In the this installment of the ADP Report we will look into where some of the outfielders around the league are being drafted in recent high stakes fantasy baseball drafts in the National Fantasy Baseball Championship. Again, these are not rankings, rather a guideline to help prospective owners see where there targets are being taken off the draft board. For the most part we will be concentrating on talking about those who have risen and fallen heading into 2014 based on their performance from a season ago.
As you all know, filling your outfield slots is one of the easier positions to fill, considering the amount of names in the player pool, but there are certainly some players that could really help you separate yourself from the pack this season. The best road to take when drafting outfielders is to have at least one player form the two two tiers, followed by a few value and sleepers picks to round out your roster. Although a few elite outfielders will be discussed in this article, the majority of the players below will fit into more of the second or third slot when building putting together your outfield.
Andrew McCutchen, OF (PIT)--4.43 ADP--Outside of the top two players overall (Mike Trout and Miguel Cabrera), McCutchen is the next best thing and is being drafted right where he should be. McCutchen is one of only two players to have reached the 20/20 club in each of the last three seasons, with Carlos Gonzalez being the only other player to do so. If you want to own him this season he is going to have to be your first round pick, but he is one of the safest picks available on the board, as we have seen in his recent ADP.
Ryan Braun, OF (MIL)--10.96 ADP--Braun is fresh off of a 65-game suspension after numerous violations of baseball's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program. This has deflated Braun's fantasy value slightly heading into 2014, with him slipping into the second round in some drafts. It will be interesting to see how the PED-less Braun performs at the plate, but I am willing to take him at his current ADP, considering he hit at least 25 home runs, 97 RBI and batting no less than .285 in six seasons prior to his 2013 suspension.
Jacoby Ellsbury, OF (NYY)--11.66 ADP--Although Ellsbury has only two seasons of reaching 150 games played over his seven year career, the Yankees decided to spend big bucks on acquiring his services this offseason. The move to the Bronx inflated his fantasy stock almost two rounds based on last year's ADP data, making him a borderline first-round pick this season. He has yet to come close to the production we saw in his career-year back in 2011 (32 HR/105 RBI/.321 BA/39 SB), but a season of 10-plus home runs and 40-plus steals is not out of the question.
Yasiel Puig, OF (LAD)--22.09 ADP--After taking the league by storm last June, Puig has catapulted into the top top among fantasy outfielders according to recent ADP data. While he is clearly one of the most exciting young players in the game, there is still some things he needs to work on before I would be willing to take him with this high of a draft pick. For starters, he is overly aggressive at the plate, which could lead to very streaky production at times. He plays reckless in the outfield, which could lead to injury down the road. I am not saying I don't like him in 2014, just maybe our expectations may be a little high for someone who has only 104 major league games under their belt.
Justin Upton, OF (ATL)--39.88 ADP--After being one of the better players overall in the first half of 2013, Upton failed to put together a full season in his first year with the Braves. His overall production was solid 27 HR/70 RBI/.263 BA, but not worth the high price tag owners paid for his services (19.31 ADP in '13). Upton has now fallen almost two rounds in 2014, making him a very attractive option on draft day, considering the skill set we all know he possesses.
Matt Kemp, OF (LAD)--46.51 ADP--The past two seasons have been injury-filled for this former first-round pick, and the early portion of 2014 doesn't appear to be promising either. Kemp underwent surgery on his left ankle and has yet to begin running on flat ground, meaning there is a good chance he starts the season on the disabled-list. When he is healthy he is a great option to have on your roster, but there is a lot risk involved in drafting him this season. Although now he comes at some what of a discount now that he has been slipping all the way to the eighth round in some recent high stakes drafts.
Starling Marte, OF (PIT)--54.99 ADP--Although Marte's 2013 production isn't eye-popping, the fact remains that players that can produce in every category, even if it is limited, will climb draft boards which is clearly what happened in his case. Marte's game is based off his ability to get on base and score runs and swipe bases, but he added some power as well which is always a plus. It is unlikely that he is going to ever be a .300 hitter, but if he can reach 40 steals and come close to recording 100 runs, he is well worth his current draft position.
ADP Source: National Fantasy Baseball Championship
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