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Blindly Mining for Outfield Profit Part 2

We will practice the same blind exercise as the previous article, but we will move down the ADP rankings to the beginning of round 12 in a 15-team league. At pick #180, we can find value and even possible keeper solutions while other owners concentrate on filling empty roster spots.

2016 Fantasy Baseball OF Rankings

We will look at three OF's today to find the best possible value at the beginning of the twelfth round. Owners are drafting Player A at #179 overall, but owners may want to be aware of his total AB's in 2016, which could end up near 440-450. Even with the limited AB's, he provides good value and a possible keeper target in deeper leagues. He made contact 77% of the time last year, and he walked 9% of the time. He hit 9 homers in 194 PA's while batting .270. He performed well against RHP with an .872 OPS, but LHP limited his OPS to .481 vL, but the limited 14 AB's against LHP capped his chance to improve. Player A dominated 83% of the 12 weeks he was in the majors for H2H owners, and Steamer projects him to hit 19 HR's in 2016, especially if he can take advantage of his home park increasing LHB HR by 24%. In points-leagues, player A is more 11% valuable as a #3 OF, but he only loses 3% as a #2 OF in deeper leagues. In Roto leagues, he should provide $19-20 worth of value if he can hit .270 with 20 HR's, but daily and weekly owners should plan to platoon him when his team faces LHP.

Player B slides in right behind player A at #180, but keeper league owners will draft him earlier for his power potential, especially since his home park increases LHB HR by 15%. His low contact rate, 65% last year, should concern us, which led to a .210 BA in 2015, but his 16% bb% provides some encouragement for growth. Player B dominated 41% of the weeks for H2H owners, but H2H owners are hoping for 50% or more in 2016 if he can hit 25 HR's and raise his batting average. He showed similar skills against LHP and RHP when he batted .216 with a home run in every 21 AB's against LHP and .209 with a HR in every 18 AB's against RHP. While player B hit an equal amount of HR's on the road and at home last year, his .234 BA on the road trumped his .181 home BA. Those owners that like player B will point to a .262 BABIP last year, but pessimistic owners will note his 28% first-half hr/f that aided his 20 first-half HR's. Idealistic owners will hope for player B to raise his line drive rate from 16% in 2015, but points-league owners will wait to draft player B because he costs us -21.6% of value as a #3 OF.

Player C provides similar power to player A and player B, and NFBC owners are drafting him at pick #184. Unfortunately, player C only owns a 66% contact rate, and a 25% second-half hr/f helped his second-half power numbers surge. His high BABIP, .365 in 2015, screams regression, which the Steamer BA projections parallel by projecting a 2016 .249 BA, down from .276 last year. Unlike the home park advantage that the first two players have for power, player C's home park depresses RHB HR by 10%, but player C overcame that statistic by hitting 10 HR's at home last year versus 7 HR's on the road. Points-league owners can draft player C, and his 500 AB's, as a #3 OF, which will provide 2% more value than the average #3 OF. By dominating 55% of his 2015 weeks, some H2H owners will want to move him up their boards. His ability to own a .819 OPS vLHP and a .907 OPS will help roto owners feel safe with a $18 price tag, but we should all hope that player C raises his 6% bb% this year.

Quick Recap

For the risk-averse owners, player C will provide the most AB's in 2016, but players A and B have more upside for keeper league owners. All three players should hit 20 HR's or more, and player A should hit for the highest BA. While all three options have some risk, each one offers us some upside in 2016.

Which player would you prefer in 2016?

Player A - .260, 19 HR's, 66 RBI's, and 3 SB's
Player B - .228, 24 HR's, 66 RBI's, and 10 SB's
Player C - .249, 20 HR's, 70 RBI's, and 6 SB's

Fantasy Baseball OF ADP