One of the most common mistakes novice fantasy baseball players make when preparing their draft is how easily they overlook strong talent after a bad year.
When people discuss Comeback Player of the Year, they tend to look at those who have been lost in a season due to injury. See how all eyes are on Orioles’ Trey Mancini, who battled cancer in 2020 and is set to have an outstanding rebound season. But 2020 has been a strange year for many, and finding the right players who are dumped in this year’s plans due to a tough season can make all the difference, and a good place to find these gems is in the open.
Take advantage of the great price of the athletic outfielder Ramon Laureano. Preparing him for his current 154 ADP should be seen as a lift based on his potential to be a 30 home run and 20 steal players. He flashed that combination of power and speed during his first conversation in the league in 2018, and he developed it during a breakout campaign where he hit .288 with 24 homers and 13 stolen bases. Last season was not so kind to him.
Like many players, Laureano struggled with the unconventional spring and delayed the season in 2020, and he was early limited with a leg injury. While warming up, during a series against the Astros, he was hit three times and then pushed into a fight by Houston bench coach Alex Cintron. He was suspended for six games and never returned to the track. Now, into season 26, Laureano looks set to leave 2020 behind and get back in business. He is ready to take the next step.
Rays outfielder Austin Meadows, whose 93 ADP is impressive considering he smashed 33 home runs in 2019, also wants to improve from a tough 2020. few understand how he tested positive for COVID-19 in July and then got thighs and a oblique injury while trying to play through the disease. Even with four homers and two interceptions this spring, he is largely overlooked by many. Do not be one of them.
If your draft position or plan makes you ignore the outfield at the beginning of your draft, you need to know that there are many talents your competitors overlook. Meadows and Laureano can be a game changer in the middle rounds, and this is where you dominate. The best talent for the middle prize is the key to your success.
Howard Bender is Vice President of Operations and Content Manager at FantasyAlarm.com. Follow him on Twitter @rotobuzzguy and catch him on the award-winning “Fantasy Alarm Radio Show” on SiriusXM fantasy sports channel weekdays from 6pm to 8pm. Go to FantasyAlarm.com for all your fantasy baseball tips.