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Yesterday, I told you how to draft your pitchers for 2024 fantasy baseball. I laid it out to you nice and simple (if you have a degree in “What The Hell Is Grey Talking About?” Not a PhD, mind you. Just a BS.) Today, we forget all that jabberwocky on the who-ha and get down to business old school-style (which means if you don’t comprehend, I will hit you over the head with a baseball bat signed by Joe Clark.) What I’m hoping to lay out to you is who do you draft 2nd, if you’ve drafted so and so first. For easy reference, the royal we will be using the Top 10 for 2024 Fantasy Baseballtop 20 for 2024 fantasy baseball, and the beginning of the top 100 for 2024 fantasy baseball. I’m going to assume you’re in a 12 team, 5×5, MI, CI, 5 OF, 1 Utility, 1 Catcher league, similar to our Razzball Commenter Leagues. (Sign up for multiple leagues, and beat the heck out of your frenemies or make new frenemies!)  Anyway, here’s some pairings for the first two rounds of 2024 fantasy baseball drafts:

1. Ronald Acuña Jr. – Metaphorically, I just cracked my knuckles. Did you hear me? That was a rhetorical on my metaphorical! If you get the 1st pick in a draft, you literally cannot go wrong with your next pick. It’s impossible. Put your 2-year-old on your lap and let them choose your next pick. Did they say ‘baba?’ No, they said Boba, as in Bo Bichette. Now you have to draft him. A 2-year-old was able to draft a 2nd round pick after Tildaddy. That’s how good he is! Put your dog on your lap, and let Rex choose. Rex chose Pete Alonso? Well, I don’t know what to say. It’s just that easy! Or your dog Rex might have a future in fantasy baseball writing. Can he rank corner men? Okay, ping me later about Rex coming on board the staff. You can’t draft incorrectly if you have Acuña. Feels slightly unfair that one team is getting a 40/70 player, but let’s hope the person with Tildaddy gets trapped under a stack of phonebooks and can’t manage their team this year. The only word of caution I’ll say with Acuña that is pretty obvious, don’t draft two outfielders in the 1st two rounds. Cool? Cool.

2. Julio Rodriguez – Thinking about drafting Julio Rodriguez with my first pick, and then immediately yelling, “Let’s f**king go!!!” at my computer. What a fun experience it will be when I do it. Karl Marx defined “Drafting Julio Rodriguez with your 1st pick” as “Opium for the masses.” Don’t ask me, it was his thing. So, Jul-Rod is ranked this high because of the OPIUM, MAN! Nah, because he’s great in five categories. That means category-wise he pairs with everyone. Clearly, we don’t want another outfielder, but just about everyone else is green light means go. Riley? Let’s FFFFFFFFFF go! Semien? Um, can you imagine Semien and Jul-Rod on the same team? You just spontaneously combusted from your orgasm. Jul-Rod and Devers? For’evers and ‘evers. Jul-Rod and Lindor or Gunnar? You scored, shooter! Albombso? Alrightso! Literally, anyone but an outfielder.

3. Bobby Witt Jr. – I love BWJ so much that I dream about drafting him, then I wake, raise my head up and realize I accidentally took Cavan Biggio. What a nightmare. If you’re not living that nightmare scenario, grab BWJ and any big ol’ power bat at a corner or outfield slot. You want BWJ and Bryce Harper? I say, yes, you do, even if my rankings say it’s not possible. You took Bobby WJ? I say Devers. You drafted Witt Jr.? Albombso sounds like the Allbestest, which sounds like asbestos, which is your batting average projections, so be careful there. Witt and Riley? You honestly can’t find a better pairing. I love that so much. Witt and LouBob? Eff it, let’s roll! Witt and Lindor? No, dude. Witt and Semien? Why can’t you draft a corner man or outfielder with power? Are you always this obstinate?

4. Corbin Carroll – Samesies as Bobby Witt Jr. but this time we’re not going outfielder, and we are going infielder, even a middle one. My biggest issue with Corbin and Lindor or Semien is you might be in a power hole and average. I’d prefer if you went Corbin and Riley, Corbin and Devers, Corbin and Olson, or Corbin and Freeman, but Freeman will never happen, because he’s being drafted way before I have him ranked. Corbin and Alonso? Yeah, I will. Corbin and corner bat with power excites me greatly. I can’t draft Corbin and Harper, according to my rankings, but, in reality for, uh, fantasy, Corbin and Harper is a strong possibility and I like it.

5. Kyle Tucker – There’s no way you can go wrong with Tucker, because he does everything and I just told you how to draft for him in the Corbin blurb. Go with a corner or middle infidel. Unlike Corbin, I don’t mind Lindor and Semien at all with Tucker. Kyle’s got your average on lock and can handle those other two. Tucker and Harper or Riley or Olson or Albombso or Devers? I honestly don’t know how you lose your league. Tell your commissioner to wire the league fees to you right now.

6. Mookie Betts – I’d look at Mookie Best more like Tucker than Corbin. So, Lindor or Semien with Best? Yest. Betts and and Riley or Olson or Albombso or Devers? You are totally following now! Though, with Best and one of those corner men, you’re in a steal hole vs. other drafters so you need to remain vigilant about making up the speed you lack. Yes, someone who can’t keep a diet going for more than three days we are asking to remain vigilant. This is your chance to prove us wrong!

7. Fernando Tatis Jr. – Fun The Jewels is a recurring theme in this year’s pairings. Everyone is a 30/30 threat (well, until this point in the rankings), so they all go with anyone you can draft, aside from their same position. Fun The Jewels and Yordan? No, I literally just said that! FTJ and Lindor? Yes, please and thank you. Fun The Jewels and Allahson? Make the pilgrimage, baby! FTJ and Jo-Jo-Ram? Hot damn damn! FTJ and Freeman? I love this because Tatis might struggle a bit in average department, but, let’s be real, Freeman’s not going to be on the board in the 2nd round for that pick, but if he is, go for it. Tatis and Harper? I love it, and I don’t care what the haters say (BDon is the hater, when he saw my Harper ranking).

8. Aaron Judge – You, a man of exquisite tastes, “Am I really drafting the guy who just had the best fantasy baseball season in history two years ago with the eighth pick?” Me, a man who taught you such refined tastes, “Yes.” Once again, Judge pairs with anyone, except an outfielder. Where he’s not similar to the guys above is the stats he provides, but, if I’m being honest, and, for the first time ever, interjection, I am being honest, when I say I would go big run-producing bat, even though that’s what Judge gives, i.e., one might think Judge and Albombso is nuts on the power, but I’m stacking ribbies like I’m Tony Roma and taking two big bats with my first two picks. I kinda love the idea of those two from the jump, but you need to keep your lack of steals in mind. Please, think of the steals! Also, while on Jump Street, Judge and Devers? Yup, I will figure out steals later. Judge and Semien? Sure, I will figure out steals now. Judge and Riley? Again, just let me draft Jarren Duran later. So, Judge and any non-outfielder? Absolutely.

9. Juan Soto – Taking Sexy Dr. Pepper at 9th overall and you’re playing with house’s money. Give Hugh Laurie back his money! For guys who haven’t been mentioned yet, Pepper goes with all the usual suspects, Benicio del Toro Albies? I likey. Pepper and Freeman? Sure, but Freeman looks like he likes his food unseasoned, and that sounds like a good way to get 40 HRs, 5 SBs and .320 from your top two picks combined. Don’t hate the playa, the beach got nothing against you. Plus, Freeman’s being drafted before the middle to end of 2nd round, so it’s not happening anyway. Pepper and Riley? I would do a love dance with that, but you better keep in mind you have no steals. Pepper and Olson or Albombso? I’d kiss those pairings they’re so good. Also, it’s not a pipe dream to think you can have Soto and a few guys I have ranked above him. Soto and Judge? I don’t even care that you’re begging DJ LeMahieu to get on base in front of them and Rizzo to drive them in. I’d do it, but it’s two outfielders, which I don’t love. Soto and Tatis? Let’s get the boys back together? No, don’t draft two outfielders. Soto and Jose Ramirez? That’s Pepper and Jo-Jo-Ram to you and yes, yes, yes, please.

10. Trea Turner – I can’t stop thinking about how sexy a Trea Turner/Bryce Harper pick sounds. Then, you can move to Philly, eat nothing but cheesesteaks, have your doctor check your cholesterol, see it’s 444 and stroke out while opening your car door, then your son can take over your fantasy team and win the whole thing, weeping and sobbing loudly, telling his father’s best buddies from high school, who mostly have dementia, “I won this for daddy!” Or you could just go Treat Urner and Yordan. Treat and Ohtani sounds like a treat for my eyeballs and fantasy team. Treat and Lindor? No, dude. Don’t draft a middle infielder. I don’t even really love Treat and Jo-Jo-Ram, because you’re gonna have 50 total homers going into the third round and the person with Bryce and Yordan is going to have 90 homers total (because I’m mentally giving Yordan 60 homers). Just draft Treat and a corner man or outfielder with power.

11. Bryce Harper – In most leagues, Harper is a 2nd round pick, so you could conceivably draft Harper and Harper again. No, wait, that’s not right. I mean, you could draft, say, Jose Ramirez here, then Harper with your next pick, if you like. Or Harper then Ramirez, I guess, but there might be more of a chance Ramirez is taken by the 12th drafter, then you have to reach for Lindor or Albies or Semien, all fine picks, by the by. Or you could draft one of the guys above here who fell because someone drafted Spencer Strider. So, you draft Tatis as your 12th pick, then Harper as your 14th. Or Harper and Yordan sounds flipping awesome, but you better keep in mind you’re in a hole for steals. A hole? Yes, you are.

12. Yordan Alvarez – This is great year to have the 1st pick, because Acuña automatically wins your league, but another reason it’s a great year is because everyone who has the 2nd pick through the last pick of the first round is on level footing. Never before has it been, pick 2nd or 12th, it doesn’t matter. You’re all coming in 2nd! I kid. I am kinda jinxing Acuña, huh? He’s about to hurt his knee and be out for five months. Any hoo! If you draft Yordan, don’t draft an outfielder or a guy who gives no real speed. Captain Woo Cubano and Ohtani? Eff it, let’s roll! But I’d keep an eye on my steals. Yordan and Jo-Jo-Ram? Works for me. Yordan and Lindor? Sounds great! Yordan and Freeman? Meh, it’s fine, but watch your steals. Yordan and Treat Urner? Sign me for the 2nd best team after the guy who drafted Acuña and Patrick Corbin in the 2nd round.

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poeman15
poeman15
1 month ago

16 team
5×5 OBP league.
What tier would you
first draft a pitcher ?
Thanks

buddens126
buddens126
1 month ago

Snagging soto in first round at pick 9 and Bryce or riley in 2nd round!!! Bryce first choice though. LETS GO!!!!!

ajhirsch
ajhirsch
1 month ago

Hi Grey! Coincidentally enough on my team I have Judge and Alonso (thought it was funny you mentioned them together lol) as keepers and am pairing them with CJ Abrams and Ha-Seong Kim for steals. Thinking I’m off to a good start since I also have Adolis as a keeper as well but you know how drafts can go sometimes, when things start to go downhill.

Was offered an intriguing deal in that league, I have Gleyber as my starting 2B and Kim as my starting MI (have Colt Keith too) but have a hole to fill at 3B and the draft is looking really bleak for players in the pool for 3B. The deal that was proposed was Gleyber for Jake Burger and Jeremy Pena. I’d be saving a decent chunk of salary and would have 1 less roster spot to fill in the draft so could spend a bit more on a few positions. Would then move Kim to my starting 2B and slot Pena in at MI. Overall thoughts on that deal for value? Seems okay-ish given the slim pickings in the draft for 3B, where Burger would probably be a top 5 option in the draft for the position and fear I’d get outmuscled on bids.

As always appreciate the work you put into your posts and best of luck this draft season!

uncle ernie
uncle ernie
1 month ago

Hey Grey. Opening day not far away. Trade question. Auction Keeper league with 7 keepers. I usually stock up on bats with keepers then go after arms in the draft. This year I’ve been offered his Strider and Harper for my Carroll and JRam. Im a little skeptical of Carroll in that Diamondback lineup. Outside of SB’s he might struggle to put up counting stats. Im considering countering Carroll for Strider even up Would you go with the rookie sensation or number 1 pitcher in the rankings. 2 or 4 player deal. Thanks

uncle ernie
uncle ernie
Reply to  Grey
1 month ago

8 team keeper so it’s pretty shallow. Would you do 1 for 1 or the 2 for 2

uncle ernie
uncle ernie
Reply to  Grey
1 month ago

After back and forth offers. I ended up with both Strider and Semien for Carroll. Not bad

Luigi
Luigi
1 month ago

Grey,

Enjoy the site and appreciate all the laughs. In a 12 team H2H keeper league (no limit on term of keeper) I am keeping the following:

1B-Olson
SS-Lindor
OF-Judge
OF-J.Lowe
SP -Kirby

Need to decide on one more, who is it out of these options:

C-Rutschman
1B/2B/3B -Steer
2B-Torres
3B-Arenado
3B-Caminero

Polka
Polka
1 month ago

My Auction League makes this interesting because I usually lock in for 2 or 3 of the top 10 fellas, and one solid Ace. I’d like to get BWJ, Tucker and Soto, but with third looking like a leper colony, Devers is a dude I’d like to roster, and in this inflation of stud’s league, he’d be a little cheaper than the 3rd stud usually in this group I draft with. Young Juan is not yet in his prime age and playing for a contract too, I may go with Soto, BWJ and Devers and then look for a bargain at 1st? NO real comment here, just thinking out loud and wondering your expert thoughts?

Sano Chance in Hell
Sano Chance in Hell
1 month ago

Hey Grey! Keeper league with max 5 years of control, players can be kept for up to 5 years at increasing rounds. I’ve locked in Carroll, Elly, Langford, Bobby Miller, and Abrams. Which 5 would you keep from below:
Junior Caminero (5 years remaining)
Cole Ragans (5)
Josh Jung (5)
Walker Buehler (5)
Shane McClanahan (3)
Jazz Chisholm (3)
Logan Webb (3)

Thanks!

ashtray
ashtray
1 month ago

I’m in a keep 6 forever league. 14 team H2h 6×6
OBP, SLG, R, RBI, HR, NSB
K/9, QS, SV, HLD, ERA, WHIP

Which 6 to keep out of:

Julio Rodriguez
Yordan Alvarez
Rafael Devers
CJ Abrams
William Contreras
Gleyber Torres
Spencer Torkelson
Junior Caminero
Wander Franco (sad trombone)

Tarik Skubal
Cole Ragans
Woo
Abbott
Canning
Lynn

Cheese Biscuits
Cheese Biscuits
1 month ago

Howdy Grey, Verlander got announced “behind schedule” today; would you decrease his numbers even more than what you already have him projected for?

OaktownSteve
OaktownSteve
1 month ago

I love my Witt/Judge/Alonso team so much. I read this post and it warms me cochleae cordis.

Drunk Mets PR Team
Drunk Mets PR Team
Reply to  Grey
1 month ago

Do you offer this service for people who don’t have a team that good? What level of subscription do I need?!

ckmookie
ckmookie
1 month ago

Keeper issue: $260, 12 team mixed 5×5. Can keep 6 from the following: Torkelson 1, Tatis 22, Carroll 30, Munoz 1, Gray Rod 1, Trout 3, R Lewis 1, Bibee 1, Senga 8, Glasnow 1, Duran 1. Leaning Glasnow, Lewis, Trout, Gray Rod, Tatis, Carroll. Injury risk thine is my name however….

Troy
Troy
1 month ago

Keeper league standard $250 budget 14 teams. I already have Tildaddy for $43 and Corbin for $6. Thinking I need to spend on a corner infielder with some pop. Would you look to spend on Alonso or Cake Batter?

If it matters I also have MGHZII for $6 and Royce Lewis for $3. Obviously stacked, but lacking a bit in the power department.

Dirt McGirt
Dirt McGirt
1 month ago

20 team,5×5 keep forever dynasty league

A: Morel
B: Suwinski, Westburg, Silseth

Joe Buckyourself
Joe Buckyourself
1 month ago

10 team Dynasty: (Keep 25/31 man roster) 6×6 (OBP, R, HR, RBI, Steals, DT) 6×6 (QS, K, K-BB, Whip, ERA, SV+HD)

Need to cut to 25….. Drop 4 from the majors. Who would you let go?

C: A Rutschman
1st: B Harper
2nd: T Edman
3rd: M Garcia
MI: W Merrifield
SS: O Basabe
CI: Y Diaz
OF: K Tucker
OF: K Schwarber
OF: A Garcia
OF: S Kwan
OF: G Springer
DH: J D Martinez
U: N Castellanos

B: J Abreu
    C Morel
    Francisco Alvarez

P: J Urias
   M Scherzer
   N Lodolo
   C Javier
    S Bieber
   J Verlander
   A Manoah
   K Bradish
RP: E Diaz
     C Holmes
     E Phillips
     M Miller

Minors:
Tink Hence
P Skenes
Sal Frelick
Pete Crow Armstrong
Jackson Chouio
Cam Collier
Kyle Manzardo
W Langford
M Winn
X Isaac

Thanks G!

Joe Buckyourself
Joe Buckyourself
Reply to  Grey
1 month ago

hahaha… What to do?

Youd keep Basabe? I thought he would be one to go.

Would you move Bieber for D Swanson?

Evan
Evan
1 month ago

Splitting hairs here I am sure…but if you have third pick in a 5×5 OBP league, and Acuna & Soto are gone…are you leaning Ohtani, Judge, or Tucker?

craig
craig
1 month ago

Hey Grey,

happy Pitchers and Catchers Day
thanks to your help, I finished second in my 10 team keeper points league last year. Putting together my base and had a few questions for you. We keep 5 players for free. The sixth cost $20, the seventh $40, the eighth $80

heres my thoughts
Alonzo
Betts
Vlady jr
Yordan
Tatis jr
Cole
this cost $20
then additional possibilities are
Gunnar
Bellinger
Snell
Musgrove
Bobby Miller

im leaning Gunnar since don’t know where Belly and Snell end up. Also thinking keeping 7 not 8. Don’t think it’s worth the $80 up charge for last man

your thoughts are always appreciated

Craig

Nick
Nick
1 month ago

Here my starting Keeper team pairings : 8 players

Combo Power Speed :
1 Acuña 42HR-54SB OF
10 T.Turner 22HR-28SB SS
POWER
26 Alonso 46HR 3SB 1B
22 A.Riley 35HR 2SB 3B
SPEED
37 Abrams 18HR 52SB SS
50 Hoerner 13HR 37SB 2B
Pitch Ace
43 L.Castillo 13-7 206K
46 G.Kirby 13-8 177K

and at the draft i’ll be aiming
Eury Perez / Max Fried

Chisholm / Riley Greene
or RPs depending on WHO is avb

Nick

Dewey
Dewey
1 month ago

Any thoughts about moving Ohtani the hitter up after his BP-barrage? If he’s healthy (it appears he is) and focusing exclusively on hitting, I think he’ll be a top-10 hitter for sure and he could be a top-3 player.

Dewey
Dewey
Reply to  Grey
1 month ago

I would bet money that he is a top ten player at the end of the year and I predict top 3. The big question is steals.

Here’s hoping he gets OF eligibility. He came close two years ago.

VinWins
VinWins
1 month ago

FWIW, Acuna drafters won only 6 of 44 RCLs last season (and 1 of those was tied for first). 3 smart drafters paired him with BWJ. 3 were lucky enough to get Acuna with the 4th pick.

1 Bluefield Baby Birds ( RCL 18 ) Bobby Witt Jr.
2 LauraHolt ( NOTL ZOMBINOS ) Marcus Semien
3 Sugar Vladdy ( RCL 9 ) Fernando Tatis Jr.
4 Florida Cardinals ( RCL 16 ) Bobby Witt Jr.
4 Ducks Eat Free at Subway ( RCL 4 ) Bobby Witt Jr.
4 Deb, The Toast of Iceland ( RCL 31 ) Fernando Tatis Jr.

VinWins
VinWins
Reply to  Grey
1 month ago

RCL 18 was The Laura Holt Challenge. She didn’t get Acuna there and finished 2nd.

Laura Holt
Reply to  VinWins
1 month ago

I like Grey’s logic; the fact that I came in 2nd in my own league but didn’t have Acuna kind of means I actually came in first! ; ) And speaking of my league we still have ONE spot left for this year… I can’t wait til it fills so we can get our official draft order!

VinWins
VinWins
Reply to  Laura Holt
1 month ago

Looks like you have the 6th pick. I guess that’s the end of your reign of terror!

VinWins
VinWins
1 month ago

Shoot, my dog picked a second outfielder.

VinWins
VinWins
Reply to  Grey
1 month ago

Haha. He’s disobedient.

mauledbypandas
mauledbypandas
Reply to  VinWins
1 month ago

Hey Vin, do you send out the invites for the leagues through email or is it a link I need to click?

VinWins
VinWins
Reply to  mauledbypandas
1 month ago

You should have received them in your email today.

mauledbypandas
mauledbypandas
Reply to  VinWins
1 month ago

Hmmph, didnt get either one. Maybe it’s just delayed or something. Nothing in spam either

VinWins
VinWins
Reply to  mauledbypandas
1 month ago

Well, spam was my only guess! I put Truss on the case.

mauledbypandas
mauledbypandas
Reply to  mauledbypandas
1 month ago

Truss to the rescue

galica1234
galica1234
1 month ago

Grey!!!

Awesome!!

Chris Rock quote of the day February 14, 2024

Jokes rot. They’re not like songs. I always envy singers – Sting is always going to sing ‘Roxanne’. But people want to hear new jokes. I’ve written jokes as good as ‘Roxanne’, I believe. But I can’t tell them again.

Cheers,
Ante

OaktownSteve
OaktownSteve
Reply to  Grey
1 month ago

I mean who knows more about rotten jokes than you?