X
Lost password?

Don't have an account?
Gain Access Now

X

Receive free daily analysis

NFL
NBA
NHL
NASCAR
CFB
MLB
MMA
PGA
ESPORTS
BETTING

Already have an account? Log In

X

Forgot Password


POPULAR FANTASY TOOLS

Expert Advice
Articles & Tools
Import Your Leagues
Daily Stats & Leaders
All Pitcher Matchups
Compare Any Players
Player Comparisons
Rookies & Call-Ups
24x7 News and Alerts

ADP Cost Analysis - Carson Kelly vs Willson Contreras

It's the middle of the draft and the elite catching options are long gone. All of a sudden, an owner drafts a catcher. Then another catcher gets taken, then another. As your pick is approaching, the mid-round run on catchers has officially started and you feel a hint of pressure staring at the empty "C" spot on your team.

In times like this, it can be tempting to join the positional run and nail down that spot on your roster. That's where the RotoBaller ADP cost analysis series comes in. We'll compare two players that could produce similar fantasy value, but at very different costs. Today, we'll examine the catcher position and how to handle the aforementioned scenario.

As tempting as it may be to grab a catcher with the rest of your league-mates, it would be a wasted draft pick just to grab one to avoid being the last to draft a catcher. Catcher is fantasy baseball's weakest position and it's not particularly close. Almost no one is going to draft more than they're required to start, so waiting out the position can be smart, especially when we comparing the numbers of one particular late-round sleeper, Carson Kelly of the D-backs, with his mid-round counterpart, the Cubs' Willson Contreras.

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

 

2019 Production

Last season, Contreras had a solid bounce-back year after a nightmarish 2018 campaign that saw him bat just .249 and slug under .400. The Cubs' backstop slashed .272/.355/.533 in '19 to go with 24 homers, 57 runs, 64 RBI and one stolen base. A hamstring injury limited him to 105 games, but when he was on the field, Contreras was a productive fantasy asset, explaining the demand for his services this season. Contreras is currently being drafted as the fourth catcher off the board and around 114th overall.

However, if we look further down the rankings, we can find similar production over 100 picks later at pick No. 220. Kelly is currently the 12th catcher off the board and offers just as much -- if not more -- upside than many of the catchers going before pick No. 200. Last season, he slashed .245/.348/.478 with 18 homers, 46 runs and 47 RBI in 111 games played. On the surface, those numbers are certainly lower than Contreras, but definitely not worth the 106-pick difference in their ADP, especially when we look under the hood and try and project forward into 2020.

 

Batted Ball Data

2019 xBA xSLG Avg Exit Velocity Hard Hit Rate (FanGraphs)
Contreras .250 .476 88.3 MPH 37.3%
Kelly .247 .466 89.0 MPH 48.7%

As we can see from the chart, Kelly and Contreras are much closer in expected outcome than their actual numbers would indicate. According to FanGraphs' hard-hit metric, Kelly made hard contact over 11 percent more often than Contreras, resulting in a higher average exit velocity. Contreras' strong batting average and slugging percentage take a hit when we look at Statcast, as the batted ball data suggests that he should've hit just .250 with a .476 SLG based on his quality of contact.

In addition to their batted ball data being similar, Kelly has Contreras beat in type of contact. Contreras hit 50 percent of his batted balls on the ground last season, not a good recipe for success for a catcher. In fact, his 50 percent groundball rate is the lowest of his career. You'd have to go back a decade to Contreras' Rookie League years to find a time he elevated the ball more than half the time.

More balls in the air typically lead to more fantasy production. Contreras relied on an unsustainable 27.3 percent home run to fly ball rate to put up the power numbers that he did a season ago. That number should regress towards the mean and Contreras' power production will likely come down as a result. We've already seen Contreras' fantasy floor when he struggled to a .730 OPS in 2018; if he experiences any dip in quality of contact or has an unlucky BABIP this season, he could be labeled a bust by the All-Star break.

Kelly, on the other hand, was much better at elevating the ball. His 21.6 percent line-drive rate was nearly six percent higher than Contreras' and his 41.1 percent flyball rate was over seven percent better. Kelly's HR/FB rate was high as well, but not to the extreme that Contreras' rate was. Kelly's high rate can also be more easily explained thanks to his 40.3 percent sweet-spot percentage, third among all catchers last year. Kelly makes quality contact and elevates the ball, the exact type of player that you should be targeting with late Draft picks.

 

Conclusion

Contreras is one of the better catchers in the league and someone most fantasy managers would love to have on their squad. The issue with Contreras isn't so much his skill level, but how high he is being drafted. Pick No. 118 is simply too high for a catcher who won't stand out at the position when there are so many serviceable options available later in the Draft.

Kelly has the skill set to be a productive fantasy catcher as he enters his second season in Arizona. The 25-year-old backstop has some prospect pedigree as a second-round pick in the MLB Draft, as he was once considered the heir apparent to Yadier Molina in St. Louis. He boasts elite plate discipline, as his 13.2 percent walk rate was third among all catchers, giving him extra value in fantasy leagues that reward OBP. The D-backs have a strong lineup, and while Kelly will bat towards the bottom, he should drive in plenty of runs and not hurt your team in batting average. His numbers may not be higher than Contreras', but given his upside, he is likely the smarter pick in fantasy baseball given their 100-plus pick difference in ADP.

More 2020 Fantasy Baseball Advice




POPULAR FANTASY TOOLS

Expert Advice
Articles & Tools
Import Your Leagues
Daily Stats & Leaders
All Pitcher Matchups
Compare Any Players
Player Comparisons
Rookies & Call-Ups
24x7 News and Alerts

REAL-TIME FANTASY NEWS

James Conner29 mins ago

Hopes To Build On 2023 Campaign
AJ Dillon51 mins ago

Enters Training Camp On Roster Bubble
Dustin Hopkins59 mins ago

Browns, Dustin Hopkins Agree To Three-Year Extension
Taylor Moore1 hour ago

Needs To Get Off To Better Start
Keaton Mitchell2 hours ago

Placed On PUP List
Mike Trout2 hours ago

Targeting Late-July Return
Tracy Cortez3 hours ago

Suffers Her First UFC Loss
Rose Namajunas3 hours ago

Dominates Tracy Cortez
Tyler Reddick3 hours ago

Incredible Consistency Continues At Pocono
Alex Bowman3 hours ago

Captures Third Place At Pocono
Muslim Salikhov3 hours ago

Edges Out Split Decision At UFC Denver
Santiago Ponzinibbio3 hours ago

Loses Second Fight In A Row
Ange Loosa4 hours ago

Drops Decision Matchup
Gabriel Bonfim4 hours ago

Gets Decision Win At UFC Denver
Brad Keselowski5 hours ago

Finishes Seventh At The Great American Getaway 400
Chris Buescher5 hours ago

Earns Spot In DraftKings Winning Lineup At Pocono
Nick Chubb6 hours ago

Making Good Progress After Knee Surgery
Joey Logano6 hours ago

Finishes Fifth At Pocono On Sunday
William Byron6 hours ago

Still Ends Up In Top Five At Pocono
Cam Whitmore10 hours ago

Continues Domination In Summer League
Julian Strawther11 hours ago

Bags 32 Points Against Raptors
Brandin Podziemski11 hours ago

Records Impressive Double-Double
Miami Marlins11 hours ago

Marlins Tab Carter Johnson With Pick No. 56
Matas Buzelis11 hours ago

Goes Off For 28 Points Versus Warriors
Minnesota Twins11 hours ago

Billy Amick Slips To Twins At Pick No. 60
Seattle Mariners11 hours ago

Ryan Sloan Slips To Mariners With 55th Pick
Craig Porter Jr.11 hours ago

Logs Full Line On Sunday
Oakland Athletics11 hours ago

Tommy White Lands With Athletics At Pick No. 40
Zaccharie Risacher11 hours ago

Struggles Versus Spurs
Michael Toglia19 hours ago

Belts Three Homers On Sunday
Lawrence Butler19 hours ago

Hits Three Homers, Drives In Six
Reed Sheppard21 hours ago

Has Another Quality Outing
Texas Rangers22 hours ago

Malcolm Moore Selected By Texas Rangers At Pick 30
Arizona Diamondbacks22 hours ago

Diamondbacks Select Slade Caldwell At Pick 29
Abdul Razak Alhassan22 hours ago

Gets a NC At UFC Denver
Cody Brundage22 hours ago

Fight Ends Early Due To Illegal Shots
Christian Rodriguez23 hours ago

Gets Submitted At UFC Denver
Julian Erosa23 hours ago

Pulls Off Upset At UFC Denver
Drew Dober23 hours ago

Suffers Stoppage Loss At UFC Denver
Drew Dober23 hours ago

Jean Silva Dominates Drew Dober At UFC Denver
Miami Marlins23 hours ago

Marlins Select PJ Morlando At Pick 16
Washington Nationals23 hours ago

Seaver King Selected With The Tenth Pick By Washington
Jordan Addison23 hours ago

Arrested On Friday Night
Pittsburgh Pirates23 hours ago

Pirates Select Konnor Griffin With Ninth Overall Pick
Caleb Williams23 hours ago

Not Involved In Contract Discussions
Los Angeles Angels24 hours ago

Christian Moore Taken By Los Angeles Angels At Pick No. 8
Tyreek Hill24 hours ago

Still Not Concerned About A New Deal
St. Louis Cardinals24 hours ago

JJ Wetherholt Goes No. 7 To St. Louis Cardinals
Kansas City Royals24 hours ago

Royals Take Jac Caglianone At Pick No. 6
Kyle Pitts24 hours ago

"Learning Basically Two Positions"
Chicago White Sox24 hours ago

White Sox Select Hagen Smith At No. 5 Overall
Oakland Athletics24 hours ago

Nick Kurtz Taken Fourth Overall By The A's
Colorado Rockies1 day ago

Charlie Condon Taken Third Overall By Colorado
Cincinnati Reds1 day ago

Chase Burns Goes Second To Cincinnati
Cleveland Guardians1 day ago

Travis Bazzana Selected First Overall
Carlos Correa1 day ago

Diagnosed With Plantar Fasciitis
Jamal Murray1 day ago

Nuggets Eager To Get Deal Done With Jamal Murray
Lonzo Ball1 day ago

"Moving Closer" To A Return
Tee Higgins1 day ago

Won't Be Extended By Monday's Deadline
NASCAR1 day ago

Bubba Wallace Is One Of The Top DFS Options For Pocono
Martin Truex Jr1 day ago

. Is A Top Favorite To Win At Pocono
Joey Logano1 day ago

Will Start 10th At Pocono This Week
Brad Keselowski1 day ago

Should Fantasy Players Roster Brad Keselowski At Pocono?
Chase Elliott1 day ago

Will Start 11th At Pocono This Week
Austin Cindric1 day ago

Is A Capable Value Pick For Pocono
William Byron1 day ago

Expect William Byron To Compete For The Win At Pocono
Denny Hamlin1 day ago

The Favorite To Win At Pocono
Tyler Reddick1 day ago

Should Be Strong At Pocono
Kyle Busch1 day ago

Is Kyle Busch Worth Consideration For DFS At Pocono?
Ty Gibbs1 day ago

Eyeing First Career Cup Series Win At Pocono
Kyle Larson1 day ago

Looking For Speed At Pocono
Brice Sensabaugh1 day ago

Doesn't Return On Saturday
Ricky Stenhouse Jr1 day ago

. A Strong DFS Play At Pocono
Cody Williams1 day ago

Notches 21 Points
Josh Berry1 day ago

Surprises with Top Five Qualifying Effort at Pocono
AJ Allmendinger1 day ago

a Sleeper Pick at Pocono
Taj Gibson1 day ago

Joining Hornets
Patrick Williams1 day ago

Should Be Ready For Camp
Adam Thielen2 days ago

Feels He Has More To Prove
DaRon Holmes II2 days ago

Suffers An Achilles Tear
Nikola Jovic2 days ago

Expected To Be Ready For Camp
Bijan Robinson2 days ago

Falcons Continue To Build Offense Around Bijan Robinson
Aaron Rodgers2 days ago

Says He Feels Good
Reed Sheppard3 days ago

Has A Solid Game On Friday
Alexandre Sarr3 days ago

Shines Defensively In Win
Zaccharie Risacher3 days ago

Leads Atlanta In Scoring Friday
Bronny James3 days ago

Struggles On Friday Night
Scotty Pippen Jr.3 days ago

Leads Memphis To A Win
Jake LaRavia3 days ago

Leads All Scorers Versus Sacramento
Jordan Love3 days ago

Shows Off Improved Footwork
Davante Adams3 days ago

Trade Rumors Resurfacing
Christiaan Bezuidenhout3 days ago

Withdraws From Genesis Scottish Open
Tracy Cortez4 days ago

Looks For 12th Victory In A Row
Rose Namajunas4 days ago

Headlines UFC Denver
Santiago Ponzinibbio4 days ago

A Favorite At UFC Denver
Muslim Salikhov4 days ago

Set To Face Santiago Ponzinibbio At UFC Denver
Gabriel Bonfim4 days ago

Looks To Get Back In Win Column
Ange Loosa4 days ago

An Underdog At UFC Denver
Cody Brundage4 days ago

An Underdog Again At UFC Denver
Abdul Razak Alhassan4 days ago

Looks To Return To Win Column At UFC Denver
Julian Erosa4 days ago

A Big Underdog At UFC Denver
Davante Adams4 days ago

Believes Aidan O'Connell Is The Starter
Tennessee Titans4 days ago

Jamal Adams Signing With Titans
Viktor Hovland5 days ago

Multiple Chips Off The Old Block
PGA5 days ago

Byeong Hun An Seeking First PGA Tour Win At Scottish Open
Si Woo Kim5 days ago

Looking To Contend At Scottish Open
Corey Conners5 days ago

In Top Form Heading To The Renaissance Club
Mackenzie Hughes5 days ago

Needs The Scottish Winds To Blow
Aaron Rai5 days ago

Has Found His Putter
Nicolai Hojgaard5 days ago

Looking To Break Poor Form Back In Europe
Matt Fitzpatrick5 days ago

A Volatile Option
Jordan Spieth5 days ago

A Risky Play Despite Links History
Ludvig Aberg5 days ago

Seeking Second Tour Victory At Scottish Open
Max Homa5 days ago

Seeking A Return To Form In North Berwick
Adam Scott5 days ago

A Safe Option At The Scottish Open
Cam Davis5 days ago

Tough To Trust At Scottish Open
Dak Prescott5 days ago

Cowboys Have Had Extension Talks
RANKINGS
C
1B
2B
3B
SS
OF
SP
RP

RANKINGS

QB
RB
WR
TE
K
DEF