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Saturday, February 6, 2016

2016 FANTASY BASEBALL ISSUES: LATE-ROUND STOLEN BASE ASSETS

Each and every fantasy baseball season, we have forcefully advised our readers to resist the urge to draft what we in the industry call "stolen base specialists" or the guys who main (and maybe only) usefulness in our fake game comes in that one category.  Guys like Michael Bourn in his prime or Billy Hamilton now makes for bad early round investments due to the fact they help you in only 1 or two categories (steals and runs) while being a major liability elsewhere.  At the same time you are drafting such a player, the rest of your league is stocking up on more well-rounded guys.  Instead, we always preach using late round picks on stolen base guys and each and every season we see more then a few players who become fantasy baseball useful and who may not even have been drafted.  In 2015 such emerging gems included Billy Burns, Odubel Herrera, Michael Taylor, and Delino Deshields Jr.  This season will be no different and so with that said, here are some late round steals upside guys to gets your fix in that category on.

Jarrod Dyson:  Once again Dyson is on the outside looking in when it comes to being a starting outfielder for the K.C. Royals but that has not stopped him from swiping 30 or more bases in 3 out of the last four seasons.  Injuries are always a factor in any starting outfield and so Dyson will get his chances to pad his steals once again.  In fact if serious injury strikes out anyone in the Royals outfield, Dyson could go all Billy Hamilton with a much better average. 

Ender Inciarte:  The Atlanta Braves swung a deal for the speedy Inciarte over the winter and now he will get to start and lead off for the team in 2016.  Inciarte collected some major steals in the minors when coming up the Arizona system and being out there every day for the Braves should result in a bunch of steals (and even runs and the occasional homer).  Tremendous sleeper upside. 

Leonys Martin:  Martin gets a fresh start with the Seattle Mariners after bombing out with the Texas Rangers in 2015 and speed has always been his calling card. 

Dalton Pompey:  Like with Jarrod Dyson, there is no starting spot available for Dalton Pompey but the very fast leadoff-type hitter has a bunch of steals to his name in the minor leagues.  Again if a spot opens up, Pompey could be a nice asset there. 

Tim Anderson:  The former 2013 first round pick of the Chicago White Sox stole a crazy 49 bases in 2015 at Double-A with a .312 average.  Watch this one closely in the spring to see if Anderson can get a chance to unseat the inconsistent Avisail Garcia.

Ketel Marte:  We already about Marte in-depth on Friday so no need to rehash but the kid could steal 30 bases if he can nail down a starting spot in the Mariners' infield. 

Chris Taylor:  If not Ketel Marte, then Chris Taylor will stake his claim to the starting shortstop job for the Mariners and he too has a ton of speed to offer.

Jose Peraza:  Whether with the Dodgers or Braves, Jose Peraza has staked his name to his prowess in stealing bases at a high clip.  The Cincinnati Reds have started a clear rebuilding plan and Peraza has a very solid chance to unseat the shaky Zack Cozart at shortstop this season. 

Of course there will be more but these are some of the more interesting plays for the late rounds of your draft. 

 

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