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NFBC Drafts are already going strong, and in many cases, the approaches of the high stakes players help set the market for where players may be selected.

The guys who have the most on the line have spent a lot of time since the end of last season carefully dissecting the numbers, watching video and staying on top of every piece of news. They’re almost like “unofficial” scouts for the rest of the fantasy community.

Here’s my current look at some very notable NFBC ADP trends. Current ADP is in parentheses for each player.

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High-End Picks

Christian Yelich (7.18): Obviously many high-stakers are not buying into the widespread analyst concerns about his sky-high BABIP and HR/FB rates from last season. Yelich is one of the best pure hitters in the game and there should not be a significant drop-off in his production.

Francisco Lindor (7.86): The big players are not scared off by his injury. Personally, he’s not in my Top 15 as he could not only miss time, but start slowly when he returns, especially in the base-stealing category.

Giancarlo Stanton (22.52): I like him better than the NFBC guys seem to. He has mostly stayed healthy the past two seasons and after a year of experience in New York, I think he will be more relaxed and the better power numbers will come naturally.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (40.80): High stakes players always want to take risks because it could make the difference between winning a league and finishing in second. But in a regular mainstream league, this is too early for me. Guerrero may not play the whole year and doesn’t even have enough Double-A experience.

 

Mid-Round Question Marks

Joey Votto (70.13): This is fair where he is going, but I want no part of a 36-year-old hitter who may have lingering back issues and may now be reduced to a mediocre power producer.

Mike Foltynewicz (83.40): His progression to stardom took a bit longer than I expected. But now he is here to stay as a steady fantasy player, and there may even be more improvements ahead. He’ll be drafted even higher at this point next season.

Mallex Smith (100.33): The injury now makes him an even better value. He may not miss much regular season time, if any, beyond the Japan series.

Michael Conforto (106.80): We have not seen his best yet, and he could deliver his true breakthrough season in 2019. I stubbornly believe he is a .280, 30-plus homer guy and I like the value price right now.

Wilson Ramos (131.49): The numbers are always good when he is available, but I’d rather keep waiting than take a guy who is unofficially guaranteed to miss time. The injuries are a headache, even at this point of the draft.

Nick Pivetta (153.31): He showed great strikeout potential last year and his 3.42 FIP is an indicator that better times are ahead. He will be picked significantly higher at this time next year.

Yu Darvish (153.74): I am definitely not as scared off as everyone else is. A great value spot for a prime rebound performer.

Nomar Mazara (156.43): This is going to be the big breakthrough campaign. You’re going to see more power than before as Mazara starts fully living up to his considerable potential.

Eduardo Rodriguez (157.40): This is going to look like a great bargain in September. The Pedro Martinez disciple is going to put two halves of impressive performances together this season.

Tyler Glasnow (164.57): The strikeout potential is already evident, and he’ll settle in nicely in his first full season in Tampa Bay.

 

Late-Round Bargains

Austin Meadows (186.88): The long wait for a breakout will be over. He’s ready to post quality numbers across the board.

Sean Newcomb (214.54): He’ll deliver a more consistent season in 2019, and will be one of the better late starting pitching values.

Forrest Whitley (237.42): Once he arrives officially in the Majors this year, he is staying. Already looks composed in the spring when facing MLB regulars.

DJ LeMahieu (243.98): Fans in the Bronx are going to take to him as a favorite. Not guaranteed to stay in the lineup but is going to produce quality numbers for as long as he is a regular.

Asdrubal Cabrera (248.78): Never quite gets the respect he deserves, he has multi-positional eligibility and consistent 20-homer power for a very late pick.

Peter Alonso (256.61): If other guys who may not play a year are going much higher, why not him? This is too low for the promising average/power combination and the first base job in Queens seems to be waiting for him.

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