Players We Wish We Drafted

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By slgckgc on Flickr (Original version) UCinternational (Crop) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

Last week I wrote a post about three players that fantasy baseball analyst missed the mark on by over valuing them coming in to the 2016 season. Today we look at players that everyone wishes they would have seen coming this season because they way over performed their draft day value.

Daniel Murphy, 2B Nationals

During the offseason the Washington Nationals shopped the market and added what at the time didn’t seem like a big piece to their team in Daniel Murphy. Murphy was coming off a hot stretch in the playoffs for the Mets where he found his power stroke to the tune of seven home runs in 14 games and hitting .328. As a whole, however, 2015 wasn’t all that different from any other year for Murphy finishing with 14 home runs, 2 stolen bases and a .322/.449/.770 triple slash line. Who would have thought that at 31 in 2016 he would have the break out season he has had? He came in to 2016 as the consensus 181st ranked player, but is currently ranked 5th. His power outburst that started in the playoffs has been followed up this season with 25 home runs and a career high .594 slugging. By the end of the year he should also set career highs in doubles, runs, RBIs, home runs and walks. Question will be for 2017 can he replicate this year’s performance.

Jonathan Villar, SS Brewers

Talent runs rampant in the Houston Astros system and because of that they had no place to play Jonathan Villar. That was good for the Milwaukee Brewers who traded for Villar in November. Coming in to 2016 he was ranked as the 414th player, more than likely not drafted in all but NL only leagues. Especially because he was seen as merely a place holder for the Brewer’s shortstop of the future Orlando Arcia. As the 6th ranked player so far in 2016 Villar has done nothing but impress with a full time role. He has played so well the Brewers delayed bringing up Arcia until much later in the year then we all expected. He is second in the majors, to Billy Hamilton, in stolen bases with 52 which has driven much of his value, but has also hit 13 home runs and is getting on-base in 38% of his plate appearances. Even with the promotion of Arcia, Villar is still seeing regular playing time at third base and is a staple at the top of Milwaukee’s order.

Jean Segura, SS Diamondbacks

In 2013 Jean Segura appeared to be on his way to a great career with a breakout season. He hit .294 with 44 stolen bases that year and fantasy owners thought they had their new great steals source. Then came 2014 and 2015 where his batting average dropped by 40 points and his stolen base numbers were cut in half. Those same fantasy owners were surely thinking what could have been. Coming in to 2016 Segura was fighting to make the opening day roster of his new club the Arizona Diamondbacks and on draft day no one was giving him much of a chance to do anything special as he was ranked 224th in preseason rankings. After an April where he hit .333 with four stolen bases and 4 home runs many owners began to take a second look at him on their waiver wire, but could he be trusted? The answer so far has been yes. He is hitting .317 on the season with 12 home runs, 30 stolen bases and 83 runs batting at the top of Arizona’s lineup. He is in the top 15 on the player rater for the season and looks to be the Segura of 2013. Many lucky fantasy owners who took a chance on this waiver wire pickup are jumping for joy with what he has done for their team.

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Your Still Sleeping on Broxton

images_4_origEarlier this week I posted the blog below on Keon Broxton, but I had to post it again because many of you have not received the memo. This kid is a speedster and if you are in a roto league he needs to be added. In the past seven games he has stolen six bases (he actually only played in six of those seven games). He has had two games in the past seven where he stole two bases in the same game. Oh and by the way he has only been caught stealing one time in 18 attempts.

Not only is Broxton full of speed, but the Brewers have shown they will run whenever they can. If you don’t believe me just look at Jonathan Villar and the amazing season he is having on the base paths. In CBSSports.com leagues Broxton is widely available with a 19% ownership rate and that needs to jump closer to 40%. Any team that is suffering for steals should snatch this guy up before your competition does.

 For more on Broxton read the blog post below.

If you are still in the running in your fantasy baseball league, then you are likely looking for any player that can help get you over the finish line. Maybe you just lost Giancarlo Stanton, like me, for the season and need to find an outfielder to replace him. Of course there is no replacing Stanton, but don’t sleep on picking up Keon Broxton.

Broxton was traded to Milwaukee in the offseason by Pittsburgh and was a sleeper steals source coming in to 2016, but he struggled early in the season and ended up going down to Triple-A. Recently he found his way back to the big league club and is making the most of this opportunity. In the past 30 games Broxton is has a .367/.475/.633 slash line with seven stolen bases and two home runs. He jumps around the batting order even hitting lead-off at times. His strikeout rate has to improve to keep up what his current level of performance, but even if it only comes down a little his elite walk rate of 15.6% makes him a great on-base guy with a ton of speed.

Critics will warn you that Domingo Santana is on his way back from injury and that may cut in to playing time for Broxton, but if he continues to have a 1.108 OPS like he has over the past 30 games there is no way the Brewers can keep him out of the lineup.