I feel obligated to mention that Tim Tebow will DH in two games this week but it literally means nothing.
Dansby Swanson - Dansby Swanson is having a fantastic spring training and might be showing a bit more fantasy value than any of us thought that he might have. IN six games he's hitting .438 with a homer and four RBI with almost a 1:1 K:BB rate. Swanson is likely going to be a more valuable real life shortstop compared to fantasy, but he did hit .302 in his brief stint in the majors last season and has some power speed combination. Our software is higher on him than I anticipated him projecting him as the #11 SS overall. While the B+ prospect doesn't possess elite secondary skills, a 15/15 season with a .275 AVG is within reach. Making him a potential value right now as he's currently the 17th SS off the board based on ADP.
Arodys Vizcaino - Arodys Vizcaino is having a solid spring and I still believe that he's the most talent arm in the Braves bullpen. Last Friday he was hitting 98 on the radar gun against the Red Sox which makes it seem like he's healthy again and ready to get a shot at the ninth inning for the Braves. Brian Snitker has all but said "Jim Johnson is our closer" but Vizzy would be next in line for the job if Johnson were to falter.
Josh Collmenter - Let me preface by saying that Mike Foltynewicz still SHOULD get the 5th starter job to break camp, but Josh Colmenter sure is making things a bit interesting. He's tossed five shutout innings this spring allowing five hits but in Josh Collmenter fashion he has just one strikeout. As a starter Collmenter rarely records big strikeout numbers, but in the bullpen we actually see a bit of a spike. In 2013 he struck out 8.32 per nine which is significantly higher than his mid-6 K/9 for his career. That same season however we the last time his fastball averaged 87 MPH and has dipped each of the last three seasons and bottomed out at 84.3 MPH last year. Maybe this spring gets him a job in someone's major league rotation, but still don't expect much from him at this point in his career.
Chris Archer - Just another friendly reminder that Chris Archer is really really good. He's tossed five shutout innings this spring allowing just one hit, one walk, and he's punched out seven batters. After a disappointing 2016 Archer is a really strong bet for me to rebound to his elite levels again this year and our software pegs him as the #12 SP for 2017 and he's currently being drafted right between Carlos Carrasco and Jacob deGrom in the 6th round and I'd take Archer over Carrasco if forced to choose (P.S. I like Carrasco too).
Rickie Weeks Jr - I'm just as confused as you are. In the year 2017 I watched a game started by Jason Marquis and am writing about Rickie Weeks tearing it up in Spring Training. He's currently crushing the ball at a .538 clip with two homers and six RBI while playing primarily left field. Weeks hasn't been fantasy relevant since 2012 and I don't think he ends up being anything worth paying attention to this year either. His hard hit rate last year was a really impressive 40.2% but even combined with a 37.0% FB% and a 40.2% pull rate amounting to a whopping nine homers. On top of everything, I legitimately don't know where there's a fit for him in Tampa for regular at bats without an injury.
Nick Franklin - Nick Franklin is another Ray player having a huge spring hitting .538 with a homer. Franklin hasn't lived up to what his ceiling "could" have been going 20/20 in A-Ball but he does have a bit of pop for a middle infielder. As with Rickie Weeks, with Matt Duffey at short and Brad Miller at second I have no iea where Franklin could get consistent enough at bats to be relevant in any sort of formats.
Yasiel Puig - Yasiel Puig is in midseason form with an easy 80 bat flip on a monster homerun this past weekend, his first of the spring. He's hitting a solid .286 in the Cactus League with three of his four hits going for extra bases (two doubles, one homer). I'm always going to be intrigued by the talent of Puig because it's so clearly there. Our software projects him to post numbers in the .280 with 20 homers ballpark which could be a floor if he were to put it all together. Out of Kevin Kiermaier and Michael Conforto who are both drafted in the 24th round according to ADP, I think I gamble on Puig at that point but would blame you if you took the Outlaw over him.
Jake Arrieta - Jake Arrieta struggled in his first outing of the year allowing five hits and three runs (two earned) in two innings. He struck out one and also allowed a homer. He should be a fairly safe pick this year as the Cubs again should be able to get him 15 wins but right now he's going in the third round of drafts and I think that's a little steep for me. I personally would rather wait two more round to pick of the Stephen Strasburg, Carlos Carrasco, and Chris Archer trio.
Seung Hwan Oh - Seung Hwan Oh pitched a perfect inning for the Korean national team in their loss to Israel Monday morning. Oh was DOMINANT in his outing and already looks like he's ready to roll for the regular season. He's got the closer gig in St. Louis on lockdown and we have him slotted in at #7 in our projection system.
Brandon Nimmo - Now that Michael Conforto is hopefully going to force the Mets to play him, now we may have a nother issue on our hands in Brandon Nimmo. He's currently second in the Grapefruit league with a .476 average, but only one has gone for extra bases. Nimmo had a decent debut last season hitting .274 after hitting a ridiculous .352 in AAA. He's a former first rounder with a decent power speed combo but there's a line around the block of outfielders who can't blame center waiting for playing time in New York.
Greg Bird - Greg Bird is a trendy breakout pick at 1B after missing all of last season with shoulder surgery and he's having a great spring with three homers and a .375 batting average. After all the big time first baseman are gone Bird should make a final value option at the positon and would make an excellent 1B/3B option as well if you can pair him with one of the elites.
Jabari Blash - Jabari Blash having a huge spring with three homers and ten RBI to go along with a .385 average. We've always known about his huge upside at the plate but the fact that he has five walks against three strikeouts is borderline unbelievable. His main flaw has been the swing and miss in his game, as he struck out in 40.5% of his at bats last year (84 PAs) but homered three times and stole a base. He's worth a buck or two in NL only in case it does click, but he's still not on mixed league radars unless it's a really deep league.
Keon Broxton - Keon Broxton is getting a ton of love across the industry as a potential breakout guy for 2017. He's hitting .400 this spring with two homers and two stolen bases, but has also been caught stealing twice already. Last year in just 75 games he hit nine homers and swiped 23 bags which makes the math easy and say that's 20/40 over the course of a full season. The average has always been less than ideal in the minors, but very few players in baseball have the 20/40 potential which makes the potential .250-.260ish average very doable.
Trevor Story - Maybe the fantasy story (not a pun, I promise) of the year last year was Trevor Story coming out of seemingly nowhere to hit 27 homers in just 97 games. It's very well documented that he strikes out a lot and he was able to withstand it by notching a 44.9% hard hit rate. His season ended early due to thumb surgery and he's showing that he's regained his power stroke with two of his three hits leaving the yard. He's a great power source at SS but the strikeouts should still be a cause for some concern.
Bradley Zimmer - In a somewhat open centerfield competition, Bradley Zimmer is throwing his name in the hat with a .300 average, two homers, and seven RBI. Zimmer has swiped more than 40 bags in each of the last two seasons in the minors and coming close to hitting 20 bombs. With how Tyler Naquin played last season I'd guess that Zimmer starts in AAA with only 150 PAs there last season, but none of the OF options in Cleveland are outstanding (unless Michael Brantley is healthy) so there's plenty of room there whenever the Indians deem Zimmer ready.
Trevor Bauer - Trevor Bauer has started his spring with 6.0 innings allowing just one unearned run, but his strikeouts have vanished as he only has one K so far. Bauer saw a velocity spike across the board last year and also a decreased walk rate but his strikeouts dipped by one per nine. At least in my mind, he's not quite the pitcher in actuality that my brain thinks that he is (a flame-throwing Lincecum clone) but he's still a very solid pitcher that can round out the back of a rotation. Being on a team as good as the Indians should be definitely doesn't hurt anything.
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