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Top 100 Fantasy Players

We have now ranked our 2013 Top 100 Fantasy Prospects.  While in general ranking prospects based on their major league fantasy contribution is similar to ranking their projections as major league players, there are some slight differences.

Batters over Pitchers

When building a fantasy team, particularly one that has Keepers, you must value batters above pitchers.  Why?

  1. Historically, hitters have superior health grades over pitchers.  In other words, pitchers generally spend more time on the DL with the risk of catastrophic injuries such as damage to their ulnar collateral ligament or a variety of shoulder injuries.
  2. Hitters contribute to 50% more counting categories than a pitcher in a traditional 5×5 league format – runs, RBI, home runs, and stolen bases vs. strikeouts and wins.  These counting stats, particularly with hitters, are best found at the top of the draft; particularly with players that can provide both power and stolen bases.  Rarely do you find power/speed players later in the draft unless they provide significant downside risk to your batting average such as Danny Espinosa or Drew Stubbs.

In our list, Oscar Taveres moves up from number three to the second ranked prospect.  Additionally, Anthony Rendon gets a boost based on his hit-tool, power potential, and his overall readiness for the big leagues.  Mason Williams, Slade Heathcott and Joc Pederson move up significantly based on their five-tool potential while Adam Eaton gets a boost based on the trade that sent Justin Upton to the Braves freeing up the center field for the gritty rookie.

Several pitchers fall including the Braves potential number five starter Julio Teheran.  While one could argue that Teheran should actually rise in the rankings based on the likelihood that he’ll start the year in the Braves rotation, his ability to strikeout batters and keep the ball in the ballpark has become a problem.  While the reports from the Winter Leagues were encouraging, it was only 17.2 innings.  Many other pitchers including Manny Banuelos, Justin Nicolino, Robbie Erlin, Wily Peralta, and Daniel Corcino drop in the rankings.  In fact, each one of these pitchers has fallen out of my Top 100 list.

Shelby Miller and Taijuan Walker change places in the rankings due solely to Miller’s overall readiness for the Big Leagues.  As I discussed in Walker’s write-up, I love his combination of stuff and athleticism and believe the future is very bright.  However, Miller is more ready.  Finally, you could argue that Walker should be ahead of Jose Fernandez based on the same logic.  The bottom line is that group of RHP pitchers starting with Gerrit Cole through Walker are very close in terms of upside.

Speed counts and defense doesn’t

While stolen bases can be used as a weapon in baseball, it’s a category in fantasy baseball and therefore players who have the ability to steal a base become extremely valuable.

Billy Hamilton takes a huge leap to the seventh overall prospect on our list.  While I doubt he’ll steal 155 bases in the major leagues, there is a real possibility that he could steal 80 plus stolen bases.  Think about this for a moment…  You could draft Hamilton on your team and not target that category for the rest of the draft and load up on power and pitching.  Of course, if Hamilton gets hurt, your team will likely not finish in the money.  Still, Hamilton could become a huge factor in Fantasy Baseball and candidly, I can’t wait to see the effect.

Delino Deshields and Philadelphia young speedster Roman Quinn make the list.  I’m particularly enamored with Quinn and while I don’t think he’ll stay at shortstop, the kid has crazy speed and could be the next “speed guy” that everyone is talking about.  Gary Brown and Lewis Brinson also get a boost in the list.  While Brown is a traditional speedster, my love for Brinson goes well beyond that and while very young, the kid could be a fantasy monster.

Jackie Bradley Jr. and Hak-Ju Lee also tumble in our fantasy rankings.  While I believe both could be nice contributors to your fantasy team, particularly Bradley, they receive considerable value from their elite defensive chops.

As always, please provide any comments you have and where you believe I got it right as well as got it wrong.

14 comments on “Top 100 Fantasy Players

  1. Hi, Neat post. There is an issue together with your web site in web explorer, may check this? IE still is the marketplace leader and a large component to other people will miss your great writing because of this problem.

  2. Great article. I’m hoping to get Taveras or Hamilton in my prospect draft this year. My brain says Taveras but my heart says Hamilton!

  3. Keith Law just released his top 100 prospect list… he has Addison Russell #10! Would you rather have him or Correa in a dynasty keeper league?

    • I just saw. I knew he liked him, but Top 10…Impressive. I have Russell and Correa in the same range, both are young but for me Correa has the higher upside but with more risk than Russell does.

      Tough call on who to take. In 5 years, Correa will likely be the better player, but for year 3, 4, and 5, Russell could provide more value.

  4. Hello there, I discovered your blog by way of Google while searching for a comparable matter, your website came up, it looks good. I’ve added to favourites|added to bookmarks

  5. Hey Rich- question….dynasty league H2H format….Would you give up R. Weeks for Chris Davis and Kyle Crick or Jared Cosart? Heard your mock draft podacst and most of you seemed to be high on davis and low on weeks so curious your opinion. thanks

    • I’m a big fan of Weeks but would prefer Davis, even with 1B pretty flush but get CRICK…he’s the stud, Cosart will be a reliever; although he could be a closer.

      • I should have clarified….currently this would be for Utility spot, so i would be just which you would prefer. yea i like what i read about Crick. seems like a sneeky prospect. and i can not say enough how much i love your podcast! wish it was daily!!

      • Thanks Andy, but it’s Weeks for Davis and Crick…is that correct? If so, I do the deal, if it’s Davis for Weeks, I probably still do the deal, particularly if it’s for a UTIL spot. If you want to take it offline, email me at thefantasysportsguy@gmail.com RW.

  6. Yelich. The kid is still a kid, but showed game power this ST. Add in his BA floor, glove to keep PT, no block, speed….is this a possible Grady Sizemore? I will select a prospect close to the MLs over another if he has a top 5 extreme park. How much should the extreme parks factor into selection? Perfect case is Cargo in Col.

    • I love Yelich’s hit-tool, but just don’t know how much power he’ll have and his home stadium will not help. Grady Sizemore comp? He’s taller and will probably grow into his height but at the moment, I can predict a 30/30 player…could definitely see a 20/20 player but with a much better hit tool. Yelich could be a classic #3 hitter with the ability to hit .300+

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