Starting Pitchers Nos. 25 to 48 ADP Report
With the National Fantasy Baseball Championship coming up, I thought I would take some time to look at the current draft flow in March. I’ve put together the top 400 or so players drafted in 168 drafts in the NFBC to get help get a feel for each player’s value. Completed drafts are a great tool for Fantasy owners to get a feel for a player’s average draft position or ADP. By knowing the potential round a targeted player may go in, a Fantasy owner may be able to add a few more pieces to the puzzle with a good feel for drafts flow and timing.
The key is finding the drop-offs at each position plus knowing when there is a huge step down at a position if you miss a targeted player. Each owner at the draft table will have a different start to their roster leading to different paths to their team development.
To help get a feel for the player pool, I’ve highlighted some players at each position to show their possible value in 2017. Here is the table that shows what each color means:
Here is a list of the second 24 starting pitchers in 2017 based on ADPs in March from the NFBC:
The next group of starters is loaded with possible upside, but there are also still plenty of questions marks with command and possible length to their seasons.
As of Mid-March, there isn’t a pitcher on this list with an injury. I am afraid of the long-term health of the right arms of Gerrit Cole and Danny Salazar. Both players have boom or bust ability while being discounted in drafts. I won’t say avoid, but I would beware of the downside risk.
I’m in on Matt Harvey headed into 2017. He has a plus fastball with three pitches that are tough to hit. His spring training has been mixed, so he’s not gaining momentum in drafts. Matt is priced to pay off. Julio Teheran is a very good pitcher with an SP2 skill set. If he can be had an SP3, he would be a steal. The Braves will be better offensively so his wins should improve. I just have a feeling Jake Odorizzi is ready to pitch over 200 innings while adding high value in Ks.
Felix Hernandez has a lot of miles on his arm, but he falls into the Justin Verlander category from the 2016 draft season. Feliz has a long winning resume with the character to be motivated to post another strong season. In one slow draft in February, he fell to pick 12.9 to me. Hernandez should be a strong SP2 this year.
Rick Porcello and Jose Quintana fall into the steady category with Porcello having the edge wins with Boston offering more firepower on offense.
I like the upside of both Michael Fulmer and Jameson Taillon. Both pitchers should work well as an SP3. Sean Manaea has the talent to make a step forward as well.
Both Steven Matz, James Paxton, and Julio Urias all have impressive left arms. Urias looks to be over-drafted based on his innings expected to be capped around 150 in 2017. Matz has a live arm with an injury history. He’s well worth the gamble if he slides too far in the draft. Paxton has a plus fastball while improving his command last year. If he improves his fastball command in the strike zone, James could make a nice step forward.
Most of these pitchers in this grouping, I would draft at the right price.
Early team structure will point Fantasy owners in many directions with their third and fourth pitchers on their starting staff. If you get beat at SP1 and SP2, it makes more sense to take upside chances. If you have a solid edge in your foundation, I would be more drawn to controlling WHIP while adding an arm with major league experience while eliminating some injury risk.