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The Dynasty Guru’s Top 50 Second Basemen, #21-50

WELCOME BACK!!! Despite a scorching hot stove (I can’t believe the player you’re thinking of did or did not sign with the team you thought they would!), January and February can be some of the darkest months of the year (figuratively and literally). But fear not, restless readers. The Dynasty Guru is here to the rescue.

While you were celebrating the holidays and ushering in the New Year, our brave group of writers has been ranking, debating, re-ranking, re-debating, and re-re-ranking over 600 players for dynasty leagues. The fruits of our efforts will be filling January and February with the deepest, most thoroughly and painstakingly selected dynasty baseball rankings on the internet. We have top-50s, top-125s, top-200s, top-500s (of course!), and even ultra-deep prospect rankings. PLUS, this season we’re including a “Where They’d Rank” section, that outlines where we would put multi-positional guys if we ranked them at their secondary positions.

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Without further ado, it’s time to continue our 2019 consensus rankings by looking at our 21-50 dynasty second basemen.

21) Brandon Lowe, Tampa Bay Rays, (Age:24, Previous Rank 44)

Brandon Lowe is interesting. Like really interesting. His name is rhymes with now…But also, he popped up amongst a crowded Rays system and made an impact during his short time in the majors in 2018. Lowe only received 148 plate appearances, but he made them count: he barreled 10.9% of pitches, smacked homers, and stole a pair of bags. While the steals were a nice bonus they aren’t necessarily something to count on, as he’s not exactly fleet of foot. However, the quality of contact he made indicates that we should take notice.

Lowe hit the ball hard. Two miles-per-hour above-league-average. Pair with his 13.9° launch angle, and there’s potential here for a power hitting second baseman. Also considering his history of solid plate skills throughout the minors, and then a power breakout in 2018 (he hit 20 bombs between 2 levels) Lowe should certainly peak our interest. Playing time may be a problem Tampa, but the Rays have traditionally very flexible with their players, and Lowe has played multi-positions in the minors.  He’s worth a gamble. Go get him right Lowe. (Patrick Magnus)

22) Vidal Brujan, Tampa Bay Rays, (Age:20, Previous Rank NR)

The hype machine has started rolling for the young Tampa shortstop, and with good reason. Well, one main reason. He’s freakin’ fast. The youngster has shown tremendous plate skills thus far in the minors, and has a TON of speed. In 2018 Brujan swiped 55 bases between A-ball and High-A. That kind of speed is going to make dynasty prospectors drool, because, boy, do we need speed in the majors.

Brujan’s speed will be aided by his ability to get on base. He has walked at a double digit rate at every level but one in the minors, and has never had a strike out rate above 13.2%. Beyond the plate skills, Brujan managed to pop 9 homers to go with those 55 bags. If there’s emerging power here we have the potential for an absolute stud. Yeah, we’re very interested. (Patrick Magnus)

23) Joey Wendle, Tampa Bay Rays, (Age:28, Previous Rank NR)

We promise this isn’t a list of just Tampa Bay Rays, but they do have a lot of intriguing talent. Next up is Joey Wendle, who had himself a helluva a first full season in the Bigs. Wendle made an absurd amount of contact (81.3%), and in the second half he even started to drive the ball (23 doubles). If he can continue this sort of progress we could be looking at double-digit homers and steals from the second baseman.

However there are some red flags with Wendle, and his .300 batting average. He significantly out preformed his xBA (.257), and had some very good BABIP luck. Regression could mean an average closer to his xBA, and he’d lose most of his value if this is the case. Draft accordingly and watch his ISO, doubles, and slugging. (Patrick Magnus)

24) Dawel Lugo, Detroit Tigers, (Age:24, Previous Rank NR)

The long-time minor league journeyman finally made it to The Show, but it’s tough to really say anything nice about Lugo’s appearance. In Triple-A he walked a whopping 1.7% of the time, and posted a disgusting ISO of .081. Yet, he made enough contact to hit .269, and he’s batted significantly better in previous levels. Unfortunately Lugo’s Triple-A performance carried over to his debut with his new team as well, batting .213/.267/.309. Gross.

However, better days are ahead for Lugo. That slash-line was partially some bad luck in the BABIP department, and I believe that he can put up an average of .270 in the majors, but without much else. There are some tools here, and if you squint to the point where you eyes are essentially closed… a minuscule amount of upside. (Patrick Magnus)

25) Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Toronto Blue Jays, (Age:25, Previous Rank NR)

There’s a freight train of young talent coming to the Toronto Blue Jays soon, but what about some of the youngsters that are already there? Gurriel is just 25 and is currently listed as the Blue Jays starting shortstop for 2019. He did some pretty good things on the baseball field in 2018, including slashing .281/.301/.446 while hitting 11 homers in the friendly confines of Rogers Centre. Not bad for the young man’s first cup of coffee and only 263 at-bats.

Gurriel’s unlikely to ever contribute significantly in OBP leagues, as he’s failed to walk or post strong OBP numbers in the minors. Still, he makes plenty of contact, and does so with a bit of thump (90.3 Exit Velocity). 20 homers and a slash-line of .270/.320/.440 doesn’t seem out reach for the Blue Jays’ starting shortstop. Absolutely worth a bench or middle infield spot in deeper leagues. (Patrick Magnus)

26) Esteury Ruiz, San Diego Padres, (Age:19, Previous Rank NR)

Buried in the most talented system in baseball, there is a super toolsy shortstop prospect with the potential to climb prospect lists quickly. Ruiz is only 19 years old and has already shown tantalizing power and speed. In 2018 he batted .253/.324/.403 with 12 homers and 49 steals. Yes, 49 steals. Not sure he has the speed that will translate into a major amount of MLB stolen bases, but regardless he needs to be on our radar.

Ruiz doesn’t get cheated at the plate, as he’s often swinging for the fences. The result is a rather ugly 28.6% strikeout-rate that will require watching. Striking out that much against low level pitching is concerning, but he’s also 2.4 years younger than the rest of his competition. Beyond the strikeouts, there’s also a lot of concern over Ruiz’s defense and he’ll likely change positions before he reaches the majors. Nevertheless he is a prospect worth owning no matter his eventual position. (Patrick Magnus)

27) DJ LeMahieu, New York Yankees (Age:30, Previous Rank 16)

2018 was the end of LeMahieu’s tenor in Colorado, but the move will not close the door on his dynasty value. While it’s true that LeMahieu preformed better at home over his career, he did managed to play admirably away. Certainly not the player he was in the hitters paradise of Coors Field, but decent.

Career SplitsAVGOBPSLGHR 2B
Home.330.387.4482122
Away.264.311.362289

Maybe it’s a little worse than decent. You can see how Coors has buoyed his value. Last year he managed to find a bit of a power stroke, and the majority of his homers came away from home. The outlook here is .270 and 10 homers. Nothing to write home about, but playable still. (Patrick Magnus)

28) Franklin Barreto, Oakland Athletics, (Age:23, Previous Rank NR)

The formally hyped prospect who was the star acquisition when the Athletics traded Josh Donaldson has been a disappointment. Since he left Double-A, Barreto has swung-and-missed a lot. He just hasn’t been able to catch up to more advanced pitching. Another discouraging sign? A very sharp decline in steals, and we need those.

Yet, it’s helpful to remember that he’s only 22 years old. Which means, of course, he’s going to swing and miss often, and it shouldn’t be surprising that he hasn’t had the success a prospect of his pedigree expected. The swing looks too big to hit for average. The best case scenario might be that we end up with a version of Triple-A 2018 Barreto in the majors with more homers(.259/357/.514). If you’re rebuilding, Barreto could make a cheap gamble, but temper expectations because they’ll be a lot of bumps on the road. (Patrick Magnus)

29) Starlin Castro, Miami Marlins, (Age:28, Previous Rank 17)

Castro’s first year with Miami was more of the same. He’s been a fairly reliable source of average, double digit homers, and a handful of steals. While Castro doesn’t hit the ball all that hard, he is able to utilize his speed to get on base. This helps him out perform his xBA most years, and so don’t be scared off by the inflated BABIP.

No longer playing in the beer-softball league park that is Yankee Stadium, Castro lost a few home runs in Marlins Park. I’d expect his power to tick up just a bit in his second year there, and there’s always the possibility of him being traded. Think .260-.280, 15 homers, and 5-7 steals. Good for a deep middle infield option. (Patrick Magnus)

30) Jahmai Jones, Los Angeles Angels, (Age:21 Previous Rank NR)

Jones owns a quick swing that makes plenty of contact. He doesn’t posses a ton of over the fence pop, but drives the ball well to all parts of the field. Jones can run a little bit, but his defense is a work in progress. Obviously the Angels feel that Jones is athletic enough to improve his defense, as they’ve moved him from the outfield to the keystone. That’s good news for us because his skill set will be much more valuable, as you’ve noticed second base gets thin fairly quick.

Thus far Jones hasn’t shown the ability to hit more advance pitching for a strong average, but the plate skills have remained solid (11.3% BB, 24.1% K). The newly minted second baseman struck out a bit much, but it was his first showing at Double-A. The walk rate was good for his OBP though, and I think he’ll be a productive major leaguer with double-digit homers and steals. Jones should be owned in most dynasty formats. (Patrick Magnus)

31) Jed Lowrie, New York Mets, (Age: 34, Previous Rank: 34)

Jed Lowrie signed a 2-year, $20 million deal with the Mets this off-season after an excellent 2018. He put up five WAR with stellar second base defense and his best offensive season—all at age 34. He’s shown no sign of slowing down; I’d expect a few more 2018-like seasons, something like .260/.345/.425 with 20 home-runs. He joins Robinson Cano, Jeff McNeil, Todd Frazier, and Peter Alonso in a crowded infield. Of these five, Lowrie and Cano are most secure, as Brodie Van Wagen deliberately dedicated resources to acquiring these two this off-season. The Mets also said they’ll play Lowrie every day. In 2019, I’d expect Alonso to seize the majority of playing time at first base, Cano to split time at first base and second base, and Lowrie to split time at second base and third base. (Jordan Rosenblum)

An unironically terrible joke:

What part of NYC did Jed move to after signing with the Mets? The Lowrie-st Side.

32) Daniel Robertson, Tampa Bay Rays, (Age: 24, Previous Rank: NR)

Robertson is a 24-year-old infielder with a 127 wRC+ in his second full season! You’d think a guy like this would rank a lot higher. Alas, his minor league performance never indicated a high ceiling and he only had a 76 wRC+ in 2017—some regression should be expected in 2019. I buy him regressing only slightly, and project him around .265/.360/.400 with 15 homers and 5 stolen bases per 600 plate appearances moving forward. His expected stats, based on exit velocities and launch angles, mostly supported his performance in 2018. He’ll have eligibility at second base, third base, and shortstop, and if he can steal a starting job from the inferior Joey Wendle or Matt Duffy, he should make a useful back-end starter in deep leagues for years to come. (Jordan Rosenblum)

An unironically terrible joke:

What did Daniel call his hotel? Robert’s Inn.

33) Nick Solak, Tampa Bay Rays, (Age: 24, Previous Rank: 40)

Solak has torn his way through the minors since being drafted in 2016. He has hit at every level, increasing the likeliness his performance translates to the big leagues. He mastered Double-A in 2018; he’ll be knocking on the door of the majors in 2019 and 2020. When he arrives, he’s a good bet to bat .260/.345/.410, with very good plate discipline, and 15-20 home-runs and 15-20 stolen bases. His 2018 peak major league equivalency suggests this sort of output*. He’s a candidate to jump up these rankings with a strong year. With the Lowe brothers, Willy Adames, Daniel Robertson, and Solak, the Rays are rich in the infield. (Jordan Rosenblum)

An unironically terrible joke:

What is Nick’s secret to consistently crushing the minor leagues? Work hard, don’t solak on the job.

*Clay Davenport translates minor league statistics to peak MLB performance, adjusting minor league statistics downward for league difficulty and upward for aging.

34) Cavan Biggio, Toronto Blue Jays, (Age: 24, Previous Rank: NR)

Before 2018, Cavan Biggio wasn’t really a prospect. He was always a bit old, with performance a bit too mediocre to be considered a top 300 guy. He had one of the biggest breakouts in the minors in 2018, crushing Double-A pitching at 23. 2019 will be a big year for him. I’d expect some regression, as he was never particularly good before 2018. However, prospects often develop quickly. If he proves his 2018 performance was legit, he’ll jump up this list and prove himself quite the dynasty asset. He has 20-20, high OBP potential at the keystone. The heartbreakingly disappointing Devon Travis currently holds the second base job for the Blue Jays, so Biggio isn’t blocked. (Jordan Rosenblum)

An unironically terrible joke:

What did Cavan say to his significant other, to try to get her to read his blog joke? “Are you busy—oh, OK, I can show you later.”

35) Kolten Wong, St. Louis Cardinals, (Age: 28, Previous Rank: 27)

Kolten Wong enters 2019 as the Cardinals starting second baseman, backed up by Jed Gyorko. He has consistently produced 10-15 home runs and 10-15 stolen bases per 600 plate appearances over the past few years, with a league average OBP. He’s terribly boring, but he should be good for another year around .260/.340/.400, with around 12 home-runs and 10 stolen bases in an excellent Cardinals lineup. He’s only 28, so he should be able to keep up this modestly useful performance for a while. He’s a fine back-end second base option in very deep leagues, and a backup otherwise. (Jordan Rosenblum)

An unironically terrible wordplay:

If you thought I would do something creative here and resist the low-hanging fruit, you’d be wong (sorry).

36) Kean Wong, Tampa Bay Rays, (Age: 23, Previous Rank: NR)

Normally, it’s bad and lazy analysis to compare players to other family members. Players are typically each quite unique, even if they hail from the same genetics. This guideline does not apply to Kean Wong though, as he really does in fact appear to be a younger version of his brother. In 2018, as a 23-year-old repeating Triple-A, he put up a .268/.331.396 peak major league equivalency, with 12 home-runs and 9 stolen bases per 550 at bats*. Tell me that doesn’t sound like a younger version of Kolten! His peak translations from past years are similar. He is a bit blocked in Tampa Bay, but if he ever finds playing time you can expect modestly useful, Wong-ian production. (Jordan Rosenblum)

An unironically terrible wordplay:

You thought I’d resist making the same joke twice in a short time span—wong again (sorry again).

*Clay Davenport translates minor league statistics to peak MLB performance, adjusting minor league statistics downward for league difficulty and upward for aging.

37) Asdrubal Cabrera, Free Agent, (Age: 33, Previous Rank: NR at 2B)

Asdrubal Cabrera remains a free agent as of press time entering his 33-year-old season. He has settled in as a reliable source of a .270-ish average and 20-ish homeruns over the past couple of seasons: a solid, above-average hitter. He brings shortstop and second base eligibility. His offensive abilities and defensive versatility should land him a starting job somewhere, perhaps with a contender. Assuming he lands a starting job, he’s an easy top 25 option at the keystone for 2019-only leagues. He hasn’t slowed down with age, so it’s reasonable to expect similar production for a couple more seasons before decline sets in: I expect something around .270/.335/.450 with 22 home-runs. (Jordan Rosenblum)

An unironically terrible wordplay:

This one is too hard, asdrubal-ed with it, I struggled with it a lot.

38) Ian Kinsler, San Diego Padres, (Age: 36, Previous Rank: 21)

The Padres signed Ian Kinsler to a two-year deal to start at second base in 2019 and maybe 2020. He continues to a be an above-average player. Remarkably, 2018 was his 12th straight season producing at least two WAR. He’s declined a bit in recent years, but he’s still good for around a .250/.320/.400 triple slash (similar to his 2018 expected triple slash derived from exit velocities and launch angles) with around 18 home-runs and 15 stolen bases per 600 plate appearances. His stellar second base defense should ensure he continues to get playing time. He’s a fine back-end top 25 second baseman in 2019. In 2020, Luis Urias and Fernando Tatis Jr. will be pushing him for playing time; he’ll have to hold off father time to keep his starting job. (Jordan Rosenblum)

An unironically terrible joke:

What did Luis Urias tell Ian Kinsler as they experimented with a new launch angle idea from their hitting coach? Kinsler-n faster than adults. [Woof -Ed.]

39) Isan Diaz, Miami Marlins, (Age: 22, Previous Rank: NR)

Isan Diaz ranks among the Marlins top prospects, which says more about their farm than about Diaz. He reached Triple-A in 2018, his age-22 season. His 2018 peak major league equivalency was unspectacular, with a .235/.332/.403 with 15 homers and 15 stolen bases per 550 at bats*. This was his second straight disappointing season, after very strong years in the low minors in 2015 and 2016. He tends to rank highly because of his toolsy-ness. It should be easy enough to get playing time on the Marlins starting in 2019. If he ever taps into his raw power more fully, his stock could rise considerably. As is, he projects as a back-end option at second base, only useful in deep leagues. (Jordan Rosenblum)

An unironically terrible joke:

What will I say if he proves me wrong in 2019? Sorry about my Isan comment, readers, looks like he isan the acension.

*Clay Davenport translates minor league statistics to peak MLB performance, adjusting minor league statistics downward for league difficulty and upward for aging.

40) Shed Long, Cincinnati Reds,  (Age: 23, Previous Rank: 37)

Shed Long’s peak major league equivalency for his 2018 minor league performance, looks a lot like Isan Diaz’s: .248/.324/.384, with 13 home-runs and 16 stolen bases per 550 at bats*. He was much stronger in 2016 and 2017, with performances in A-ball and High-A suggesting potential for a .270 average and 25+ home-runs per 550 at bats. I’d expect Long to bounce back a bit in 2019 as he pushes the Reds for an MLB job. His minor league career performance suggests he’ll peak at .255/.330/.420, with 20 home-runs and 15 stolen bases. If he reaches this peak, he’d make for a solid back-end top 20 option. (Jordan Rosenblum)

I’ll spare you from another joke, I’ve already shed far too much.

*Clay Davenport translates minor league statistics to peak MLB performance, adjusting minor league statistics downward for league difficulty and upward for aging.

41) Alen Hanson, San Francisco Giants (Age: 26, Previous Rank: NR)

After a shaky rookie season, hitting .221 split between the Pirates and White Sox in 2017, Alen Hanson received 310 plate appearances with the Giants in 2018 and became a usable fantasy player in the middle infield. Known for his speed in the minors with numerous 30+ steal seasons, Hanson has stolen 11 and 7 bags in his first two seasons, respectively. The switch-hitting Hanson mixed in a little pop with eight HRs in 2018, all against RHP, raising his wRC+ from 59 to 86. His .274 BA last year against righties would make Hanson a solid platoon player, but the Giants have a roster full of left-handed and switch hitters for the 2019 season. Out of options, Hanson qualifies at second base and outfield, while also playing 10+ games last year at both shortstop and third base. He should be able to get at least 300 PAs again this year, and the power/speed combination makes Hanson a usable Middle Infielder in NL-only and deeper dynasty leagues. (Bob Osgood)

42) Tucupita Marcano, San Diego Padres (Age: 19, Previous Rank: NR)

Marcano was part of the excellent J2 group signed by the Padres in 2016. He did not turn many heads in first-year player drafts last year, due to a .206 batting average during his first go-around in Rookie ball in 2017. A deeper look at his 16.3% walk rate and 7.2% strikeout rate showed that the tools were there, however. 2018 was an entirely different story, as Marcano hit an outrageous .395 in 160 Rookie League plate appearances. In fact, according to madfriars.com,  his .497 OBP was the best of any qualifying hitter in the AZL since Jaff Decker in 2008. Marcano continued his tear upon promotion to Low-A, hitting .314. While his walk rate dropped to 5.2% in limited at-bats, his K-rate has stayed between 6-8% at all stops so far. Marcano played almost as many innings at shortstop as he did at second base in 2018, and has a 55 grade arm at Fangraphs. Add in the double-digit steals in each of the two short seasons that Marcano has played, and he is likely worth pursuing in any dynasty league that rosters 200 prospects, as a potential top of the order bat for the Padres in a few years if he continues to get on base at the rate he has so far. (Bob Osgood)

43) Eduardo Nunez, Boston Red Sox (Age: 31/32, Previous Rank: 18)

Nunez emerged from a platoon player to a very valuable fantasy option in 2016 by stealing 40 bases. He followed that up with 24 in 2017, before a knee injury in the final month essentially ended his season. While the knee healed in the offseason without surgery, it may have sapped his speed and most of his fantasy value im the process, as he hit .265 with 10 HRs, 44 RBI, and only 7 SBs, as his wRC+ plummeted from three seasons over 100, down to 78 in 2018. With 502 plate appearances, Nunez did stay relatively healthy for most of 2018, outside of the four injuries he suffered in extra innings of World Series Game 3.

Alex Cora seems to try to fit Nunez into the lineup whenever he can, and while the Red Sox and Dustin Pedroia are both saying all the right things going into the season, confidence is not high that Pedroia will be healthy enough to start at second base for all, or any, of 2019. Picking up Nunez’s $5M option was an easy decision for Boston. With second and third base eligibility, Nunez seems to be an afterthought in drafts this season, and you may be able to find some cheap value here for counting stats, while not killing your average. (Bob Osgood)

44) Daniel Descalso, Chicago Cubs (Age: 32, Previous Rank: NR)

Qualifying at both second and third base, Daniel Descalso has had a quiet emergence over the past two years, as he began to hit for a little more power. After never topping a 90 wRC+ over his first eight seasons, this number shot up to 111 in 2018 for Descalso out of nowhere. This seems to be the result of a swing change which is wonderfully outlined by Jeff Sullivan at FanGraphs, showing that the 111 number should have been even higher if the humidor at Chase Field had been considered. A left-handed hitter, 83% of Descalso’s plate appearances came against RHP in 2018, a season where he hit .238. However, Descalso hit left-handers at a .286 clip compared to .227 against right-handers. Having recently signed a two-year deal with the Cubs, it will be interesting to see how Joe Maddon deploys him in 2019. In addition to 2B and 3B, Descalso has played plenty of first base and outfield in recent years. With Ben Zobrist turning 38, and in the final year of his contract, he may find himself in a similar role over the next two years. A bit more helpful in OBP leagues (.353 in 2018), Descalso is worth a flier as a multi-position bench player at the end of drafts. (Bob Osgood)

45) Joe Panik, San Francisco Giants (Age 28, Previous Rank: 35)

After back to back seasons with at least 10 HR and 60 RBI in 2016 and 2017, Panik had a down year with a .254 BA, combined with only 4 HR and 4 SB. Panik had 392 plate appearances, as a result of missing all of May with a thumb sprain, and most of July with a groin injury, so it is safe to wonder if he played much of the season through injury to account for the down year. An old school 2-hitter who strikes out only 7.7% of the time and likes to hit the ball to the opposite field, Panik hit .297 when used in the 2-hole in 2018. He has never made double-digit errors in a season, so the at-bats should continue to be there for Panik to hit near the top of a weak Giants lineup in 2019. At only 28, the hope is that Panik can bounce back to a batting average closer to .300 as we saw early in his career, but should only warrant a late pick. (Bob Osgood)

46) Niko Goodrum, Detroit Tigers (Age: 27, Previous Rank: NR)

Goodrum spent eight years in the Twins minor league system, except for a cup of coffee in 2017, before becoming a free agent and signing in Detroit last season. Many fantasy owners found a useful player on waivers who eventually qualified at almost every position, playing 10 or more games at 1B, 2B, SS, 3B, and OF last season. Although he only hit .245, Goodrum chipped in with 16 HRs and 12 steals, showing some power that we did not see in the minor leagues, highlighted by a very good .187 ISO. According to Roster Resource, the switch-hitting Goodrum should hit 5th in 2019 behind Nick Castellanos and Miguel Cabrera, so the opportunities should be there to drive in runs on a rebuilding Tigers team. With a year in the Bigs under his belt, if Goodrum can cut down his 26.8% K-rate, and improve against RHP (.225 in 2018), he could take another step up in 2019. You could do worse with a one-year stopgap than Goodrum, who will start the season qualifying at first base and second base, and may gain additional eligibility as the season progresses. (Bob Osgood)

47) Jeter Downs, LA Dodgers (Age: 20, Previous Rank: NR)

The 32nd pick overall in the 2017 draft by the Reds, Jeter Downs was sent to the Dodgers this offseason in a trade returning Yasiel Puig, Matt Kemp, and Alex Wood to Cincinnati. While Downs’ hitting numbers in the short season of 2017 stayed consistent in 2018 (a .257 average with 13 HR and 47 RBI), it was the stolen base numbers that exploded last season, totaling 37 steals on 47 attempts at Single-A Dayton. Although Downs’s wRC+ increased from 93 in 2017 rookie ball to 118 in 2018, his BB-rate declined from 12.9% to 9.9% and K-rate increased from 15.3% to 19.7%, an expected result of facing tougher competition at single-A. Downs has recently begun appearing in some top 100 prospect lists, and measures as a high floor player who can do several things well. His FanGraphs future hit, power, and speed tools at 55, 50, and 40 respectively, but he may lack true upside in any category unless his SB increase continues at higher levels. (Bob Osgood)

48) Jason Kipnis, Cleveland Indians (Age: 32, Previous Rank: 19)

Dynasty owners have seen Jason Kipnis’s value plummet over the last two years, going from 8th to 19th, and now all the way down to 48 in The Dynasty Guru’s second base rankings. The subpar hitting years from Kipnis in his twenties was previously saved by his ability to swipe 20+ bases, but in the past two seasons, Kipnis has not stolen more than seven. He has increased his fly ball rate to 44-45% each of the last two years, appearing to sell out for more power. Back to back seasons with a batting average around .230 has left HR and RBI (18 and 65 in 2018) as the only categories for Kipnis to contribute in. The good news is that with no threat in the minors to speak of, and with the Indians paying him $14.5M on what could be the final year of his contract (pending a $2.5M buyout for 2020), the at-bats should still be there for Kipnis to contribute in the counting stat categories in fantasy. The expectation should be for 15 HR and five steals, with the possibility for more. (Bob Osgood)

49) Adam Frazier, Pittsburgh Pirates (Age: 27, Previous Rank: 47)

Frazier no longer needs to be known as “the guy blocking Austin Meadows” now that Meadows has been shipped off to Tampa. Frazier had a .277/.342/.456 slash line in 2018, backed up by an ISO of .179, a wRC+ of 116, and a hard hit rate that moved up from 27.5 to 34.8%. 10 HRs in 2018 was an additional perk, but his SBs dropped from nine in 2017 down to only one in 2018. Eligible at second base and outfield, Roster Resource anticipates Frazier to bat leadoff, which seems more likely against righties (against whom he hit .291 last year). Add in the fact that Josh Harrison is gone, and Jung Ho Kang has not exactly been reliable for various reasons, and there may be more opportunities for runs and hopefully a few more stolen bases this year. (Bob Osgood)

50) Brayan Rocchio, Cleveland Indians (Age: 18, Previous Rank: NR)

Rocchio was signed in the 2017 J2 period as a 16-year-old out of Venezuela and had a solid initial 2018 season across both different levels of rookie ball. In the advanced rookie level in the AZL, he hit .343 in 143 at-bats, while stealing 14 bases in only 35 games, and also being named as an AZL postseason all-star. Rocchio made appearances at second base, shortstop, and third base, playing the majority at short. Fangraphs gives him a 60 grade speed tool now, and a future hit tool of 60 as well. If Rocchio is still available in any upcoming minor league, or first-year player drafts that roster 200-300 prospects, he would be a great target. (Bob Osgood)

 

Where They’d Rank

Ketel Marte- 28, in front of DJ LeMahieu

Marwin Gonzalez- 36, behind Daniel Robertson

Ben Zobrist- 51, behind Niko Goodrum

Kike Hernandez- 52, behind Ben Zobrist

The Author

Ian Hudson

Ian Hudson

Ian is an editor for The Dynasty Guru and a bowtie enthusiast. If you guessed one of those things about him you could probably guess the other.

He's also an attorney in Tampa, Florida.

Go Rays.

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