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We have moved on to third base week, with everything you need to know about the hot corner coming over the next five days. In this space, you’ll once again find everything you need to know about early ADP trends as you start your preliminary draft preparation. As a reminder, this is pulled from the NFBC ADP data, and the average round is assuming a 15-team league. With that housekeeping out of the way, let’s dig into this interesting position that appears to be on the rise.

The First Round

The elites at 3B remain the same as last year, just in a different order…

Rank

Player

Team

Avg. Pick

Avg. Round

1

Kris Bryant

CHC

4.50

1

2

Nolan Arenado

COL

5.12

1

3

Josh Donaldson

TOR

11.79

1

Kris Bryant, Cubs

The stock for the reigning NL MVP is certainly rising, but it was already pretty high heading into last year. At this point in 2016, the now-25-year-old was being selected 10th overall in early drafts. After slugging 39 home runs, hitting .292 and topping the 100 run and RBI plateaus, Bryant has played himself into being a top-five selection. He’s also moved himself to the top of the third base board after ranking fourth last season. With the dramatically improved strikeout rate and incredible bat-to-ball skill, there’s no reason to think draftees will regret taking Bryant so early this spring.

Josh Donaldson, Blue Jays

The fact that Donaldson, a top-12 pick in early 2017 drafts, has the down arrow next to his name says more about his stock at this point last year than any diminishing talent level. Although Toronto’s third baseman saw slight downticks across the board last year, he was still the 16th-best batter according to ESPN’s Player Rater. There’s no reason not to expect the same kind of production from Donaldson this year. That is to say, he should contribute 30+ home runs with 100+ RBI and runs and a .280+ AVG. It’s hard to call a 12th-overall pick a steal, but Donaldson makes it close.

The Early Non-First Rounders

While the talent here isn’t quite elite, there’s still plenty of value to be found…

Rank

Player

Team

Avg. Pick

Avg. Round

4

Kyle Seager

SEA

66.38

5

5

Todd Frazier

CHW

72.68

5

6

Adrian Beltre

TEX

80.50

6

7

Alex Bregman

HOU

93.09

7

8

Anthony Rendon

WAS

93.26

7

9

Jose Ramirez

CLE

95.88

7

10

Evan Longoria

TB

105.44

7

Todd Frazier, White Sox

Most of this tier is on the way up draft boards, but Frazier finds himself going in the opposite direction. His ranking remains the same amongst other position-mates, but he’s fallen by just about two rounds. While his power is still elite — he mashed 40 homers in 2016 — and he can steal double digit bases, there’s plenty of cause for concern. For one, his strikeout rate rose substantially last year and his BABIP fell considerably. At this point, his true-talent AVG is likely around .240. Plus, even if his power doesn’t regress at all, the White Sox lineup is not going to do him any favors. There are plenty of positives to Frazier’s game, but this ranking and ADP doesn’t properly reflect what he can bring to the table.

Alex Bregman, Astros

There weren’t many late-season fantasy assets more surprising than Bregman in 2016. The 2015 first round pick wasn’t even included in last year’s Early ADP analysis, but he came up in late-July and played in 49 games during the second half. His plate discipline wasn’t great, but it wasn’t detrimental, either. One would assume more experience will bring out more of the excellent discipline he showed as a prospect. Selecting someone with such little experience this early certainly carries its risks, but Bregman has the tools to make it worth it. It’s not unfair to expect him to be a four-category contributor with a few stolen bases thrown in there as well.

Jose Ramirez, Indians

At this point last year, Ramirez wasn’t even being drafted except for in the deepest of leagues. He was coming off a putrid year and seemed destined for a career as an athletic utility man who would never come around with the bat. Instead, he reversed his BABIP woes from 2015, showed off solid power and continued to steal bases at a strong rate. Looking ahead to 2017, there’s reason to expect a little regression in terms of BABIP, but the 24-year-old should only keep rising elsewhere. His contact skills mean a near-.300 AVG is sustainable for years to come, and he should continue to reach double digits in home runs. When you add that to 20+ steals and a strong Cleveland lineup that will now include Edwin Encarnacion and Michael Brantley, you have a strong value in the seventh round.

The Middle Rounds

If you’re looking for risers, you’ve come to the right place…

Rank

Player

Team

Avg. Pick

Avg. Round

11

Maikel Franco

PHI

123.35

9

12

Justin Turner

LAD

132.32

9

13

Jake Lamb

ARI

145.56

10

14

Hernan Perez

MIL

163.32

11

15

Ryon Healy

OAK

197.35

14

16

Mike Moustakas

KC

201.91

14

17

Nick Castellanos

DET

208.03

14

Jake Lamb, Diamondbacks

Lamb is one of the most confusing players in the entire draft, so having him square in the middle makes plenty of sense. On the one hand, he is just entering the prime of his career, he plays in a favorable park and hit 29 home runs with 91 RBI in his first full season. On the other hand, he has shown some real strikeout issues, plays for a (possibly) bad team, and posted a miserable .663 OPS in the second half. If his play in the second half scares you away, I can’t say I don’t understand. On the other hand, we’re talking about a 20+ home run hitter who still plays with Paul Goldschmidt and A.J. Pollock, giving him a solid enough floor. He showed in the first half he can hit for a decent AVG, too. If you get stuck as one of the last team’s without a third baseman, a mid-round selection of Lamb has plenty of upside.

Hernan Perez, Brewers

Like Bregman, Perez has climbed all the way from not being included in this series last year to being drafted as a starting 3B. The difference is, he was an unimpressive utility player rather than a top prospect. Perez managed 430 plate appearances last year while showing off improved bat to ball skills. That was shown by his .322 BABIP and 13 home runs. What really made his fantasy value, though, were his 34 stolen bases. Looking ahead to 2017, his current ADP appears to be based almost entirely off his SB total. While steals are hard to come by, Peres still has a career walk rate of just over three percent and isn’t likely to boast an OBP over .300. There’s probably some fantasy value here, but I don’t see enough to justify such an early selection.

Ryon Healy, Athletics

Healy was one of the biggest breakouts in all of baseball last year, going from an unnoticed prospect to a legitimate fantasy contender. Some mechanical tweaks added to his power, and he produced a .219 ISO in 283 plate appearances. I’m not totally convinced all of that will carry over into next year, especially given his home park, but he has enough of a base to still hit 15-20 home runs. Unfortunately, he’s playing in too weak of a lineup to supplement that with strong contextual numbers. I’d rather have Healy than Perez at their respective ADPs, but I’d still like to see what happens in a full season for the former before taking him with a mid-round pick.

The Late Rounds

Looking for upside with your final selections

Rank

Player

Team

Avg. Pick

Avg. Round

18

Yoan Moncada

CHW

230.24

16

19

Jung Ho Kang

PIT

243.32

17

20

Brandon Drury

ARI

256.15

18

21

Yulieski Gurriel

HOU

259.85

18

22

Eugenio Suarez

CIN

265.88

18

23

Yangervis Solarte

SD

283.26

19

24

Jose Reyes

NYM

308.68

21

25

Travis Shaw

MIL

317.94

22

26

Danny Valencia

SEA

319.64

22

27

Matt Duffy

TB

324.55

22

28

Martin Prado

MIA

326.34

22

Yoan Moncada, White Sox

Moncada is another one of the most interesting fantasy players to watch this season. He is a prospect who already has major-league experience, but there’s no guarantee he’ll see much MLB time in 2017. His cup of coffee last year exposed some serious issues with breaking stuff, and the adjustment to solve that issue will take some time. On the other hand, he still has huge potential with plus-plus speed and big-time power. This might be a round or two too early for my liking, but Moncada is as enticing as late-round fliers can be.

Jung Ho Kang, Pirates (Arrow Down)

We finally have another player with a falling draft stock, but not for good reasons. The Pirates infielder has had a number of off-the-field issues, including DUIs and domestic violence. All of this could lead to discipline from the league, which would obviously take away from his playing time. With David Freese, Josh Bell and John Jaso on the roster, playing time could be tough for Kang to find when he comes back from a possible suspension. The talent still exists in the bat, but there’s upside with fewer red flags to find in this portion of the draft.

Travis Shaw, Brewers

Shaw looked like he was ready to break out beyond anyone’s wildest dreams with his performance to start last season, but he quickly cooled off and wound up with perfectly pedestrian numbers. His strikeout issues figure to keep his AVG down on a regular basis, even with solid BABIPs. Plus, he’ll now be playing for a Brewers team that clearly doesn’t have the same kind of firepower last year’s Red Sox lineup had. Still, the power in his bat is real and Milwaukee will play right into that. There’s not a ton of upside here, but the playing time will be there and he can contribute in some areas. If for whatever reason you want some relative safety at the end of the draft, Shaw could be a good get.

Matt Duffy, Rays

No one at this position has undergone a more dramatic fall since last season than Duffy. The now-Rays third baseman has fallen almost 200 picks since this time in 2016. Duffy had a rough year last season, watching his production fall in every category. Looking ahead to 2017, however, there could be some sneaky value here with one of your final picks. He has enough contact skills to maintain a solid AVG, and there’s double-digit home run and steal potential in here. The Rays’ lackluster lineup limits some of his value, but the rest of his game will produce enough and he should gain shortstop eligibility early in the year.

The Undrafted

There should be a surprising amount of upside on the waiver wire after the draft…

Rank

Player

Team

Avg. Pick

Avg. Round

29

Pablo Sandoval

BOS

360.71

Undrafted

30

Jurickson Profar

TEX

373.37

Undrafted

31

Adonis Garcia

ATL

382.48

Undrafted

32

Joey Gallo

TEX

395.29

Undrafted

33

Wilmer Flores

NYM

408.14

Undrafted

34

Chase Headley

NYY

443.00

Undrafted

35

Yunel Escobar

LAA

447.18

Undrafted

36

David Freese

PIT

470.21

Undrafted

37

Cheslor Cuthbert

KC

471.54

Undrafted

38

Trevor Plouffe

OAK

479.75

Undrafted

One shouldn’t expect any group of undrafted players to be good, but there are some intriguing names in this crop. Pablo Sandoval has the looks of a transformed player right now, but obviously we can’t trust that to be the case until we see him hit. Profar and Gallo still have as much upside as ever, and it’s just a matter of finding the playing time to contribute regularly. Escobar and Freese aren’t exciting by any means, but they can offer steady production if you lose a 3B or CI to injury in the spring.