There are many people that don't pay much attention to Spring Training and dismiss it too easily. There can be a lot of things to learn leading to big dividends in fantasy baseball.

One such player for me was Carlos Rodón . The White Sox left-hander wasn't on my radar when I started drafting in January. He only pitched 7.2 innings last season and 34.2 innings in 2019. Before that, he struggled and showed flashes occasionally, but command was an issue. He wasn't even guaranteed a spot in the starting rotation. What was there to see?

Rodon worked on his mechanics with pitching coach Ethan Katz and entered the spring the healthiest he has been. He looked excellent in the spring, allowing two runs on nine hits with one walk and had 16 strikeouts in 13.2 innings. The strikeout-to-walk ratio was eye-popping for me. He was the third overall pick in the 2014 draft and was throwing harder than previous years. That's the type of player to take a shot on late in deeper drafts.

I drafted Rodon in the 26th round of the 15-team NFBC Main Event and in round 29 of the NFBC 12-team online championship. It's only one start, but Rodon looked excellent against the Mariners and touched 98 miles per hour and averaged 95.4 miles per hour with his fastball, two above his career average.

Rodon pitched five scoreless innings, allowed two hits, walked three, hit two batters and struck out nine. He threw 95 pitches and induced 19 swings and misses. He threw mainly a fastball and a slider and mixed in a changeup.

The good thing was Rodon was tested right away. After a failed pick-off attempt, J.P. Crawford was at third base with no outs in the first inning. Rodon then got a strikeout, pop-up to shallow center and a strikeout to end the inning. It was the first win for Rodon since April 19, 2019.

The fourth inning was also a test as Rodon walked the bases loaded with one out. A fielder's choice getting an out at home and a strikeout ended the threat.

It was easy to be dismissive of Rodon before the spring. He was 29-33 with a 4.14 ERA in 97 games, including 92 starts over six seasons. Injuries didn't help either. In 2017, he was limited to 12 starts due to left biceps bursitis and left shoulder inflammation. He had surgery after the season on the shoulder and then had Tommy John surgery in 2019. He appeared in four games last season before going on the injured list with left shoulder soreness.

This isn't a victory lap. Rodon still has to prove himself and stay healthy. The point is to pay attention to changes in the spring. Rodon was extremely cheap, going in the final rounds of drafts and undrafted in most leagues. The cost is minimal and even if he fails, it didn't cost a premium pick. Rodon should be added in all leagues of 12 teams or more and I would consider in ten-team leagues depending on the drop.

It's Not Over!

I know a lot of people with Fernando Tatis Jr. are feeling down and think the season is over. It's not! Sure, it's a big blow, but if you had a good draft, got some value players late and work the waiver wire, it can be overcome. It's much more difficult in NL-only leagues and competitive leagues like high stakes leagues but forget about sulking and work to make the team better.

I have to heed this advice, too. I drafted Tatis with the third pick in the 15-team Tout Wars mixed league draft. I also have Trevor Rosenthal . James Paxton , who left with an injury Tuesday night, Nate Pearson , and Matt Olson . There's nothing you can do except work the waiver wire and keep trying.

Do the Baddoo

Akil Baddoo has been one of the fun stories in the first week. He's another player that stood out in the spring to make the Tigers. He had a slash line of .325/.460/.750 with five home runs and four steals in the Spring.

Baddoo wasn't in the lineup for the first two games and got the start on Sunday in left field, batting ninth and hit a solo homer. He started in center field on Monday and went 2-for-4 with a grand slam and a stolen base. Baddoo didn't start on Tuesday but came into the game late as a pinch-runner, stayed in to play right field and got the walk-off single in the bottom of the tenth inning. He is 4-for-8 with two home runs and six RBI.

Playing time is the concern, but I would add Baddoo in deeper formats. The Tigers don't have any outstanding players in his way.