Sometimes you have to just keep scrolling.
These will be our draft rooms, and we’ll have to adapt on the fly.
For the past few seasons, I’ve been playing extremely early NFBC Draft Champions leagues with Donkey Teeth. Have gotten into Fantrax of late, too, with B_Don and DT setting up Best Balls of multiple shapes and sizes. This allows us that Red Dead sensation of fresh powder. Open prairie. A drafter and his wits. I was shocked to learn they update the ADPs even during the first few drafts and think the drafts should maintain the starting ADPs throughout, though I suppose it only makes an impact that first month or so, and I suppose not many people are handwriting and color-coding their positional breakdowns.
I was always a geek for a deep-sea diving book or TV special. Find the Giant Squid, kind of thing. These past few years, I’ve become a geek for the depths of these draft rooms, and just this week I’ve geeked out a little getting a look at DT’s battle of the podcasts draft just now exiting round 36. I’m seeing a lot of fun names on the board beyond the 600s, so that’s where I’ll set the arbitrary line for this article.
*Note: I used the basic ADP covering all formats back through the first drafts in November because that’s the standard interface most will see. I’m also using “rank” on first reference because that’s the default organizational mechanism of the room. You’ll probably want to set league-specific filters and dates for your in-draft price checks.
Right away at 601, we get Oakland OF Seth Brown. Fun memory, when I sent Grey an early list of top prospects for redraft leagues, he texted to ask if I meant Seth Beer where I write Seth Brown. Makes sense. Beer is all over the baseball conversation, in more ways than one, while the prospect echo chamber has all but ignored what Brown could do for them.
He’s produced wRC+ tallies well above league average every step of the way and smacked 37 HR in 500 AAA plate appearances last season. He’ll turn 28 on July 13 and goes mostly ignored because he’s always been old for level and never projected to help on defense. But you watch this guy in the box, and it’s all there. He’s much smoother and more athletic than I suspected, given the sounds of silence around him.
With an ADP of 604.94, Cardinals RP Ryan Helsley could be among the cheapest week 1 saves on the board. Giovanny Gallegos is stuck in Mexico with covid, and Jordan Hicks is coming back from Tommy John surgery. Hell’s bells transitioned his high nineties heat to relief last year after five years in the system developing as a starter. These guys tend to thrive, and manager Mike Schmidt already seems to have Helsley in mind for the early season save opportunities.
The first name that jumped out to me among the 600’s was RP Jordan Hicks at rank 621 in DT’s draft room and ADP 656.42. He’s not a prospect anymore, but he’s young enough that I think he gets undervalued outside of some die-hard dynasty leagues where I’ve seen him treated as a top 5 RP in trade.
Ranked 616 with an ADP of 686.91, Rangers 1B Ronald Guzman is nobody’s ideal corner infielder heading into 2020 and no longer qualifies as a prospect. He worked with Nelson Cruz throughout the off-season and says he feels at home in his swing again for the first time in a long time. He’s a gifted hitter who put on incredible power displays as a teen, and Texas doesn’t have much in his way among prospects or even vets. Joey Gallo has been diagnosed with coronavirus. Planets are aligning for Guzman to add some patina to his battered prospect shine.
Ranking 651 with an ADP of 705.85, Yankees RHP Clarke Schmidt is likely to climb draft boards as the season approaches. He’s already made a splash in summer camp, and at 24-years-old, he’s old enough that New York might not mind he’s only pitched 19 innings above high A.
Ranked at 663, Giants OF Jaylin Davis is a laughably cheap flier. He just turned 26 and smoked 35 HR across AA and AAA last year. I think he’ll have an everyday gig in the outfield a couple weeks into the shortened season. Young Yaz is the only OF they have who’s locked into their opportunity.
Astros RHP Cristian Javier can be a dominant strikeout force. I suspect anyone who gets him around his ADP of 719.95 in Draft Champions leagues will get at least one useful week out of him, but that’s not why I like him here. He’s got tremendous upside in a short burst with two plus breaking balls. Hitters will need time to adjust to Javier’s unique skill set, and they won’t get that this year. I also like his teammate RHP Bryan Abreu in that same area, ADP 719.3, but I think Javier is a bit more likely to creep toward a starting role because he’s got better command.
At 693 with an ADP of 722.49, Royals 1B Ryan McBroom gets a boost from Ryan O’Hearn being absent with the rona. What a world. I feel so weird about one man’s troubles being another man’s opportunity in this scenario, but that’s the game, and the Royals quite like McBroom, a Yankee farm hand who aged out in part because Luke Voit and Mike Ford locked that spot down.
Thanks for reading!
I’m @theprospectitch on Twitter and Reddit.