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Mid-Round Second Basemen - Fantasy Baseball Outlooks


Here at RotoBaller, we've been producing fantasy baseball analysis all offseason. As part of that, our awesome MLB team has written up detailed 2019 fantasy baseball outlooks for 400+ players. These player outlooks include RotoBaller's analysis on how we expect player to perform in 2019, where to target them in 2019 drafts, and supporting stats to back up the analysis. Typically, we only include these outlooks for premium subscribers, but we have a special treat for you.

Over the next few weeks we'll be releasing some exclusive player outlooks for each position. Our editors have hand-picked these specific MLB players for your draft prep enjoyment. Normally only available to Premium subscribers, the five outlooks below are meant to give you a taste of the in-depth analysis you receive with our industry-leading 2019 Draft Guide.

Today we are looking at some middle-round second basemen who need to be considered. Do we think they are draft targets, or players to avoid? Are their ADPs overvalued or undervalued? Will they make significant fantasy contributions and be one of your key draft sleepers? Read on to see our take. Be sure to subscribe as well, and read all 400+ of our 2019 player outlooks available exclusively in our 2019 Draft Guide.

Editor's Note: Get any full-season MLB Premium Pass for 50% off, with exclusive access to our season-long articles, 15 in-season lineup tools and over 200 days of expert DFS research/tools. Sign Up Now!

 

Jonathan Schoop - 2B, Minnesota Twins

Minnesota Twins second baseman Jonathan Schoop has a chance to redeem himself on a new club after a forgettable 2018. After five strong seasons as a middle-of-the-order stalwart for the Orioles, including an All-Star appearance in 2017, Schoop swooned along with the rest of the club last year. He slashed .244/.273/.447 but provided good power numbers at 17 HR, 40 RBI in half a season before being dealt to the Brewers for the stretch run.

Despite the drastic improvement in atmosphere, going from a last-place club to a playoff team, Schoop did worse the rest of the year. He slashed .202/.246/.331 with just four homers in 46 games with Milwaukee. Schoop is in an interesting position now, joining a team that would seem to be rebuilding with a young nucleus but instead chose to sign 27-year-old Schoop to replace Brian Dozier.

As a player with a strong track record still in the prime of his career, his depressed draft value could lead to sleeper value entering 2019. He doesn't need to be picked in the top half of most drafts but could jump back into top-10 2B status and should be considered if you wait on the position.

--Pierre Camus - RotoBaller

 

Jurickson Profar - 2B/3B/1B/SS, Oakland Athletics

Oakland Athletics second baseman Jurickson Profar is coming off of a breakout that felt like it was a decade in the making, but we now look towards his age-26 season with reason for optimism. In 594 plate appearances, Profar slugged 20 homers and stole 10 bases, making him one of the 29 hitters to go at least 20/10 in 2018, despite having a 27.6 ft/sec sprint speed that ranked 178th out of 403 hitters with 50 baserunning opportunities.

His hit tool has always been there but held back by a variety of injuries, but his going 10-of-10 on the basepaths without elite speed shows promise moving forward. Now, for some pessimism. Profar goes from playing in Arlington, a top-five hitting park for both left- and right-handed bats, over to Oakland, which ranked 52nd for RHB and 55th for LHB.

If he can hold onto hitting second in the A’s order then hopefully the additional PAs help balance out the lesser park. All this explains our site’s rank of 158th against an ADP of 117, as we’d advise not to buy in hard at cost in 2019.

--Nick Mariano - RotoBaller

 

Cesar Hernandez - 2B, Philadelphia Phillies

Philadelphia Phillies second baseman Cesar Hernandez is more known for his glove than his bat, and that's about all you need to know for fantasy purposes. However, he did post career highs in 2018 in home runs (15), runs scored (91) and RBI (60), while also tying his career high with 19 stolen bases. He did it with a very mediocre .253/.356/.362 slash line in 161 games, though.

Hernandez's on-base percentage can be useful in leagues that count that statistic, as he walked a career-high 13.4 percent of the time last season, but he also fanned 21.9 percent of the time, his highest percentage since 2014. The 28-year-old switch-hitter never had more than six home runs in a season before 2018, so expecting him to improve on his 15 long balls from last year would be a big mistake. Hernandez makes enough contact, but most of it is medium contact (55.5 percent in 2018) instead of hard contact (24.0 percent). Most of the fly balls he hits are being caught instead of leaving the yard.

Even if the Phillies don't sign Manny Machado this winter, Hernandez could also be at risk of losing playing time at the keystone to youngster Scott Kingery if he gets off to a slow start. We more than likely just saw Hernandez's best season. RotoBaller has him ranked 153rd overall and 20th at his position. He'll more than likely be avoided in most mixed leagues, as he doesn't move the needle much in the counting stats other than steals.

--Keith Hernandez - RotoBaller

 

Roughned Odor - 2B, Texas Rangers

Texas Rangers second baseman Rougned Odor is entering his sixth MLB season at just 24 years old. He had a down year in 2018, slashing .253/.326/.424 with 18 home runs, 63 RBI, 76 runs scored, and 12 steals in 535 plate appearances. Though he’s never been a solid contributor in the batting average or on-base percentage categories, he has displayed the coveted power-speed combination as recently as 2017 (30 home runs and 15 steals) and 2016 (33 home runs and 14 steals).

His underlying metrics don’t inspire confidence that his average and on-base percentage will improve, as a 0.34 BB/K ratio, 23.7% strikeout rate, and a career .248/.295/.440 slash line all qualify as subpar. However, Odor posted a career-best 19.5% line drive rate in 2018, easily surpassing his career average of 16.6%. He also posted a low 13.6% HR/FB ratio, compared to 17% in 2016 and 16% in 2017 (when he posted 30+ homers). This gives Odor a great chance to at least approach his 2016 and 2017 form. Don’t forget that Arlington Park remains a premium spot for fantasy production, ranking second in expected runs scored and sixth in expected home runs in 2018.

Projection site Steamer has Odor pegged for a .249/.307/.453 slash line in 2019, adding 28 home runs, 86 RBI, 79 runs scored, and 16 steals. RotoBaller has him ranked at 115th overall, while he’s being drafted at pick 128 (2B10) in early drafts. That is a good spot for the young Venezuelan, though one could easily reach for him earlier due to his rare 30/15 HR/SB upside.

--Kyle Ringstad - RotoBaller

 

Yoan Moncada - 2B, Chicago White Sox

Yoan Moncada showed off some of his potential in 2018 by hitting 17 home runs with 12 steals; he also displayed the biggest downside to his fantasy value by leading the Major Leagues with 217 strikeouts. Along with posting his second-straight season with a strikeout rate over 30 percent, Moncada also saw his on-base percentage drop 23 points to .315 and his slugging percentage drop 12 points to .400.

While those numbers are by no means great, Moncada still provides some value relative to his position. He finished ninth among second basemen in home runs, and he was one of only four second basemen with at least 17 home runs and 12 steals.

The strikeout issue will cause the overwhelming majority of owners in points leagues to avoid him, but owners in roto leagues might want to consider Moncada to fill in at their middle infield spot. If owners are willing to put up with Moncada’s low average, his potential for 15 home runs and 15 steals makes him a decent value at his current 158 ADP.

--Michael Grennell - RotoBaller

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