Please see our player page for Jon Berti 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.

Maybe the real-life baseball season has stopped, but that doesn’t mean fantasy baseball has to. It’s all we have these days, really. Fantasy sports while we fantasize about real sports coming back. I feel bad for my fellow fantasy hockey folks – I get the feeling it ain’t coming back, even if regular hockey does. I’m not about that fantasy basketball life (I dabbled in my younger years – Tracy McGrady anyone? Had to have him on all my teams), but I fear it’s the same fate. Only fantasy football is unscathed…so far. Wild stuff happening on that front, too. Brady to the Bucs? Da BUCS?! DAFUQ! Gurley and Newton RELEASED?! Hopkins TRADED?! Maybe Watson, too?! Madness, I say!

Anyway. This is a fantasy baseball article. Almost forgot. It’s an important year for the fine ladies and gents here at Razzball: the inaugural season of RazzSlam! Big shoutout to the NFBC peeps for hosting it. Give ’em a follow on the Twitter at @TheNFBC. I had the honor of being accepted into League 2 (of 18). Some scrub ass writer for CBS is in it. Big deal. I’m kidding, he’ll probably whoop my ass.

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Over these next two weeks, we’ll be focusing on late-round category targets. This week we’ll touch on hitting categories and follow it up next week with pitching categories. While these will be geared towards the standard 5×5 categories, feel free to leave a comment if you have a more specialized category.

For this exercise, I limited my player pool to hitters projected to get at least 350 plate appearances (with a handful of exceptions). I tried to stick with players being drafted beyond pick 175, but in my mind, the later a player’s going, the better. With that in mind, let’s get to it.

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The highlights of this post last year were Fernando Tatis Jr., Jorge Polanco and Brendan Rodgers. So they’re not all winners, but 2nd basemen to target and the shortstops are necessary evils like changing your underwear. Whether you want to or not, it is a good idea to take a flyer on a late middle infielder, and you should still expect to get crapped on. Unlike previous years, I’m hopeful that everyone owns at least one shortstop prior to getting to the sleepers in this post. Top shortstops are the bees knees and bees do have knees; I’m a scientist. This is a (legal-in-all-countries-except-Lichtenstein) supplement to the top 20 shortstops for 2020 fantasy baseball.  The players listed have a draft rank after 200 on other sites.  Click on the player’s name where applicable to read more and see their 2020 projections. Anyway, here’s some shortstops to target for 2020 fantasy baseball:

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Draft season is getting into full swing. Unless things break right for you early you’re likely to find your team a little light in the steals department. Take a stab at some of these cheaper players to boost your speed.

The 2020 Razzball Commenter Leagues are now open! Free to join!

Usual Suspects

  • Jarrod Dyson – Dyson probably has the most guaranteed playing time coming into the season. Injuries tend to cut into his ABs but when he’s in the lineup he’s running.
  • Delino DeShields Jr. – We’ve all been there with Delino. He’s cheap and has 50 steal speed if he could only play everyday and avoid the litany of injuries that tend to derail his season.
  • Dee Gordon – I’m actually interested in Gordon as a speed dart. He’s been around a while but is a seemingly young 31. The wheels aren’t what they used to be and will likely degrade as the season goes. Still, there’s plenty of scenarios that see him leading off in Seattle.
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I can’t say it feels like baseball season looking out my window at empty trees and snow-filled streets, but just a few states to the south, human beings are playing the real game (for practice).

One of my favorite traditions as a young fan was Peter Gammons profiling each team’s spring training focus points. 

I loved the spittle and shake of his voice, the depth of his details, and especially how he always shot the segments in front of people playing catch, gloves popping symphonically as Gammons explained how Bill Pulsipher, Paul Wilson, and Jason Isringhausen were going to re-define the New York Mets.

It’s in that spirit that I begin our next prospect series—one that works in concert with Razzball’s Gammonsian team previews and one that involves a few nods to some non-prospects. Graduating from eligibility requirements doesn’t mean you’re a known quantity, nor that you’ve graduated to an everyday opportunity. Yesterday’s failed prospects are often tomorrow’s sleepers, so let’s take a lap around the division looking for some fantasy profit. 

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I’m usually not big on worrying too much about positional scarcity, but anyone who has competed in a variety of different fantasy baseball league formats knows that depth at a given position is one thing that can make a big difference in approaching a draft for a shallow league versus a deep one.  The last couple of years, I’ve been making a concerted effort to draft with less concern about a player’s position, and more towards getting the best value possible with every draft pick or auction purchase, regardless of league size.  But when approaching a draft this way, it’s even more important to know what your options are going to be at each position, which positions you can wait to fill later, and which players are actually worth reaching for if you do realize you’re running out of decent options at a given position.  Getting to the point of today’s post, let’s take a look at some third basemen for 2020, with an emphasis on how I’ll be approaching the position in deeper leagues.

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After going over the top 20 shortstops for 2020 fantasy baseball, I needed a cigarette. A good after-sex cigarette, not a waiting-to-go-into-court-to-hear-if-you-have-to-spend-18-months-in-jail cigarette. Subtle, but important differences. We also hit up the top 20 catchers for 2020 fantasy baseball, the top 20 1st basemen for 2020 fantasy baseball and the top 20 2nd basemen for 2020 fantasy baseball.  In no way was that clickbait.  Okay, onto the hot corner. Here’s Steamer’s 2020 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Hitters and 2020 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Pitchers.   All projections listed are mine and I mention where I see tiers starting and stopping.  Good times, dyn-o-mite!  Anyway, here’s the top 20 3rd basemen for 2020 fantasy baseball:

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Wasn’t that long ago that we were screaming about how terrible the shortstops are and how the sky is falling and how red wine is good for your health and you were like, “What if I put grenadine in my vodka?” Maybe it comes with age, but if you’re around long enough you know these things go in cycles. For a few years, middle infidels are terrible, then corner infidels are in that sinking boat. As of now, shortstops are stupid stacked, and the top 20 shortstops for 2020 fantasy baseball are an absolute joy for at least twenty of the twenty but, as always, this is going much deeper. So, here’s Steamer’s 2020 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Hitters and 2020 Fantasy Baseball Projections for Pitchers. All my 2020 fantasy baseball rankings are under that thingie-ma-whosie, and I mention where all tiers start and stop, and all shortstop projections are mine.  Let’s get to it!  Anyway, here’s the top 20 shortstops for 2020 fantasy baseball:

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On Dancer! On Prancer! On–Oh, I didn’t hear you come in. Welcome, reader! Grab some egg nog and brandy it up to the fire. You look festive. I love that Rudolph tongue ring. That’s the great thing about Christmas, no matter what your interpretation is, it’s all about commercialism. That’s unless you light the Munenori Kawasaki. The 2020 fantasy baseball rankings are not far away. Right now, January Grey is throwing darts at a board to figure out where to rank Shohei Ohtani, the hitter vs. Shohei Ohtani, the pitcher. Maybe I should use two dart boards. Hmm…In the meantime, let’s look at the players who have multiple position eligibility for this upcoming 2020 fantasy baseball season. I did this list of multi-position eligible players because I figured it would help for your 2020 fantasy baseball drafts. I’m a giver, snitches! Happy Holidays! I only listed players that have multiple position eligibility of five games or more started outside of their primary position. Not four games at a position, not three, definitely not two. Five games started. If they played eight games somewhere but only started one, they are not listed. 5, the Road Runner of numbers. So this should cover Yahoo, ESPN, CBS, et al (not the Israeli airline). Players with multiple position eligibility are listed once alphabetically under their primary position. Games played are in parenthesis. One big take away is Jonathan Villar started in, like, 200 games. That can’t be right. Oh, I know, they’re listed if they had 5 or more games started, but I noted games played in parenthesis, so Villar must’ve switched positions three times per game or played two positions at once because the Orioles only had seven fielders plus a pitcher. Don’t know, don’t care. Players are listed by Games Started, and Games Played are noted. It’s not confusing at all! This is the only time a year I do anything alphabetically, so I might’ve confused some letters. Is G or H first? Who knows, and, better yet, who cares! Wow, someone’s got the Grinchies, must be the spiked egg nog talking. Anyway, here’s all the players with multiple position eligibility for the 2020 fantasy baseball season and the positions they are eligible at:

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Jon Berti isn’t young. He will be 30 years old in January. So, the first thing I did for my Jon Berti sleeper was look up how many guys stole 25 or more bases at the age of 29 or older last year. Four players. That’s out of a total of 11. Yes, MLB turned the players with 25 or more steals to 11. Those four were Tommy Pham, Starling Marte, Jarrod Dyson and Elvis Andrus. What do these players make you think? Okay, I mean, I love ya, but let’s be real, this is just a way for me to get out what I think. These four players are speed-forward players. At 30 years of age, Lorenzo Cain, Marte and Dee Gordon stole thirty bags in 2018. The year before there was another four players at 30 years of age. 31-year-olds get a little less frequent, but there’s guys there in the last few years too. Players who primarily steal bases still steal (almost stutterer!) in their early 30s. Without a ton of evidence (because I’m too lazy to figure it out), the players who stop stealing at the ages of 29-31 are the ones who are not speed-forward players. Think of Paul Goldschmidt’s 15-20 steal years vs. Rajai Davis’s. Think of Ryan Braun’s 20+ steal years vs. Jarrod Dyson’s. Players who are not speedsters can scrap and eek out 15+ steals until the age of 29. Players who are fast don’t stop being fast until around the age of 32. Therefore, ergo, vis-a-vie, Jon Berti isn’t young, but it doesn’t matter for 2020. So, what can we expect from Jon Berti for 2020 fantasy baseball and what makes him a sleeper?

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