We wrap up each week of positional coverage with our 2017 rankings. In addition to the rankings we will pose a number of questions to our panel covering topics such as reaches and targets, players to avoid and late round impact players.
Taking part in our rankings will be Kevin Jebens, Jim Finch, Ron Vackar, Josh Coleman, Andy Singleton, Mike Sheehan and Neil Kenworthy. Our seven “experts” each ranked their top-30 second basemen for the 2017 season.
Players marked N/R were not ranked inside the top 30 by that particular person. We used a 10 games started minimum requirement for eligibility, so if you do not see a player here that may qualify in your league, that’s why.
Jonathan Villar does not yet qualify in many leagues, but the Brewers have stated he will start the year at second base so we ranked him accordingly.
If you feel we overlooked someone or would like to debate a player’s ranking, feel free to do so in the comment section below.
Second baseman you will reach for
if you don’t take Altuve in round 1?
Jim: One year ago Dee Gordon was a second round pick. Early mock drafts have him as the 7th second baseman off the board. I’d happily reach into round four to get him.
Kevin: Cano bounced back in the power category, and Dozier hit a lot of homers. However, I’m most likely to nab Dee Gordon due to his potential for 40+ SB, which is becoming a rarity and so boosts his value.
Ron: Second base is not a position to reach for given the depth of the position. However, if I were to reach it would be for Trea Turner. Enthusiasts who play in several leagues need to take at least one crack at Turner just to see if he can have a Ricky Henderson type of season with eligibility at 2B, SS (coming soon), and OF.
Andy: Is 2B loaded or what?!! Javier Baez, Jonathan Schoop, and Devon Travis have serious upside. I mention them as highly regarded prospects, who may be coming into their own. I almost felt lazy doing this position, because after a few studs at the top, there is a lot of really good talent lumped together. I could easily change almost anyone on this list; it is that close. The reach I would make is Trea Turner, who came dangerously close to unseating Altuve at the top.
Josh: I would have no issue at all targeting Matt Carpenter as a Top 50 draft option. Good plate discipline, steady contact, increased hard hit rate and home runs, and a solid BA to go with 200 combined runs and RBIs. Cano is the better option, but I could see Carpenter with a similar line 40 picks later.
Mike: In early mocks drafts I’ve seen Matt Carpenter and Dee Gordon falling to the 5th and 6th rounds. I’d be really happy with either of them at that value.
Neil: Trea Turner passed the eye test during the second half and should have fantasy owners jumping at the chance to see what he can do over 162 games. Turner has great contact skills and the combination of his elite speed and manager Dusty Baker’s aggressiveness on the base paths put him in the fantasy superstar conversation.
Which second basemen do you plan on avoiding in the draft?
Jim: Robinson Cano is being taken way too early for me so I’ll pass on him. I’ll also avoid the soon to be 35-year-old Ian Kinsler – playing the regression card just to be safe.
Kevin: Trea Turner is simply going to cost too much, and readers will know I avoid youngster hype. I’m also not a fan of Dustin Pedroia, but it’s mostly personal: the years I’ve kept him or drafted him, he’s underperformed or been injured.
Ron: I plan to avoid Rougned Odor. There’s too many similarly productive players to snag later on. The second basemen available a little later in the draft may not quite have his ceiling, but there are tons of guys with a similar, safe floor.
Andy: Jean Segura scares me the most. Similar to what I wrote about Wil Myers, we have seen really good, and really bad, but still young enough to be the former. His name seems to excite a lot of people, of which I am not a member of the group.
Josh: Brian Dozier’s BA issues make month to month stats erratic, but his final line is usually solid. He has pull power and fly ball tendencies, and he should lead position in HRs, but career high HR/FB leave me skeptical of the 40 HR power. I see more of a 2015 line (.236/28/101/77) than I do a repeat of last year. That’s not a top-30 player.
Mike: I probably wouldn’t take Altuve in the first round like most people. I’d rather have one of the elite third baseman paired with one of the great values at second base.
Neil: Although Jean Segura is coming off of a great season, I’m not a firm believer and can’t see him repeating. Moving to Seattle, Segura now has to play a decent chunk of his schedule in pitcher-friendly parks – a significant change from Chase and Coors Field.
Who is your top MI target once your second base slot is filled?
Jim: There are so many 2B options I’m not sure I have a specific target. Jose Peraza (speed), Jonathan Schoop (power), and Jedd Gyorko (multi-eligible) are a few guys on my short list, but I’d be happy with anyone being taken in the top-20.
Kevin: A deep MI means you have your pick depending on the type of player you need? Power (Gyorko), average (Panik, Kendrick), or speed (Harrison, Wong, Mondesi) can all be reasonably had.
Ron: I will likely be looking in the Logan Forsythe or Neil Walker range when filling my MI slot. Both offer the floor of a guy like Rougned Odor “as I mentioned above”, but Forsythe and Walker might not have the ceiling potential of the Rangers’ keystone man.
Andy: Like a Quarterback in Fantasy Football, I want either the first Middle Infielder or the last one. If I reach, I’m doing it early and getting a multi-positional guy like Murphy or Carpenter. If I wait, I’m likely going veteran, like Pedroia, Castro, or Phillips.
Josh: The health concerns of Devon Travis provide a built-in discount on draft day, He could provide a nice AVG and solid run totals with a high lineup spot. Even lower would be Yangervis Solarte. The skills aren’t elite but he has some pop and could have prominent lineup spot for an under the radar offense.
Mike: I want Devon Travis. He has been awesome whenever on the field and I’m willing to gamble that the injuries are behind him.
Neil: While batting average is incredibly hard to predict from season to season, DJ LeMahieu has put together back-to-back .300 seasons. This is likely aided by playing half his games in Colorado but I’m not complaining? He will likely be overlooked for names like Kinsler and Carpenter which only increases his value as owners may be able to snag him at a decent ADP.
Late round pick that could make an impact?
Jim: Neil Walker will be available late and could hit 20+ home runs with a batting average floor of .270. He was on his way to having a career year last year before an injury cut thing short. He’ll be overlooked with all the new talent up the middle.
Kevin: There’s no denying Moncada’s long-term potential. However, we currently don’t know how many AB he’ll get in 2017, with Lawrie and Frazier in line to start, so you may be able to grab him late in the draft. Joe Panik is a good buy-low target if you need average, but provides little else.
Ron: It may be foolish, but I am still a believer in Kolten Wong. I have seen him going after pick 300 in a couple early drafts. If that continues, Kolten Wong will find his way on several of my 2017 rosters.
Andy: Again, I can’t emphasize enough that this position is DEEP. The late round pick with upside, who may not even get picked at all is Raul Mondesi. Barely old enough to legally drink, he has been highly touted since he was in diapers. The Royals have been extremely aggressive with him, and if he gets AB’s he can truly be a 15/25 type. Even if the power doesn’t come yet, the 25 is real.
Josh: Neil Walker posted a BA under .265 once, has 20 or more HR in 2 of last 3 seasons, and the counting stats are strong in seasons he accumulates 500 or more at bats. He has the talent and skill to finish in the top 10-15 for his position.
Mike: I think people will forget about Hernan Perez. He could be an awesome steals contributor in the late rounds.
Neil: While Ryan Schimpf won’t do much in terms of average, I’ll take a late-round flier on his power potential alone. During his rookie season he hit 20 HR over 289 at-bats, and his metrics suggest more of the same in 2017. If Schimpf is able to find a stable role in the lineup, he could easily make for a valuable end-draft pickup.
That Wraps up our second base rankings. Check back next week as we bring you our top-30 Third Base options for the 2017 season.