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Fantasy Baseball Player Notes

2021 Fantasy Baseball Draft Notes

Jack Flaherty Note
Jack Flaherty photo 35. Jack Flaherty SP
Flaherty ended up with a 4.91 ERA, but that hardly represents his actual performance, given that he allowed nine runs in a three-inning start in September. If you take out that outing, Flaherty had just a 3.13 ERA, and he didn't allow more than three earned runs in any of his eight other starts. Given that Flaherty's season was shorter than most due to the Cardinals' COVID-19 issues, it's fair to essentially throw out at that one abysmal outing, considering his other numbers were relatively consistent from 2019. Indeed, his swinging strike rate improved, as did his K/9 rate and ground ball percentage. With his devastating slider, Flaherty should still be considered one of the top pitchers in the real and fantasy game, and is capable of fronting a fantasy staff.
15 hours ago
Nolan Arenado Note
Nolan Arenado photo 40. Nolan Arenado 3B
On the bright side, Arenado struck out just 10% of the time, a career-best. On the down side, there was everything else. Arenado batted just .253 and put up a 162-game pace of 27 home runs, 78 runs, 88 RBI, and zero steals. Those numbers won't kill your fantasy team, but considering Arenado's worst numbers over the previous five seasons were 37 home runs, 97 runs scored, and 110 RBI, they were a disaster. The good news, at least from the standpoint of projecting Arenado into the future, is that he was dealing with an injured AC joint in his shoulder for most of the season. In other words, fantasy managers can largely ignore Arenado's poor 2020 numbers, and focus instead on how he will perform now that he's been traded to the Cardinals. Although there's likely to be some dip in his numbers, we've seen hitters leave the Rockies and largely retain their value (or, in the case of DJ LeMahieu, increase their value), The best part is you won't have to pay that first-round price anymore, and if his ADP drops after the trade to St. Louis, it should be easy to turn a profit.
15 hours ago
Paul Goldschmidt Note
Paul Goldschmidt photo 75. Paul Goldschmidt 1B
Goldschmidt had an interesting 2020 season, during which he brought his batting average back up to .304 and his walk rate to 16%, while simultaneously dropping his strikeout rate to a career best 18.6%. After swinging more than he ever had in his first season with the Cardinals, Goldschmidt returned to the patient approach he had developed throughout his career, swinging at just 40.5% of pitches (after a 46.4% swinging strike rate the year before). But while his average went up, his power waned, as he hit just six home runs and had a career-worst .466 slugging percentage. Nolan Arenado batting behind him this year should help, and he had bone chips removed from his elbow this offseason. There could be another big-time power season left in Goldschmidt's bat, but the more likely scenario is that he will put up solid but unspectacular production at the first base position.
15 hours ago
Tommy Edman Note
Tommy Edman photo 156. Tommy Edman 3B
After a highly successful 2019 season in which he hit 11 home runs and stole 15 bases in 92 games, Edman's numbers regressed in nearly every meaningful way last year. His batting average slipped from .304 to just .250, he hit just five home runs, and he went 2-for-6 in stolen base attempts. Edman was a bit unlucky last year, as his xBA and xSLG outperformed his actual numbers. And despite his down year on the basepaths, he was in the 95th percentile in sprint speed. He's likely to lead off for the Cardinals this year, and should be good for double digits in both home runs and steals, with plenty of runs scored. Considering he has multi-position eligibility, he should be drafted before the double-digit rounds.
15 hours ago
Dylan Carlson Note
Dylan Carlson photo 163. Dylan Carlson RF
Carlson caught major buzz heading into the season last year as he looked likely to earn an everyday role in the outfield, but he sputtered for much of the season even when he did play, slashing just .200/.252/.364 with three home runs in 119 plate appearances. But he had a successful, albeit brief, post-season, and now again looks ready to claim a starting outfield spot for the Cardinals. Carlson is just 22 years old and has a strong minor-league track record. If he can hold down his spot, he has 25-15 potential, and should hit for a solid average. Given his age and his poor 2020 season, there's some obvious risk, but the draft capital necessary to get him on your team is not prohibitive, and his upside should make him a target in all formats.
15 hours ago
Paul DeJong Note
Paul DeJong photo 193. Paul DeJong SS
Giovanny Gallegos Note
Giovanny Gallegos photo 257. Giovanny Gallegos RP
Gallegos pitched well last year with the Cardinals despite seeing limited innings because of his difficulty in getting to the states in the middle of a pandemic. But he was effective when he pithed, and owns a career 3.06 ERA, 0.94 WHIP, and 31.6% strikeout rate. The Cardinals want Jordan Hicks to be their closer, but Gallegos will undoubtedly be in the mix should Hick prove ineffective or suffer a setback in his return from Tommy John surgery.
15 hours ago
Kwang Hyun Kim Note
Kwang Hyun Kim photo 270. Kwang Hyun Kim SP
If you want upside with a late-round pitcher, you're looking in the wrong place with Kim. Although he put up a 1.62 ERA and 1.07 WHIP last year, his xFIP and SIERA were each about three runs higher than his ERA. He also struck out just 5.54 batters per nine innings, and never showed much strikeout potential in the KBO. That said, for a pitcher who is basically free in drafts, he offers some decent stability, and is worth taking late if you have an otherwise strong staff, particularly with strikeouts.
15 hours ago
Yadier Molina Note
Yadier Molina photo 285. Yadier Molina C
Jordan Hicks Note
Jordan Hicks photo 294. Jordan Hicks RP
Hicks is likely to serve as the Cardinals' closer this year if he can show that he has fully recovered from Tommy John surgery. He totaled 20 saves from 2018-2019 before hurting his elbow, and then opted out of last season, in part because of setbacks in his recovery. Early reports from the spring are promising, and it seems that the Cardinals want him and his 100+ MPH fastball to lead the way in the ninth inning. Monitor his health in the spring, but draft him late for now and expect saves so long as he is healthy.
15 hours ago
Miles Mikolas Note
Miles Mikolas photo 323. Miles Mikolas SP
Adam Wainwright Note
Adam Wainwright photo 367. Adam Wainwright SP
Alex Reyes Note
Alex Reyes photo 385. Alex Reyes RP
Carlos Martinez Note
Carlos Martinez photo 398. Carlos Martinez SP
Tyler O'Neill Note
Tyler O'Neill photo 409. Tyler O'Neill LF
Harrison Bader Note
Harrison Bader photo 414. Harrison Bader CF
Andrew Miller Note
Andrew Miller photo 463. Andrew Miller RP
Andrew Knizner Note
Andrew Knizner photo 483. Andrew Knizner C
Matt Carpenter Note
Matt Carpenter photo 488. Matt Carpenter 3B
Dakota Hudson Note
Dakota Hudson photo 498. Dakota Hudson SP
Daniel Ponce de Leon Note
Daniel Ponce de Leon photo 527. Daniel Ponce de Leon SP
Ryan Helsley Note
Ryan Helsley photo 781. Ryan Helsley RP
Genesis Cabrera Note
Genesis Cabrera photo 841. Genesis Cabrera RP
Angel Rondon Note
Angel Rondon photo 855. Angel Rondon SP
Lane Thomas Note
Lane Thomas photo 861. Lane Thomas RF
John Gant Note
John Gant photo 875. John Gant RP
Tyler Webb Note
Tyler Webb photo 938. Tyler Webb RP
Seth Elledge Note
Seth Elledge photo 1077. Seth Elledge RP
Kodi Whitley Note
Kodi Whitley photo 1109. Kodi Whitley RP
Junior Fernandez Note
Junior Fernandez photo 1184. Junior Fernandez RP
Johan Quezada Note
Johan Quezada photo 1226. Johan Quezada RP
Johan Oviedo Note
Johan Oviedo photo 1239. Johan Oviedo SP
Jake Woodford Note
Jake Woodford photo 1262. Jake Woodford RP
Tyler Heineman Note
Tyler Heineman photo 1280. Tyler Heineman C
Ali Sanchez Note
Ali Sanchez photo 1336. Ali Sanchez C
Austin Dean Note
Austin Dean photo 1354. Austin Dean LF
Edmundo Sosa Note
Edmundo Sosa photo 1375. Edmundo Sosa SS
Justin Williams Note
Justin Williams photo 1383. Justin Williams RF
John Nogowski Note
John Nogowski photo 1460. John Nogowski 1B
Evan Mendoza Note
Evan Mendoza photo 1469. Evan Mendoza 3B
Max Moroff Note
Max Moroff photo 1471. Max Moroff 2B
Kramer Robertson Note
Kramer Robertson photo 1516. Kramer Robertson 2B