2018 Prospect Rankings: Third Base

Back by popular demand, Paul Hartman and Andy Germani return to bring you their prospect rankings for the 2018 season. In addition to the rankings we pose a number of questions to each of or “experts” to give you an idea on who they are targeting and avoiding. While these rankings are primarily for those of you in keeper and dynasty leagues, some of the players could make a potential impact in 2018.

Note that players marked N/R were not ranked by that particular person. Players are also ranked using their primary position, so those that played multiple positions will not be duplicated elsewhere in our rankings.

  Player Age ETA Andy Paul
1 Vlad Guerrero Jr

18

2020

1

1

2 Nick Senzel

22

2018

2

2

3 Austin Riley

20

2019

4

3

4 Kevin Maitan

17

2021

3

6

5 Michael Chavis

22

2018

10

4

T6 Miguel Andujar

22

2018

13

5

T6 Colton Welker

20

2020

6

12

T6 Lucas Erceg

22

2018

8

10

T6 Christian Arroyo

22

2018

11

7

T10 Ryan Mountcastle

20

2019

5

14

T10 Ryan Vilade

18

2021

10

9

12 Hudson Potts

19

2021

9

13

13 Jake Burger

21

2020

16

8

14 Nolan Jones

19

2021

15

15

T15 Jacob Gonzalez

19

2921

14

18

T15 Bobby Dalbec

22

2020

7

25

T15 Mark Vientos

18

2021

21

11

18 JD Davis

24

2018

19

16

19 Drew Ellis

22

2020

12

24

T20 Ke’Bryan Hayes

21

2020

17

20

T20 Brian Anderson

24

2018

18

19

22 Dermis Garcia

20

2021

23

17

23 Colin Moran

25

2018

20

21

24 Renato Nunez

24

2018

24

22

25 Sheldon Neuse

23

2018

25

23




Who is your favorite prospect to break out in 2018?

Andy: Jacob Gonzalez had a pretty nice start to his minor league career last season with a .339/.397/.458 slash with an 86% contact rate. He is still young so the power right now is just a dream, he only hit one homer last year. If Gonzalez can prove he is even capable of 20 homers in the future his hit tool should be enough to make him make a big jump this year.

Paul: It will likely take a significant improvement in his approach, but I have to think Lucas Erceg breaks out after a lackluster 2017. Erceg has massive power potential, but he looks pop-up happy with a 45% FB rate and a 24% IFFB% (30% in 2016). His final line of .256/.307/.417 was disappointing after many expected his break out in 2017. We may have just been a year early, as Erceg went 4-10 in three AAA games to end the season. He hit 2 doubles, walked once and struck out just once. If his owner is feeling less excited than he was a year ago, it would be a great time to buy low. 

What prospect (if any) could make a surprising contribution to fantasy teams in 2018?

Andy: Only one I think can make a real contribution is Nick Senzel. The bat is great and he is almost a lock to make the jump to the majors this year. He spent half the year in AA and had a .220 ISO with a .340 average. Senzel’s start of a great fantasy asset starts this year.

Paul: I think people are sleeping on Tampa’s Christian Arroyo heading into 2018. It might be the .192 AVG he posted in 125 at-bats last year with the Giants. But, this guy can hit – and he’s lined up for a full-time gig as a Ray this year. His 24% strikeout rate was nearly double his average throughout his minor league career, and while the power isn’t there yet, he’s been a doubles machine with his gap power. I’m a big fan of this bat.

What lesser-known prospect should fantasy owners put on their radars now?

Andy: Drew Ellis was overshadowed by two-way star Brendan McKay at Louisville but he hit 20 homers at Louisville and another eight after he was drafted. The average in the minors wasn’t great, but a 12% walk rate for a first timer is nice to see. His power is his calling card, and while everyone hits for power nowadays I still think Ellis is worth a look.

Paul: The Yankees’ Dermis Garcia was promoted to low A last year as a 19-year-old third baseman. There he hit .227 with a 34% K rate. The power showed up, as it did in 2016 and earlier in the year in the Appalachian League. He hit 17 home runs on the season in 225 at-bats. And while the strikeouts were a concern, he did walk 38 times.  There’s a lot of risks here, but the power is real and it’s beautiful. 

What prospect can you see slipping down the rankings owners may want to trade/avoid?

Andy: Bobby Dalbec’s strikeout rate is pretty terrifying if you own him and were hoping for big things. On the flip side, what he did after being drafted in 2016 is some pretty exciting upside. This is kind of your now or never year, on both sides. Trade him away now, his value will either tank or go up, or trade for him now if you’re a believer. My rank says believer, but make sure you keep expectations in check.

Paul: It was a nice year for Ryan Mountcastle, hitting .314 with a .228 ISO in High A at 20 years old. He faltered later in AA, but relative to his age it isn’t terribly concerning.  The issue to me is his aggressive approach that will keep his batting average low, and limited power to make up for it. I think he’s at the high point of his prospect status – as he moves up and looks more and more like a 15 home run, .250 hitter, few will be looking to make a move for him. If you’ve got him, I’d move him. 

*****

2018 Prospect Rankings
CatcherFirst BaseSecond BaseShortstopOutfieldStarting Pitcher – Top 100

 

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Andy Germani

Written by 

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.

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