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Top Second Base Prospect Rankings - 2018 Impact Rookies for Fantasy Baseball


Welcome back, RotoBallers. I'll be breaking down impact prospects by position. Today I'm bringing you my top 10 second basemen - MLB prospect rankings for the 2018 fantasy baseball season.

Second base is not a particularly strong position for prospects. It suffers from the same issue as first base: it is used as the position for third basemen without the arm or shortstops without the range and who need to make the most to the less-demanding defensive position. However, there are still a few second basemen who can be valuable in redraft leagues.There is some drop-off after the first four spots, but there is value to be found at the position.

Just a quick note, some of the top players on the list will appear on other positional prospect lists given the uncertainty of the position they will play in the majors. As said earlier, a lot of shortstops will find second base to be their future home. So without any further ado, here are the top 10 second base prospects for 2018.

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Top 10 Second Base Prospects for 2018 Fantasy Baseball

1. Gleyber Torres (NYY, AAA)
Stats: (from AA) 139 PA, .273/.367/.496, 5 HR, 5 SB, 12.2% BB%, 15.1% K%
ETA: Late April
There are plenty more prospects more exciting from a fantasy standpoint than Torres, but few with his type of floor. He has shown over the past several seasons the ability to consistently drive the ball with force, posting high walk rates and always decent power numbers. His power has not always translated to a ton of over-the-fence pop, but scouts believe Torres should convert his raw power into 20-plus home run ability. He seemed to be a strong candidate to begin the season at second base for the Yankees, but the acquisition of Neil Walker now means he’s likely heading to Triple-A for a while. Still, with his incredible offensive floor and upside of a middle-of-the-order hitter, he might not be in the minors for too long before he forces Walker to the bench — or fights Miguel Andujar at third base. Should he receive the call-up to the big leagues for meaningful playing time, he would be worth owning in all 10-plus team leagues.

2. Scott Kingery (PHI, AAA)
Stats: 286 PA, .294/.337/.449, 8 HR, 10 SB, 4.5% BB%, 20.3% K%
ETA: Late April
Kingery was never a particularly impressive prospect in the minors, always demonstrating plus-speed and a nice hit tool, but not enough to be a real factor in dynasty leagues. But then in 2017, he combined to post 26 home runs and steal 29 bases in 132 minor-league games. Now, Kingery appears to be a future fantasy star with the ability to post 20/20 seasons with ease while also hitting for a high average. The only thing standing between him and playing time at second base is Cesar Hernandez, a tough obstacle to pass. However, the Phillies are trying to give him innings in center field and third base during Spring Training in an effort to give him more positional versatility. His future is undoubtedly at second base, but any playing time he can have in the majors, fantasy owners will gladly take. Kingery has enough fantasy potential to be a fantasy Rookie of the Year candidate and would be worthy of owning in all leagues.

3. Franklin Barreto (OAK, MLB)
Stats: (from AAA) 510 PA, .290/.339/.456, 15 HR, 15 SB, 5.3% BB%, 27.6% K%
ETA: Early May
In 2017, Barreto flashed promise in Triple-A but stumbled in the majors. His lack of patience and current swing-and-miss issues led him to struggle at the MLB level, likely meaning he will begin 2018 in Triple-A. Though the issues began to show in the minors, Barreto was only 21 years old last year and will only be 22 this season. He has always demonstrated an impressive power/speed combination that could eventually turn into 15/30 or 20/20 seasons in the future. Scouts believe as he matures, he will be able to make more consistent contact and could push .290-plus in a given season. He has all the makings of a high-producing fantasy second baseman if he can start to make contact and could be worth an own in 12-plus team leagues if he can start to put it all together this season. He currently sits behind Jed Lowrie in the second-base depth chart, but Barreto should not have too much of an issue pushing past the 33-year-old if he starts to hit in the minors.

4. Luis Urias (SD, AA)
Stats: 526 PA, .296/.398/.380, 3 HR, 7 SB, 12.9% BB%, 12.4% K%
ETA: Early June
Outside of a little bit of minor-league seasoning, there really seems to be no reason Urias should not begin 2018 as the San Diego Padres’ starting second baseman. It will likely be Jose Pirela starting at the position, but Urias will eventually force his way into the lineup. Urias has consistently matched walk rates and strikeout rates, which has been particularly impressive for someone who has been young for every level he has reached. He also makes so much contact that he seems a near-lock to hit .300 every season. He has average speed and could swipe a few bags, but many are counting on him eventually developing decent power thanks to exit velocities comparable to other power-hitting prospects. Plus, it’s important to remember that in this day of a juiced ball, good things happen when consistent contact is made. Urias has a very high floor as a guarantee to hit for a high average, and should be owned in 14-plus team leagues if called up. The development of any power could make him a reliable own in shallower leagues.

5. Dawel Lugo (DET, AA)
Stats: 557 PA, .277/.321/.424, 13 HR, 3 SB, 5.9% BB%, 12.9% K%
ETA: Early June
As it stands right now, Dixon Machado is slated to be the Detroit Tigers’ Opening Day second baseman. If he is the only player standing between Lugo and playing time, it will not be long until Lugo reaches the majors as the starter. Machado has never been a great hitter, and at 26 years old, he is not the future. Lugo, on the other hand, is only 23 years old and has shown at times the ability to be a solid hitter. He will not be a thrilling, explosive hitter, but with the chance to hit .280 with 15-plus home runs, he could at least be a solid option. Playing time seems destined to find Lugo, who should reach the majors after some seasoning at Triple-A. He will not be a Rookie of the Year candidate, but owners in deep/AL-only league could benefit from someone like him receiving regular playing time.

6. Kevin Kramer (PIT, AA)
Stats: 234 PA, .297/.380/.500, 6 HR, 7 SB, 7.3% BB%, 21.4% K%
ETA: Early August
The Pittsburgh Pirates are starting to tear down the roster, and with that, it becomes important to focus on prospects close to the majors. Kramer currently sits behind both Josh Harrison and Adam Frazier in the second-base depth chart, but Frazier is more of a super-utility player anyway and Harrison could be on the trade block. Should space be cleared for Kramer, he has the bat to hit for a high average and enough power and speed to be something a little bit more than what Frazier was last season. If he taps more into his raw power, Kramer could be something more like a 12-home run hitter while matching that total in stolen bases. He needs some moves to happen in front of him to see playing time, but he could be a valuable deep/NL-only add if he finds MLB at-bats.

7. Mauricio Dubon (MIL, AAA)
Stats: 244 PA, .272/.320/.420, 6 HR, 7 SB, 5.7% BB%, 13.9% K%
ETA: Early June
There is not currently a clear path to playing time for Dubon. With Orlando Arcia at shortstop and Jonathan Villar at second base, Dubon seems to be very much on the outside. But helping his cause is that fact he’s done nothing but hit in the minors and has shown the ability to play nearly any infield position. He is an above-average contact hitter with a penchant for making consistent contact — even if not for much power. Dubon later puts his speed to good use, consistently swiping 30-plus bags every season. He is major-league ready, and though he might not have a direct path to playing time, Dubon could reach the roster as a super-utility player and steal a couple bags with occasional starts. His lack of clear playing time will cap his upside to that of only NL-only leagues.

8. Shed Long (CIN, AA)
Stats: 160 PA, .227/.319/.362, 3 HR, 3 SB, 11.9% BB%, 19.4% K%
ETA: Early August
It is such a tough task to find playing time for Cincinnati Reds’ prospects. It seems clear Nick Senzel will get playing time, but Long should also seem to have his name mentioned more frequently given that he is just one Scooter Gennett trade away from seemingly being next in line at second base. But it appears that if the Reds did decide to move Gennett — it should be noted there has not been any trade rumors around him — that Senzel or Eugenio Suarez would play second base unless Jose Peraza fails to hold down shortstop. Long has the power and speed to be a 15/15 hitter or even 20/20 hitter in the big leagues with a .290-plus batting average, and also can play literally every infield position — including catcher. However, playing time is tough to find for him. His bat could be nice for owners to have should space be made for him on the roster, but he does not have an easy path to playing time.

9. Bo Bichette (TOR, A+)
Stats: 182 PA, .323/.379/.463, 4 HR, 10 SB, 7.7% BB%, 14.3% K%
ETA: September
If this was based solely on talent, Bichette would have a strong case for the top spot. He is not just a pure hitter who should hit for a high average, but has plenty of pop and could be a future .300-plus, 20-plus-homer batter in the big leagues. Bichette is slow enough that though he has played plenty of shortstop, he seems likely to shift over to second base. However, he will really need to crush pitching this season at Double-A to rise to the top. He just turned 20 years old, and there is not really much of a reason for the Blue Jays to promote Bichette to the big leagues unless they are competing and they feel he is their best option at short or second. He could be a September call-up, but odds are he will either be called up well before then or not until 2019. My bet is on 2019, but his talent is so special that owners need to at least be aware of him in redraft leagues.

10. Isan Diaz (MIA, A+)
Stats: 455 PA, .222/.334/.376, 13 HR, 9 SB, 13.6% BB%, 26.6% K%
ETA: September
If Diaz could learn how to make more consistent contact, he would be one of the most exciting prospects in fantasy baseball. He has plenty of power and could be a 25-plus home run hitter in the majors and has tons of patience that has allowed him to keep his on-base percentage respectable. That OBP would be higher if he could stop striking out 25 percent and more on an annual basis. He still has plenty of potential development left ahead of him and there is a very good chance that, like Bichette, he is not promoted until 2019. But he has enough offensive upside at second base that if given the chance to reach the majors, redraft owners need to at least know about him and be ready to add him to their rosters.

 

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