2019 Fantasy Baseball Draft Prep: Rankings breakdown, No, 241-250
Learn why you should — and maybe why you shouldn't — draft players 241-250 in our consensus rankings.
Welcome to our 2019 Player Profiles series. We are going through the top-300 in Heath Cummings and Scott White's consensus rankings to give you the case for and the case against drafting each player. By the time you're done, you'll know everything you need to know for drafting in 2019.
241. C.J. Cron, 1B, Twins
The Case For: He hit 30 home runs last year in 140 games. He should hit in the top half of the Twins lineup. While last year was his first with more than 20 home runs, his 162-game pace for his career is 26 home runs and 85 RBI.
The Case Against: He's just barely an above average hitter and he's never played more than 140 games in a season. He's only received more than 450 plate appearances once. There's just nothing to get excited about unless you're desperate for home runs in the reserve rounds.
242. Yoenis Cespedes, OF, Mets
The Case For: When Cespedes is healthy he's an elite hitter. Even in his last two injury-plagued years he's posted an .869 OPS and hit 26 home runs in 119 games. You'll have to wait on him, but as long as you have DL slots he's well worth the wait because his cost is almost nothing.
The Case Against: He had double heel surgery and he's not expected back until at least July. In fact, there's a decent chance he doesn't contribute anything to the Mets or your Fantasy team in 2019. Unless you're in a very deep league, there's just no reason to use draft capital on him.
243. Justin Bour, 1B, Angels
The Case For: Bour has three seasons with an OPS over .800 and one where he topped .900. He should slot into the middle of the Angels lineup at the start of the season, with all the RBI opportunities Mike Trout and Justin Upton provide. You can wait until the reserve rounds to add Bour, who could be a two-category contributor.
The Case Against: He owns a career .639 OPS against left-handed pitching so he could very easily find himself in a platoon again. And once Shohei Ohtani returns from the disabled list, there's legitimate reason to wonder whether Bour has an everyday job at all.
244. Franmil Reyes, OF, Padres
The Case For: Reyes hit 16 home runs in 285 plate appearances as a rookie. He absolutely crushed the ball (44 percent hard contact rate) when he made contact, and there's reason to believe he'll improve his strikeout rate because it was just 21.7 percent in the second half of the season. Reyes has enormous power potential at the back end of the draft.
The Case Against: The Padres have way too many young outfielders, and one of those spots is going to Wil Myers. That means Reyes likely has to win a competition in spring training just to get regular at bats. There's also reason to be concerned about his home run total. He had a 49 percent ground ball rate and just a 29.8 percent fly ball rate.
245. Ramon Laureano, OF, Athletics
The Case For: Between Triple-A and the majors, Laureano hit 19 home runs and stole 18 bases in 112 games. He should open 2019 as the Athletics starting center fielder. In the double-digit rounds he has legit 20-20 potential. If he cuts back on his strikeouts from last year, he could even be a good source of average.
The Case Against: He did strike out in 28 percent of his plate appearances, and it looks likely he'll start the year towards the bottom of the order. If his BABIP regresses he could be a drag in three categories, and his ADP (187) is much higher than our consensus ranking.
246. Jorge Alfaro, C, Phillies
The Case For: Alfaro is a 25-year-old catcher who just posted a 37 percent hard-contact rate and a 23 percent line drive rate. If he can just put the bat on the ball a little bit more often he has the profile to become a must-start catcher in any format. Even if he doesn't, he's a power breakout candidate in two-catcher leagues.
The Case Against: He struck out 36 percent of the time and needed a .406 BABIP to hit .262. For the breakout to happen he also needs to improve on his 29 percent fly ball rate. Alfaro is a fine No. 2 catcher with upside, but you should avoid him in one-catcher drafts.
247. Steven Souza, OF, Diamondbacks
The Case For: Souza has 30 home run, 15 stolen base upside, and his plate discipline improved in Arizona, even if everything else went wrong in 2018. The injuries are a concern, but they're being baked into his ADP. He hits the ball hard, is willing to take a walk and has been a successful on the base paths. You have every reason to give him a shot as your fifth outfielder.
The Case Against: The injury concerns shouldn't be glossed over. He's only played more than 120 games once in a season and he'll turn 30 years old this year. Even if he does stay healthy, he'll be a big drag on your batting average and his run production will be hampered by his weak supporting cast.
The Case For: Bell is so close to being a very good major league hitter. He walks a lot and doesn't strike out often. He makes quality contact. He is one adjustment (less ground balls) away from being very interesting in Fantasy. It's worth a pick after the 20th round to see if he makes that adjustment.
The Case Against: In that park and that lineup, it's just hard to see the upside for Bell. His 26-homer season in 2017 was largely a product of an unsustainable HR/FB rate, and he doesn't profile as a particularly high-average hitter or big run producer.
249. Kevin Kiermaier, OF, Rays
The Case For: Kiermaier had some bad batted ball luck in 2018, but his underlying peripherals looked largely the same. He still has 20-20 upside if he can stay healthy, and he should be decent in points because it looks like he'll hit leadoff again.
The case against: "If he can stay healthy" is not a fair expectation unfortunately. Kiermaier has only played more than 110 games once in his career, and that was three years ago. Even when he is healthy he's a mediocre Fantasy asset.
250. Brandon Belt, 1B, Giants
The Case For: In OBP leagues or points leagues, Belt is a very solid 1B option when he's healthy. He won't wow you in any one category, but that would change if he ever gets traded.
The Case Against: It doesn't sound likely that he'll be traded, and he plays half of his games in one of the worst parks in baseball for left-handed hitters. He's also struggled with availability the past two years. This gives him a low floor and a low ceiling, especially in traditional Roto leagues.
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