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Wednesday, February 8, 2017

2017 FANTASY BASEBALL PROSPECT WATCH: ALEX BREGMAN

With the third base position as stocked with high-end talent like never before, surely there can't be any more room at or near the top of the position right?  Well whether you think so or not, Houston Astros third base prospect Alex Bregman will no doubt force his inclusion in such a class as he gets set to serve as the team's starter at the hot corner to begin the 2017 season.  The former second overall pick in the 2015 MLB Draft has just one season (and a partial one at that) at a level above A-Ball but that just goes to show you how much of a talent Bregman is and he is on the short list as one of the most sought after sleepers when it comes to 2017 fantasy baseball drafts.

Now in terms of the numbers, Bregman made mince meat of  minor league pitching last season as he compiled the following numbers first at Double-A and then at Triple-A:

Double-A:  .297 14 HR 46 RBI 54 R 5 SB in 285 at-bats
Triple-A:  .333 8 HR 34 RBI 31 R 2 SB in 83 at-bats

So prior to getting the call to the Astros last season, Bregman showed off his power/speed game at the grand old age of 22 in posting a 22-HR/7-SB split with an average north of .300 and those eye-opening digits forced the team's hand during the summer,  Now while Bregman understandably struggled right out of the Astros gate given his age and very low amount of minor league seasoning (1 hit in first 32 at-bats), he predictably rallied to hit .264 with 8 home runs and 2 steals in 201 more at-bats.  Do the math and Bregman hit a total of 30 home runs in 2016 across three level, thus fueling the hype meter to the point that his price could get downright ridiculous this spring.

In delving into the numbers a bit more, Bregman pretty much checks all of the boxes in terms of having obvious power that is still developing, plus the speed to steals some bases.  While Bregman is not going to be a difference-maker in the steals category, he has the speed to swipe 10-15 bags to go with 20-plus home runs right out of the gate this season.  The batting average could be up-and-down all season which is what happens to most hitters in the first first full seasons in the majors but everything else looks more than potent.  If Bregman bats out of the second spot in the lineup as he did a year ago?  Bump him up even more so.

So when breaking it all down, Alex Bregman is right there with the Boston Red Sox's Andrew Benintendi in terms of being the number 1 hitting prospect in all of fantasy baseball for the 2017 season.  Yes there will be some bumps in the road (looking at you 2016 Michael Conforto) but Bregman is going to be special and ready to be the next great third baseman.

2017 PROJECTION:  .278 22 HR 74 RBI 92 R 11 SB  


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