The dynasty league first-year player draft is a unique winter ritual. It’s typically how dynasty owners get their hands on all of the unowned players who were previously ineligible to be claimed. Take all the 2014 draftees from June, mix with the top international signings from Cuba and elsewhere, sprinkle in the July 2nd international prospects, and you’ve got a whole new pool of players to draft from. With both comments and questions on the topic from previous articles, I think it’s worth looking closer at some of the top options in such a draft. And there is no better way to do that than with some good old-fashioned rankings.

Disclaimer – these are obviously my personal rankings. Who you take where may hinge on what your team’s competitive window looks like, your league setup, and who is available to draft. These are also similar to prospect rankings in the sense that they are fluid and dealing with a lot of unknowns. Only players who have signed or who I expect will sign before the season were considered. This list goes 20 players deep, or through the first round of a 20-team league.

Rk Player Pos Team Age Comments
1 Yoan Moncada INF FA 19 all 5 tools are plus; best Cuban since Puig/Soler?
2 Yasmany Tomas OF ARI 24 25+ HR potential but a risky approach
3 Rusney Castillo OF BOS 27 power/speed combo; will it surface in games?
4 Alex Jackson OF SEA 19 hits and hits for power; RF profile
5 Kyle Schwarber C/OF CHC 21 +PWR, +HIT; is he an everyday MLB catcher?
6 Carlos Rodon LHP CWS 22 ++ slider and close to MLB ready
7 Bradley Zimmer OF CLE 22 5-tool CF who hits from the left side
8 Michael Conforto OF NYM 21 + left-handed power; could reach majors quickly
9 Tyler Kolek RHP MIA 19 Texas power arm with an 80-grade heater
10 Nick Gordon SS MIN 19 not as fast as Dee, but better hit tool and pop
11 Adrian Rondon SS TB 16 top July signing; could stick at SS with +HIT already
12 Aaron Nola RHP PHI 21 3 good pitches with polish; close to MLB ready
13 Jeff Hoffman RHP TOR 21 TJ surgery in May; still frontline starter potential
14 Brandon Finnegan LHP KC 21 already tasted the majors as RP; future SP?
15 Hector Olivera 2B FA 29 oldest on the list, but could help a team now at 2B
16 Trea Turner SS WAS 21 ++ speed; future leadoff hitter
17 Monte Harrison OF MIL 19 athletic CF with power/arm to play RF too
18 Derek Hill OF DET 19 speedy CF with a leadoff profile
19 Touki Toussaint RHP ARI 18 ++ fastball and a big curve; 3+ years away
20 Tyler Beede RHP SF 21 solid arm; still working on control

T10 Prospect Index: AL | NL

103 Comments
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RobbyRobDu
RobbyRobDu
7 years ago

Yoan Lopez just went 28th after I took Kang 27th (got Zimmer/Turner at 13/14)…both are probably worth the risk there, however I would take Harrison, Wall, Adams, Reetz (start 2 C)…well a lot of guys over Lopez…he has RP written all over him IMHO and why take a spot up waiting to see…

Great read, I love Rondon’s upside, where would you slot some of the other J2 guys if at all just curious?

Also really liking Adams and looking into Blandino, Braxton D, and Jake Gatewood…I see you like Adams’ athleticism and projectability…any feelings either way on the other two?

Thanks in advance!

RobbyRobDu
RobbyRobDu
Reply to  RobbyRobDu
7 years ago

@RobbyRobDu:

Edit: I wanted Harrison at 28 but despite having I believe 5 guys from Wisconsin I STILL think I can squeeze him in at 42…wishful thinking? WE’LL SEE!!

Dylan
Dylan
7 years ago

Thoughts on Yoan Lopez? Where would he slot in if at all?

Dave
Dave
7 years ago

Question for anyone interested in answering. I’m in a 16-team dynasty league with 25 active roster spots and 20 minor league spots. I’m in rebuild mode (trying to rebuild quickly) and have the #1 pick as well as a bundle of other picks I acquired throughout last season. It’s a 7-round draft. I have an offer on the table that I’m considering (any feedback would be appreciated as I work through the deal). NOTE: Moncada can only be drafted if he signs with a team before our draft (likely mid-March) and the above rankings are pretty close to what will be available to my league in the draft and a good representation of the first 20 picks or so:

Which side wins this trade?

Other team gets: Picks #1, 17, 18, 21, 32, and Hunter Harvey

My team gets: Picks #2, 4, 34, 35, and Arismendy Alcantara

Thanks in advance…

Dave
Dave
7 years ago

Am I missing something on Casey Gillaspie? I’m pretty well aligned with you otherwise, but I have Gillaspie in my Top 15. College guy that had a pretty good debut in A-Ball. Haven’t seen anyone mention him…seems like his bat could be pretty valuable in Fantasy. No?

The only beef I really have with your list is Derek Hill. I think that guy ends up a better real life guy than fantasy – replace him with Gillaspie and I’d say that’s a near perfect list.

Yescheese
Yescheese
7 years ago

BP not as high on A Rondon or Monte Harrison. They’ve got a ton of pitching in their fantasy top 50 from the draft. I don’t get it! Why would I want, say , Tyler Beede, over Rondon or Harrison? His rapping skills?

Yescheese
Yescheese
Reply to  Mike
7 years ago

@Mike: young beedah, check it!

I agree it’s deep. When you look at potential high upside fantasy bats like wall, chavis, AJ Reed, Bobby Bradley, Alex Verdugo, Derek Fisher, Michael Gettys, Jacob Gatewood… And they aren’t even in the top 20 here. It just seems in today’s fantasy marketplace, I think we align. Give me the bat over the pitcher nearly every time.

Sherwood
Sherwood
7 years ago

IF Brady Aikens signed where would he fall on your list.?

goodfold2
goodfold2
7 years ago

on to PIT. do any of these guys make cut and whereish?
tucker SS
joe OF
keller RP
supak RP
luplow OF
gushue C

goodfold2
goodfold2
Reply to  Mike
7 years ago

@Mike: yeah, i didn’t think it would be one that 2 rookies would crack.

goodfold2
goodfold2
7 years ago

with ARI do any of these make it and whereabouts?
reed LP
wilson OF
diaz SS
railey OF
jones RP

goodfold2
goodfold2
Reply to  Mike
7 years ago

@Mike: we are on pick 23. started late saturday night. we have till end of Jan to finish (and even at a rate of around only 6-7 per day we’ll make it fine)
1.rodon
2. moncada
3. tomas
4. schwarber
5. castillo
6. jackson OF
7. nola
8.kang
9.zimmer
10. kolek
11. gordon SS
12. newcomb
13. conforto
14. turner
15. finnegan
16.wall
17. hoffman
18. lindgren
19.freeland
20. toussaint
21.kievlehan
22.bradley CI CLE

goodfold2
goodfold2
Reply to  Mike
7 years ago

@Mike: hoping your being higher on mella works out for me too. 27 picks to go.

goodfold2
goodfold2
Reply to  Mike
7 years ago

@Mike: the guy who took kang that highly needs pitching prospects more than any team in league, and i advised him to take the best pitcher, but he didn’t do it.

goodfold2
goodfold2
Reply to  goodfold2
7 years ago

@goodfold2: holmes at 23.

goodfold2
goodfold2
Reply to  goodfold2
7 years ago

@goodfold2: forgot, do fleck RP or sherfy RP make top 10? they are currently relief guys so i’m guessing not.

Benny
Benny
7 years ago

Like the props for Zimmer. Toolsy athletic guy.

Excited about Moncada…What are thoughts on what kind of player he’ll be stats wise? Granted up to this point the guys kind of a ghost and not a ton is known about him.

Maybe he settles in at 2B or 3B once he’s a steady big leaguer somewhere and hits .295-.305 21-26 HRs 30-35 SBs????

acidjazz
acidjazz
7 years ago

Haha man I am so far out of the loop with baseball it’s got me a little nervous! I’ve been digging through your stuff catching up though so I appreciate the work man for reals! I’ll be defending my championship this year in my 20-team dynasty, had a lot of really old guys fill in last year and do way better than expected which is probably why I ended up winning (by 0.5 pts! roto). Have a solid core of young players to keep me going for a year ior two but need to be solid on these next drafts if I’m guna avoid the complete rebuild. Probably will end up happening but want to wait off on that as long as I can…

Anways, thanks again Mike good stuff.

Jammer McSlam
Jammer McSlam
7 years ago

Where would you rank Nomar Mazara and Dilson Herera on this list?

Dave
Dave
7 years ago

How much will I regret trading Dahl, Clint Frazier, Trea Turner and Franklin Barreto for Addison Russell?

Russ
Russ
7 years ago

I’ve got 8th pick in a first year draft, I’d love to get Jackson but I’m guessing he won’t be left on the board at that point. I’m thinking Zimmer might be more realistic, how far away would you say he is?

Russ
Russ
Reply to  Mike
7 years ago

@Mike: thanks, looking forward to reading that write up!

goodfold2
goodfold2
7 years ago

BA’s CUBS list out today, don’t help me as all those guys are gone. any of these make top 10 (i’m anticipating having to eventually get into maybe finding which just outside top 10 guys are best at some point in my long as hell draft, but i’ll concentrate on top 10’s till it looks like i’ll have to go deeper).
stinnett RP
zagunis C
sands LP
steele LP

goodfold2
goodfold2
Reply to  Mike
7 years ago

@Mike: CUBS system pretty strong, hard for rookies to crack it.

Swfcdan
Swfcdan
7 years ago

Thanks big guy, right up my alley this.

Swfcdan
Swfcdan
Reply to  Mike
7 years ago

@Mike: Where do you see this Moncado guy signing and how soon?

Also unrelated but still prospecty question, what numbers do you see Lindor putting up in his first few years in the bigs. Something like .280/10/30? Or is that too optimistic..trying to gauge his value in trade talks.

Chris
Chris
7 years ago

How much higher would Hoffman rank if he were completely healthy? How does his ceiling compare to that of Rodon?

goodfold2
goodfold2
Reply to  Chris
7 years ago

@Chris: good question, i don’t draft for so long i might end up with him.

goodfold2
goodfold2
7 years ago

so far you being much higher on mella, leads me to think he’ll be my get at 59th. I need pitching prospects badly. i doubt kolek/hoffman/touissant/beede/lopez(WAS)/newcomb/sanchez (LAA)/ are around there. I’ll probably later get that TEX RP you mentioned, just as i might be able to use him this year (Kela).
for LA system, any of these crack top 10?
holmes RP
verdugo OF
richy RP
brigham RP

goodfold2
goodfold2
Reply to  Mike
7 years ago

@Mike: Fedde being at 4th in BA’s list, not so likely (of course Lopez is 3rd, so not him either), newcomb just went at 11th. the fact that SF’s BA list won’t be out till Jan 28th helps him me a lot, probably (assuming Mella’s moved up in other lists than yours)

goodfold2
goodfold2
Reply to  goodfold2
7 years ago

@goodfold2: adams also at 3rd in BA’s list for WSOX, so he’s unlikely.

goodfold2
goodfold2
Reply to  Mike
7 years ago

@Mike: yeah, i’m betting he’s around 6th or so with SF.

Joeg414
Joeg414
7 years ago

Maybe the start of a 3month depate R.Castillo Or Solar 6x6mixed roto?

goodfold2
goodfold2
7 years ago

on to COL. any of these guys make top 10 and whereabouts?
rafael ynoa CI/MI
freeland LP
wall MI
castellani RP
howard LP
rogers OF
padlo CI

Chris
Chris
7 years ago

This is great – thanks!

I know thy weren’t eligible for the list, but where would J2 guys like Devers, Jimenez Torres, Albies, and Barreto rank? All of them are available in my dynasty league.

Also, does Rondon’s ceiling justify a keeper spot in a 12 team league with 25 keepers? I’m rebuilding but I don’t know if I can justify keeping a 17 year old.

Joey Jo Jo Jr Shabadoo
Joey Jo Jo Jr Shabadoo
7 years ago

roughly where would kang SS go?

Dave Zimmer
Dave Zimmer
7 years ago

Awesome list. 2 questions if you don’t mind…

Do you think Tomas is going to be a stats killer in an OBP league instead of avg?

Unrelated to this list – what are your thoughts on Arrietta this year? True ace or will he come back to historical averages?

Dave Zimmer
Dave Zimmer
Reply to  Mike
7 years ago

@Mike:

Awesome – now 2 more guys I have to target :-)

Keep up the solid work, I love this site.

Yescheese
Yescheese
7 years ago

Very useful tool Mike, good work. Our lists line up all the way to Zimmer, so I’m glad I’m not crazy! After that I’ve got Hoffman, Kolek, Harrison to round out the 10. Definitely love the fantasy prospect analysis this offseason. Thanks!

j
j
7 years ago

3 videos adds on this page, its getting ridiculous, one is too much, let alone 3, i like this website, but I’m going to quit checking it, if this is how it is.

Baezaworldseries
Baezaworldseries
Reply to  j
7 years ago

@j: Gotta pay the bills somehow.

Adult Onset Dia Bit Us
Adult Onset Dia Bit Us
Reply to  j
7 years ago

@j: don’t adblockers block these things?

Kenneth
Kenneth
7 years ago

Of these 20, who has the highest ceiling?

Kenneth
Kenneth
Reply to  Mike
7 years ago

@Mike: Thanks. Assuming the Pirates sign Kang, where would he slot in?

james
james
Reply to  Mike
7 years ago

@Mike:

Kang does hold the upside of being one of the 3-4 guys on this list likely to do anything this season… Albeit, it could be almost anything. It could be buying into the KBL before the stats look more real (like Abreu in Cuba) or if the KBL really is that much of a hitters league and a .350 average there is like a .350 average in high A ball (from a 27 year old who should be in AAA or the bigs by that age)

Dave
Dave
7 years ago

This is awesome

Jay
Jay
7 years ago

Thanks for the list. I’ve seen a couple of these with no mention of Forrest Wall. Where would he, Willy Adames, and Michael Chavis place on this list?

goodfold2
goodfold2
Reply to  Jay
7 years ago

@Jay: wall just went 16th in my league’s draft.

Joe LoPiccolo
Joe LoPiccolo
7 years ago

Hey guys,
A little of topic but I have to submit my keepers at the end of the month and have a few questions?

Keepers:
Goldy
Merchado
Dickerson
Brantly
Martinez OF Detroit
Hamilton
Baez
Bumgarner
Kluber

For the last spot I can choose either:
Duda
Polonco pit
Arreita
Arcia

I have the first pick in the draft and will be taking kershaw best available.
14 position players 2 catchers MI and DH
9 pitchers have to start 2 relief pitchers
Cats are:
BA, HR, R, RBI, OPS, SB
ERA, K, W, S, QS, WHIP

It’s been a long drought and thus is the best team I have had in a while.
Thanks

james
james
Reply to  Mike
7 years ago

@Mike:

As a note, I am in a new dynasty, Polanco went in the 6th, I just took duda in the 13th, and Arcia is still on the board.

So if you want them back, Polanco will go earlier, with duda (may be my own perception that put him in the 13th) a little later, and Arcia much later (we are at the end of the 13th, so could be sooner rather than later)

The Harrow
The Harrow
Reply to  james
7 years ago

@james: 7 round dif between duda and polanco is more than a little difference. but that is very useful to know.

Hawk
Hawk
Reply to  Joe LoPiccolo
7 years ago

Arrieta for me. You’re already protecting a TON of hitting. Arrieta has become the pitcher Baltimore touted him to be. Letting him go is a mistake.

griff
griff
7 years ago

Hey Mike,
Good work on this list. Have a question about my team in 12 team dynasty. I’m in a situation where I can only keep one of the following players: Dalton Pompey or Arismendy Alcantara. Either player would come into this season as a bench player for me, so immediate payoff is not a major issue, but it never hurts either. Which one do you like better long term?

Fanthead
7 years ago

Love it! Thanks.

See anything good in Michael Gettys?

goodfold2
goodfold2
7 years ago

useful list, and accurate to my league too, in first 4 picks rodon/moncada/tomas/schwarber went.