When looking at 1st basemen based on 2015 statistics, it is easy to see this position is elite when it comes to Spread (again Spread= OBP minus AVG). In fact, the average Spread for all 1B who had over 400 ABs in 2015 was .081, which would be near elite at most other positions. Taking that figure into account, I will show you the risers, fallers, targets, and sleepers for this rather shallow position.

(Keep in mind, the format is 12-team 5×5 OBP)

 

The Risers:

PLAYER TEAM AB R HR RBI SB BB AVG OBP SPREAD
Joey Votto CIN 545 95 29 80 11 143 0.314 0.459 0.145
Carlos Santana CLE 550 72 19 85 11 108 0.231 0.357 0.126
Paul Goldschmidt ARI 567 103 33 110 21 118 0.321 0.435 0.114
Anthony Rizzo CHC 586 94 31 101 17 78 0.278 0.387 0.109
Lucas Duda NYM 471 67 27 73 0 66 0.244 0.352 0.108
Chris Carter HOU 391 50 24 64 1 57 0.199 0.307 0.108
Miguel Cabrera DET 429 64 18 76 1 77 0.338 0.44 0.102
Mark Teixeira NYY 392 57 31 79 2 59 0.255 0.357 0.102
Mike Napoli BOS/TEX 407 46 18 50 3 57 0.224 0.324 0.100
Chris Davis BAL 573 100 47 117 2 84 0.262 0.361 0.099

Carlos Santana (15th Round, OBP Value= 6th Round)

Why is Carlos Santana a good fantasy option? “He gets on base a lot. Do I care if it’s a walk or a hit?” (Shitty Moneyball quote #2). In fact, Carlos Santana pondered retirement last year to be the lead doctor at a rehab center to teach people how to walk. I mean, this guy gets more steps in than when I strap my Fitbit to my dog for the day. Just how much does he walk? Well, let’s take a look:

 Year G BB
2011 155 97 (6th)
2012 143 91 (5th)
2013 154 93 (5th)
2014 152 113 (1st)
2015 154 108 (5th)

Now I know Joey Votto might walk more, but in standard 5×5 leagues, Votto is still a legit 2nd rounder. What makes Mr. Caaaloss Santanaaa great, and somewhat of a sleeper for OBP newbs, is that the one category that Santana kills you in (AVG) is nonexistent in this format. In fact, his .365 OBP is really, really good. Add that together and you have yourself a legit 6th rounder in a position that lacks depth. Sadly, everyone who has a clue probably knows that Santana is a semi-beast in OBP style leagues as well.

 

The Fallers:

PLAYER TEAM AB R HR RBI SB BB AVG OBP Spread
C.J. Cron LAA 378 37 16 51 3 17 0.262 0.300 0.038
Hanley Ramirez BOS 401 59 19 53 6 21 0.249 0.291 0.042
Mark Trumbo SEA/ARI 508 62 22 64 0 36 0.262 0.310 0.048
Ryan Howard PHI 467 53 23 77 0 27 0.229 0.277 0.048
Mitch Moreland TEX 471 51 23 85 1 32 0.278 0.330 0.052
Jose Abreu CHW 613 88 30 101 0 39 0.29 0.347 0.057
Justin Bour MIA 409 42 23 73 0 34 0.262 0.321 0.059
Mark Canha OAK 441 61 16 70 7 33 0.254 0.315 0.061
Albert Pujols LAA 602 85 40 95 5 50 0.244 0.307 0.063
Eric Hosmer KC 599 98 18 93 7 61 0.297 0.363 0.066

Jose Abreu (2nd Round, OBP Value=3rd)

First Base is hard to choose an ideal faller because nearly all are above average when it comes to getting on base (when compared to other positions). That being said, Mr. Abreu has yet to impress when it comes to taking walks. Which is especially surprising in a lineup that scored less in 2015 than me in my college years. Sure the addition of Todd Frazier might boost his power numbers, but don’t be too surprised to see Abreu’s OBP continue to hover around 60 points above his average. That spread alone shouldn’t scare you off enough to put him on your “do not draft” list, but it does drop him a peg or two. Abreu’s value shifts just a bit- from a middle of the 2nd round pick to a middle of the 3rd round pick.

 

The Target:

Lucas Duda (13th Round, OBP Value=9th)

If you owned Duda last year like me, you remember about a ten day stretch in particular where the dude(a?) hit literally like two bombs a day. And if you were like me, you made sure to annoy the absolute shit out of everyone in your league with terrible Duda puns, knowing that you only had about one week to bask in his glory. Well boys and girls, it’s time to bask in the Duda once again!

What makes Duda the target for you in an OBP league, is that he is someone everyone will forget about. As your friends draft the sexy names in the middle of the rounds, you do you, and stick with the numbers. And as far as number go, Duda slashed a .387 OBP in the months of August and September when he was playing alongside Yoenis Cespedes. That being said, you should be able to snag Duda with a 9th or 10th round pick, but it could be even later…

 

The Sleeper:

Chris Carter (Undrafted, OBP Value=22nd)

Buyer beware…this guy was on my list last year too. In fact, good old Chris Carter is the worst baseball player I have ever loved (and I was a Royals fan thru the 2000s). With Carter, you pretty much know what you are gonna get…lots of terrible ABs, lots of power, and most importantly- lots of walks.

Just two years ago, Carter hit 37 home runs in 145 games played, proving that he does indeed have 40 HR power. The shift to the Brewers won’t help his RBI totals much, but it should solidify him with full time duties at 1B-something he didn’t have with the Astros.

Because I love blind tests, let me give you one. Here are average stats over the 2014 and 2015 seasons for two players:

Player A: 148 G, 28 HR, 89 RBI, .310 OBP

Player B: 137 G, 30 HR, 76 RBI, .307 OBP

Player A is Adam Jones, Player B is my main man, Chris Carter. And because he will only cost you a late round flyer, I am all-in on Tha Carter in 2016.

 
  1. JIM says:
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    Keeper league, keep all players with annual 3 round amateur draft. Trade proposal:

    Donaldson

    OR

    Freeman, Ventura, Profar, Future pick

    Which side has more value this season? Future seasons?

    • Hodysseus

      Hodysseus says:
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      @JIM: With Freeman banged up, I like the Donaldson side this year. For future years I am ALMOST swayed to take the other end, but not quite.

  2. Jose says:
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    I just trade michael brantley for carlos gonzalez….i was looking for power and rbi did i made a good trade?

    • Hodysseus

      Hodysseus says:
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      @Jose: Absolutely. And I even hate Cargo.

  3. OJ Simpson says:
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    in a 5×5 obp, QS no wins league and have sano in a keeper and was offered thor.
    keep sano or take thor?

    • Hodysseus

      Hodysseus says:
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      @OJ Simpson: I am super high on Thor, but in an OBP league, Sano has top 15 upside. I would keep him.

      • OJ Simpson says:
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        @Hodysseus: I know, I am too. I have arrenado at 2nd rd keeper value in my league, which in an obp league is basically face value, so i’m trying to flip him for another pick because i have maikel franco at 22nd round keeper value. do you agree or would you hold arrenado?

        • Hodysseus

          Hodysseus says:
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          @OJ Simpson: I like where your heads at. Franco has shown great plate discipline in MLB so far and I expecf big things out of him. And totally agree on Arenado about your valuation.

          • OJ Simpson says:
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            @Hodysseus: Moved him. Last question I have for you. in my league pitchers were kept like crazy and I’m locked at almost every position except 1B, SS, C and pitchers which are always draftable/streamable. I could definitely benefit from another OF ( Buxton, Blackmon, Sano??).
            I have the ninth pick in our keeper league and excluding players that will be kept there should be one of kershaw, mccutchen, rizzo, bautista, EE, Posey, and marte.

            Rizzo is my first choice, but if I don’t get him, which is likely, how would you rank the others?
            Or would I be better off drafting a duda or santana later on and focusing on someone else?

            Thanks man wish more OBP QS stuff was posted because this was exceptional.

            • Hodysseus

              Hodysseus says:
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              @OJ Simpson: Appreciate it! Look for more stuff from me over the next few weeks- as I will continue to release rankings by position.

              To answer your first question…I would rank them in this order for OBP leagues: Rizzo, McCutchen, Kershaw, J Bats, E5, Posey, Marte with two things to watch for. 1. If SPs are being kept like crazy and you don’t feel strongly about drafting them later, Kershaw can move to 1. 2. Monitor E5s injury.

              Secondly, I think it all depends on your gut feel on how the draft will play out. It is always nice to have a beast like Rizzo at 1B and still land Duda or Santana to play CI. Gives you some flexibility to trade to someone who may have missed out on a top 1B.

  4. Splendid Sphincter says:
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    5×5 Keeper league, keep three for three years. Got to keep Votto, Trout, and deGrom. Here’ s my draft. What do I need to beef up on? Where did I go right or wrong with this roster? I’m having buyers remorse on some of these guys. Any feedback is appreciated.

    Joey Votto 1B
    Jonathan Schoop 2B
    Evan Longoria 3B
    Jung Ho Kang 3B,SS
    Gregory Polanco OF
    Mike Trout OF
    Justin Upton OF
    Nick Castellanos Util
    Delino DeShields Util
    Gerardo Parra OF Bench
    Michael Conforto OF Bench
    Trea Turner 2B,SS Bench

    P
    Chris Archer P
    Zach Britton P
    Steven Matz P
    Jake Odorizzi P
    Tyson Ross P
    Shawn Tolleson P
    Jacob deGrom P
    Patrick Corbin P
    Aaron Nola P
    Zack Wheeler P

    • Splendid Sphincter says:
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      @Splendid Sphincter: And Salvador Perez is the catcher

    • Hodysseus

      Hodysseus says:
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      @Splendid Sphincter: Your team is nearly identical to mine, so I absolutely like it. Need to add a closer or two and maybe one more power bat and you got yourself a good squad.

      If this is an OBP league, I really like Kang, Upton, and obviously Votto.

  5. The Wombat says:
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    Otis wearing a fitbit. Classic

  6. PancakeMaker says:
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    Looks at lists, sees Moreland and Pujols on the fallers list, owns both in dynasty league….

    *gulp*

    • Hodysseus

      Hodysseus says:
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      @PancakeMaker: There can be worse things and I still had both on my draft board if the round was right. Still, maybe try and flip Pujols for a Santana type once the HRs start coming.

  7. Ryan says:
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    Sweeney, grud, angel Berroa, joe randa- go.

    • Hodysseus

      Hodysseus says:
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      @Ryan: Randas smile could make any youngsters heart melt

  8. Brett says:
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    I inherited a pretty boring roster in a standard 12-team 5×5 yahoo keeper, and there doesn’t appear to be any benefit to keeping fewer players. The six keepers I’ve settled on are Jose Abreu, Posey, Bumgarner, Kluber, Jansen, and Familia. But I was looking for a second opinion, because I don’t usually value closers.

    It’s just that my other options are Kinsler, LeMahieu, Longoria, Granderson, Lester, Hamels, and Rosenthal, and I was reading something about Lester having bone chips in his elbow. Either way, I’m praying other teams leave me some decent 3B/OF options in the draft.

    • Hodysseus

      Hodysseus says:
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      @Brett: I don’t value closers either, but that doesn’t mean others in your league won’t. I think you are making the right choice but probably should try flipping one of those closers to someone who is in need after the draft. If you don’t see that being a possibility I do expect a big year out of Lester, but you already are keeping two horses at the top of your rotation.

  9. Otto Von Bismark says:
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    Great post Hodysseus. Any chance you could extend the list of risers to 10 or 20? And are you gonna go around the horn with posts like this? They’d be a huge help to those of us in OBP leagues. Thanks!

    • Hodysseus

      Hodysseus says:
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      @Otto Von Bismark: Appreciate it man. I am working on 2B now and can definitely extend the lists a bit. Keep your eye out!

  10. Commish Cauda says:
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    16-team, H2H points league, (HR=4, 3B=3, etc., BB=1, SB=3, CS=-1, SO=-1)

    About half of the Top 25 players are being kept. I pick 9th out of 16. We start 3 OFs.

    I’m keeping Correa (13th round), Salazar (14th round) and Polanco (15th round).

    I can add one of the following groups of players. Which option?

    #1) Starling Castro (2nd Round)
    #2) DeShields (16th round) and Kang (17th round)
    #3) Yelich (8th round)

    I was leaning Marte as the best available, but my 2nd rounder is the 21st overall pick, and I could just pick him there. I’m also worried about not having the option of taking a SP at that 21st overall if the draft flow dictates.

    What do you think?

    • Hodysseus

      Hodysseus says:
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      @Commish Cauda: Gotcha so I assume you mean Marte not Castro in the second *crossing fingers*?

      I am high on Kang and DeShields this year, so I would lean that direction. I think Kang in the 17th is the best bet.

      • Commish Cauda says:
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        @Hodysseus:

        Ooops….yes, Marte, not Castro. Thanks!

  11. Will says:
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    Do you think Chris Davis is a top 15 pick in OBP leagues? Just trying to give myself some post-draft comfort.

    • Hodysseus

      Hodysseus says:
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      @Will: Absolutely. I had the 15th overall in my draft and had him as my #1 option. Sadly, he was taken at #13, which was super surprising.

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