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Fantasy Baseball Player Notes

2021 Fantasy Baseball Draft Notes

Clayton Kershaw Note
Clayton Kershaw photo 12. Clayton Kershaw
Kershaw turned back the clock a bit in 2020, as the shortened season allowed him to let things go a bit more and add some of the velocity he had lost over the previous two seasons. The result was his best WHIP and ERA since 2016 and best strikeout rate since 2017. Kershaw isn't going to reach 200 innings pitched at this stage of his career, not with his injury history and the Dodgers' depth in their rotation and World Series aspirations. But even entering his age-33 season, he offers next to no downside. Consider this: Kershaw had probably the worst season of his career in 2019 and pitched to a 3.03 ERA and a 1.04 WHIP with more than a strikeout per inning. Draft him as a strong SP2 but bank on 160 innings. Anything more is gravy.
37 weeks ago
Zack Greinke Note
Zack Greinke photo 26. Zack Greinke
Greinke is entering his age-37 season, but still somehow keeps getting it done. His ERA of 4.03 last year was certainly higher than fantasy managers are used to seeing, but it came with a 2.80 FIP and 3.51 xFIP. His strikeout rate was his best since 2017 and his walk rate of 3.3% was the best of his entire career. But his velocity was down about two ticks, with his fastball clocking in at just 87.9 miles per hour. Greinke is as smart a pitcher as there is but it's going to be difficult to succeed over the course of a full 162-game season if his pure stuff continues to diminish. He's one of the few pitchers in the game who is probably capable of pitching 200 innings in 2021, but expect a continued downward trend in his performance.
37 weeks ago
James Paxton Note
James Paxton photo 52. James Paxton
Paxton missed almost the entire 2020 season after straining a flexor in his pitching forearm. Any forearm injury is worrisome because of the connection to the elbow, and Paxton has hardly been the picture of health in his career. He'll try to jumpstart his career again back with the Mariners, and the reports from his workout, where he reportedly touched 94 MPH, were encouraging after his velocity drop last year. When he pitches, he's almost always effective, so he's worth a late-round pick for the potential upside. But the injury history should keep him relatively low on your draft board.
37 weeks ago
Michael Pineda Note
Michael Pineda photo 66. Michael Pineda
Drew Smyly Note
Drew Smyly photo 76. Drew Smyly
If you're willing to buy into Smyly's 2020 season, then he's likely to come at a major discount in drafts. He added more than two miles per hour to his fastball, struck out 37.8% of the batters he faced, and leaned more into his excellent curveball. There's reason for optimism after the Braves offered him a substantial one-year deal. Of course, Smyly's real issue is his health, as he missed two full seasons because of Tommy John surgery and even last year was limited to 26 1/3 innings. But there's reason to believe his gains last year are sustainable, so taking him late in your drafts, is worth the gamble.
37 weeks ago
Yusei Kikuchi Note
Yusei Kikuchi photo 78. Yusei Kikuchi
Matthew Boyd Note
Matthew Boyd photo 79. Matthew Boyd
Zach Davies Note
Zach Davies photo 81. Zach Davies
Davies has quietly put together two quality seasons, with a 3.55 ERA and 1.29 WHIP in 2019, and a 2.73 ERA and 1.07 WHIP last year. Notably, he started throwing more changeups in 2020, which led both to an increased swinging strike rate and strikeout rate. But his xERA was still 5.01, and although he routinely outperforms his expected stats, it's a reminder not to get too high on a pitcher who amounts to a command specialist. The upside is that after a trade to the Cubs, he'll face mostly weak offenses, which should help to boost his floor a bit.
37 weeks ago
Kwang Hyun Kim Note
Kwang Hyun Kim photo 99. Kwang Hyun Kim
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. Back tightness may put him on the IL to start the year, but there does not appear to be any long-term concerns.
37 weeks ago
J.A. Happ Note
J.A. Happ photo 110. J.A. Happ
Carlos Martinez Note
Carlos Martinez photo 115. Carlos Martinez
Garrett Richards Note
Garrett Richards photo 125. Garrett Richards
Carlos Rodon Note
Carlos Rodon photo 128. Carlos Rodon
Danny Duffy Note
Danny Duffy photo 130. Danny Duffy
Matt Shoemaker Note
Matt Shoemaker photo 139. Matt Shoemaker
Johnny Cueto Note
Johnny Cueto photo 141. Johnny Cueto
Mike Foltynewicz Note
Mike Foltynewicz photo 143. Mike Foltynewicz
Daniel Ponce de Leon Note
Daniel Ponce de Leon photo 148. Daniel Ponce de Leon
Masahiro Tanaka Note
Masahiro Tanaka photo 158. Masahiro Tanaka
Matt Strahm Note
Matt Strahm photo 165. Matt Strahm
Matt Moore Note
Matt Moore photo 166. Matt Moore
Jon Lester Note
Jon Lester photo 168. Jon Lester
Vince Velasquez Note
Vince Velasquez photo 171. Vince Velasquez
Collin McHugh Note
Collin McHugh photo 173. Collin McHugh
Jakob Junis Note
Jakob Junis photo 175. Jakob Junis
John Curtiss Note
John Curtiss photo 177. John Curtiss
Julio Teheran Note
Julio Teheran photo 180. Julio Teheran
Chad Kuhl Note
Chad Kuhl photo 182. Chad Kuhl
Tyler Clippard Note
Tyler Clippard photo 183. Tyler Clippard
Tyler Chatwood Note
Tyler Chatwood photo 186. Tyler Chatwood
Jake Arrieta Note
Jake Arrieta photo 187. Jake Arrieta
Cole Hamels Note
Cole Hamels photo 188. Cole Hamels
Felix Pena Note
Felix Pena photo 189. Felix Pena
Cam Bedrosian Note
Cam Bedrosian photo 191. Cam Bedrosian
Josh Tomlin Note
Josh Tomlin photo 192. Josh Tomlin
Tanner Roark Note
Tanner Roark photo 193. Tanner Roark
Jimmy Nelson Note
Jimmy Nelson photo 195. Jimmy Nelson
Mike Fiers Note
Mike Fiers photo 199. Mike Fiers
Brett Anderson Note
Brett Anderson photo 203. Brett Anderson
Tyler Anderson Note
Tyler Anderson photo 205. Tyler Anderson
Rick Porcello Note
Rick Porcello photo 211. Rick Porcello
Martin Perez Note
Martin Perez photo 214. Martin Perez
Zack Godley Note
Zack Godley photo 218. Zack Godley
Anthony Reyes Note
Anthony Reyes photo 220. Anthony Reyes
Derek Holland Note
Derek Holland photo 226. Derek Holland
Daniel Norris Note
Daniel Norris photo 228. Daniel Norris
Jose Urena Note
Jose Urena photo 231. Jose Urena
Colten Brewer Note
Colten Brewer photo 235. Colten Brewer
Aaron Sanchez Note
Aaron Sanchez photo 241. Aaron Sanchez
Homer Bailey Note
Homer Bailey photo 243. Homer Bailey
Jordan Lyles Note
Jordan Lyles photo 247. Jordan Lyles
Adam Plutko Note
Adam Plutko photo 249. Adam Plutko
Ivan Nova Note
Ivan Nova photo 253. Ivan Nova
Brandon Finnegan Note
Brandon Finnegan photo 260. Brandon Finnegan
Jeff Samardzija Note
Jeff Samardzija photo 263. Jeff Samardzija
Ross Detwiler Note
Ross Detwiler photo 264. Ross Detwiler
Jon Duplantier Note
Jon Duplantier photo 269. Jon Duplantier
Joe Palumbo Note
Joe Palumbo photo 271. Joe Palumbo
Chi Chi Gonzalez Note
Chi Chi Gonzalez photo 274. Chi Chi Gonzalez
James Marvel Note
James Marvel photo 279. James Marvel
Luke Bard Note
Luke Bard photo 281. Luke Bard
Hyeon-jong Yang Note
Hyeon-jong Yang photo 282. Hyeon-jong Yang
James Shields Note
James Shields photo 283. James Shields
Sam McWilliams Note
Sam McWilliams photo 284. Sam McWilliams
Rogelio Armenteros Note
Rogelio Armenteros photo 286. Rogelio Armenteros
Jason Vargas Note
Jason Vargas photo 287. Jason Vargas
Trevor Cahill Note
Trevor Cahill photo 288. Trevor Cahill
Andrew Cashner Note
Andrew Cashner photo 290. Andrew Cashner
Clayton Richard Note
Clayton Richard photo 304. Clayton Richard
Jasseel De La Cruz Note
Jasseel De La Cruz photo 306. Jasseel De La Cruz
Ariel Jurado Note
Ariel Jurado photo 307. Ariel Jurado
Bartolo Colon Note
Bartolo Colon photo 310. Bartolo Colon
Ryan Weber Note
Ryan Weber photo 320. Ryan Weber
Mike Leake Note
Mike Leake photo 331. Mike Leake
Brad Peacock Note
Brad Peacock photo 332. Brad Peacock
Daniel Gossett Note
Daniel Gossett photo 333. Daniel Gossett
Cody Ponce Note
Cody Ponce photo 335. Cody Ponce
Chris Mazza Note
Chris Mazza photo 337. Chris Mazza
Dario Agrazal Note
Dario Agrazal photo 345. Dario Agrazal
Felix Hernandez Note
Felix Hernandez photo 351. Felix Hernandez
Tommy Milone Note
Tommy Milone photo 352. Tommy Milone
Shelby Miller Note
Shelby Miller photo 354. Shelby Miller
Edwin Jackson Note
Edwin Jackson photo 357. Edwin Jackson
Anibal Sanchez Note
Anibal Sanchez photo 359. Anibal Sanchez
Glenn Sparkman Note
Glenn Sparkman photo 368. Glenn Sparkman
Jordan Zimmermann Note
Jordan Zimmermann photo 370. Jordan Zimmermann
Wade LeBlanc Note
Wade LeBlanc photo 372. Wade LeBlanc
Chase De Jong Note
Chase De Jong photo 374. Chase De Jong
Conner Greene Note
Conner Greene photo 378. Conner Greene
Dakota Chalmers Note
Dakota Chalmers photo 383. Dakota Chalmers
Asher Wojciechowski Note
Asher Wojciechowski photo 386. Asher Wojciechowski
Gray Fenter Note
Gray Fenter photo 389. Gray Fenter
Matt Harvey Note
Matt Harvey photo 393. Matt Harvey
Ervin Santana Note
Ervin Santana photo 396. Ervin Santana
Tony Cingrani Note
Tony Cingrani photo 397. Tony Cingrani
Andrew Triggs Note
Andrew Triggs photo 400. Andrew Triggs
Steven Fuentes Note
Steven Fuentes photo 402. Steven Fuentes
Corey Oswalt Note
Corey Oswalt photo 403. Corey Oswalt
Francis Martes Note
Francis Martes photo 404. Francis Martes
Jesse Chavez Note
Jesse Chavez photo 405. Jesse Chavez
Derek Law Note
Derek Law photo 406. Derek Law
Neftali Feliz Note
Neftali Feliz photo 408. Neftali Feliz
Gabriel Ynoa Note
Gabriel Ynoa photo 409. Gabriel Ynoa
Braden Shipley Note
Braden Shipley photo 413. Braden Shipley
Wily Peralta Note
Wily Peralta photo 414. Wily Peralta
Jason Hammel Note
Jason Hammel photo 415. Jason Hammel
Edinson Volquez Note
Edinson Volquez photo 416. Edinson Volquez
Mike Kickham Note
Mike Kickham photo 419. Mike Kickham
Francisco Liriano Note
Francisco Liriano photo 420. Francisco Liriano
Jacob Waguespack Note
Jacob Waguespack photo 421. Jacob Waguespack
Jake Faria Note
Jake Faria photo 422. Jake Faria
Thomas Eshelman Note
Thomas Eshelman photo 430. Thomas Eshelman
Steven Wright Note
Steven Wright photo 432. Steven Wright
Dereck Rodriguez Note
Dereck Rodriguez photo 435. Dereck Rodriguez
Phil Pfeifer Note
Phil Pfeifer photo 436. Phil Pfeifer
CC Sabathia Note
CC Sabathia photo 441. CC Sabathia
Artie Lewicki Note
Artie Lewicki photo 442. Artie Lewicki