As fantasy baseball takes on a new season, everyone participating is looking for the next ace or slugger to put them ahead of their leagues. Whether for money from the pool or bragging rights, people will have to bull through 162 games with utmost awareness.
One injury could dent teams even worse if one is not paying attention. When assembling the team, one question must come to mind among others: “If the players I want are taken off the board, who do I get?”
Everyone wants a big fish in their ponds. Mike Trout, Jose Altuve, Clayton Kershaw and Bryce Harper are usually among the ones taken first. But every so often, an unknown name will step up, create waves and becomes the big thing on the MLB Fantasy talk.
At times, these names are young guns looking for a breakthrough season. When they establish themselves as secret weapons, new prospects can help teams reach new height alongside respected veterans of the game.
Let’s take a look at the 2018 prospects to consider for fantasy.
Fantasy Prospects: outfield
In the outfield, these names can take over for injured players or improve the team right out of the gates.
The first name to keep an eye out for is Lewis Brinson of the Miami Marlins. Although he already made his MLB debut last season, the 23-year-old has so much more to show than his 21 games played as a Milwaukee Brewer.
His six seasons in the minors, fall and winter leagues have yielded solid numbers at the plate and on defense. In this spring session, he has raised his batting average to .409, on top of showing continuous growth on defense. With the Marlins’ outfield in need of filled ranks, no doubt that the Florida native will make his case to be a starter.
Another outfielder to consider is Eloy Jimenez of the Chicago White Sox. The 21-year-old has made himself a top prospect for 2018. In his four seasons in the minors, he has recorded 43 home runs, 206 RBIs and a .302 batting average. His talents on defense are solid on their own merits, showcasing his discipline and lack of errors.
Though he hasn’t made a lot of noise in this spring training, the young right fielder will look at every opportunity he gets to show what he can bring to the 40-man roster. Fantasy participants might want to keep his name written down, if they’re looking for a solid batting presence.
Although names like Ronald Acuna and Shohei Ohtani seem like bigger and better names, Brinson and Jimenez should in no way be overlooked in the outfield conversation.
Fantasy Prospects: infield
In addition to the outfield, there are a couple of names to take notes on for drafting infielders. By bat and glove, they look to appear on the national radar as the next superstars in Major League Baseball, in addition to fantasy draft boards.
Starting off is Rockies first baseman, Ryan McMahon. Though he already has some regular season experience from last year, the 23-year-old is turning into a rising force at the plate. In his five seasons in the minor leagues, he has tallied 79 home runs, 392 RBIs and a .298 batting average.
His batting continues to improve in spring training, along with his fielding prowess. McMahon, along with Nolan Arenado could be shutting down both sides of the infield in the near future.
Another prospect looking to strike it big in 2018 is Luis Urías of the San Diego Padres. Urías has shown seemingly endless potential due to his huge skill set, not just in his batting improvements, but also in his fielding knowledge. His experience at numerous positions in the infield can open up options for San Diego, as well as problems for batters.
Throughout his tenure in the minors, he has played shortstop, second base and third base. On top of this level of versatility, he has racked up a .310 overall batting average in the minors and a .444 overall average in spring training.
Though he has to make his MLB debut, fantasy league enthusiasts and experts alike should not take Luis Urías lightly.
As March 29 Draws Closer
In addition to the regular season, fantasy baseball participants should stay tuned in as spring games come and go. With injuries, and retirement announcements, they will have to adapt quickly to remain in fantasy contention. Come the regular season, the fantasy marathon will truly begin.
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