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April 3, 2017 6:00 am

Fantasy Freestyle: Five to Watch: Leadoff Surprises

1

Greg Wellemeyer

There can be hidden value at the top of the lineup.

The importance of batting order position is often overstated, especially in shallow or medium depth mixed leagues. In deeper and mono contexts, where plate appearances come at a premium, a slot in the upper third of the lineup can make a difference. The same goes for formats that allow daily lineup changes, as the leadoff spot can be a popular place for hitters with a pronounced split. Provided you have a bench with a little depth, you can often build an excellent platoon on the cheap by leveraging these roles. With that in mind, here are five players whose Opening Day stock is up because of unexpected opportunity at the top of their clubs’ lineups.

Delino DeShields, Texas Rangers

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