Welcome to Perception Vs. Reality where we look at the player rater to determine the valuable assets in the fantasy baseball world that might cost you less or be performing better than you think. This week we should talk about values at individual categories. Shout out to the roto league grinders who might be lacking in certain categories. Let’s try and take care of some of that one this fine (possibly rainy?) Wednesday.
Jose Iglesias used to be about the most boring player in the majors at the plate. In other words, he was a standard shortstop. *Cackles from the readers as I tip my hat.* At one point, he could hit around .300 in a season, but nowadays he falls between a .255-.260 hitter. He also plays in a bad offense and doesn’t hit for power. All of a sudden, Jose Iglesias decided he was going to steal bases. He has stolen at least 3 bases in each month of this season and has 11 steals for the first time since 2015. His $SB value sits at $8.9 and that is a whole dollar ahead of Jonathan Villar, Kevin Pillar, and Cesar Hernandez. He is barely 10% owned in ESPN leagues.
Matt Davidson is starting to show some life again in his bat. Despite hitting .241 for the season, which is par for the course, he has two home runs in the White Sox’s past three games. He has 13 home runs on the season which puts him on pace for over 25 for the second straight season. He does play for a bad offense so that limits his RBI potential. He ranks 45th in $HR on the player rater and he’s still available in over 75% of ESPN leagues.
Sleeper darling Jose Pirela is living up to his value more than halfway through the month of June. Pirela has scored 40 runs for a team that ranks 25th in runs scored this season. Pirela is hitting a very respectable .274 and is available in over 80% of ESPN leagues. His $R value is 4.7 and ranks 40th in the category on the player rater.
The 38-year-old Albert Pujols still holds some value in fantasy baseball. Pujols has racked up 40 RBIs this season to go along with his 25 HR pace. The Prince has actually hit home runs in back to back games going into Tuesday night’s action. It’s a shame that the batting average isn’t quite there anymore, but what can you expect? Not everyone ages like Big Papi. Albert’s June power surge has led him to a top 50 value in $RBIs this season.
Albert Almora Jr. has been a hitting machine so far this season as he continues to see consistent at bats. Aside from being a bad ass outfielder, he’s beginning to show why he garnered so much attention as a prospect. Almora is available in 80% of leagues and he plays in a top 6 scoring offense. His $AVG value sits 8.2 which is good for 14th. Almora has also scored 38 runs to go along with his .325 batting average.
We might as well just call this the AARP edition of Perception Vs. Reality. 35 year-old Joe Mauer is still an OBP machine, even though he is not good for much else. His 16.0% walk rate has helped lead to a .394 OBP through 181 at bats. His $OBP sits at 5.7 which is good for 27th on the player rater. He’s available in over 90% of leagues.