 RBI despite hitting in the leadoff spot. The peripherals suggest that Altuve's 2021 HR total was somewhat fluky and park-aided. Altuve used to be good for 30+ stolen bases a season, but he's had 11 SBs in his last two full seasons combined. The days of .300 batting averages may be gone, too. Altuve has been below .300 in each of the last three seasons and has batted .277 over that span. We should at least be able to count on a lot of runs with Altuve batting at the top of a stacked lineup, but the ceiling here isn't what it used to be. Exercise caution as Altuve enters his age-32 season.
40 weeks ago
Jose Abreu Note
Jose Abreu photo 57. Jose Abreu 1B,DH
The White Sox slugger continues to be one of the most reliable investments in fantasy baseball. He hit 30 homers last year, with 117 RBI and 86 runs. In seven full MLB seasons, Abreu has produced 30 or more HRs five times and 100 or more RBI six times. His .261 batting average last season was the lowest of his career, but he batted .280 from July 1 on. His exit velocities and hard-hit percentage say that he still crushes baseballs with authority. If you get an age discount, pounce.
40 weeks ago
Alex Bregman Note
Alex Bregman photo 77. Alex Bregman 3B
After his monster 2019 season (.296, 41 HRs, 112 RBI), Bregman's last two campaigns have been disappointing. Quad and hamstring issues limited him to .348 ABs last season, and he batted .270 with 12 HRs, 55 RBI and 54 runs. Uninspiring Statcast numbers suggest that another 40 HR season isn't in the cards. Bregman is a career .281 hitter, however, and he'll make worthwhile contributions in RBI and runs. Just don't pay for the Bregman of 2018-2019.
40 weeks ago
Ryan Pressly Note
Ryan Pressly photo 91. Ryan Pressly RP
Pressly was his usual excellent self in the bullpen last year, pitching to a 2.25 ERA and a 0.97 WHIP with a 32.4% strikeout rate, his fourth straight season with at least a 31% mark. His fantasy value was held in check by his oddly-low save total of 26, but that was hardly his fault. The Astros as a team had only 34 saves total, which was tied with the Blue Jays for the lowest mark by a .500 team or better. Houston averaged 46.5 saves over the team's previous two full seasons, so expect them to approach that mark again and for Pressly's save total to jump by at least five or more. If you can grab a discount based on his low number last year, do so.
37 weeks ago
Framber Valdez Note
Framber Valdez photo 125. Framber Valdez SP
Valdez fractured his ring finger just before the start of the season and although there were rumors he could miss the entire season, he wound up making 22 starts and throwing 134 2/3 innings. He lost some of the gains he had made with his control, but he induced ground balls at a 70.3% clip, an absurd rate. Valdez has one great pitch - his curveball - and his value is highly dependent on the quality of his defense. So the chances of him taking a great leap are minimal. But what he provides is plenty good enough to be a mid-tier starter for your fantasy team.
37 weeks ago
Luis Garcia Note
Luis Garcia photo 154. Luis Garcia SP
Garcia had a fine 2021 season, as both his cutter (.175 BAA) and slider (.133 BAA) were dominant, at least until the end of the year and playoffs. His upside is capped just a bit because his fastball is so mediocre, so he really needs to lean in to both of those other pitches and have them both working to be effective. That's what we saw most of last year, so another season of a mid-3.00 ERA and a passable WHIP may certainly be in the cards. Let's just hope the mini-swoon we saw over the final month of the season (4.67 ERA) was a blip and not a sign of things to come.
36 weeks ago
Trey Mancini Note
Trey Mancini photo 156. Trey Mancini 1B,DH,RF,LF
Mancini was one of the best baseball stories of 2021 as he returned from missing the 2020 season due to cancer to put up a productive year. He dipped significantly from his outstanding 2019 numbers (.291/.364/.535), but his underlying metrics largely held firm. The truth is that Mancini was just a bit lucky in 2019, as he outperformed his expected numbers in nearly every category, and was comparably unlucky in 2021, underperforming those same numbers by similar amounts. His true version likely lies somewhere in between, and that's not a bad thing. Expect an improvement from most of his numbers last year, but bank on 25 homers, rather than the 34 he totaled in 2019, particularly with the new dimensions in left field in Camden Yards.
37 weeks ago
Jose Urquidy Note
Jose Urquidy photo 192. Jose Urquidy SP
If Urquidy could avoid dealing with injuries every season, then he'd probably be drafted much earlier, but he's missed time in each of the past three seasons. When he does pitch, he's almost always solid, with a WHIP that hovers around 1.00 thanks to an elite walk rate (4.5%, top four percent of the league). His pure stuff is well above average, with a fastball, slider, and curveball that can all induce weak contact. But, at least as of now, he hasn't yet gotten his strikeout rate to where it needs to be in order to be a true impact starter. There's potential for growth in strikeouts if his slider improves, but draft Urquidy for his safety, not his ceiling, and build in some missed time.
37 weeks ago
Lance McCullers Jr. Note
Lance McCullers Jr. photo 261. Lance McCullers Jr. SP
There's no doubting McCullers's stuff at this point. Already armed with an elite curveball, he added an equally dominant slider to the mix last season (.150 BAA, .242 wOBA), and set a career-high in innings with 162.1. Unfortunately, he ended the year on the shelf with an elbow injury and is now delayed in the spring because of a flexor tendon strain.The fact that he is still dealing with an injury at this point is extremely worrisome, especially for a pitcher with a history of elbow trouble. Drop him way down your draft boards, and take him only if you have plenty of depth or you are in desperate need of upside.
37 weeks ago
Cristian Javier Note
Cristian Javier photo 294. Cristian Javier SP,RP
Jeremy Pena Note
Jeremy Pena photo 314. Jeremy Pena SS
Hector Neris Note
Hector Neris photo 394. Hector Neris RP
Phil Maton Note
Phil Maton photo 556. Phil Maton RP
Chas McCormick Note
Chas McCormick photo 562. Chas McCormick LF,CF,RF
Ryne Stanek Note
Ryne Stanek photo 566. Ryne Stanek RP
Martin Maldonado Note
Martin Maldonado photo 585. Martin Maldonado C
Rafael Montero Note
Rafael Montero photo 604. Rafael Montero RP
Jake Meyers Note
Jake Meyers photo 655. Jake Meyers CF
Joel Payamps Note
Joel Payamps photo 724. Joel Payamps RP
Tyler Ivey Note
Tyler Ivey photo 856. Tyler Ivey SP
Hunter Brown Note
Hunter Brown photo 875. Hunter Brown SP,RP
Blake Taylor Note
Blake Taylor photo 892. Blake Taylor RP
Forrest Whitley Note
Forrest Whitley photo 940. Forrest Whitley SP
Austin Davis Note
Austin Davis photo 952. Austin Davis RP,SP
Brandon Bielak Note
Brandon Bielak photo 1002. Brandon Bielak RP
Bryan Abreu Note
Bryan Abreu photo 1077. Bryan Abreu RP
Seth Martinez Note
Seth Martinez photo 1119. Seth Martinez RP
Korey Lee Note
Korey Lee photo 1153. Korey Lee C
Enoli Paredes Note
Enoli Paredes photo 1198. Enoli Paredes RP
Mauricio Dubon Note
Mauricio Dubon photo 1319. Mauricio Dubon 2B,SS,CF,3B
Pedro Leon Note
Pedro Leon photo 1589. Pedro Leon SS
Alex De Goti Note
Alex De Goti photo 1600. Alex De Goti 2B