With the top 40 outfielders for 2017 fantasy baseball, we’ve finished all the hitter recaps.  We meaning me, but I’ll include you.  No, that’s not a cue to try to hold my hand.  Why are you now patting my butt?  Don’t muss my hair!  The pitching recap will begin next.  You can hardly wait.  No, you!  To recap, the end of the season rankings are based on our Fantasy Baseball Player Rater.  I felt the easiest way to keep it objective would to go this route.  This way when I say someone finished 30th and I ranked them 23rd in the preseason, it carries more weight like a non-vegan Bill Clinton.  Anyway, here’s the top 40 outfielders for 2017 fantasy baseball and how they compare to where I originally ranked them:

21. Andrew Benintendi – Was pretty high on Benintendi coming into the year.  Not quite as high as Prospector Ralph who rolled up magazine covers of Benintendi and smoked them.  There’s some legitimate concerns about Benintendi looking at his ground balls vs. fly balls and Hard Contact.  He looks more like a 40-double guy than a 30-homer one, but it’s hard to be that against a guy sitting in the middle of the Red Sox lineup with 20 steals.  Preseason Rank #27, 2017 Projections: 79/16/68/.303/19, Final Numbers:  84/20/90/.271/20

22. Trea Turner – Went over him in the top 20 2nd basemen.

23. Billy Hamilton – Pretty much nailed Hamilton’s projections which has me concerned about my ranking.  60 steals, as projected, should’ve been more like 25th outfielder in the preseason vs. 35th.  As they say, this is a teachable moment.  Those that say that sound like know-it-alls.  Ooh, teachable moments, blah blah burp, shut up!  Preseason Rank #35, 2017 Projections: 75/4/40/.253/60, Final Numbers:  85/4/38/.247/59

24. Scooter Gennett – Went over him in the top 20 2nd basemen.

25. Brett Gardner – One recurring thing you’re going to see with this top 40, 31 to 35-year-olds were not as done done as we thought.  They were well done.  Not bad well done, but good well done.  Like your ketchup-covered Trump steak.  Preseason Rank #81, 2017 Projections: 72/10/37/.255/15, Final Numbers: 96/21/63/.264/23

26. Lorenzo Cain – See what I said 1/18th of inch above, or five inches if talking to a girl.  Cain…Sugar! looked all but dead coming out of 2016 (9 HRs, 14 SBs), but he had a season matching his best.  By the way, at some point a few years ago, Ned Yost decided Cain…Sugar! was his three-hole hitter and has resisted the urge to second guess himself similarly to–Well, every major league manager resists the urge to second guess themselves.  As a group, major league managers are a very resolute group, for better or worse (mostly worse).  Preseason Rank #50, 2017 Projections: 83/14/79/.285/20, Final Numbers: 86/15/49/.300/26

27. Ender Inciarte – As someone who owned Ender in one league from about the 2nd week of the season until the end, so almost-beginner to Ender, he’s exactly the kind of guy that gets dropped early and should be owned all year.  He’s not going to hit 5 HRs in a week or steal 10 bags in a month to ever really excite you, but a leadoff man who plays 150+ games and hits .300 with 20-steal speed is going to be valuable on the year.  Preseason Rank #41, 2017 Projections: 92/7/39/.297/21, Final Numbers: 93/11/57/.304/22

28. Jay Bruce – Went over him in the top 20 1st basemen.

29. Eddie Rosario – I’m going to blame a lack of confidence on his playing time for why I was so low on him in the preseason, because I’m fully on Rosario now.  I’ve bought in.  I am convinced.  There is no questions parrying me over the fence away from him.  Okay, you get the point.  I’m sold.  Preseason Rank #118, 2017 Projections: 49/11/53/.264/7, Final Numbers: 79/27/78/.290/9

30. Shin-Soo Choo – For the first time in a few years when someone said “God bless you” after someone said Shin-Soo Choo, they weren’t simply saying it because they thought you sneezed.  Preseason Rank #76, 2017 Projections: 75/16/48/.264/7, Final Numbers: 96/22/78/.261/12

31. Avisail Garcia – His BABIP was .392, i.e., the top BABIP in the league for qualified hitters, i.e., ludicrously high for him, I before E except in Teixeira, Avisail was lucky he didn’t have yet another yawnstipating year.  Preseason Rank #83, 2017 Projections: 54/15/67/.251/6, Final Numbers: 75/18/80/.330/5

32. Adam Duvall – In the preseason, I compared Duvall to Khris Davis.  Now, I will say correctamundo.  Preseason Rank #24, 2017 Projections: 74/34/92/.244/5, Final Numbers: 78/31/99/.249/5

33. Nicholas Castellanos – Went over him in the top 20 3rd basemen.

34. Steven Souza – Fun with BABIP!  Souza had a .302 BABIP and still only hit .239 with a 29% strikeout rate.  If he could hit .270, he’d be in the Justin Upton range.  In other words, a Souza isn’t just fun for Band Camp.  Preseason Rank #93, 2017 Projections: 57/16/54/.227/10, Final Numbers: 78/30/78/.239/16

35. Yasiel Puig – As you’ll hear me say (a lot) on the podcast (between cackles), most players have a range.  Like I’ll say something like, “Lorenzo Cain’s home run power is 12-17 and his steals are 23-28.”  Usually about three to five is a range.  With Yasiel, he could hit anywhere from 15 HRs to 40, and steal anywhere from five to 25.  No one, not even Puig, has any clue what he’s going to do.  Sometimes, after Puig’s already done it, he still doesn’t know what he’s done.  Preseason Rank #56, 2017 Projections: 65/18/71/.277/7, Final Numbers: 72/28/74/.263/15

36. Willson Contreras – Went over him in the top 20 catchers.

37. Joey Gallo – Went over him in the top 20 1st basemen.

38. Josh Reddick – Don’t look at his projections or end of the season stats yet.  I projected him for 17 HRs and seven steals.  Yet, he was a top 40 outfielder, so he must’ve beat those numbers by a lot, right?  A’la Maxwell Smart, would you believe he hit less homers and had exactly seven steals?  If Reddick would’ve hit 8th in the lineup all year instead of 2nd, he’d about the 70th best outfielder.  Preseason Rank #79, 2017 Projections: 59/17/68/.269/7, Final Numbers: 77/13/82/.314/7

39. Adam Jones – Came pretty close on Jones’ projections, but was way off on his ranking.  I think I know why.  Cause you’re stupid.  Shut up, Random Italicized Voice.  Because I favor guys that have solid floors, and one thing Jones has is that.  Not exactly gonna be a M.C. Escher-designed house with Jones’ foundation, but it will be sturdy.  Preseason Rank #22, 2017 Projections: 92/27/78/.268/3, Final Numbers: 82/26/73/.285/2

40. Corey Dickerson – 2nd half wasn’t kind to Dickerson — 10 HRs, .241 vs. 17 HRs, .312.  So which is he?  1st half slugger, 2nd half slug.  Hey, a slug like a fake escargot.  Yeah, leaning heavily on him being the 2nd half escarfaux.  Preseason Rank #87, 2017 Projections: 49/22/58/.250/4, Final Numbers: 84/27/62/.282/4

   
  1. Brian says:
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    A lot of these guys were on waivers at various times throughout the year in my 12-team leagues. With guys on waivers who can put of these numbers, I’m thinking about taking pitchers a bit earlier in 2018 and waiting on the last outfielder or two.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Brian: They were depending on the league… Pitchers were way worse than outfielders if that’s your rationale…

      • swaggerjackers says:
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        @Grey: Agreed. I’d rather go the direction of locking up reliable bats early then throwing a bunch of darts at upside starting pitching in the double digit rounds.

        People would have been thrilled walking out of the draft with Bum, Synder, and Cueto at the top of their rotation but we all know how that worked out.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Yeah, exactly, swagger

  2. Duda Want to Build a Snowman? says:
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    Silly hypothetical, but if Brewers had let Keon start all season, how valuable do you think his ~.225 25/25 80 R 60 RBI season would have been? Gallo range?

    Either way, not very interested in him next year, given the dropoff in SB in the second half.

  3. Duda Want to Build a Snowman? says:
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    Silly hypothetical, but if Brewers had let Keon start all season, how valuable do you think his ~.225 25/25 80 R 60 RBI season would have been? Gallo range?

    Either way, not very interested in him next year, given the dropoff in SB in the second half.

  4. Tweak says:
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    Loving this range of guys for next year. I think a lot of them get overlooked despite really solid seasons. I’d be willing to bet you could get an OF of Rosario, Puig, Inciarte and Gallo all outside of the top 100, maybe even 125. You’re looking at 40 SB, 100 HRs there.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @Tweak: They’ll easily be outside the 100 range… Puig is the only one I could see remotely being close to that…

  5. GFY250 says:
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    Look at Inciarte’s 2017 numbers 93/11/57/.304/22 and Jose Ramirez’s 2016 numbers 84/11/76/.312/22.

    Pretty damn close! I get that Inciarte has never really shown power but their profiles are very similar in that both make a ton of contact and don’t walk above league average and Inciarte has increased his FB% each of the last 2 seasons (it’s a minimal increase but it’s something). He should be an interesting sleeper next year.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      @GFY250: Hmm…Maybe…I hadn’t thought about that comparison before…

      • GFY250 says:
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        @Grey: Me either until just now. It looks like Jo Ram hits the ball significantly harder so I doubt Inciarte ever reaches 20+ homers, but still.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          Yeah, Ender feels more like a tops 15 HR guy

          • swaggerjackers says:
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            @Grey: I was surprised to see Ender is only 26 (soon to be 27). I figured he was closer to 30 therefore limiting his upside relative to Jose Ramirez (25).

            Ender has had an OBP of .350 the last two seasons so that’s appealing as well.

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              Yup, Ender is a solid guy, especially if he’s getting 150+ games at the top of a decent lineup in a good park

          • chris says:
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            @Grey: dude plays somer serious defense. i know that doesn’t count in fantasy, but the guy is like Andruw Jones out there.

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              Yeah, that’s true too

            • Grey

              Grey says:
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              Will keep him on the field if healthy

    • Tweak says:
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      @GFY250: Inciarte had 718 PAs this year, playing in all but 4 games. He’s a really solid leadoff guy with maybe some developing pop; you’re right, very interesting for next season. I assume the Braves get better next year with a full season from Albies and Freeman, maybe Acuna comes up by mid-May and makes some noise for the ROS. JD Martinez would look really good in that lineup. Also, assuming they add a passable 3B (sign Moose? trade for someone like Moran from Houston or McMahon from Colorado?) and get some meaningful SS production out of someone, their offense should markedly improve, making Inciarte even more valuable on top of the order. 100+ Runs scored should be absolutely within reach.

      • chris says:
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        @Tweak: that’s assuming the MLB doesn’t rake our organization through the coals. we really messed up. i could see McMahon for some pitching (Allard?) but if we’re signing Just Dong (also, what do we do with Markakis and Kemp?), there’s NO way we’re getting Moose, too.

        I could see a deal to an AL team (Yankees?) for Markakis if we kick in a decent prospect, but at this moment the OF looks pretty much like it did at the end of the season. Especially with no GM to do anything.

        • Grey

          Grey says:
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          I think the Braves are really close… Moose would be nice..:

        • Tweak says:
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          @chris: Yeah, who knows how that whole thing will turn out? We’ll see how Manfred’s office wants to play it and how deeply rooted the issue was. I haven’t been paying close attention, so I’m not up to date other than the headlines.

          My apologies on the JD suggestion; I was under the impression that one of Markakis or Kemp was a free agent now. Even Adams has another year of arbitration left. Maybe it would be best to deal him to an AL team rather than Markakis (Minnesota? Seattle? Kansas City?). I also wasn’t suggesting that both Moose/JD could go to Atlanta. Even without the investigation, I don’t think the team would splurge like that. Not yet anyway.

          3B needs to be shored up more than anything, I think. Probably best to do that through trade as well and save up money in hopes of landing one of the big fish in 2018.

  6. Chris D says:
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    Ender was easily my favorite set it and forget guy all year after grabbing him off waivers. Knew exactly what I was getting from him. Usually a hit a night (or if a double header, 6-8 lol) a steal or two every two weeks and a good OBP and some runs. I called him the OF version of LeMahieu

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Ha, totally! Good call…

  7. bboston says:
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    Grey,

    Kiermaier seems to be taking a rough, injury -marred path to a breakout….. Thoughts? Is he a legit 5-tool guy or fools gold?

    ON unrelated note, seems like Clevinger is gold, masquerading as fools gold. Everyone expects a bb/9 driven regression. I see a guy who is getting people to chase the edges and trading increased K’s and poor contact for more somewhat neutered walks. Am I crazy, or is this guy the real deal….just gold?

    bbboston

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      KK is a 15/15 guy that has potential for more, but has never put it together over a full season…. Still young tho…

      Clevinger could be a 4.75 ERA guy with some bad luck, very dangerous

  8. Chrisjen17 says:
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    I don’t trust Rosario… Nothing Twins ever works out like it is supposed to. Maybe once he is traded for mediocre pitching, I can trust him to keep up those numbers.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Yeah, maybe, but that’s more anecdotal

  9. Aj says:
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    Mostly spot on. Except when you talked about the Red Sox offense in the Benetendi part. That was a team with a 91 wRC+ that was 27th in home runs.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Gotcha

  10. darek says:
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    quick non-OF question.

    I have Grandal in a keep forever league. I’m looking at Austin Barnes stats in their platoon and thinking that’s a pretty good player if you combine them (although some of Barnes’ were at 2B). Does it ever make sense to roster both sides of C platoon? It’s a limited transaction (5/week) league where most transactions are allocated to pitching moves. But it does have a fairly deep (8) bench.

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      Don’t carry two catchers in a non-two catcher league

  11. Matt says:
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    So, I recieved an interesting offer in a 10 team dynasty HTH. I’m thinking its a no brainer but wanted to double-check:

    His Miggy, Gibson
    For
    My Jordan Montgomery, Joe Martinez (stl), and a last round rookie pick

    Am I missing something there? Miggy was horrid, but I don’t see Montgomery as more than a mid-rotation guy in the AL East and-while Martinez may have figured in out a la JD, he may be a one hit wonder. Worth the shot to see if Miggy rebounds?

    • Grey

      Grey says:
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      I’d take the gamble on the Miggy rebound

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