Sleepers Are Dead! But Here Are 7 Real Sleepers!
Rest in peace to the notion of “sleepers.” The internet took a wonderful fantasy tradition of finding undervalued talent and turned it into the opposite. Players who SHOULD have great potential return on investment because of their opening ADP, instead get overhyped and over-discussed to the point their ADP rises above the level where they were once a true value. Now, they’ve become risks! They become guys whose ADP rises to the point where they are no longer bonuses on your roster but must return value guys.
What started out as a potential beautiful summer fling, now has all the trappings of a failed marriage.
BUT, there are a few players still sliding through the cracks, as we hit the stretch run of draft season, that can still qualify as “sleepers” because everybody still loooooooves a sleeper. Don’t you? You do.
Here are 7 Sleepers That Haven’t Been Overexposed, which means their ADP is 250 or greater on Fantrax.
(So help me god, I refuse to call them “deep sleepers”. Don’t push me!)
The time is now! It’s time to start thinking fantasy baseball. Leagues are already forming at Fantrax.com, so head on over and start or join a league today.
The Real Sleepers of 2019
Kyle Gibson MIN (Fantrax ADP 257)
No one, and I mean no one, is going to “ooooo” and “aaahhh” when you select Kyle Gibson in your draft room. He’s far from a sexy pick. No one thinks William H. Macy is sexy either, but he makes every film he’s in better! Gibson had a career-high 196 IP last year and saw his K rate climb from the annually frustrating 6 K/9 range, to the intriguing 8.3 K/9 level. His ERA was the same at home and on the road as well. Despite pitching in the AL, Gibson can be a mixed league asset if used properly in favorable match-ups.
Ketel Marte ARZ (Fantrax ADP 261)
Don’t let the Adam Jones signing scare you at all. Ketel Marte is going to play every day, hit leadoff and be a fantasy asset. The Jones signing is more of an insurance policy for Steven Souza and/or Wilmer Flores, than a threat to Marte’s PT. In his first full season, Marte hit 14 HR, 12 triples, stole 6 bags and posted his best MLB SLG% to date (.437). Marte has potential for a 15/15 roto season, with 90 runs scored. In points leagues, those triples will add up and his low K rate is an asset. Plus, he’ll qualify at 2B, SS and OF by May 1st in most leagues!
Ian Happ CHC (Fantrax ADP 272)
Remember when Ian Happ was a rock star prospect in 2017 and he hit 24 bombs in 114 games? I do! Why does no one else seem to remember? Well, that’s good news. Happ bounced around in 2018 and qualifies at OF and 3B this year. Ben Zobrist is in the final year of his contract and at 37 is showing signs of decline. Happ found 462 plate appearances and should find 500 this year. The BA could certainly stand to improve (just .233 last year). Happ was a .275 hitter in the minors, so a .260 BA with 20+ HR and 10 SB is well within his 2019 reach.
C.J. Cron MIN (Fantrax ADP 275)
Do you like power? I like power! C.J. Cron has power. Why don’t you like C.J. Cron!? He’s 29 years old, in his prime and last year when he was given a full, healthy season of playing time he produced! Now, he’s moved onto Minnesota and could be in line to match that HR total and drive in 80 runs as well. As an AL only asset, or a mixed league UT bat, you could do a lot worse than Cron. He may have only hit .233 versus RHP, but he also clubbed 22 dingers off them as well. He also crushes LHP (.307 BA/.9.30 OPS).
Teoscar Hernandez (Fantrax ADP 288)
Lost in the shuffle of all the shiny new Blue Jay prospects is Teoscar Hernandez. To which I say, “Oh good!” He hit 22 HR last year as he scuffled through his first big league season. Spring stats don’t mean much, but when faced with the prospect of being in a timeshare in 2019, the guy showed up to camp looking fit and is hitting .500. That tells me, this guy gets it and doesn’t have to be hit over the head like Miguel Sano. Hernandez was in the Astros’ system previously, and I trust their track record of selecting young talent. Hernandez is basically a free outfielder with 25 HR potential.
Trevor May (Fantrax ADP 291)
I don’t care if Blake Parker was signed this offseason, Trevor May’s 2018 finish left no question he should be the closer for the Twins in 2019. He amassed 36 K in 25 IP as a reliever last year while walking just 5. May has looked equally sharp this spring and has the potential to outperform 75% of the closers drafted ahead of him. May will be the 2019 poster boy for not paying for saves.
Domingo Santana SEA (Fantrax ADP 300)
Playing time? Check. Power? Check? Speed? Check. Low ADP? Check. Domingo Santana checks all the boxes and did you know he’s still just 26 years old? He’s bounced around for a while and his current low ADP is a cocktail of injury history, multiple teams and being dubbed a fantasy “sleeper” in years past, only to under-deliver. It was just 2017 when he hit 30 HR, drove in 85 and stole 15 bases. He’s crushing spring training pitching and looks poised to once again be fantasy relevant, post the sleeper hype.
Are there any sleepers any more? For more great rankings, strategy, and analysis check out the 2019 FantraxHQ Fantasy Baseball Draft Kit. We’ll be adding more content from now right up until Opening Day!
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