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Fantasy Baseball Today

The tiers get one last glorious update

By Scott White | Senior Fantasy Writer

So I took the time to update all of my tiers (print 'em out!) Wednesday evening for you last-minute drafters out there. Granted, I've been doing it all along, but this time, I changed the time stamp on each column (such as this one) and documented it in this blog to leave no doubt when I last made changes.

Or what changes I made ...

  • Josmil Pinto gets to stay among The Last Resorts at catcher. He made the team, which means it's only a matter of time before he overtakes Kurt Suzuki for the starting job. In two-catcher leagues, he needs to be owned even if he's making only two starts a week in the beginning, especially now with Geovany Soto sidelined.
  • Jurickson Profar is one of The Last Resorts now, with Kolten Wong taking his place among The Fallback Options. Even though he may miss the first three months, Profar is still worth stashing in mixed leagues, especially if yours offers a DL spot. His upside is just too high. Slotting him behind useful-but-uninspiring types like Howie Kendrick and Neil Walker seems about right.
  • Marcus Semien and Mike Olt have both improved their stock enough this spring to become draftable in deeper mixed leagues, which is as far as I go with the tiers. They're not exactly must-haves, but both have the upside to contribute in standard mixed leagues if they get regular at-bats and meet their potential right away.
  • Brad Miller is now at the front of The Fallback Options at shortstop. In Head-to-Head points leagues, I might even be willing to slot him with The Next-Best Things. His spring performance has cleared up any doubts I had about his upside. I expect him to hit .300 this year.
  • I finally caved and moved Alex Rios and Jayson Werth up to The Near-Elite just because everyone else seems to value them as such. I still don't really trust them, but because they're tiered with players who typically last longer, I don't think I'll ever be in a posiiton to draft them.
  • Matt Kemp is now in a low enough tier that I won't be tempted to draft him no matter how far he falls. Maybe if he stays healthy, he's as good as Domonic Brown, but that's all I'm willing to give him. And who am I kidding? He's already not healthy.
  • Kole Calhoun is now appropriately tiered with Khris Davis and Adam Eaton. Nick Castellanos is now appropriately tiered with Oswaldo Arcia.
  • Matt Cain and James Shields have joined The Near-Elite at starting pitcher, which had become near depletion with all the injuries this spring. Their track records set them apart from the Alex Cobbs and Shelby Millers of the world -- enough that I continually found myself reaching for them in drafts.
  • Alex Wood, Yordano Ventura, Michael Pineda are now with The Last Resorts where they belong. That's an upgrade, in case it isn't clear. Alex Wood moves up a tier in leagues where you can use him at relief pitcher.
  • Tanner Scheppers, Robbie Ross and Drew Hutchison have starting jobs now. Of them, Scheppers is by far the most exciting, especially in leagues where you can use him at relief pitcher.
  • Koji Uehara and Trevor Rosenthal are now tiered separately from Joe Nathan and Jason Grilli to reflect the difference in projected number of strikeouts. Ernesto Frieri has moved up a tier for the same reason.
  • Joakim Soria takes Neftali Feliz's place among The Last Resorts, but further up the list. If he wasn't coming back from Tommy John surgery, I'd tier him with The Fallback Options.
  • J.J. Hoover is nestled between the Rockies' and Astros' closing committees as the projected replacement for Aroldis Chapman. If he claims the job outright, I like him about on the level of Nate Jones.

In case you're unfamiliar with the concept, tiering helps ensure the most efficient draft possible by pointing out the biggest drop-offs at each position. Naturally, the position to target is the one whose active tier is closest to completion.

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