Outfielders are tough to gauge. Many players who can’t make it at an infield position are often cast to the outfield because the defensive responsibilities are easier. This makes it easier to find players who might end up in the outfield, but harder to target someone who will end up there. In our latest fantasy baseball dynasty prospects watch the following guys are already labeled as outfielders and are almost certain to remain there.
Hopefully, you were able to lock on to Ronald Acuna. I’ve heard him compared as the next Mike Trout, but I see him more as the next Andruw Jones, which is still pretty good company. The main difference will be batting averages closer to .270 than .300 and half the stolen bases in his prime years.
So who is available in your league? The names you should know are Eloy Jimenez (White Sox), Victor Robles (Nationals) and Alex Verdugo (Dodgers). These guys are going to be studs. Others you should look for are Lewis Brinson (Marlins), Kyle Tucker (Astros), Austin Meadows (Pirates) and Luis Robert (White Sox). If any of these players are on your waiver wire, you should move quickly because they are going to be stars.
Leody Taveras is a guy who can help your team in all five fantasy categories. He has a great approach at the plate and is an impact player and the steals will carry him as a fantasy factor until his power develops. He is still young and a little patience will be required, but the patient fantasy player will be rewarded with a future fantasy force. ETA: 2020
— MiLB.com (@MiLB) March 31, 2017
Juan Soto is off to a hot start in 2018. He’s a guy who will provide huge power but also may have trouble staying healthy. Soto looks like a younger version of Eloy Jiminez with his superior contact and power skills and should develop into a star. ETA: 2020
Corey Ray was much ballyhooed when he was drafted in 2016. Ray struggled mightily in his first two professional seasons and many were declaring him a bust before he turned 23 years old. He has found new life this season and is currently tearing up double-A. He has power and speed but the batting average will keep him from becoming elite. ETA: 2020
Blake Rutherford is a favorite of mine. I fell in love during his junior year of high school when I read reports comparing him to Grady Sizemore in his prime. Who wouldn’t want a guy who posts .285/25HR/80RBI/120R/30SB?
Of course, projecting a 17 year old for future MLB greatness is tough. Rutherford probably won’t put up pre-injury ravaged Grady numbers, but maybe Grady-lite? He’ll fill up the stats boxes and definitely be an above-average player at a minimum. ETA: 2020
Roll the Dice
Kyle Lewis is trying to get back on track after the knee injury that ended his 2016 season and plagued his 2017 as the injury kept recurring. He has good contact and great power skills. The talent is there but the ability to stay healthy is the factor that will determine if he is a star or a bust. ETA: 2020
Anthony Alford is another power-speed guy who will struggle to hit for average, but the concern with Alford is his inability to stay healthy. He struggled in his cup of coffee in Toronto last season, but will get his second chance this summer. If he can stay off the DL, he is likely to be an above average fantasy contributor. ETA: 2018
Mickey Moniak was the first pick in the 2016 MLB Draft. But he was flawed from the start as a skinny kid who wasn’t likely to develop power. At best, he is going to be a high average, base stealing, slick-fielding centerfielder, not the kind of player you usually associate with the number one overall pick. His strikeout rate is alarmingly high and suggests his bat will not develop. Unless he figures out how to steal first base, he’s little more than pinch runner and a late inning defensive replacement.
Tip of the Week
If you need an outfielder right now, you might be able to get Steven Souza away from his fantasy owner. Souza has been dealing with a pectoral injury suffered in spring training and has yet to take the field in 2018. Minor setbacks keep moving his Arizona Diamondbacks debut back and making his owners weary of waiting.
You can still get 20 homers and 10 steals with a .250 average from Souza this season. He’s probably a week or two away from playing, so make an offer of a lesser OF and see if his owner is interested in getting value now rather than waiting for a Souza return.