It took six picks for a college prospect to come off the board at the 2022 MLB Draft in Los Angeles, but a string of eight-consecutive players from the collegiate realm followed — including seven straight position players to cap off the streak. Just like when you’re waiting the better part of an hour for your luggage to appear at baggage claim, then all of a sudden your suitcase, snowboard, pogo stick, camping gear, ninja swords, guitar, mechanical crossbow, and cat all appear on the conveyer belt in a row, one after the other. This has happened to me twice but is incredibly rare. In total, 21 of the 39 players selected in the first round came from the college ranks (including Round 1C and Round CB-A). As always, there’s a lot to unpack with these picks and the subsequent rounds beyond, as 616 total players had their names called across the 20-round, three-day event. I’ll begin by breaking down some of the biggest storylines from the draft and conclude with ranking a handful of sleepers and overhyped players that you should target more or less heavily than their draft position might otherwise indicate. The MLB Draft doesn’t work the same way as it does in many other professional sports leagues. Taking the top player available is quite often not the focus, as bonus pool allocation strategy is frequently at the forefront. Never, ever, ever copy and paste a list of the draftees in order and use that to directly dictate your first-year player draft rankings. Feel free to use it as a frame of reference, then apply your own opinion and the information provided by myself and The Itch to develop your own big board.

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You can’t judge a prospect by his draft position, the same way you can’t judge a middle-aged man for walking around shirtless in your neighborhood. A player could get drafted 40th overall solely due to signability and financial asking price, but still be a top-15 overall player (more on that later). Along those same lines, that middle-aged man could have recently burnt his nipples on a saucepan while reaching across the stovetop to adjust a knob, and now walking around shirtless is the only comfortable way he can go for an evening stroll. You simply never know the underlying circumstances at play, which is why it’s always best to ask questions and gather reliable intel before rushing to judgment. That exact premise is the motivation for this piece: don’t treat the 2021 draftees as shirtless middle-aged men. Assess the tools and how each player aligns with your fantasy team’s winning timeline, and draft the top players available regardless of where they were selected in the 2021 MLB Draft. Draft position should not directly correlate with first-year player draft (FYPD) order and rankings.

So here’s a few shirtless, middle-aged men to target in your upcoming FYPDs — of the baseball variety, of course!

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You click the button.

Bingo

You’ve made your pick. You feel energized, confident. You look over. Your queue is proud and strong.

I’ve got this.

Nothing can tear you down. You’ve done your research, crossed your Ts, and dotted your I’s.

Until… The next pick. One player taken from your queue is no big deal, right? You’ve still got… Ding. Ding. Ding. And just like that, your best-laid plans have vanished.

My good do these scrubs read Razzball, too?

You panic as you search the top available picks left. All your targeted prospects, all your value veterans, all hope… Gone in a flash. Even Hedbert!

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When it comes to strategy in dynasty formats, I deploy an unorthodox approach. Depending on where you play and the roster rules that accompany your league, my method may or may not be feasible for you, but it’s simple. I do my best Dave Dombrowski impersonation, fully equipped with a suave, silver wig, a coating of Jurgen’s Natural Glow and a Palos Heights, Ill. birth certificate. What I mean by this, is I like to make win-now moves while my league-mates are busy competing for the strongest prospect pool award and salivating over the talent that is waiting in the wings, each one desperately trying to convince the rest of the league that they are the very best at identifying young talent.

If I’m in any position to win in any given year, I’ll happily dump a few prospects, even ones with top 100 status, for a veteran player with a lower career ceiling in order to help my chances. Like I said, this may or may not be a possible trade-off for you depending on your league rules, but I’ve seen all too many league-mates dwell in the cellar year-after-year, stockpiling more and more top 100 names and never getting the production they were waiting for. Win when you can win — and be willing to sell your highest-rated prospects. That is, except for the select few that you should stash and forget, and wait on no matter the circumstances. This does not necessarily mean honing in on the top 10 in the MLB 100, but rather identifying the players who are young and quickly developing skill sets you just know are going to play at the next level. The fantasy gems. They play loud. Think of Ronald Acuna during the 2017 season, before he became the No. 1 prospect in the game.

Today, I’ll go in-depth on three players you could make this type of argument for: Julio Rodriguez, MacKenzie Gore and Matthew Liberatore. I’ll provide detailed, unbiased data along the way, before providing my own brief opinion at the end regarding whether or not you should pack this player for the long haul. As a reminder, all the players I’ll go over today were previously requested in the comments section by the readers of Razzball. If there is a particular prospect you would like to see an in-depth profile for in the future, please feel free to voice such in the comments section. Now saddle up, take off your shoes and belt, and join me over at the TSA security check.

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Good Afternoon DFSers and welcome to today’s edition of Toilet Talk with Jared!

Today’s going to be an interesting day for baseball.  It’s TRADE DEADLINE DAY!  Make sure you are paying close attention to lineups.  While you may see some get scratched late, this also leads us to some possible value plays where we normally wouldn’t see them.  My favorite pitcher tonight is Tyler Glasnow ($9,500) vs. the Yankees.  This isn’t the same feared lineup without Stanton, Judge, Torres, and now Hicks.  I expect Glasnow to take us to the profit land tonight.

New to FanDuel? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well, be sure to read our content and subscribe to the DFSBot for your daily baseball plays. Just remember to sign up through us before jumping into the fray. It’s how we know you care!

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Brent (@ExitVelo_BH), Jordan (@ExitVelo_JR), and Zach (@Braffz), breakdown the MLB 60 game schedule and what teams have the easiest path to the playoffs. The Twins, Padres, Indians, and White sox have a great chance to make the playoff and compete. The Angels, Athletics, and Rockies have some of the tougher schedules in the league. We discuss the underrated fantasy assets on teams that will compete. Can Wil Myers, Franmil Reyes, Luis Robert make impacts on their rosters? We discuss our award winners in a 60 game season. Can Josh Hader as a reliever get CY Young consideration? We all agree Josh Hader will be a very valuable asset in fantasy leagues. We talk about the future of the Exit Velocity Podcast and guests we will feature, highlighted by SP Streamer, Carter Capps, Adam Aizer, Chelsea Ladd, and Deegs. We also launched a new podcast store on Instagram (exitvelocitypc), which include shirts, mugs, koozies, wine glasses, and beer steins!

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Hope everyone is ready for a sun tan today!  The Tampa Bay Rays are going to give our skins some much needed color…ok, I’m done I promise.  I’m sure you already know, but I like the Rays as a whole today.  As a team they’ve been heating up, and they’ll be facing off against a pretty unknown pitcher in Austin Bibens-Dirkx.  WHO?  I didn’t even know he existed before today, nor if he was any good or not.  I did some digging and his stats aren’t terrible in the minors with a little over 3.00 ERA this year.  Also has an ERA of just under 4.00 this year in long relief.  I’m still going to load up on bats here.  Mostly because of three things: stadium, conditions, and how often does a long reliever last more then a few innings?  The bats I’ll be targeting start with Logan Morrison at $3,500.  I think he’s a great play for the price and the potential.  I also like Evan Longoria at $3,300.  He’s had a rough time this year but I think he’s a much better hitter then what he’s shown.  Corey Dickerson at $4,200 seems obvious at this point, but he’s always in play if your stacking Rays.  Last guy I really like from this team is Tim Beckham at $2,900.  The former #1 pick hasn’t done much of anything in his career but with the injury to Matt Duffy, he’s finally getting a chance to play everyday.  Its beginning to pay off as he’s showing a power stroke and a decent average.  I expect his success to continue through today, at least.

Now on to the picks…

New to FanDuel? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond?  Well be sure to read our content and subscribe to the DFSBot for your daily baseball plays.  Just remember to sign up through us before jumping into the fray. It’s how we know you care! 

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Tampa Bay’s farm system isn’t the best on the block for shallow league players, but there are a bunch of interesting fantasy pieces here to sift through if you play in a deeper dynasty format. The biggest news from the 2015 season was the explosion of left hander Blake Snell. He earned all kinds of accolades with his performance and now he’s set up to join the rotation in 2016. The Rays have good pitching depth again this year, and they’ll get Alex Cobb back at some point as well. Outfielder Steven Souza was a trendy sleeper prospect in 2015, but injury and strikeouts limited his value in his rookie year. He could be a decent buy low in dynasty leagues since the power and speed that made him interesting in the first place are still there.

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Cheers to you and yours on this fine Labor Day. And now, cheers to all the hard work you’ve done over this last year and the history of hard work this nation has done. Now cheers to the stretch run of baseball DFS as we wind our way into football season. Now cheers to your hardwood floors that you now seem very intent on seeing up close…wait, are you sleeping? Too many cheers, eh? I can cheers anyone under the table, truth be told, so I’m not surprised. But wanna know what might be a surprise? A Rays stack on a full slate day that’ll feature bigger named bats could be the GPP get that you get to keep peeking at on your phone while you wait for the next brat off the grill. You see, with the horny lobo (or as you call him, Randy Wolf) on the hill and the poor bullpen that resides behind him, Tampa Bay could make Tiger stadium feel like Coors. At the very least, on this day, don’t work too hard on picking your 2B because it should be Logan Forsythe at $4,400. You just don’t look the other way on that price when it comes with the 3rd highest ISO against southpaws on the year. Meanwhile, a hot bat Brandon Guyer at $2,900 is a great OF punt and Evan Longoria gives a lot of upside at his $4,300 price tag. If you ain’t stacking or mini-stacking, swirling players like this into your own personal lineup stew should pay handsomely. But enough about my strange cooking ingredients, let’s move on. Let me sell you on my red hot propane and propane accessory hot takes for this Labor Day DK slate…

New to DraftKings? Scared of feeling like a small fish in a big pond? Well try out this 25 teamer of Razzball writers and friends to wet your DK whistle. Just remember to sign up through us before you do. It’s how we know you care! If you still feel helpless and lonely, be sure to subscribe to the DFSBot for your daily baseball plays.

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