Friday, April 5, 2013

Second Baseman Fantasy Rundown


TOP 20

1. Robinson Cano
2. Dustin Pedroia
3. Ian Kinsler

Robinson Cano is the top dog among second baseman. However, the gap isn't as wide as many would like to think thanks to an injury riddled Yankees roster. I'd expect a slow start out of the gate for Cano, until other big name stars (Jeter, Teixeira and Granderson) begin making their returns around mid May. Look for a line somewhere around his usual .300, 30 HR, 100 R, and 100 RBI.

Right on the heels of Cano, is Dustin Pedroia. Pedroia welcomes back a healthy Jacoby Ellsbury and Will Middlebrooks, to go along with the additions of Shane Victorino and Mike Napoli. Victorino and Napoli might not put up the numbers they once did, but they are better players then the ones they replaced from a season ago. I'm expecting an AL Wild Card spot for the Red Sox, and Pedroia is a big reason why. Take him confidently as your starting second baseman.

4. Brandon Phillips
5. Aaron Hill
6. Chase Utley
7. Ben Zobrist
8. Jason Kipnis
9. Martin Prado
10. Jose Altuve

When missing on the elite players at a position, the overall attention shifts to value (based on your needs). If you are looking for a player with historically good stats, who I'm expecting to rebound, look no further than Chase Utley. Utley has battled injuries over the better part of the last three seasons, but has  produced when able to play. I'm picking the Phillies to be National League Champs, and Utley is a big reason why.

If you are more interested in a younger player with upside, I'd look at Jose Altuve very closely. What he lacks in power numbers, he makes up for in stolen bases. I could easily see him swiping 40 bags, with a .300 average. The only reason he isn't higher in the rankings is because of the dreadful lineup around him in Houston.

11. Rickie Weeks
12. Dan Uggla
13. Howie Kendrick
14. Kyle Seager
15. Josh Rutledge

Dan Uggla, what do I make of you heading into the 2013 season? Uggla has shown throughout his career that he is a .230 - 250 hitter, who strikes out a lot (150+ K per season) but he offsets that with his power numbers. The problem is last season he didn't supply his usual power numbers. He put up career worsts with 19 HR and 78 RBI which is somewhat worrisome, however I believe the addition of the Upton brothers will mean a return to his 30 HR form with added RBI opportunities.
Seager and Rutledge are the sleeper out of this tier. Personally, I wouldn't be excited to have either one as my starting second baseman, but they do offer some upside. Both are potential 15-15 players at their position which definitely gives them value to owners looking for a little bit of everything.

16. Jurickson Profar
17. Neil Walker
18. Daniel Murphy
19. Danny Espinosa
20. Gordon Beckham

I can tell you this for sure... I need Jurickson Profar on at least one of my fantasy teams this season. He is an exciting player to watch, and offers HUGE upside. The only issue is he has no clear timeline to join the Rangers in an everyday capacity.
The rest of this tier consists of just backup second base options or MI starters in deep leagues. Don't plan on drafting any of these players as a starter in a 12-team league.

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