Jesse Roche is a member of the Fantasy Team at Baseball Prospectus.
Jesse Roche: TGIF! Happy Friday, everyone!
This was a big week here at Baseball Prospectus. The real-life Top 101 dropped on Monday, and its dynasty counterpart followed on Thursday.
It is also second base week, and I'm extremely thankful we shifted our eligibility preferences this year because otherwise it would have been a rough time writing about this thin position.
That said, let's dive into some questions!
L-Train (NYC): I'm in a 12 team 6x6 (OPS/FIP) dynasty and been peddling Lance Lynn as a useful, if not actually pretty good, SP3 or 4. His advanced metrics are legit and he's a workhorse...yet I get laughed out of the room when I include him in offers. I'm not asking for big pieces back or making dumb offers, I can't even get a lottery ticket prospect for him. Am I missing something or is Lance Lynn not that good?
Jesse Roche: Sometimes it is difficult for owners to look past a player's former performance. Lynn is nearly 33 years old and had some ups and downs from 2017-2018. While he rebounded in a big way last year, with newfound velo (94 avg) and control (6.7% BB), he may not repeat those career bests in 2020. Owners can be way, often rightly so, of such spikes in performance. Lynn is a solid pitcher who should provide IP/K with decent ratios. If the market is not there to move him, hold him. Even if it is in your team's interest to move a player, you do not necessarily have to. Patience often goes a long way in trading and negotiation.
Vic (Baltimore): Please rank as my final keeper in a 14 team 5 x 5.....Framil, Ryu, Urquidy, Wong, Odor.
Jesse Roche: Franmil Reyes & Hyun-Jin Ryu, gap, Rougned Ordor & Jose Urquidy, gap, Kolten Wong. Whether you keep Reyes or Ryu depends on the state of your other keepers and where you think value may be had during the draft.
staycock78 (MEMPHIS, TN): General question, for dynasty leagues who has the greater value, bottom of the barrel closers (think M. Givens) or high end set up guys who probably wonâ€™t get many save opportunities (Think D. Betances or R. Pressley)?
Jesse Roche: In standard formats, bottom of the barrel closers with a tenative hold on a job still have ever-so-slightly more value than high-end set-up guys stuck behind top-tier closers, absent the top young arms like James Karinchak and Andres Munoz. Of course, this is not a hard and fast rule, and it will vary player-by-player. For example, I prefer Gallegos/Knebel to Givens, but I prefer Givens to Betances/Pressly.
MK (Houston): Which dynasty 101 guys make the biggest moves if you consider OBP vs. Avg?
Jesse Roche: As an initial matter, I do not trust walk rates in short-season leagues or even the low minors. Player discipline can change dramatically between the minors and the majors as pitchers simply have better command/control and throw more strikes to challenge hitters. That said, I think the extreme cases do warrant attention (15%-plus walk rates and sub-5% walk rates)
Guys who move up include Andrew Vaughn, Adley Rutschman, and Nolan Jones.
Guys who drop some include Luis Robert and Ryan Mountcastle.
Of these players, Jones moves the most (easily into the Top 50, probably in the 30s).
James (Toledo): Last two keepers in a midsized 5x5 h2h dynasty league - pick from Jordan Lyles, Carlos Rodon, Alex Young, Randy Dobnak, Austin Voth. Or should I dump all the pitchers and keep Seth Beer and Leody Taveras? I'm finding myself unnaturally attracted to Dobnak....
Jesse Roche: I would dump them all and keep Beer and Taveras. Of the arms, we are highest on Rodon, but I also like Lyles a good bit. I drafted Dobnak in P365XDL this offseason at 936th overall so that tells you what the industry thinks of him. If he wins a starting job, his leash will be very short in Minnesota and his high-contact ground-ball approach does not normally provide a ton of fantasy value, especially if he is getting hit. Of course, if you want a high-end Uber driver, he is your man!
bozodidthedub (Providence): I read that the Mariners' manager basically announced Shed Long as the starting second basemen. He was a slightly above average hitter in his first go in majors last year, which is impressive. What do you think of him for 2020 and long term in dynasty? Thanks.
Jesse Roche: The rebuilding Mariners almost certainly are moving away from Dee Gordon, but he is not out-the-door yet and he is on the books for $14 mil the next two years. I do expect Long to see plenty of playing time in 2020, and, like Dobnak, I also drafted Long in P365XDL at 456 overall. I think he can be average-ish across-the-board offensively, with a touch less hit/power and a touch more speed. Something like .260/15/10 is very possible as soon as 2020. Long-term, the hope is average everything and .270/20/10 type seasons, maybe even a few more steals. Long is often overlooked in dynasty leagues at the moment, and you can acquire him for peanuts.
Blake (Phoenix): Do you think Jasson Dominguez's speed holds up as he gets older? And if you think it will fall some as he is already stocky, is that why you have Abrams over him?
Jesse Roche: I have two Jasson Dominguez/CJ Abrams questions in the Q and I'll handle them back-to-back.
Dominguez is listed as 5-foot-10 and 190 pounds, and may be a bit heavier than that. His frame does have a stocky look, but he arguably has double-plus speed at present and he is already pretty physically mature. The risk of him filling out and losing speed is less than similar J2 prospects.
Abrams is over Dominguez on the dynasty top 101, and in our Top 50 FYPD rankings, because I was overruled. I personally prefer Dominguez and his .300/30/30 dream upside to Abrams, who I also love and value highly. Folks here at BP prefer Abrams because, simply, they have seen what he can do in person, and his upside is really not too much different than Dominguez's. The knocks against Dominguez are he has yet to play a pro game, has extreme proximity, and reports on J2 guys are often suspect. Though, the recent success of Wander Franco, Julio Rodriguez, and Marco Luciano does provide more confidence in reports surrounding The Martian.
Jake (Philly): You took Dominguez over Abrams in the BP mock... what's the reason? Seems like Abrams is a little safer from the speed and I'm not convinced Dominguez's upside is as good as the recent J2 stars like Franco or Vlad.
Jesse Roche: Told you there were two of these questions! I did take Dominguez over Abrams, and I actually was debating between the two (i.e., should I go with my personal preference or pick consistently with our rankings). In my opinion, Dominguez has elite, top-5 dynasty player upside akin to the likes of Ronald Acuna Jr. Of course, so much of his upside remains a pipe dream, but reports speak of the next great superstar and are more glowing than even the infamous Kevin Maitan. If Dominguez truly has 6/7/7 (hit/power/speed) offensive potential, then no prospect comes close to his pure upside.
As for Abrams, he is far better than most expected, and I even roughly comp'd him to Royce Lewis entering the draft. I did not expect him to flash as much power as he did in his debut. At this point, he looks like a potential 6/5/7 (or even 8) player, which is elite. I would not fault anyone for taking Abrams over Dominguez. It is a great year to have a top-5 pick in FYPDs!
Jordan (Milwaukee): Who are your favorite young catchers after Rutschman for dynasty purposes?
Jesse Roche: I could just point to our Top 101 and our Top 40 catchers, but where is the fun in that? After Rutschman, my rankings are:
2. Joey Bart
3. Daulton Varsho
4. Sean Murphy
5. Luis Campusano
6. Francisco Alvarez
7. Keibert Ruiz
8. Zack Collins
9. Diego Cartaya
10. Tyler Stephenson
11. Ivan Herrera
12. Miguel Amaya
13. Sam Huff
14. Andrew Knizner
15. Ryan Jeffers
16. William Contreras
17. Alejandro Kirk
18. Gabriel Moreno
19. Ronaldo Hernandez
20. Cal Raleigh
21. Bo Naylor
22. Mario Feliciano
23. Shea Langeliers
24. Connor Wong
25. Korey Lee
Michael (Boston): Is right handed Anthony Rizzo a decent upside comp for Andrew Vaughn?
Jesse Roche: I think so, though Vaughn has slightly more hit and power upside. However, any Andrew Vaughn owner should gladly take a career like Rizzo's.
Baseball Junkie (Mississauga, Canada): What can you tell me about Brady Singer, a rhp who is presently pitching in the KC Royals orgn. ?
Jesse Roche: Our prospect team detailed Singer here: https://www.baseballprospectus.com/prospects/article/56329/2020-prospects-kansas-city-royals-top-10-prospects/
Singer is the type of prospect who is better than his raw stuff. The report reads, in part, "He is a healthy, durable, consistent, strike-throwing, polished arm with an excellent performance track record and pedigree. He is a fiery competitor with advanced pitchability."
"The fastball sits low 90s, up to 95 with run and sink, generating plenty of groundballs. His command of the pitch is plus, allowing it to play up past the average velocity readings. Singer’s best secondary is a firm, low-80s slider that is above-average, but lacks elite movement, and is not consistently a swing-and-miss pitch. He is excellent at manipulating the shape of both the fastball and slider, allowing him to consistently give hitters different looks. There is a changeup as a third offering, but he rarely uses it, and it doesn’t feature any kind of above-average action."
I think Singer is a pretty safe 4-starter with 3-starter upside, but he does lack the type of high-end fantasy ceiling you are often chasing with pitching prospects.
JD (TN): Hi Jesse. Thanks for all of your work on BP! I'm loving reading it. Where do you have Jeffrey's favorite (Johan Rojas) in your dynasty fantasy prospect list?
Jesse Roche: Thanks, JD! Johan Rojas is an outfield prospect for the Phillies. I have yet to finalize my deeper rankings, but Rojas falls around the 250 range. He has tantalizing power/speed upside and impressed stateside (GCL/NYP) at just 18 years old.
Jeremiah (Thunder Bay): Wander Franco is on the block in my league how crazy should I go to trade for him?
Jesse Roche: Go Nic Cage levels of crazy for Wander Franco. He is a top 40 dynasty asset and he even went as high as 19 overall to James Anderson of Rotowire fame in P365XDL.
staycock78 (memphis, TN): Better long term prospect, Andrew Vaughn or Dylan Carlson? Both are ranked similarly everywhere and it seems like Carlson will be the first to MLB.
Jesse Roche: Long-term, we prefer Vaughn, who has more upside. This is not to say Carlson is bereft of upside, but he profiles more as a .280/25/10 type versus the .310/30 upside Vaughn possesses.
boatman44 (Liverpool ): Hey Jesse ,Would you keep any of Monte Harrison or Yusneil Diaz over Ryan Braun in a 24 team dynasty,knowing your tam is middle of the pack this year and it is probably Brauns last? cheers.
Jesse Roche: I prefer Braun to both Harrison and Diaz, but if Braun is lost on your team in 2020, then I would keep Harrison. Never hurts to try to shop any of these guys when you are facing a keeper crunch.
kalimantan (as above): Last few years you did articles on obp league rankings as part of the fantasy positional series. Why not this year?
Jesse Roche: I am not sure. It is probably something that took a back seat to other pieces. I will look into providing some OBP-based content following the big positional push.
darielsantana (santo domingo): Any chance we see Andrew Vaughn at the show this year?
Jesse Roche: After the signing of Edwin Encarnacion, I doubt we see Vaughn in the majors in 2020. The White Sox have not been shy of keeping prospects down until the following April (e.g., Eloy Jimenez, Luis Robert, and Nick Madrigal). Of course, the White Sox are also looking to compete in 2020 and if either Jose Abreu or Edwin Encarnacion are injured while Vaughn is tearing up the upper minors, he definitely could see a promotion. I just would not expect him to arrive until 2021.
Jesse Roche: That is it for me. Thanks for the all the questions! I will be back at it next Friday. In the meantime, next week we tackle third basemen. Stay tuned!