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Wednesday, February 3, 2016

2016 FANTASY BASEBALL DRAFT PRIMER: OUTFIELDERS

The not as deep as you think outfielders are up next as we continue with our last few 2016 fantasy baseball draft primers where we identify the players we will target this season.  With the list quite large, we will save the outfielders we will avoid for a separate post. 

Draft Plans:  Once again, we go with the tried-and-true method of using one of our first two picks on a five-tool outfielders.  While a first round pick will be needed for Mike Trout, Bryce Harper, Andrew McCutchen, etc., some second round options are Adam Jones, Charlie Blackmon, Starling Marte, and Ryan Braun. 

OUTFIELDERS WE WILL TARGET

Mike Trout, Andrew McCutchen, Bryce Harper:  All first round locks and guys who put up blockbuster numbers, in particular Trout and Harper.  McCutchen meanwhile is a bit overrated as his steals are eroding a bit and his overall package of numbers was down last season as he dealt with injuries.  Still a first round pick spent on any of these guys is well worth it.

Charlie Blackmon, A.J. Pollock, Adam Jones, Giancarlo Stanton, Starling Marte:  All guys who command second round picks outside of maybe Marte and again we will gladly select someone from this group if we go first baseman in Round 1.  No explanation needed as they all are five tool guys outside of Jones and Stanton who both supply major power.

Mookie Betts:  Once some April struggles were put behind him, Mookie Betts was every bit the five tool sleeper star we anticipated he would be.  With a few seasons left of ceiling, Betts could very well be a 20/40/.300 guy real soon.

Carlos Gomez:  Still young at the age of 30, I will give a mulligan to the 2015 version of Carlos Gomez.  Gomez was simply not healthy at any point in the season and that caused his numbers to crater.  Give him another chance and take advantage of the cheaper draft price. 

George Springer:  On the bubble here as Springer might be a tad too high priced for me.  Expectations remain very high here as Springer has immense talent and began to show average improvement and a sizable uptick in steals last season before he got injured. 

Kevin Pillar:  Love cheap power/speed guys and Kevin Pillar was just that in 2015 when he hit 12 home runs and stole 25 bases in his first full major league campaign.  Somewhat overshadowed in the insanely good Toronto lineup, Pillar could do a nice Mookie Betts impression for a much cheaper cost.

Adam Eaton:  Finally health in 2015, the much-hyped Adam Eaton finally showed his skills as he batted .287 with 14 home runs and 18 steals.  The power was surprising as Eaton never put up home run rates like he did last season but that could be due to the fact he is reaching his prime.  There are more steals to be had here and Eaton can hit .300 in his sleep.  Go heavy here. 

Gerardo Parra:  Yeah moving to Colorado adds even more appeal to a guy who posted a terrific breakout in 2015.  While not a 20-plus steal guy, Parra can swipe 15 bags with 10-12 home runs in Coors Field with a .300 average. 

Rusney Castillo:  Will take another shot on the talented Cuban as Castillo hints at decent power/speed ability but injuries and a loaded Boston outfield have held him back a bit.  Talent usually wins out and Castillo will be given every chance to succeed this season.

Byron Buxton:  Many are foolishly already down on the multi-talented Buxton who was arguably the most hyped prospect outside of Kris Bryant over the last two seasons.  While his plate discipline needs work and the power has not shown up yet, Buxton has way too much talent to remain an enigma.

Ender Inciarte:  Getting moved to the Atlanta Braves will allow Inciarte to be the leadoff batter for the team.  There is a long pedigree of bit time steals here and Inciarte can also pop the occasional homer. 

David Peralta:  With the trade of Ender Inciarte opening up a starting outfielder spot for David Peralta, there is some major upside here.  Peralta has above-average and very intriguing power and he also can run a bit.  Sit him versus lefties but overall Peralta is one of the best sleeper prospects this season. 

Christian Yelich:  As long as you accept the fact Yelich won't hit any more than 15 home runs due to a heavy groundball rate, there is a lot to remain excited about here as the kid has batting title ability and major wheels to swipe a ton of bases. 

Yasiel Puig:  The draft price has dropped a ton here as Puig continues to let the fantasy baseball community down due to injuries and ugly behavior but the power improved on a per game basis in 2015 and the overall talent is terrific. 

Ben Revere:  Always have respected the excellent and quite affordable three category production here from Revere who helps greatly in steals, runs, and average. 

Odubel Herrera:  Bad teams like the Philadelphia Phillies can house some very good bargains and one guy is Odubel Herrera who can steals bases, hit .300, and hit the occasional home run. 

Michael Conforto:  Really like the power potential here and Conforto has a starting outfield spot ready for him this season.  25 home runs is entirely possible. 

Stephen Piscotty:  The kid did very well last season as a waiver add midway through the summer and the solid batting eye and developing power looks very enticing.  Will have a starting spot all his own this season which alone is looking quite appealing given the obvious upside from the kid. 



 

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