The closer you get to the start of the season, the less value Average Draft Position data really has in guiding your decision making. Not that you should ever be married to ADP when going through your draft, but it can at least help you estimate when your targets might be available, who you can wait on and when you have to move on a player.
However, values are always fluid in drafts, and the last week of draft season usually sees some pretty wild divergences from ADP as players start to reach for their guys. Plus, late injuries or position battle changes can bring player values into focus in a way that just isn't possible in February or early March.
Still, there's value in looking at who is moving up and who is moving down. Those trends can help you identify who the industry is starting to buy into and who is losing faith. I covered some of the biggest ADP risers in another piece here, and now here are 20 of the biggest ADP fallers over the past week.
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Carlos Carrasco -- 70.5 to 159.76
Carrasco is falling due to a pair of injury concerns, first a minor scare with his elbow and then a hamstring strain suffered while doing conditioning drills after a simulated game last week. There's no timetable for his return at this point, though it has been diagnosed as a Grade 1 strain, the least severe type, so it might not be as serious as initially thought. It's possible Carrasco is out until June, but it's also not out of the question that he's back by mid-April. We should know more in the coming days and weeks, but if you're drafting before then and he falls to about 140 overall, I'd be willing to be the person who takes the chance on him.
Dinelson Lamet -- 99.52 to 121.96
In drafts before February, Lamet was going inside of the top 80 on average, even though we knew he was coming back from an elbow injury and wasn't throwing yet. I understand that now that we're deep into spring training and he hasn't thrown in a real game yet makes this injury more "real", but it's fair to say he never should have been going as high as he was to begin with, and that includes inside of the top 100. I haven't moved him up or down in my rankings in the past few weeks, and he's finally fallen below where I have him in my overall ranks at 119 overall. He's fine to draft there, especially if you've built a pitching staff with a few innings-eating anchors and can afford to take a chance on a guy who, even in a best-case scenario probably won't throw many innings. If he makes up for that with strikeouts and ratios, you'll be fine at this price.
Craig Kimbrel -- 173.72 to 184.74
Given the way the last two seasons have gone for Kimbrel, he's not going to get any kind of benefit of the doubt, and he hasn't earned it in spring training, giving up nine earned runs in 4.2 innings of work. However, he admitted he was working on finding his delivery in his first few outings and has thrown two scoreless innings over the past week, hitting 98 mph with his fastball in Saturday's outing. His margin for error is slim, as the Cubs have shown they will pull him from the ninth inning role if he's struggling, but at this point in the draft, he's a fine risk to take on the chance it was just a small blip early in the spring.
Eric Hosmer -- 149.69 to 159.26
I've been higher on Hosmer than the consensus throughout draft season, and now I'm a lot higher on him than the consensus -- he's inside my top 100. However, he's struggled in spring, and while I'm not worried about a .608 OPS in 10 games, there is a real warning sign here: He has three times as many groundball outs as fly-ball outs, getting back to his pre-2020 ratios in that regard. It's still too small of a sample size to say definitively whether he's back to being too groundball prone, but his 12 games last spring did ultimately serve as a precursor to the changes he made during the season, and he needs to hang on to those gains in order to justify a higher price. I'll move him down a bit in my rankings, too, but I'll still have him higher than his consensus price, because even if he can't sustain 2020's power gains, he should be a solid source of average and RBI in the middle rounds.
Zach Plesac -- 81.92 to 86.39
Plesac has struggled a bit in spring, allowing eight runs -- including three homers -- in just 12.1 innings, but that shouldn't be enough to change how anyone views him. If you are lower on Plesac because of his most recent 12.1 innings in exhibition games, you're overreacting. Of course, the problem with his price is it is also based on a very small sample size because Plesac's apparent breakout in 2020 took place in 55.1 innings over eight starts against five teams. This may be a case of Plesac's price moving in the right direction for the wrong reasons, so if you liked Plesac before he started pitching this spring, you should still like him just as much.
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Kim, Kwang Hyun
- Framber Valdez -- Valdez's ADP plummeted with reports that his fractured finger might be a season-ender, but we recently learned Valdez will try to heal without surgery. There's still no timetable for his return to action, and obviously, it's possible he ends up needing surgery anyway, but he's worth taking a chance on him if he falls. Don't expect him to last to 300, but if you take a chance around 200th overall, it could be a worthwhile one.
- Kole Calhoun -- Another player dropping due to injury, Calhoun had surgery to repair a meniscus tear in early March but hopes to be back in action sometime in April. Calhoun is a drain on batting average and doesn't steal bases, but he could be a significant contributor in the other three categories, with ATC projecting him for 23 homers, 68 runs, and 64 RBI in 110 games -- that's a 150-game pace of 32.4 homers, 95.8 runs and 90.2 RBI. If you've got IL spots in your league, you can do a lot worse with your last pick than that.
- Amed Rosario -- Andres Gimenez is one of the biggest ADP risers, so it seems like there's a bit of a zero-sum game happening with Rosario's value in comparison. However, Cleveland is trying Rosario in the outfield, and after a disastrous first appearance, he's been much less newsworthy in his past few games. If he can prove even decent out there, he's probably the team's best option and still has 15-homer, 20-steal potential.
- Scott Kingery -- Kingery opened camp as the likely starting center fielder for the Phillies, but he's struck out 14 times in 33 plate appearances and is hitting .133 in spring and appears to have fallen behind Odubel Herrera and possibly Roman Quinn in the depth chart. Kingery still has tons of flexibility thanks to his infield skills, but there's a real question whether he will open the season in the majors. He's a potential 20-20 guy if he plays every day, but there's no reason to target him in a 12-team league at this point.
- Victor Reyes -- In 126 games over the last two seasons, Reyes has hit .293 with seven homers and 17 steals, and would figure to be a viable Fantasy option if he played everyday. Unfortunately, it looks like that may not be the case any more -- he got off to a late start in spring due to visa issues, and has struggled to date since arriving. However, there's still a decent Fantasy profile here, and Robbie Grossman and Nomar Mazara may not end up being long-term impediments. He'll be someone to watch on waivers early on.
- Michael Kopech -- Kopech was one of my favorite late-round pitchers to target early in draft season, but now that he'll be pitching out of the bullpen, it's harder to get excited. On the other hand, his stuff may play up nicely in the bullpen, and he could be an impact arm in a multi-inning role, and that may never have more value than it will in 2021 for Fantasy, so he's still a decent flier.
- Caleb Smith -- Smith still has some sleeper appeal, but I'll admit I've had trouble getting excited about him this spring. He can generate plenty of whiffs, but his inconsistent control and home run issues make him a pretty inconsistent contributor. That being said, I can't quite identify a reason why his price would be falling, and he's still a decent late-round flier if you want some streaming depth.
- Avisail Garcia -- The signing of Jackie Bradley Jr. seems to have sent Garcia's price tumbling, but I'm not sure it's necessarily warranted. For one thing, Lorenzo Cain is only just now making his spring debut, and at his age likely isn't an everyday player anyway. Garcia is the best hitter of the bunch, so he should see plenty of chances -- and remember, he hit .282 with 20 homers and 10 steals in just 530 PA in 2019. He can have value even as something less than an everyday player.
- Mitch Keller -- Enthusiasm has dampened for Keller with a 15.12 ERA in four spring starts, and he continues to be more hittable than you would think given the quality of his stuff -- he has allowed 17 hits in 5.1 innings over his past two starts. Still, his velocity is back after he struggled with injuries in 2020, and as a late-round flier, I'm willing to take the chance that he'll figure it out. If not, I drop him after a few weeks. He's talented enough to be worth that, at least.
- Kwang Hyun Kim -- One thing that sometimes happens over the course of draft season is Fantasy players just sort of stop liking a player, even if nothing has necessarily happened to cause it. I think that's what we're seeing with Kim, whose 1.62 ERA in 2020 belies a pretty lackluster profile overall. He had a 3.88 FIP and 4.52 xFIP and it's sort of hard to see how he drastically changes that without a good swing-and-miss pitch to put hitters away with. He's fine, just kinda boring.
- Chris Sale -- Sale is being linked to Noah Syndergaard and Luis Severino in people's minds, as all three former aces are working their way back from Tommy John surgery. However, Sale seems to be more than a bit behind the other two, as he has yet to throw off a mound, while both Severino and Syndergaard have already begun doing so. Of course, that doesn't mean Sale is behind schedule -- Severino and Syndergaard just seem to be ahead of theirs. Sale could still be back in June, and you don't need me to tell you how high the upside can be if he is right.
- Nate Pearson -- It's not clear if Pearson would have been in the opening day rotation if not for his groin injury, but that pretty much settles it. That being said, the Blue Jays don't exactly have a ton of impediments in his way if Pearson goes down to the depth site for a month and looks like himself, so I would expect we'll see him before long. It can be hard to stash a player if you don't have a minor-league spot available, which makes Pearson's potential market a little slimmer. That said, I'd love to have him around for his eventual return to the rotation, whenever it is.
- Lorenzo Cain -- Cain finally played in a game Sunday for the first time this spring, and he's expected to be a full go by opening day, but it's grown increasingly hard to get excited for a soon-to-be 35-year-old whose game relies so much on his athleticism, especially coming off a leg injury. Cain could be a solid source of speed, and is worth a late-round selection if you need steals, but don't draft him expecting a big contribution.
- Ha-seong Kim -- Kim has seen time at shortstop, second and third base this spring, but most of his opportunities have come at short. And I don't know if you all know this, but the Padres are kinda set at shortstop. And, with Jake Cronenworth and Jurickson Profar fully capable of playing all over the diamond, Kim may be just a bench piece to start the season. That he is 3 for 29 with no extra-base hits through his first 13 spring games doesn't exactly help. He has the potential to be a plus in steals and average, but he might need some time to get up to speed at the major-league level.
- Jurickson Profar -- I actually don't quite get why Profar is falling in drafts. He has a nice bounce-back in 2020, hitting seven homers and stealing seven bases in 202 plate appearances, a 20-20 peace over a full season's playing time. He may have some trouble getting that kind of playing time, but his chances are better now than they were in the beginning of spring with Trent Grisham dealing with a hamstring injury. Even with Grisham expected to be ready for Opening Day, Profar's multi-eligibility and power/speed combo makes him a valuable late-round addition.
So which Fantasy baseball sleepers should you snatch in your draft? And which undervalued first baseman can help you win a championship? Visit SportsLine now to get Fantasy baseball rankings for every single position, all from the model that called Will Smith's huge breakout last season, and find out.