Ah, the middle infield.  Can you think of any other fantasy position where people praise mediocrity more than here?  I owned Daniel Murphy in 2014 and it was great!  Kudos to you, my friend…kudos.  Pardon me if my pants don’t get tight about someone who has a 10/15 season.  That’s just not for me because you’re drafting to not get hurt rather than drafting to succeed.  What happened to you as a child to choose such a sheltered path?  I worry about people like this.  They’re usually the ones that snap and go postal at the mall.  I mean, I’d lose it too if I thought the only sexual position was quiet missionary in the dark.  But I guess that’s the only kind if you’re getting any living in your parent’s basement…wow, where’d you all go?  Well, now I at least know who my audience is/was.  But for the remainder of you that stuck around, let’s talk about the scary upside and downside of our player of this post, Nick Franklin, and why he could be a good get for the 2015 Fantasy Baseball season…

So I don’t know when these posts are gonna come out or in what order but Franklin is post number six I’ve written so far and the big thing I’ve learned from these writeups is how players, regardless of age, can get written off pretty quickly.  And what’s funny about Nick Franklin is his pedigree and his age would make you think with only 502 plate appearances in his career at the soon to be age of 24, this former 2009 first round draft pick would have a bit more buzz around his name knowing the Rays have all but given him a starting job at 2B to start the year.  But no, we know what Franklin is at this point after one season of 412 PAs in 2013 and 90 in 2014.  Yep, he’s a strikeout machine who’ll never live up to the hype.  What do I see?  I see the starting second baseman for the Rays in 2015 who has the potential for a 15/10 floor and hopefully an average that won’t kill you.  Yes, it’s clear his strikeout rates are going to hamper any realistic chances of hitting above .250.  From 2014, there were only seven players who met the minimum PA requirements with higher K% than Franklin’s career mark of 28.9%.  Of those players, only Marlon Byrd hit above .230 (he hit .264 because I know you were gonna go look it up and I don’t wanna you to leave…I’d miss you!).  So to put it mildly, let’s say he repeats his 2013 but adds 48 games and roughly 200 PA.  You’ve got a .225 hitter (gross) with close to 9 steals (eh, not bad) and 17 HRs (ok, I’m intrigued).  Overall, I’m not predicting a breakout here.  However, to put it in perspective, Dustin Ackley was your 15th best 2B last year according to Razzball Final 2B Rankings and he hit 14 bombs, stole 8 bags while hitting .245.  And if Nick goes all Xbox on you and gets an achievement unlocked, maybe you’re looking at .250 with 18 HRs and 15 SB.  In the end, there’s still some potential and intrigue with Franklin and I’m not willing to give up on him right as he’s being given a chance.

Honorable 2B Deep League Mentions

Marcus Semien – I’m gonna be liking me a lot of A’s players this year.  How could you not?  None of them are really gonna be going high on draft boards.  But I digress, Seimen is just too middling of a middle infielder for me to get totally intrigued.  He makes me think of Daniel Murphy with a lower batting average which sounds great until you realize average is the only thing separating Murphy from a majority of the muck past the top 15.  Marcus is young and could surprise but he’s definitely a last resort kind of play for me.

Luis ValbuenaWant some sneaky pop that’ll get overlooked?  Valbuena is your man.  The trade to the Astros does nothing major for Luis’ value as he’s still a 15 HR kind of guy.  The main two things that pull him down my 2B list are 1) his average and 2) he’s a platoony-toon.  His potential to be a helpful bench bat is high but anything other than that and you’re asking too much.

Rougned OdorHe’s going to be 21 by the time the season starts and let me be the first to say, he’s not Mike Trout.  Because, of course, no one is comping Odor to Trout and why should they?  All this to say, I’m not saying he has no talent, I’m just saying I think his growth will be gradual and could be derailed by a stumble and losing some ABs here and there.  Hey, stranger things have happened.  I mean, they keep letting me write for this site.  I should’ve been stopped years ago!

 
  1. Bas says:
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    Hi fellow Fantasy Baseballers,

    Sorry for the spam, but today I have my draft of my 12 team 5×5 keeper league. Unfortunately I suddenly have to work. I wonder if there is anybody of the Razzballers who would like to do my draft. I have the 7nd pick starting in the 8 round. My keepers are Kimbrell, Chapman, Jupton, Cutch, Fielder, Cespedes and Altuve. It is an Yahoo league and the draft is at 1:00pm PDT.

    If you can use the Razzball rankings and strategy I will be grateful.

    Many thanks,
    Bas from Holland

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @Bas: You’re good, hopefully someone takes you up on it.

  2. Joe Shmoe says:
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    Hi there,
    I know you are talking about middle infielders, but I saw Shin Soo Choo sitting on my waiver wire in a competitive league. I’ve never owned him so I am guessing I should leave him there? Or should I pick this guy up with A. Garcia, Y. Tomas, J. Soler, Stanton, Cespedes and Pollok as my OF’s? I have C. Crawford and C. Cron on my bench.

    Thanks for the Sunday afternoon thoughts…

    • Malicious Phenom says:
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      @Joe Shmoe: Choo was solid up until last year. With that said, I think he will have a better year than Crawford..

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @Joe Shmoe: I’d drop Crawford for him.

  3. Malicious Phenom says:
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    Here is my team, keepers are noted (K)
    H2H points 10 team deep league
    Looking for opinions from any and all Razzballers…

    Batters
    C Evan Gattis C | HOU
    1B Joe Mauer 1B | MIN
    1B Mark Trumbo 1B,OF K
    2B Dee Gordon 2B | MIA K
    2B Jedd Gyorko 2B | SD
    3B Chase Headley 3B | NYY
    3B Evan Longoria 3B | TB K
    SS Jose Reyes SS | TOR K
    SS Jean Segura SS | MIL
    OF Billy Hamilton OF | CIN K
    OF Bryce Harper OF | WAS
    OF Matt Kemp OF | SD
    OF Giancarlo Stanton OF | MIA K
    DH Jay Bruce OF | CIN
    U Marcell Ozuna OF | MIA K

    Reserves
    2B Javier Baez 2B,SS | CHC
    3B Miguel Sano 3B | MIN
    OF Wil Myers OF | SD

    Pitchers
    P Brett Anderson P | LAD
    P A.J. Burnett P | PIT
    P Josh Collmenter P | ARI
    P Gio Gonzalez P | WAS
    P Shelby Miller P | ATL
    P Jake Peavy P | SF
    P Stephen Strasburg P | WAS K
    P Masahiro Tanaka P | NYY K
    P Taijuan Walker P | SEA

    Reserves
    P Archie Bradley P | ARI
    P Tony Cingrani P | CIN
    P Mike Minor P | ATL
    P Matt Moore P | TB

    Injured
    P Cliff Lee P | PHI

    • Joe Shmoe says:
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      @Malicious Phenom: HI there,
      Your pitching scares me… At least 4 of those guys are either too old or going to break before May…

      Maybe you can trade Gordon and a “Can’t miss” prospect for a 1 or 2 pitcher…(You have Hamilton, Reyes for steals). Choose someone who has done it before…. (Cole Hamels, Smardijixa(CHW) someone like that?)
      No saves? Also isn’t head to head about K’s? Gyroko, Bruce and Trumbo could hurt you every week?

      I do think you have a lot of depth with SB’s and could use them for trades.

      FYI I have been in FBB for about 5 years and on this site for less than a year. I am just pointing out stuff not trying to be negative.

      • Malicious Phenom says:
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        @Joe Shmoe: Hey thanks for the input. I am going to trade for a SP, just want to wait a bit to see how things turn out early in the season..I also am going to PU free agent Brad Miller to play 2B and hope and pray Gyorko puts up the numbers that he did in the minors..

    • Sos says:
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      @Malicious Phenom: In a 10 team league, I don’t think you have enough pitching. I’d consider moving an of for a sp

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @Malicious Phenom: For a 10 team keeper, your overall team looks solid. I’d want to up my pitching over the course of the year. You have top end talent with Stras/Tanaka but if Tanaka’s injury comes back up, you could be in for some hurt. Be sure to be the first guy on the out of nowhere arms. Guys like Collmenter/Peavy are streamers in a typical 10 team.

  4. Malicious Phenom says:
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    Hey Sky, I need ONE more SP:

    who do you like of these:

    Adam Warren – Yankees #5
    Dan Haren
    Matt Garza
    Kendall Graveman

    thanks

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @Malicious Phenom: They’re all streamers right now but I think Graveman could have a good month or two in him. I’d lean his way.

  5. Joe Shmoe says:
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    HI there,
    Your pitching scares me… At least 4 of those guys are either too old or going to break before May…

    Maybe you can trade Gordon and a “Can’t miss” prospect for a 1 or 2 pitcher…(You have Hamilton, Reyes for steals). Choose someone who has done it before…. (Cole Hamels, Smardijixa(CHW) someone like that?)
    No saves? Also isn’t head to head about K’s? Gyroko, Bruce and Trumbo could hurt you every week?

    I do think you have a lot of depth with SB’s and could use them for trades.

    FYI I have been in FBB for about 5 years and on this site for less than a year. I am just pointing out stuff not trying to be negative.

  6. Mr. Glass says:
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    I need of assistance would you move Morneau for Joc Pederson.. Morneau is my bench/utill spot so if i move him for Joc it would be for the same position, I just like the upside more for Joc but not sure if the deal is a fair trade

    • Sos says:
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      @Mr. Glass: I would do that deal in a heartbeat, especially if it is a shallower league. Worse case is Joc flames out and you replace him with someone off waivers who will probably be as good as Morneau anyway…I don’t think Joc flames out though

      • Mr. Glass says:
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        @Sos: yeah its only a 10 team i could probably replace Morneau on fa list if i really wanted to

    • Malicious Phenom says:
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      @Mr. Glass: I like Jocs upside..

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @Mr. Glass: Agree w/Phenom and Sos: take the upside.

  7. Malicious Phenom says:
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    Deep League Thoughts on Andrew Heaney for 2015?

  8. Stephen Gambardella says:
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    Isn’t Franklin out 4-6 weeks with an oblique injury?

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @Stephen Gambardella: I wrote this in January, don’t have control over when content comes out. But yes, you are right, he’s hurt right now.

  9. Adam Jonze says:
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    Anyone have thoughts on Kris Bryant vs Jorge Soler as a keeper?

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @Adam Jonze: Like them both in different ways. Are you asking if you need to decide between the two? Bryant could be a once a life talent. Like Soler, think he could be Jay Bruce type with .260 and 30 HRs eventually. Bryant could be that basically now with room for improvement.

  10. tentyme says:
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    I have my draft in a few hours and I’m in a 12 team al/nl h2h weekly league AND I’m from chicago so I am struggling with where I should look to draft kris bryant. I want him this year but don’t want to over pay so what round do you think is a good round to target him. The hype is strong here… thx for your help.

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @tentyme: Sorry I missed this, had a busy afternoon. Would’ve had to overpay to get him, regardless. He’s been creeping up into the 6th/7th rounds

  11. scooter jacobson says:
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    Deeper League Thoughts at 2B…Micah Johnson.

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @scooter jacobson: He’s gonna be in an unenviable batting slot for runs. Probably just a 1 cat contributor (steals) unless Eaton/Melky get hurt

  12. Lville Jim says:
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    Had franKlin for a few years in my all keeper league until I pulled the plug on him early last year. When he was traded I snatched him back up again off the wire. Looked at his last 10 games played in spring training a few days ago and his k/bb was 11/0. That was enough for me to drop him again and pick up flores at the same 2b/ss spot.

    • Sky

      Sky says:
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      @Lville Jim: Yeah, there’s nothing safe about him but it’s ST numbers. Only thing guys are doing is working on new approaches and win jobs. We’ll see how the season goes for him.

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