October 28, 2020

Baseballpods

We listen to a lot of baseball podcasts

2020 Wishlist

In this post, I list one player per position on my wishlist. Jeff Erickson at Rotowire inspired me with his FOMO (“Fear Of Missing Out”) list. These are players I believe will provide excellent value in 2020, and I wish I had more shares of them coming out of my drafts.

One might ask: if I like them so much, why didn’t I draft them more often? Sometimes it’s roster construction or there’s someone else in my league who likes them more than I do. Which is fine. But in some cases, especially in early drafts, I didn’t trust my judgment enough and followed ADP. Don’t repeat my mistakes. Grab these guys if they fit your team build.

Will Smith, C – He has the tools and opportunity to put up some very useful numbers in a loaded lineup. I feel similarly about fellow youngster Sean Murphy, so I grabbed him everywhere late. But I wish I owned Smith somewhere. In every draft I’m in, someone likes him more than me.

DJ LeMahieu, 1B – Sometimes we focus so much on the regression of players coming off a career year that we overcorrect by avoiding them completely. That’s what I did with LeMahieu. He’s eligible everywhere and provides such a strong batting average floor for you to scoop up the cheap ugly power that awaits you at the end of the draft.

José Altuve, 2B – He is an elite producer at the thinnest position in baseball in his prime, and I didn’t draft him anywhere. If I’m being honest, I let others get him at a discount because of the Astros cheating scandal. I didn’t want him. I was angry, and it clouded my judgment. Now more than ever, that feels like a lifetime ago, and incredibly insignificant in the grand scheme of things. Oh well, at least I’ve got a ton of Albies.

Trea Turner, SS – With his speed and average, along with the possibility of power growth, Turner is on the shortlist of Fantasy MVP contenders. I loved drafting toward the second half of the first round, and have plenty of shares of Francisco Lindor and Trevor Story. Which means I’ve passed on Turner. He has the talent to make me regret that even if those guys perform adequately.

Scott Kingery, 3B – The batting average scared me away, but I was too quick to bypass a 25 year-old multi-positional player who should easily flirt with 20/20.

Marcell Ozuna, OF – I’m pegging Ozuna for a full season line of around .280-30-90-80-10 with upside for more counting stats if the Braves lineup clicks. He was very unlucky in his batting average last season, and the market seems to think he won’t run at all. Give me Ozuna over outfielders like Ramon Laureano and Tommy Pham. He’s going around 20 picks later than them.

Julio Urías, SP – Pretty much every team I’ve drafted features multiple Dodger arms, with the glaring exception of Urías. I think he’s a special talent primed for a breakout season. This is more about roster construction than anything. Speculating on mid-round high-upside starters just isn’t the way I think you build the most competitive roster in 2020. I like laying a solid foundation in the first four or five rounds with a couple of starters and then waiting to fill in my rotation as value falls to me. Which means I’m not owning a lot of Urías, Jesús Luzardo, or other pretty young things.

Nick Anderson, RP – I’ve avoided the Tampa Bay bullpen situation for awhile because Kevin Cash doesn’t care about your fantasy team, and I value a closer’s job security more than anything. But the more I look and listen, the more I think Anderson is a special reliever who will be well worth more than his price even if he only notches 20 saves in a job share.

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