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Prospect Values: Second Base

For many people, second base has the top prospect in baseball – if not number one then definitely in the top-three, and I wouldn’t be surprised if most people had as many as seven second baseman in the top-100.

According to the study I keep referencing, believe it or not the second base position busts the most out of all the fielding positions at 69 percent; only pitcher busts more.

There is nothing I can really point to being a reason for the struggle for the position itself. And I really don’t believe that just because the position hasn’t had success in the past that it won’t again. There will be plenty of shortstops that end up getting moved to second base because the defense profiles better there. Guys like Jorge Mateo and Ozzie Albies look like they have already made that move.

If you have any questions on any players feel free to ask about them in the comment section below or on Twitter

Note: Just because a player isn’t mentioned doesn’t mean I like or dislike them; I just feel like their current value falls in line with what it should be, or the guys I chose were more underrated or overrated than the ones I left off.

If you are looking for the top-20 prospect second base rankings click here. We will continue to have prospect rankings on Friday’s and my values the following week.

Overvalued

Forrest Wall: I can see some of the excitement with Wall. He has hit for a decent average with some steals. He is also in the Colorado system which brings excitement with the future potential playing in Coors. Coors will really help the average and the power play up compared to any stadium in the majors.

The issue is I don’t think Wall makes it to the majors with Colorado. Maybe he gets a handful of at bats at some point, but not a full-time role. Brendon Rodgers and Trevor Story look like they will be manning the middle infield for some time. Wall’s hope to play in Colorado relies in Story getting moved to the outfield or traded.

Wall doesn’t seem like a likely option to move to the outfield himself because of surgery he had that has reportedly hurt his arm strength.

In the end I think Wall’s upside could be a 12-15 homer/20-25 steal player while hitting for a respectable .270-.280 average.

Like with everyone here, it depends on the people you are dealing with. I have seen Wall highly touted by some, and others that value him similarly to me. He will probably end up on the back-end of top-100 lists this offseason, but I don’t think he makes mine.

Travis Demeritte: It is hard for me to say he is an overvalued player because I own tons of these types in dynasty leagues at one time or another. The big power hitters that we hope can hit just enough to maintain a decent enough average to hit 30-40 homers.

The issue with him now? He has become a little too overhyped. In MLB.com’s recently released second base rankings he came in at fifth. Yes, I know their rankings aren’t for fantasy, but guess where most of your fantasy league mates are going to look first or second to get their prospect information.

He was suspended in 2015 for PEDs, and last year broke out with a 28 homer season while hitting .266. One thing that gets overlooked a bit here is he was a 22-year-old playing in high-A. As a high school draftee from the 2013 draft, I would like to see a lot more advancement than to be in high-A in his fourth season.

There is also the huge issue of strikeouts; he whiffed 175 times last year and 80 times in just 190 at bats in 2015.

The home run appeal is great, but these prospects have a high rate of busting. When these types get to the high levels of prospect values it is time to flip them before people realize the strikeouts aren’t going away and the best case scenario is a .230 hitting 35 home run player.



Good Values

Willie Calhoun: I went in possibly a little too far with my love affair with Calhoun with the prospect rankings. As you can see by our second base rankings, I am really high on Calhoun.

It might be hard to really get on board with Calhoun as an undervalued prospect because of how highly you might see him ranked around the industry. I still think he is not highly ranked enough. I expect him to be inside my top-25, and possibly higher, when we get to our top-100 lists in a few weeks.

Ian Happ: He really gets overshadowed because he hasn’t been Alex Bregman or Andrew Benintendi, however I don’t think he is far off from those two 2016 breakouts.

In his minor league stint seasons he has hit .272/.362/.452 with 26 steals. In the majors I would expect a similar stat line to go with 20-25 home runs and potential for 15 steals.

You might ask, why is someone like Happ undervalued and someone like Wall is overvalued?

Happ has multiple avenues to get playing time. He can play both second and outfield. He is also very close to the major leagues. If it wasn’t for the Cubs great lineup Happ would be talked about as one of those prospects redraft players would be watching for an in season promotion.

The bad news is the Cubs have just about every position blocked right now.

I wouldn’t at all be surprised if in two years when he gets full-time playing time he is doing what Bregman is expected to do this season. If you haven’t invested yet and you want to, I would expect this to be your last chance to get him at a reasonable cost.

Scott Kingery: Kingery doesn’t provide much pop as evidence from his eight homers through 197 games.

Kingery is mostly a line drive gap to gap type hitter right now, and he might not ever change from that. He hit .281 last year between two levels with 30 steals.

He is going to be a little different than just about every person you will see on any of these undervalued overvalued lists throughout the offseason. I think Kingery is a decent player. Nice extra base hit potential with steals, a solid average, doesn’t strike out a lot, and he walks. The power will always keep him either unowned or unwanted.

So why invest? And why is he different?

Kingery’s borderline nonexistent power might be about to rise in one of the most power friendly parks in all of baseball. He finished 2015 in AA Reading and would expect to spend most, if not all, of the season there this year. Last year he hit two homers in 156 at bats at Reading; nothing to be really excited about. I think a little of that can be chalked up to his first full season in the minors taking a toll on him.

My hope in getting Kingery now is that he can turn his five homers from last season into a more desirable 12-15 to go with another 30 steal season. At that point you hold a 15/30 player that is hitting .270, possibly even better, that you should know doesn’t have that kind of power.

I think those in the prospect trading business would have a good investment if they bought Kingery now in hopes of flipping him at the deadline or next offseason.

*****

If you have any questions or players at a position I haven’t gotten to yet also leave them in the comment section below and I can do some digging and maybe they will be included when I get to that position.

Previous Prospect Values
Catcher First BaseThird BaseShortstop Outfield pt 1Outfield pt 2 – Starting Pitcher

 

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Andy Germani
I am a lifelong Pittsburgh sports fan and a graduate from Penn State. Baseball was my first love and I still play to this day in an adult baseball league. I always love helping people with their questions on Twitter so feel free to follow me and ask questions.
Andy Germani

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2 comments on “Prospect Values: Second Base

  1. I am with you on Calhoun. Love him! Assuming his defense does not pan out at second, I assume he ends up in left. Also big on Happ. I am surprised the Cubs have not given him a look in center yet. Second base is coverd by Zobrist/Baez and centerfield seems to be the only true opening on the team. I don’t see Almora as the long time fixture out there.

    • Ya I love Calhoun. Right now hes at 2B but like you noted I dont really know if he sticks there. Either way I love the upside. And in reality he might get a value boost by moving off the position and going to the outfield.

      Right now I think Happ’s best chance for 2017 is Zobrist tanks/gets hurt. And even then I dont know if he gets regular at bats with all of the depth they have. It is so frustrating because he can play so many positions but the Cubs have one of the deepest rosters in baseball.

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