Re-Ranks: First Basemen/DH

In the final edition of our re-rank series, evaluating trade candidates to both acquire and deal, we focus on the big-fellas DH’s and First Basemen. We decided it was best to lump Ortiz and Butler in with the DH’s because an optimal lineup would include a 1B/OF/DH being utilized at the utility position. We will re-examine the positional ranks, after news that fantasy disappointment and $200-million man Albert Pujols is out for the season. Here are the ranks, as always with buy/sell candidates below:

 

Player Name   Team  Rank
Paul Goldschmidt ARI 1
Chris Davis BAL 2
Edwin Encarnacion TOR 3
Joey Votto CIN 4
David Ortiz BOS 5
Prince Fielder DET 6
Adrian Gonzalez LAD 7
Allen Craig STL 8
Michael Cuddyer COL 9
Mark Trumbo LAA 10
Freddie Freeman ATL 11
Eric Hosmer KC 12
Billy Butler KC 13
James Loney TB 14
Anthony Rizzo CHC 15
Kendrys Morales SEA 16
Adam Lind TOR 17
Adam LaRoche WSH 18
Matt Adams STL 19

A lot of this list had to do with timing, with Davis’ recent struggles and shorter track record, Goldy takes the top spot. It is an enormous advantage to get double digit steals from a position of big-slow guys, and Goldschmidt’s 4-8 additional steals the rest of the way could decide multiple points. Edwin Encarnacion is quietly having another top-10 performance and his value is immense in leagues where he has dual eligibility at 3B. Matt Adams is an intriguing short term buy, as he has shown in a small sample that he is an above-average hitter in an elite lineup. Eric Hosmer has shown signs of reaching his full potential and is an intriguing target in the trade market. It is important to note that players are listed at the position which gives their owner the most value; it does not make logical sense to start a C/1B at 1B, or a 2B/1B at 1B, because they could be dealt for a better player at that position.

Buy High: Paul Goldschmidt. The pride of Wilmington, Delaware, Goldschmidt leads our ranks at a deep position which has includes many studs and Hall of Famers. Goldschmidt hits in the middle of a potent lineup, in a hitter’s park, and helps in every category. He is also in his age-25 season, and will have many matchups with the weak NL West staffs in the closing stretch.

Sell High: Joey Votto. It hurts me to say this, but Votto is a much better real-life player than fantasy stud. His batting eye is incredible and hitting abilities are well-documented (his infield fly stats are insane two in four years!), but the amount of walks he takes actually damages his fantasy value, having less at bats to increase his RBI’s and HR’s. It is hard to justify top 10 value on a first basemen who may not be better than a 25 HR/year hitter.

Buy Low: James Loney. Trade value is all about actual value vs perceived value, and I believe the fantasy community is truly shocked that James Loney is a contributor to team in 10-team mixed leagues! He has been a top-100 player and has much better numbers than Billy Butler. I’d imagine you could acquire Loney for a marginal starting pitcher, or deal a player from a category of strength (like SB or SV). Loney has put together a large enough sample for fantasy owners to take him seriously and his perceived value is a fraction of his actual value. He should have a higher ownership percentage than platoon hitter Ryan Howard.

Sell Low: Freddie Freeman. I have a multiple pieces of stock in Freddie Freeman and now is the right time to sell. His power numbers are disappointing and his RBI and AVG are somewhat luck induced as indicated by his high BABIP. Freeman’s true batting average is somewhere in the high .280s, and as a 1B with below average power, he should not be considered a top-70 hitter for the rest of the season.

 

This concludes our Re-Rank midseason series! Hope you enjoyed it!

Next up: Fantasy Football Top 100!

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