Please see our player page for Jake Cronenworth to see projections for today, the next 7 days and rest of season as well as stats and gamelogs designed with the fantasy baseball player in mind.

Yesterday, across a doubleheader, Mitch Haniger went 3-for-8, 3 RBIs and his 3rd and 4th homer. After the arduous eighteen months that Mitch Haniger went through, it’s great to see him get in touch with his inner dong. If only someone would smack him on the butt to get it to poke out again. Now, now, that must be refreshening for Haniger, like a swim in a cool pond on a warm day, something he embraces since he no longer has to worry about shrinkage. Yesterday, was the first time in 18 months Haniger’s had any luck with hangers. Haniger’s had less luck with hangers than Joan Crawford’s kids. Okay, okay, OKAY! Enough! You’re liable to get Haniger testy, in theory at least. As for fantasy, meh, who am I kidding, I just wanted an excuse to razz him. If he stays healthy, he’s a solid number three outfielder. Too bad to stay healthy, his front side needs to look like the M’s new closer. Ya know, a Kendall. Anyway, here’s what else I saw yesterday in fantasy baseball:

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Don’t you love when you can get a top option without paying for it? Today that guy is Marcell Ozuna, OF: $2,800 – This price is just way too cheap for a guy who can do as much for you as he can. Throw in a very favorable projection from the bot and you’ve got yourself the steal of the day. His projection puts him in the top 10 and not that far behind the top guys, but for way less. For the money, I’ll take that upside all day long.  Run, don’t walk to lock this pick in.

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Well, just over one week into the season, who is ready to dump Ozzie Albies and who is ready to trade the farm for Chris Owings? OK, no one with a functioning brain will do any of those two things, but that is the reaction some fantasy owners are feeling at this point of the fantasy season.

If this were the middle of July, a bad week from Albies and a hot week from Owings wouldn’t move the needle much in the fantasy world. But when the season is brand new, who’s who and who’s not leads to excess celebration or hair pulling. These rankings will reward those who produced and punish those who had a bad stretch of play – though there are always exceptions as we have to look forward and not always in the rear view mirror.

With that in mind, you won’t see Albies sitting at the top of the rankings as the best second baseman – but he is still ranked. Six players who weren’t ranked in the final preseason rankings are now listed below, though one of them – Jonathan India – was a player to watch during those final rankings. So let’s stop wasting time and get to the rankings.

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Nothing makes my heart happier than baseball….sorry kids and wife and family and dogs. Actually, I think I’m in big trouble for that statement. One year ago, my kids had their first T-Ball practice before the world shut down. Flash forward to this week when T-Ball started back up and, hi, my name is Coach Richardo. There’s so much joy in teaching kids the basics. Fielding a grounder, throwing to first base, the proper launch angle to be a home run masher! Speaking of home run mashing, I need to update my top 25 first basemen for the rest of the season. When the original top 25 came out, C.J. Cron was just a NRI, Luke Voit was healthy, and the Nationals didn’t have an outbreak. Let’s take a look at the updated list and then we’ll talk a little bit about the movers.

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Last year is officially behind us!

Months after the Dodgers defeated the Rays in the World Series to cap the most unique season Major League Baseball has ever seen, followed by countless offseason moves and meaningless exhibition games, the baseball season has thankfully begun.

Of course, it is impossible to completely put the past behind us. For the Mets and Nationals, they must think that they are still stuck in 2020 as their season-opening series was wiped out due to the COVID virus affecting a host of Washington players. But for everyone else, every hit, home run and strikeout now count. That means we are all checking how our fantasy teams five or six time a not to see how our players are doing on the field.

Gone are the endless updates of our preseason rankings as we prepared for drafts. Now the fun part starts – tracking the players and their performance as the season unfolds. Will the top players perform as expected, or will one of them pull a Christian Yelich or Jose Altuve on us and stink it up all season. With only a handful of games in the books, the Top 25 Shortstop Rankings are basically the same as they were a month ago, but there has been some player movement.

So without further adieu, lets get to the rankings.

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Howdy, folks!

Oh how joyous it is to have baseball back! Lineups galore need setting! Waiver wire races have already started! What a time of year.

I’m just glad some of these injured guys have finally hit the IL so I can stash them and scoop up some replacements. Pretty peeved that some guys didn’t hit IL until it was too late to do anything about it for Opening Day.

I hope you had a successful first couple of days. Mine was a mixed bag, but I’m ready for Byron Buxton to go so ham. I know it’s easy to fall victim to inflated hype, but how can you not love this guy for fantasy? If healthy, of course; I imagine he’ll find his way into one of these updates sooner or later…

Alrighty, enough blathering. Let’s get yinz caught up:

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My final final final final draft of the year. Believe it was four finals, might’ve been five finals. Finally, the final final, as we extend our arms and coax into the 2021 fantasy baseball season. HalleBerrylujah, we’ve made it. Since this is my fourth or fifth final final draft of the season, I decided to throw everything to do with ADP out the window.

I mentioned at one point in the draft, I wonder what a draft would look like if all players were simply listed alphabetically rather than by ADP, or some arbitrary ranking by someone I don’t trust. It would likely mean at least one person would autodraft Andrew Abbott, but besides that I think it would change the entire draft landscape. Whether people want to believe it or not, they are influenced by the in-draft rankings. When it says a player is the next hitter or pitcher off the board, they don’t sit there for very long. Well, except for Sixto Sanchez in our league who went in the last round to Coolwhip. When you ignore ADP, it feels. Dot dot dot. Freeing. The most YOLO of drafts incoming. Anyway, here’s my RCL draft recap, 12-team mixed league:

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In just a few short days, the screams of “play ball” will be yelled on baseball fields across Major League Baseball  – finally. The darkness of winter is finally giving way to the warmth of the sun and the sounds of baseball. Even better, the cheers of fans will once again be heard in baseball stadiums in anticipation of the first pitch.

The start of the season also means the endless hours spent pouring over statistics and coming up with intricate formulas to create the perfect ranking list for players at each position is coming to an end. Instead, we can all rank a player based on his actual current performance. That gut hunch you had about Gavin Lux will either be proven right, making you look smart for taking him a three rounds ahead of the his ADP,  or  leave you looking foolish for reaching on an unproven player.

These rankings first appeared more than a month ago, at a time when drafts had yet to happen or were just starting. The rankings weighed several factors – position eligibility, re-draft league value, dynasty league value and just the good ol’ gut hunch factor. With the season nearly here, the top 25 second baseman rankings have some players in new slots and some new players being ranked altogether.

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With your NCAA tournament bracket now busted due to the rash of upsets this weekend, you can turn your attention back to baseball. In fact, why was your attention even turned away from baseball? With less than two weeks until the start of the regular season, spring training starts to take on a little bit of importance. OK, who am I kidding? We don’t need spring training to know who the top shortstops are, especially in 12-team mixed leagues.

However, there are plenty of 16-, 18- and 20-team leagues and thus a much larger player pool you need to dip into. Additionally, many deep leagues still require a middle infielder in addition to needing a starting shortstop. Depth is critical in deep leagues, and finding that gem late in the draft can be the difference between winning and losing a league.

With players locked into battles for a starting job, the spring training stats we overlook could help determine if Nico Hoerner earns the starting job with the Chicago Cubs or starts the season in the minor leagues. Or maybe a player you are tracking as a sleeper is having a horrible spring and doesn’t deserve to be on your watch list right now.
However, there are plenty of 16-, 18- and 20-team leagues. The player pool you need to dip into is greatly expanded when you have that many teams. Additionally, many deep leagues like these still require a middle infielder in addition to needing a starting shortstop. Depth is critical in deep leagues, and finding that gem late in the draft can be the difference between winning and losing a league. 

With players locked into battles for a starting job, the spring training stats we overlook could help determine if Nico Hoerner earns the starting job with the Chicago Cubs or starts the season in the minor leagues. Or maybe a player you are tracking as a sleeper is having a horrible spring and doesn’t deserve to be on your watch list right now.

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March, a month where the snow is hopefully gone, trees and flowers start to bud and bloom, and the days start to grow long once again. For those of in the south March just means we get to spend another weekend mowing the lawn. But as baseball fans flock or social distance in flocks to Florida and Arizona to see their favorite teams get ready for the season, March is also the month for fantasy players to draft teams and dream of winning championships.

There are numerous types of leagues, from redraft leagues to dynasty leagues. Which league you prefer will greatly influence how you draft. Redraft leagues are great, but they are more for those who like instant gratification. You draft, you win, you start over next year. Dynasty leagues are for those who like to build something and see it last. These leagues require you not to just think about today, but next year and the year after that.  Thus, it requires you to think differently when drafting your team, with potential and youth being more important than a known quantity and experience.

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