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Early 2024 Fantasy Baseball ADP Analysis: Catcher, 1st Base, and 2nd Base

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Remember years ago when you'd have to wait until at least January to draft? Not anymore. When one season ends, another begins. We live in a time where sites like NFBC and Fantrax allow you to draft for the following season as early as October, and many of us degenerates take advantage of that.

For me, I was going to wait until at least December for my first 2024 draft, but that itch to draft became too great to ignore and I hopped in a NFBC DC that started on November 8th. I've already been digging into data and formulating my 2024 rankings and projections, so I figured why not do at least one early draft.

And along with early 2024 drafts comes early 2024 content, and today specifically, early 2024 ADP analysis. There have been 19 drafts completed on NFBC so far which gives us a decent sample size to work with. I'll be starting with the catcher, first base, and second base positions today and follow this up with three more installments of this series, covering third base/shortstop, outfield, and pitchers.

Be sure to check all of our fantasy baseball lineup tools and weekly lineup resources:

It's NEVER too early to discuss and draft for 2024!

 

Early 2024 Fantasy Baseball ADP Analysis

Catchers

Rank Player Team ADP Min Pick Max Pick
1 Rutschman, Adley BAL 57.26 32 70
2 Realmuto, J.T. PHI 68.32 31 93
3 Smith, Will LAD 83.26 51 126
4 Contreras, William MLW 90.74 49 114
5 Diaz, Yainer HOU 136.37 100 178
6 Murphy, Sean ATL 144.53 94 181
7 Perez, Salvador KC 147.53 101 190
8 Raleigh, Cal SEA 149.11 113 178
9 Moreno, Gabriel ARZ 155.53 112 200
10 Alvarez, Francisco NYM 159.21 84 196
11 Contreras, Willson STL 160.21 111 193
12 Naylor, Bo CLE 172.68 144 207
13 Heim, Jonah TEX 177.74 153 196
14 O'Hoppe, Logan LAA 179.79 137 213
15 Ruiz, Keibert WAS 180.32 141 220
16 Garver, Mitch TEX 225.11 176 297
17 Campusano, Luis SD 228.32 169 270
18 Stephenson, Tyler CIN 230.74 192 278
19 Diaz, Elias COL 259.84 206 300
20 Kirk, Alejandro TOR 278.37 184 351

Keep in mind, the above ADP is from NFBC which are two-catcher formats. In single-catcher leagues, these catcher ADPs won't be quite as high.

For most of you reading this that are in single catcher formats, my initial thought is that this is a position you can wait on due to how deep it is. While I'm certainly enamored with options like William Contreras, Yainer Diaz, and Gabriel Moreno, plenty of other drafters are as well. If those guys are taken higher than I'm willing to go, I'm more than okay waiting several rounds and taking someone like Bo Naylor, Jonah Heim, or Logan O'Hoppe.

There's a clear-cut top four at this position and you're going to have to pay up if you want any of them on your team, especially in 2-catcher formats. I'm also expecting Yainer Diaz's ADP to only rise from here after the news came out about him being the main guy behind the plate in Houston next year. Diaz was phenomenal in his 377 plate appearances last season, rocking a .282/.308/.538 slash line along with a 12.2% barrel rate, 43.9% hard-hit rate, .287 xBA, .546 xSLG, and 23 home runs. With more than 500 plate appearances, Diaz could absolutely return top-5 value at this position. Yes, the approach is overly aggressive, but the contact skills are fine and he doesn't strike out much.

The Player(s) I Anticipate Having The Most Shares Of: Logan O'Hoppe, Yainer Diaz (If ADP doesn't rise too high)

Coming off a season where he missed the first two months, O'Hoppe still managed to swat 14 home runs in 199 plate appearances with a 15.6% barrel rate and 46.7% hard-hit rate. The average wasn't as rosy, but O'Hoppe showed better contact and approach metrics in the minors, so the lower average isn't much of a concern right now. This could be a top-5 catcher in 2024 with a current C14 price tag.

Early ADP(s) I'm Not Keen On: Sean Murphy, Salvador Perez

First Base

Rank Player Team ADP Min Pick Max Pick
1 Freeman, Freddie LAD 9.26 5 12
2 Harper, Bryce PHI 15.05 9 24
3 Olson, Matt ATL 17.68 10 24
4 Alonso, Pete NYM 27.11 19 32
5 Guerrero Jr., Vladimir TOR 33.05 19 52
6 Bellinger, Cody CHC 55.16 26 88
7 Goldschmidt, Paul STL 72.89 40 99
8 Walker, Christian ARZ 82.42 42 105
9 Steer, Spencer CIN 102.16 72 158
10 Casas, Triston BOS 106.47 48 151
11 Torkelson, Spencer DET 113.32 63 135
12 Naylor, Josh CLE 138.79 111 179
13 Diaz, Yandy TB 139.26 80 161
14 Encarnacion-Strand, Christian CIN 139.37 74 225
15 Perez, Salvador KC 147.53 101 190
16 Bohm, Alec PHI 163 147 185
17 Pasquantino, Vinnie KC 167.16 96 222
18 Paredes, Isaac TB 185.68 141 227
19 Lowe, Nathaniel TEX 189.68 129 221
20 Vaughn, Andrew CWS 199.84 101 260
21 Hoskins, Rhys PHI 206.16 174 238
22 Mountcastle, Ryan BAL 225.32 178 276
23 Turner, Justin BOS 243.47 166 285
24 Drury, Brandon LAA 246.11 189 309
25 Abreu, Jose HOU 269.05 197 344
26 Bell, Josh MIA 295.26 231 398
27 Candelario, Jeimer CHC 297.16 266 344
28 Rizzo, Anthony NYY 305.79 214 387
29 Manzardo, Kyle TB 322.16 207 396
30 Flores, Wilmer SF 337.89 267 391

Finally, the first base position is back to being loaded and deep. Along with Bryce Harper transitioning to first base and Christopher Morel as well from the sounds of it, we have Vinnie Pasquantino and Rhys Hoskins returning from injury and will have full seasons from Triston Casas, Spencer Steer, Christian Encarnacion-Strand. On top of all of that, Kyle Manzardo is likely going to debut on opening day or shortly after that, adding another intriguing, young bat to the fray.

This is another position that you'll be able to wait on if you want to attack other positions. There's a massive glob in the ADP 105-140 range that I'm fine with taking as my starting first baseman, and if you really want to wait, Vinnie Pasquantino and Nathaniel Lowe are going in the 165-190 range on average as the 1B17 and 1B19 respectively.

There's nothing wrong with taking one of the elite names early either. Freddie Freeman has been arguably the most consistent elite performer in the game and I'm hoping that Harper staying at first base will help keep him on the field more moving forward.

The Player(s) I Anticipate Having The Most Shares Of: Triston Casas, Vinnie Pasquantino, Kyle Manzardo, Christian Encarnacion-Strand

Out of this group, Casas and Pasquantino are probably going to be the two I have the most shares of in 2024, especially if Manzardo's ADP continues creeping up following his strong showing in the Arizona Fall League. Casas was a top-5 fantasy first baseman over the final 40% of the season and looks primed to jump into the top-5 at this position this season. he's my 1B7 and is going off the board as the 1B10 on average right now. There absolutely should not be a 73-pick gap between him and Vladimir Guerrero Jr.

As for Pasquantino, his lost 2023 season has dropped his ADP to a very reasonable level. Pasquantino has had a strikeout rate below 12%, whiff rate below 20%, hard-hit rate above 40%, and a zone contact rate above 90% in both of his first two seasons. As long as the shoulder hasn't zapped his power, Pasquantino could return a solid ROI this season.

Early ADP(s) I'm Not Keen On: Isaac Paredes, Spencer Steer, Yandy Diaz, Matt Olson

Paredes: The Quality of Contact metrics are below-average and don't support him being a 30-homer bat. I'm expecting a sizeable step back in the home run department this season.

Steer: In general, I'm a Steer believer for fantasy, but this comes down to him having limited ROI opportunity in my eyes.

Diaz: Same reasoning as Steer. Also, if the AVG drops a bit, he's probably a negative ROI player.

Olson: You're paying for him to basically repeat his 2023 performance or close to it. Could he? Sure. But that's going to be a tough performance to replicate.

Second Base

Rank Player Team ADP Min Pick Max Pick
1 Betts, Mookie LAD 5.47 2 12
2 Albies, Ozzie ATL 23.42 14 36
3 Semien, Marcus TEX 28.74 18 40
4 Altuve, Jose HOU 35.53 25 45
5 McLain, Matt CIN 67.79 44 83
6 Hoerner, Nico CHC 72.63 49 100
7 Kim, Ha-Seong SD 78.74 50 111
8 Torres, Gleyber NYY 105.79 71 122
9 Stott, Bryson PHI 113.42 53 169
10 Marte, Ketel ARZ 128.53 104 156
11 Gimenez, Andres CLE 137.42 91 203
12 Gelof, Zack OAK 139.32 96 169
13 Estrada, Thairo SF 150.84 109 181
14 Arraez, Luis MIA 157.79 51 256
15 Edman, Tommy STL 159.05 81 207
16 India, Jonathan CIN 183.58 121 220
17 Gorman, Nolan STL 190.58 161 260
18 Julien, Edouard MIN 192.89 126 240
19 McMahon, Ryan COL 228.26 177 284
20 Drury, Brandon LAA 246.11 189 309
21 Merrifield, Whit TOR 251.47 208 314
22 Mauricio, Ronny NYM 254.11 215 319
23 Lowe, Brandon TB 259.21 209 314
24 Polanco, Jorge MIN 282 210 325
25 Westburg, Jordan BAL 284.58 206 335
26 Donovan, Brendan STL 289 232 333
27 Lux, Gavin LAD 289.63 253 353
28 Rengifo, Luis LAA 290.05 234 337
29 McNeil, Jeff NYM 321.84 264 404
30 Rosario, Amed LAD 346.16 259 429

Having Mookie Betts eligible at second base (and shortstop in most leagues) is a damn cheat code. If you're first pick is anywhere in the 2-7 range, I'd absolutely be fine with taking Betts and enjoying elite production with two or three position eligibility. Betts is coming off what I would consider his second best fantasy season with a .307/.408/.579 slash line, 126 runs, 39 home runs, 107 RBI, and 14 steals. The elite ceiling and floor makes Betts worth the top-5 selection on draft day.

Alright, now that I'm done gushing about Betts (I'm still mad he's no longer on Boston), let's discuss the rest of the position. After Betts, Marcus Semien and Ozzie Albies represent tier 2 and I'd be fine with using a second or third round pick on either of them as this position starts getting shakier behind them. Do you want to use a top-40 pick on Jose Altuve? When healthy, he's absolutely a top-40 fantasy player, but Altuve is coming off a season where he played just 90 games and hasn't played in 150 games since 2017. In fact, if you look at his last six seasons, he's returned top-40 value once, maybe twice.

After Altuve, there are some solid prices for Matt McLain, Gleyber Torres, Bryson Stott, and Ketel Marte, but I'm not seeing a ton of glaring positive ROI possibilities at this position. If I'm not able to secure one of Betts, Albies, or Semien in the first few rounds, I'm probably going to target the quartet I just mentioned or wait until the ADP 180+ range and grab an upside play.

Speaking of that ADP 180+ range, that's where most of the positive ROI possibilities are being selected. You have Jonathan India, Nolan Gorman, and Edouard Julien in the 184-193 range along with Ronny Mauricio, Brandon Lowe, Jordan Westburg, and Gavin Lux in the ADP 250-290 range. I've never recommended to wait until after pick 250 to grav your starter at any position before, but it's not a terrible idea to explore at this second base position in 2024 if one of the earlier options doesn't fall to a range where they become a great value pick.

The Player(s) I Anticipate Having The Most Shares Of: Bryson Stott, Edouard Julien, Jordan Westburg, Gavin Lux

Early ADP(s) I'm Not Keen On: Jose Altuve, Nico Hoerner, Ha-Seong Kim

 



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