Starting Pitchers Nos. 49 to 72 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 third 24 starting pitchers in 2017 based on ADPs in March from the NFBC:
Of this group of pitchers, Adam Wainwright is the only beaten down ace. He struggled in 2016 for sure, but he has a long winning resume. In addition, he has the arm to pitch a high volume of innings. Over nine innings this spring. Adam has a 3.00 ERA with eight Ks and two HRs allowed. I expected Wainwright to pitch well in 2017 with over 200 innings.
I like the arm of Aaron Nola, but he does have injury risk after hurting his elbow in 2016. If he stays healthy all year, Nola should post a season well worth his draft value. Robbie Ray had a ton of Ks (185 over 174.1 innings) in 2016, but he needs to throw more strikes. His arm could make a huge step forward with better command. Taijuan Walker is my Breakout Pitcher in 2017. Over four starts this spring covering 13 innings, Walker has a 2.08 ERA with 21 Ks and one walk.
Sonny Gray will be out at least a month with an oblique issue. Anthony DeSclafani has a bum right elbow, and I would avoid him on draft day. Drew Pomeranz battled a left elbow injury in early spring, but he’s trending in the right direction.
Carlos Rodon, Michael Pineda, Drew Smyly, and Garrett Richards have the types of arm that have high upside. Rodon needs to throw more strikes. Pineda needs better conditioning with a stronger mental approach. Richards looked special in 2014 with playable 2015. He's allowed three runs and five hits over 4.1 innings this spring with six Ks.
This is plenty of upside in Blake Snell, Jharel Cotton, and Dylan Bundy with each player having a minor tick in the potential value in 2017. Snell needs better command while Bundy will have an innings cap. Cotton looks exciting, but his short-term success in the majors wasn’t supported by his minor-league resume.
Fantasy owners will be attracted to Ivan Nova after his strong second half with the Pirates. Junior Guerra threw the ball well with the Brewers in 2016 with a long journey to the majors. His “spin rate” is the draw here, which is nothing tier nonsense.
Some teams will be looking for upside with their fifth and sixth starters. A team with a strong foundation want to avoid risk and downside risk. The best teams will find that hidden gem in this group of options.