Potential Impact Second Basemen for 2014
Last week, we looked the Top 20 Second Basemen for 2014 Fantasy Baseball. These are the second basemen that probably aren’t going to begin the season in anyone’s starting fantasy lineup, but could make a potential impact at some point in the season. These guys might be bench players who overtake someone’s job or starters who are just in the shallow end of the talent pool. You might add them midseason if someone on your team gets hurt or if they get hot. Here we go, in no particular order:
1. DJ LeMahieu (COL)
LeMahieu hasn’t yet played a full season, but he did get in 109 games in 2013, and hit .280 in those games. He was a career .321 hitter in the minor leagues, so there is definitely talent here. Problem is, he’s going to severely lack the counting stats that make him valuable in fantasy. Like I said, he hasn’t played a full season yet, so perhaps 2014 can provide the opportunity he needs.
2. Marco Scutaro (SF)
This 38-year-old journeyman hit a very respectable .297 in the 120+ games he played in last year, and was even selected to his first All-Star Game. Clearly he’s still got some gas in the tank. Unfortunately, the counting stats aren’t there. Don’t expect many fantasy points out of him, but with a very low strikeout rate he certainly isn’t going to hurt you on most nights.
3. Eric Sogard (OAK)
Sogard is slated to start at second base for the A’s come Opening Day, and I expect him to improve upon his numbers from last year. In the 130 games he played in 2013 he hit a paltry .266, but he did show some speed. Again the counting stats aren’t going to amaze anyone, but if he jumps the batting average up to .275 or .280, he could find all of his numbers rising given the offense that he’s in.
4. Alex Guerrero (LAD)
Guerrero is a Cuban import that the Dodgers signed to a 4-year/$28 million deal in the early offseason. Now while the Dodgers have not officially declared him the Opening Day second baseman, I expect he will ultimately be given the job. He was one of the best hitters in the Cuban League, and brings a very capable set of skills to the MLB. If he does start, I expect he will not break out as a .300 hitter right away (as he consistently was in Cuba), but once he gets half a season under his belt he could be a legitimate fantasy option.
5. Scooter Gennett (MIL)
Gennett was very impressive in the 69 games he played last year, hitting .324 with 6 jacks and 20+ runs scored and RBI. Extrapolate those numbers to 150 games and you’ve got a very solid fantasy option. Whether or not he lives up to those numbers with a full season to play is not certain though, so I don’t expect him to break the top 20 2B come draft day.
6. Darwin Barney (CHC)
Barney has now played three full major league seasons, and he has regressed in each of them, culminating in a 2013 campaign where he hit .208 in 141 games. Yikes. Those are Uggla numbers, except he only had 7 homers. I don’t think there’s any way he could be worse this year, and the Cubs don’t really have any solid options behind him so he should still see enough playing time. Should he bounce back (and I think he will) he could be a nice play if someone on your team gets hurt.
7. Kolten Wong (STL)
This Hawaiian speedster has been so highly touted that the Cardinals repositioned Matt Carpenter so Wong could be brought into the starting lineup. As a lefty who hits lefties well, Wong has nothing but opportunity in 2014. The Cards did sign Mark Ellis to spell Wong (at least at first), but I think he’s going to break out and earn a full-time job. The Cardinals are high on him, and so am I.
8. Rafael Furcal (MIA)
Coming off of a season lost to a Tommy John surgery (weird, right?), Furcal isn’t going to blow anyone away. I’d bet on him not getting more than 130 games in, but for the time he is playing he could be a decent plug-and-play option. .270 hitter, a handful of SBs in there, 50 RBIs and 75 runs. Useful, but not stellar.
9. Dan Uggla (ATL)
Sigh. Every year since 2010, when the Braves signed him, Uggla’s batting average has plummeted like it had a boulder strapped to its feet. Drafting Uggla or picking him up means that you are prepared to accept a .200 average and 25 jacks from those big, beefy biceps. That’s just what he is at this point, but he could be a benefit if you play with category scoring or if you’re looking to balance out your lineup with some power.
10. Ryan Goins (TOR)
There’s nothing really exceptional about Goins, but he is projected to be the Jays’ Opening Day starter. He is going to hit at the bottom of the lineup, which may end up benefitting him—he’ll be on base for the boppers. Assuming he does start and get full playing time, he could make something of himself in that lineup. Definitely worth a flier if you're weak at MI.
Agree? Disagree? I wanna know. Tweet me @Roto_Dubs or leave a comment here.