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Fantasy Baseball Player Notes

2022 Fantasy Baseball Draft Notes

Byron Buxton Note
Byron Buxton photo 43. Byron Buxton CF,DH
Get a season of reasonably good health out of Buxton and you're likely to run a profit, probably a big one. But what are the chances he'll play 150 or more games? In the five non-COVID years that he's been on the Twins' Opening Day roster, Buxton has averaged 81.6 games played and 271.2 at-bats. In 2021, Buxton missed 39 games with a strained hip, then broke his hand after being hit with a pitch in his third game back, causing him to miss another month. When healthy, Buxton will steal a lot of bases and score plenty of runs. He's added power, too, and he batted .306 over 61 games last year. Still only 28, Buxton has upside galore, but the risk level here is enormous.
31 weeks ago
Carlos Correa Note
Carlos Correa photo 72. Carlos Correa SS
Correa enjoyed one of his finest seasons to date in 2021, establishing new career highs in homers (26) and runs (104). He also had 92 RBI and batted .279. Good health was a key, as he played 148 games. Since breaking into the league in 2015, Correa had played more than 110 games only twice. At 27, Correa is squarely in his prime. His power production is probably maxed out due to his modest flyball rates, but his improved plate patience and robust line drive rates suggest that the healthy batting average and solid run production are easily repeatable. Correa is a free agent, so his landing spot will have a major bearing on his value.
31 weeks ago
Jorge Polanco Note
Jorge Polanco photo 75. Jorge Polanco 2B,DH,SS
Polanco enjoyed the finest season of his career in 2021, batting .269 with 33 HRs, 98 RBI, 97 runs and 11 SBs. He went nuclear after the All-Star break, batting .287 with 21 homers. Could it be that Polanco feels less pressure as a second baseman than as a shortstop, and his hitting has benefitted as a result? Polanco has always been a line drive machine, so even if the power gains don't stick (and there's a good chance they won't), he should still deliver a healthy batting average. Dual 2B-SS eligibility is a plus. Polanco is a worthy investment, but don't pay for a full repeat of the power.
31 weeks ago
Tyler Mahle Note
Tyler Mahle photo 130. Tyler Mahle SP
Mahle is your quintessential fantasy rotation filler. His ERA (3.75) and WHIP (1.23) won't really hurt you and he'll throw enough innings, but because he's primarily a fastball pitcher with little else in his arsenal, there's so little upside. That's especially true because he pitches in a hitter-friendly environment and for a team that has traded nearly every decent offensive piece. That means wins should be hard to come by and with Mahle's upside cap, make sure not to draft him too early.
28 weeks ago
Sonny Gray Note
Sonny Gray photo 139. Sonny Gray SP
Gray can be maddening at time with his inconsistency. When his breaking stuff is on and getting strikes, he's borderline unhittable. When it's not, things often get ugly, and there's little rhyme or reason to which Gray you're going to see on any given day. His home-run rate spiked last year and a move to Minnesota should help get that under control. And he started throwing a cutter last year that had a lot of success, and if he continues to develop it, it could be a game-changer. But in the end, Gray has essentially put it all together just once in his last six seasons, so keep your expectations in check.
28 weeks ago
Alex Kirilloff Note
Alex Kirilloff photo 169. Alex Kirilloff 1B,LF,RF
Kirilloff had a poor 2021 season, ultimately succumbing to wrist surgery to fix an injury that has reportedly bothered him off and on for a few years at this point. Long-term, there's plenty of reason for optimism given his pedigree and strong minor league numbers. But for this year, he's more of a middling outfield filler. His quality of contact and home park aren't favorable enough to lead to a major outburst in power, and his surrounding lineup isn't strong enough to offer a favorable environment for counting stats. Kirilloff probably won't hurt you in batting average and he'll hit about 20 home runs, but players like that are a dime a dozen in redraft leagues. Take him late as a filler, but still view him as a target in keeper and dynasty formats.
28 weeks ago
Joe Ryan Note
Joe Ryan photo 214. Joe Ryan SP
Ryan had a nice cup of coffee in the majors last year until the Tigers beat him up to inflate his overall numbers. There's been a lot of hype around the youngster but his stuff isn't overwhelming. His fastball is an enigma, in that it sits at just 91 MPH but batters just can't hit it (.172 BAA). If he can sustain that, along with his better than average slider, then there could be success for the full year, especially with his control. But more than likely, you're looking at a league average fantasy starter, one who will have more perceived than actual value.
27 weeks ago
Miguel Sano Note
Miguel Sano photo 223. Miguel Sano 1B,DH
Sano reportedly lost 25 pounds this offseason and is in, wait for it, the best shape of his life. Hopefully that means he can stay healthy and productive because, simply put, he hits the ball as hard as anyone in the game. He is always in the top three percent of the league in hard hit rate and exit velocity, and 50 homers could potentially be in reach if he put it all together. But he struck out 34.4% of the time last year and that was the best single-season mark in that category of his career. There is potential, as there always is with Sano, but you've got to be in really good shape in batting average before you take on the risk with him.
27 weeks ago
Max Kepler Note
Max Kepler photo 227. Max Kepler CF,RF
Kepler's expected stats suggest he got pretty unlucky last year, as they looked a lot like his 2019 season where he hit 38 home runs and batted .252. On the plus side, he did swipe 10 bases, the first time he had reached double digits in that category in his career. His true outcome likely lies somewhere between his 2019 season and last year's numbers, and he's more of a .240, 20-homer bat. The bigger problem this year is that the Twins' lineup likely won't be strong, and his counting stats will take a hit. Kepler can fill in for you, just don't rely on him as a starter.
27 weeks ago
Bailey Ober Note
Bailey Ober photo 257. Bailey Ober SP
Ober is a really intriguing name to watch this year, as his strikeout rate and elite command have all the makings of an impact fantasy starter. He gave up way too many homers last year (1.95/9 innings), but that's due for regression given his minor-league track record. His stuff isn't overwhelming, and he sits at just about 92 MPH on his fastball. But his pedigree and performance last year are good enough for you to take a shot on late in your drafts.
26 weeks ago
Gio Urshela Note
Gio Urshela photo 275. Gio Urshela 3B,SS
Urshela was moved to Minnesota this offseason where he'll man third base and likely bat in the bottom third of the order. When healthy, he's a high-average, 20-homer bat who will chip in everywhere but steals. But his margin for error is fairly thin given how mediocre his quality of contact is and with his poor walk rate. Given that his surrounding llineup and home park took a pretty drastic step down, he's really just an AL-only option at this point.
26 weeks ago
Chris Paddack Note
Chris Paddack photo 288. Chris Paddack SP
Gary Sanchez Note
Gary Sanchez photo 303. Gary Sanchez C,DH
Luis Arraez Note
Luis Arraez photo 373. Luis Arraez 1B,2B,3B,DH,LF
Michael Fulmer Note
Michael Fulmer photo 374. Michael Fulmer SP,RP
Jorge Alcala Note
Jorge Alcala photo 407. Jorge Alcala RP
Dylan Bundy Note
Dylan Bundy photo 433. Dylan Bundy SP
Emilio Pagan Note
Emilio Pagan photo 434. Emilio Pagan RP
Jose Miranda Note
Jose Miranda photo 459. Jose Miranda 1B,3B,DH
Ryan Jeffers Note
Ryan Jeffers photo 461. Ryan Jeffers C
Caleb Thielbar Note
Caleb Thielbar photo 483. Caleb Thielbar RP
Kenta Maeda Note
Kenta Maeda photo 488. Kenta Maeda SP
Jorge Lopez Note
Jorge Lopez photo 504. Jorge Lopez SP,RP
Jhoan Duran Note
Jhoan Duran photo 568. Jhoan Duran RP,SP
Cody Stashak Note
Cody Stashak photo 685. Cody Stashak RP
Nick Gordon Note
Nick Gordon photo 688. Nick Gordon 2B,SS,LF,CF
Danny Coulombe Note
Danny Coulombe photo 698. Danny Coulombe RP
Trevor Larnach Note
Trevor Larnach photo 715. Trevor Larnach LF,RF
Chris Archer Note
Chris Archer photo 784. Chris Archer SP
Josh Winder Note
Josh Winder photo 791. Josh Winder SP
Jovani Moran Note
Jovani Moran photo 848. Jovani Moran RP
Simeon Woods Richardson Note
Simeon Woods Richardson photo 882. Simeon Woods Richardson SP
Jordan Balazovic Note
Jordan Balazovic photo 962. Jordan Balazovic SP
Sandy Leon Note
Sandy Leon photo 1029. Sandy Leon C
Randy Dobnak Note
Randy Dobnak photo 1046. Randy Dobnak SP,RP
Devin Smeltzer Note
Devin Smeltzer photo 1072. Devin Smeltzer RP,SP
Chance Sisco Note
Chance Sisco photo 1121. Chance Sisco C
Hunter Wood Note
Hunter Wood photo 1122. Hunter Wood RP
Aaron Sanchez Note
Aaron Sanchez photo 1142. Aaron Sanchez SP
Jhon Romero Note
Jhon Romero photo 1160. Jhon Romero RP
Griffin Jax Note
Griffin Jax photo 1184. Griffin Jax RP,SP
Trevor Megill Note
Trevor Megill photo 1210. Trevor Megill RP
Jake Cave Note
Jake Cave photo 1344. Jake Cave LF,CF,RF
Jake Jewell Note
Jake Jewell photo 1355. Jake Jewell RP
Billy Hamilton Note
Billy Hamilton photo 1371. Billy Hamilton LF,CF
Kyle Garlick Note
Kyle Garlick photo 1383. Kyle Garlick LF,RF
Brad Peacock Note
Brad Peacock photo 1415. Brad Peacock P,RP,SP
Gilberto Celestino Note
Gilberto Celestino photo 1420. Gilberto Celestino CF,LF,RF
Royce Lewis Note
Royce Lewis photo 1457. Royce Lewis SS
Michael Feliz Note
Michael Feliz photo 1520. Michael Feliz RP
Andrew Bechtold Note
Andrew Bechtold photo 1644. Andrew Bechtold 3B