2017 ADP Issues
March 13, 2017 | Doug Shain
2017 ADP Issues
As I was researching for my next Man Crush list (hitters), I found that I was getting confused while I was looking at the most current NFBC ADP. There were a number of players where the ADP was so bizarre that it compelled me to drop the man crush article and instead write about just how wrong the ADP was for these players. My initial list of players was large, so large that I had to take a step back and limit myself to one player per position (except for OF where I have three).
For some players I found that the ADP was too low and for some I found it was too high (for the purposes of this discussion, a high ADP means they are getting picked soon and a low ADP means they are getting picked late). With each of these players I was able to find comps that I preferred them over (if they are being drafted too low) or whom I preferred over them (if they are being drafted too high). For those players being drafted too high, I like them as players, just not where they are being drafted. Every player is draftable for the right price.
***Expectations are based on 12-team leagues for most standard scoring systems (H2H, Roto, Points)***
Gary Sanchez (NYY – C) – #2 C 50th overall 5th round
I get it, Gary Sanchez was a stud in the second half of the 2016 baseball season. He was a top prospect that lived up to his advance billing, and then some. I’ve just seen far too many players come out of the gate strong their first half of a season and then go total busto in their sophomore campaign. I don’t think that we get a bust of a season for Sanchez but I’d much rather wait a few rounds and grab a guy like Wilsson Contreras in the 9th round and use my 5th round pick on someone who isn’t a catcher. There are a plethora of players being drafted between 50-70 that I’d rather have over Sanchez (Jose Abreu, JD Martinez, Jean Segura, Christian Yelich, Gregory Polanco, Carlos Gonzalez). Are we even sure that Sanchez is going to be better than that 9th round Contreras? Both have an amazing pedigree and it wouldn’t shock me at all if Contreras was the better player of the two in 2017. I’d have no problem waiting even longer and taking Yasmani Grandal eight rounds later and loading up elsewhere in my lineup. Sanchez is the flashy new toy but you have to pay a hefty price for someone that we’ve seen play a grand total of 53 games.
Jose Abreu (CWS – 1B) – #8 1B 61st overall 6th round
Abreu may very well be the most underrated player in fantasy this season. I don’t see what he has done over his three big league seasons that would see him being drafted after Wil Myers and Freddie Freeman (and I love Freddie Freeman). All Abreu has done is average a line of .300-30-103 with about 80 runs scored and a .360 OBP over his three year career. Very few players have those averages the last three seasons. I don’t know why someone would spend a late first round/early second round pick on an aging and declining Miguel Cabrera when they can have Abreu four rounds later. I’d gladly jump into the 5th round to grab Abreu and lock in those 30 HR/100 RBI once again this year.
Trea Turner (WSH – 2B) – #2 2B 10th overall 1st round
Call me old school but I just can’t bring myself to jump into the first round to grab Turner this year. I love him, and I love his skill set, but before drafts were starting up I pegged him as a really slick 3rd round pick. To have to pick him in the top ten is preposterous to me. Like Sanchez, he has all of one good HALF of a season under his belt. He’s not Mike Trout but we are drafting him in Mike Trout territory. Look, hitting .343 with 33 SB in only 73 games is epically good but those numbers are completely unsustainable. Give me Jean Segura four rounds later. Segura might not steal 50 bases but I’m not sold on Turner doing that either. Can’t simply double his stats from last year and expect that to be his baseline. To pick Turner over guys like Donaldson, Rizzo, Blackmon, and Correa is mind blowing; not to mention that you can grab any pitcher not named Clayton Kershaw over picking Turner as well. I’d much rather have a Donaldson/Segura duo on my team rather than a Turner/Kyle Seager duo. I mean, that’s not even close; you want Donaldson/Segura (or at least you should). Position scarcity is a thing but it doesn’t exist enough at 2B to warrant such a high pick on Tuner.
Jose Ramirez (CLE – 3B) – #11 3B 98th overall 9th round
People have no idea how good Jose Ramirez was last year. Did you know he had 22 SB? I sure didn’t. Did you know he hit .316? I didn’t either. I know that I used him in DFS often because he was a high floor/low ceiling guy but until I started studying his numbers I had no idea just how useful he is for season long as well as DFS. Now I know that Ramirez doesn’t give you the pop that you’d normally want from a CI position (only 11 HR last year) but I’d bet that a number of his 46 doubles from last year turn into HR this year. Did you know that he had 46 doubles last year? Right! I know, me either. When you look at his XBH total of 60, the full picture of what Ramirez brings to the table comes to light; he’s a high average, high steals (for the 3B position), extra-base hitter. One more thing about Ramirez, he only struck out 62 times last year (a 3:2 K to BB ratio, which is pretty solid). Let’s compare him to Todd Frazier, who is going 2 rounds higher in drafts. Ramirez had only one less XBH but he also had 100 less K’s, his BA was 90 points higher, and he stole 7 more bases than Frazier. I know that 40 HR looks sexy with Frazier but do you know what’s sexier? A player who can help you in all 5 categories like Ramirez. For the record, I like Ramirez over Anthony Rendon at approximately the same ADP.
Jonathan Villar (MIL – SS) – #3 SS 21st overall 2nd round
I can’t take full credit for my hate of Villar’s ADP this year (one of the SXM radio hosts, I think Jeff Mans, went on a rant the other day about it) but just because I didn’t create the hot take doesn’t mean I don’t agree with it. I don’t get why anyone in their right mind would take Villar in the 2nd round of a fantasy draft. First and foremost, I don’t think his numbers from last year can be replicated. He’s not a power hitter yet he popped off 19 HR. That’s not happening again. He hit .285 last year but with his high K-rate (174 K’s), that’s surely not happening again. So what’s the appeal for him, the 62 steals? If he’s not getting on base as much this year, and I don’t think he does, then that number won’t be replicated either. Let’s not forget that Villar was caught 18 times for a total of 44 net steals (a category A LOT of leagues are moving to). I may not be able to get that many steals from anyone else at the SS position but who says my SB have to come from a shortstop? I’d much rather wait 100 picks and grab a guy like Dansby Swanson or Aledmys Diaz and then get steals from my OF or 2B position (remember the Jean Segura love? There are the steals). I’d draft Trea Turner in the 1st round before I’d grab Jonathan Villar anywhere near the top five rounds; that’s how strongly I dislike Villar this year relative to his ADP.
Nelson Cruz (SEA – OF) – #9 OF 40th overall 3rd round
I’m obsessed with Nelson Cruz this year. I think he’s in for a monster season. I also happen to think he’s a much safer OF pick than the likes of AJ Pollock and Giancarlo Stanton. Both of those guys could be great players but their injury concerns are too high given their current ADP. Cruz has averaged 42 HR and a .280 BA over his last three years. Those averages are about the most you can expect from Stanton (ok, I guess Stanton could get to 50 HR but at what cost to his average?). Anyone who reads anything I’ve ever written knows that I love a player with a high ceiling but that love stops when you factor a high risk of injury into the equation. I could make an argument that Cruz should be the fourth OF off the board instead of the ninth (with guys like Springer, Blackmon, and Marte only being ranked higher because of SB potential). I wouldn’t take him in the first round but if I had a swing pick at the end of round 2/beginning of round 3 I’d have no problem making Cruz one of those two picks. I will own a lot of Cruz this year.
Billy Hamilton (CIN – OF) – #12 OF 51st overall 5th round
By now you probably have come to the conclusion that I hate the SB stat. I’ve already downgraded Trea Turner and Jonathan Villar and now I’m going to attack poor Billy Hamilton. The fact is, I love the SB stat and think it’s wildly undervalued in drafts. The thing is, I think it’s undervalued in the middle to late rounds, while it’s overvalued in the early rounds. I get that we draft Mike Trout and Mookie Betts so high because they can steal bases, and that Paul Goldschmidt and Todd Frazier provide them at non-steal positions, but those four guys bring you so much more than SB for your early pick. What exactly does Billy Hamilton provide for you that you can’t get from Keon Broxton, Jarrod Dyson, or Rajai Davis 120 picks later? His 57 steals last year were nice but that came with a .226 BA and 56 runs scored with no power to speak of. All three of the alternatives had a better BA. Are the extra 20 steals worth 100+ spots of ADP? Is that really worth a top 50 pick? When I see some of the names I’d be passing up to grab Hamilton (Jose Abreu, Christian Yelich, Zach Britton, Gregory Polanco, Kyle Seager) it makes no sense to me. There’s just so much more that those guys can give you over what Hamilton does. Heck, I’d argue with the lack of runs scored and terrible batting average that Hamilton hurts you more than he helps you given the investment you have to make to draft him. I will not own any shares of Billy Hamilton this year at a fifth round ADP.
Adam Jones (BAL – OF) – #26 OF 117th overall 10th round
Adam Jones might be the captain of the Hines Ward All Stars (safe but boring fantasy players). He’s gotten to a point in his career where we know pretty much what we are going to get from him with very little upside. He’s going to get you 25-30 HR, 82-100 RBI, and a .265-.285 BA with 70-90 runs scored. Those are very boring numbers but they are also very reliable and usable numbers. He’s not a first round pick anymore, I’m totally on board with that. But to have him as a 3rd OF is kind of ridiculous. I know he’s not stealing bases anymore but he’s still a very safe guy to plug in as your #2 OF while you take some risks at other positions. I would gladly draft him over guys like Khris Davis, David Dahl, Matt Kemp, and Andrew McCuthcen. All of those players, expect maybe McCutchen, have a higher upside than Jones but they could all easily have seasons far worse than Jones for a variety of reasons. When you read my DFS articles you’ll probably never hear about Jones since I write about GPP’s but those are high risk/high reward players. That’s not what you want to fill your team up with in a season long league. In order to sustain a high level of performance for the entire season you need your high floor/low ceiling players like Jones to carry to offset some of the risks that don’t pan out; he’s the Hines Ward of MLB and we all need a little Hines Ward in our life.
Whose ADP do you disagree with? Hit me up on Twitter (@bankster17) to let me know. I answer everyone that writes to me and I love to hear feedback from my readers. Keep an eye out for more great fantasy analysis here at The Fake Baseball. Happy drafting!