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Wednesday, January 24, 2018

2018 FANTASY BASEBALL PLAYER ANALYZER: RAFAEL DEVERS 3B BOSTON RED SOX

Let the hype begin.  On the short list of being the "must have" sleeper of the upcoming 2018 fantasy baseball season, Boston Red Sox top third base prospect Rafael Devers is right up there with Philadelphia Phillies slugging first baseman Rhys Hoskins in the extreme hype department.  at just 21-year-old, Devers comes off a tremendous 2017 campaign where he lit up Double-A pitching (.300, 18 home runs) and the proceeded to come up to the Sox and hit .284 with 10 more homers in just 240 at-bats.  It was a beyond impressive showing for such a young hitter and it speaks to the massive upside here that has made many drool in the fantasy baseball community.  So let's dig in a bit more in order to see what a full season of Devers could supply his owners going forward.

What really stands out about Devers as a whole is that he profiles as the next bit slugging third baseman who also can hit .300.  That is always a highly sought-after commodity in yearly fantasy baseball leagues and 2018 will start to unveil this skill.  Devers has never hit worse than .280 at any level in his development thus far and as he matures, he will continue to solidify that skill.  The power is already apparent as well and Devers should be up against 30 home runs before too long.  In fact, you can make a good case that Devers profiles as a Nolan Arenado-type third baseman and that alone will really hype the kid even more.

Now in terms of the rest of the profile, it needs to be noted that Devers is not a base stealer as he had only 3 all of last season at three different combined levels.  5-7 is possible but you are not hanging your hat on this skill for Devers.  Instead, bank on four category production from Devers who already draws walks at a high rate (7.5 BB/9 with Red Sox last season) and whose 23.8 K/9 rate figures to smooth out as he gains more experience at the major league level.  Now in terms of where to draft Devers, the hype will ensure he will go in the Round 5-7 range which is pricey for someone so raw.  The talent is way too obvious to ignore though and so Devers will be worth the cost this drafting season.

2018 PROJECTION:  .284 24 HR 78 RBI 79 R 5 SB  


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