Fantasy Baseball sleepers to target in 2023 drafts
Yahoo Fantasy analysts Scott Pianowski, Andy Behrens and Dalton Del Don look deep down their draft boards for value outside of the top 200 players.
SCOTT PIANOWSKI: If you're thinking about a fantasy championship this year, you're probably thinking about hitting on a couple of sleepers. We're going to give you three names outside the top 200 in Yahoo fantasy drafts. Andy, I know that Washington team looks like an unstoppable juggernaut. Who can we find on that roster to draft into?
ANDY BEHRENS: Yeah, any time you can take a flyer on the Nationals lineup, you have to do it, right? I'm going to look at a post-type sleeper here in CJ Abrams. Abrams barely managed to tread water last season. I get it. He was 21 years old. That's OK. Struggled to get on base. Again, I understand.
But his Minor League career, how about a .385 OBP? That was never a problem for him at lower levels, so I don't think it's going to be a problem for him in the Big Leagues down the road. He's only 22 years old. This is someone who stole 42 bases in 114 career Minor League games, so we're not talking about somebody who might just finish with like 25, 30 steals.
This is a potential category leader down the road. I think in his best years, he's stealing 50, perhaps 60 bases, especially with the new rules. Love Abrams this year for runs and for stolen bases, and I have to love his draft price.
SCOTT PIANOWSKI: And when we're looking for steals, a lot of times it's that team that isn't a contender. They kind of have a yellow approach on the stolen base front. Think of the Royals in recent seasons. Maybe Washington says, we need to sell something. It's CJ Abrams stealing 70 bases.
Look, post hype is always our favorite song when we talk sleepers. I'm going to look at Jesse Winker into his age 29 season. Knee, neck problems last year, and Seattle's park did him no favors. Now he's with Milwaukee. He may get some time DHing. He may bat second here and there. I still think he can hit .285 with 30 home runs.
And again, outside the top 200 in Yahoo ADP, he's a steal as your fourth or fifth outfielder if your league goes that deep. Even if you're in a shallow league, I want him on your bench. He's going to pound his ADP and make you a profit. Dalton, we need a pitcher to balance things out. What do you got for us?
DALTON DEL DON: Andrew Heaney is my sleeper, a former top-10 pick with a shaky injury history. But he possesses a ton of fantasy upside. Heaney recorded a K-minus-walk ratio on the road last season that would have easily led all starters.
Now normally, pitching for the Dodgers is a good thing, but he'll be leaving a park in LA that has increased homers to right-handed batters an MLB-high 44% over the last three seasons to a neutral one now in Texas. And that's big news for an extreme fly ball pitcher. Heaney is definitely a health risk, but he's also a dark horse Cy Young candidate. A pitcher with his peripherals last year absolutely should not be going outside 200 picks in fantasy leagues.
SCOTT PIANOWSKI: We've given you three league winners. Now you go out and draft them. Get your group together at Yahoo Fantasy Baseball. Draft your 2023 title team today.