Home Uncategorized Fantasy Baseball 2B Sleepers: Breakout second basemen, late-round steals

Fantasy Baseball 2B Sleepers: Breakout second basemen, late-round steals

by MD Samsuzzaman Siyam

Many fantasy baseball owners consider second base to be sort of a “catch-all” position, particularly if you’re looking for a bench sleeper or MI late in drafts. Particularly, 2B is the position where you can find some steals, which is always coveted by fantasy owners. You can also usually find one or two big 2B breakouts every year, and with almost all second basemen eligible at other positions, that’s important because you can’t necessarily count on rankings or cheat sheets to know when the upper- or even middle-tier guys will come off draft boards.

The list below features a wide range of 2Bs, from popular sleepers in even shallow leagues (Dylan Moore, Nick Madrigal) to guys who might not get drafted even in deep leagues. It also features a solid array of specific category sleepers, from average (Madrigal), power (Nick Solak, Gavin Lux), and speed (Madrigal, Jon Berti) to some combination all three (Moore, Solak, Jake Cronenworth). 

Second base isn’t a particularly deep position, but that just makes it all the more important. Getting a good one — or at least one who helps in a specific category — can really put your team over the top. At the very least, it’s always good to have bench options who you can plug-and-play at multiple infield positions, and you can find many of those at 2B.

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Fantasy Baseball 2B Sleepers: Breakout second basemen, late-round steals

Position eligibility based on Yahoo’s default settings

Nick Solak, Rangers (also eligible 3B, OF). Solak was high on this list heading into last year after he hit 32 HRs between Double-A, Triple-A and the majors in 2019. He didn’t produce as expected in ’20 (.268/.326/.344), but he did steal seven bases in 58 games, which is promising if you project that out over a full season. The versatile 26-year-old righty figures to hit for power eventually, making him a legit 20-20 (or even 30-20) candidate. Chances are, the steals won’t quite hit that mark, but Solak can still be a solid all-around producer at a bargain price. 

Dylan Moore, Mariners (3B, SS, OF). Moore is “everyone’s sleeper” this year, so he might be getting overvalued at this point. That said, even with all the hype, Moore has the tools to really pay off, especially with his multi-position eligibility. The 28-year-old righty hit eight HRs and stole 12 bases in just 33 games last year, and getting that 20-HR, 30-SB potential is always going to be extremely valuable, even if it comes with a mediocre average. Chances are, he won’t steal quite that many bases, but Moore will be a worthwhile fantasy contributor.

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Nick Madrigal, White Sox. Like Moore, Madrigal might be getting a bit overvalued at this point, but the 24-year-old speedster should provide two stats that fantasy owners are always looking for: SBs and batting average. A .309 hitter in 163 minor league games, Madrigal hit .340 in 29 games with the big club last year. That came with a .365 BABIP, which really isn’t that high when you consider what type of hitter he is. Mandrigal will not hit for any power (four total HRs in the minors), but after 35 steals in 2019, it’s likely he can hit the 30-SB mark. However, it’s important to note that it would be a bit of a surprise if he stole 40 or 50, and with next to nothing provided in HRs and RBIs, Madrigal has limited overall value. Still, if you’re loaded with low-average power hitters, getting a guy like Madrigal to play 2B or MI can really round out your roster. 

Jake Cronenworth, Padres (1B, SS). The Padres have multiple infield options, but Cronenworth projects to have an everyday role when the season opens. The versatile 27-year-old lefty hit .285/.354/.477 in 54 games last year, building off a 2019 Triple-A campaign where he hit .334/.429/.520 with 10 HRs and 12 SBs in 88 games. Cronenworth’s lefty splits are a worry, as he could find himself in a platoon, but his multi-position eligibility, decent power-speed combination, and solid contact skills make him a nice bench player. 

Ha-seong Kim, Padres (SS). Kim doesn’t have an everyday spot in the Padres lineup, but the 25-year-old Korean import is a 20-20 type with good average and on-base skills. How that will translate to the majors remains to be seen, but if he finds his way into the lineup, he could be a nice, cheap source of all-around production. Don’t draft him, but add him to your watchlists.

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Gavin Lux, Dodgers. Lux tore through the Dodgers’ minor league system, particularly dominating at Triple-A in 2019 (.392/.478/.719). That success hasn’t carried over to the majors in either of the past two seasons (.210/.278/.377 in 42 games), but at just 23, Lux still has time to develop. The Dodgers have no shortage of options to play second base, so Lux, who’s been particularly bad against lefties in extremely limited action (.091/.130/.227 in 23 plate appearances), could find himself in a platoon, but with his pedigree, a breakout at some point isn’t just possible, it’s probable.

Jon Berti, Marlins (3B, SS, OF). Berti might seem like an odd inclusion on this list since he’s 31 and doesn’t have an everyday spot in Miami’s lineup, but the past two seasons, he’s produced when he’s been given a chance. More important, he’s produced steals, swiping 26 bags in 112 games. With a solid BB-rate, good contact skills, and significant multi-position eligibility, Berti could be a poor-man’s Jonathan Villar. Realistically, he could be even better than that. Don’t overlook him in deep leagues. 

Brendan Rodgers, Rockies (SS). Rodgers gets the obligatory “starter-in-Colorado” mention here, though a hamstring injury will force him to the IL when the season opens. Nonetheless, the former top-prospect has good pop and decent speed, so if he ever figures it out at the major league level, he could put up some solid numbers. 

Other 2B-eligible sleepers written about elsewhere: Andres Gimenez (3B, SS), Ty France (3B), Mike Brosseau (1B, 3B), Garrett Hampson (SS, OF), Ryan McMahon (1B, 3B), Luis Urias (3B, SS), Dee Strange-Gordon (SS*, OF)

*Not eligible at that position on draft day but expected to play there during the season.



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