2018 Outlook: That's two consecutive healthy seasons for Myers, who struggled to stay on the field in his first three big-league seasons, and in 2017, he showed a definite move towards injecting more power into his game. He boosted his fly ball rate by more than seven percent and his well-hit average by 32 points, things that might soon make him a contender for the home run crown if he didn't call such a pitching-friendly ballpark his home. Myers is also one of the rare first base-eligibles who brings speed to his game -- he's one of only four in history to have multiple 20/20 seasons -- which is an added bonus for those trying to fill the category on the cheap, and it helps ease worries about his middling-to-low batting average. He'll move to the outfield following Eric Hosmer's arrival, though, meaning multi-position eligibility early in the year. Myers should again return top-100 rotisserie value, making him a strong early-to-mid round pick, though he whiffs a bit too often to elevate him into that class in points leagues.
2018 Outlook: It's hard to fathom how a 28-year-old who had 4.8 wins above replacement and was a top-30 fantasy player overall in 2017 lingered on the free-agent market into February, but Hosmer finally found his team in the Padres, inking what at the date he signed was the winter's largest deal in terms of total years and money. Hosmer's skill set has been a matter of sabermetric -- and therefore fantasy baseball -- debate in recent years, as his 56.2 percent ground ball rate for the past three seasons (12th-highest among 232 players with at least 1,000 trips to the plate) makes it difficult to envision him exceeding (or even repeating) the 25 home runs he had in each of his past two seasons. He has seemingly managed his way into the Player Rater's top 50 in three of the past five years, thanks to a high contact rate (16.3 percent strikeout rate in his career), enough health, a prime lineup spot driving his run-production numbers (runs and RBIs) and the ability to contribute a handful of steals. In San Diego, Hosmer will get a small home-run bump -- Petco is no longer a contender for the league's worst power park since the fences were moved in -- but the overall pitching-friendly environment will probably cause him to spin his wheels. He could sneak his way into the top 10 among first basemen, but his limited upside from there makes him more of a mid-round, corner-infield type than a centerpiece of your team.
2018 Outlook: An all-or-nothing slugger, Sano's 470 strikeouts through his first 310 career games were the most by any player in history through that many games, but his 71 home runs were 12th-most. He's also capable of drawing a walk, making him a three-true-outcomes player subject to streakiness and a mediocre batting average -- probably sub-.250. With some of the best Statcast power metrics, including average exit velocity on fly balls and line drives as well as Barrels, Sano's league-leading power potential is unmistakable. The problem is that players like this are more commonplace nowadays, and therefore less valuable than they were a half-decade ago. He also could be subject to league discipline for an off-the-field incident, so keep tabs on the news. Sano is a solid dynasty pick and an early-to-midround selection in Rotisserie redraft formats, though his poor contact rate makes him a bit less valuable in points-based scoring.
2018 Outlook: While Posey's annual numbers might seem solid though not spectacular, it's his consistency and high-volume role that's so appealing in fantasy. He has finished 49th, 47th, 131st and 130th on the Player Rater the past four years, but those also represent four of the seven such seasons with a finish of 131st or better by any catcher in those four years. Posey has also led all catcher-eligibles in plate appearances in two of those four years while averaging 602 across those four, something that's most advantageous in points-based leagues and Rotisserie formats that start two catchers or have 15-plus teams. While his power metrics are slowly declining and he's now 31 years old, he should again be one of the most trusted picks at his position, with the question being this: How important is it to you to get a reliable catcher? The case can be made he warrants a top-40 pick in leagues in which the replacement pool is thinnest, but in standard ESPN leagues, in which streaming catchers is a valid strategy, the case can be made he's not even one of the three best at his position or a top-100 pick.
2018 Outlook: As the Tigers began their rebuild, Castellanos quietly enjoyed one of the more under-the-radar summer breakthroughs, batting .303/.339/.557 in 106 games from June 1 forward. He did this thanks in large part to his boosting both his contact rate and well-hit average significantly, while maintaining his already-high fly-ball rate. While Castellanos' supporting cast entering 2018 is weaker, he'll also occupy a prime lineup spot, again fueling his counting numbers. He's not yet a top-10 fantasy option at the position, but he's also one of the more intriguing upside plays from the corner infield tier.
2018 Outlook: Few players in the history of the game possess Gallo's combination of elite, "light tower" power and a record-setting-low contact rate -- he, in fact, set an all-time record for the lowest qualified contact rate (56.3 percent). This penchant for swings and misses makes him wildly streaky, a legitimate worry for a sub-.200 batting average and a player difficult to trust in head-to-head leagues. Still, Gallo's power metrics are off the charts, as he averaged a major league-leading 422.2 feet on his 41 home runs, led with a 48.6 percent fly ball rate, and finished second in Statcast's "Barrels per Batted Ball Event" (percentage of batted balls hit with optimal launch angle and exit velocity). And he in fact showed gradual improvements in most offensive regards as the year progressed. He's a legitimate contender for the home run crown, in an era where everyone seems to be hitting for power, and he's a great dynasty pick and a top-100 redraft candidate across the board.
2018 Outlook: Though his 2017 had the appearance of a major breakthrough year, Moustakas' underlying skills were actually pointing in a similar direction during his injury-marred 2016: His power metrics and hard-contact rate were right in line, with the significant difference being his raising his launch angle more than four degrees to help give those fly balls some extra "oomph." Remarkably, this growth couldn't earn Moustakas anything more this offseason than a low-cost, one-year-plus-an-option deal to return to the Royals. Moustakas should again be one of the game's better power sources, making him an especially attractive pick as a starting third baseman in points-based leagues, but be aware that the now-rebuilding Royals might no longer prop up his runs and RBIs to the same level.
2018 Outlook: After riding the Oakland-to-Triple-A-Nashville shuttle five times in either direction, Olson was promoted for the sixth time in 2017 on Aug. 8, after which point he put on a power display that rivaled any in the game's lengthy history. From that date forward, he hit 20 home runs in 156 trips to the plate, for a grand total of 24 for the season, resulting in a major league-record 11.1 percent home run rate (minimum 200 PAs in said season). Olson did it with some extreme fortune on fly balls, however, with FanGraphs' 41.4 home run/fly ball percentage the highest in any of the 16 seasons for which the site has data, something certain to regress in this his first full big league campaign. The reality is that he's your prototypical three-true-outcome slugger, subject to streakiness and batting-average risk, but also one who could contend for the league's home run title. Olson is a good dynasty draft target, and a top-100 redraft pick, if you can deal with his likely inconsistency.
2018 Outlook: Few players in baseball possess as stark a contrast between their Rotisserie and points-based value as Santana. Thanks to his combination of elite plate discipline, contact rate and penchant for extra-base hits, he routinely finds himself among the top 40 in fantasy points come year's end. That he plays a somewhat easy position to fill, at first base, is the main reason he's not a building-block type, but he's also the "ace up your sleeve" worth a look after you've rostered your first 4-6 players. Santana's consistency, meanwhile, is attractive in Rotisserie, where he's a locked-in mixed-league corner infielder. With the move to Citizens Bank Park's homer-friendly confines, he might even elevate his game a few notches.
2018 Outlook: Shoulder issues derailed the second half of Carpenter's 2017 campaign, and while they didn't require offseason surgery, they'll bear monitoring during spring training. If he's healthy, his continued attempt to elevate the ball bodes well for his power potential, as he has increased his fly ball rate in each of the past three seasons, and he set a personal best with a 47.0 percent rate last season. Though he has traded some contact to do it, Carpenter's walk rate remains excellent, making him one of the most underrated players in points-based leagues or those that reward extra for on-base percentage. He's in good shape for a rebound, and he could be a top-50 player in points leagues and worthy of an early-to-midround pick in rotisserie.
2018 Outlook: While a lot of things went right for Shaw in 2017 -- he had a generous 14.0 home run/fly ball percentage and his competition for at-bats mostly disappointed -- his status as a regular in one of the game's most hitting-friendly environments gives him an excellent chance of at least approaching a repeat. Most notably, he improved against left-handed pitching to a productive level, batting .250/.312/.464 against them, and he showed smarts on the base paths that make him a potentially sneaky contributor in stolen bases. Shaw's skill set isn't that of a true superstar, though, but rather an above-average regular, so be cautious chasing last year's stats. He's a good early-to-mid round pick.
2018 Outlook: Like so many other players in the game, Seager made a decided shift towards an uppercut swing last season, boosting his fly-ball rate by nearly seven percent for the year and posting a whopping 51.9 percent rate after the All-Star break. This caused a sluggish first half followed by a second-half power rebound, but both came at the expense of batting average, as his .249 mark was his lowest in any of his nine professional seasons. If Seager maintains this approach, he could boost his power output and set career highs in those related categories, further strengthening his status as one of the more underrated players in points-based leagues. His drain on your batting average in Rotisserie formats, however, would likely keep him outside of the top 10 at a deep third base position.
2018 Outlook: A fractured left hand suffered early in spring training cost Desmond nearly a month of regular-season action and cast a shadow on his debut year in Colorado. All of his underlying numbers suggested the injury took its toll, as he couldn't capitalize upon Coors Field's hitting-friendly environment (.265/.304/.331 home rates), saw his hard-contact rate plummet and posted a career-high 63.2 percent ground-ball rate. Desmond still flashed good speed, however, and the winter's rest could've done him a world of good in terms of his health. He's a bounce-back candidate, with Coors a large part of the argument for it, and while his high strikeout rate makes him more of a corner-infield candidate in points-based leagues, he stands a good chance of returning to the top 100 using Rotisserie scoring.
2018 Outlook: After a disappointing 2016 in the minors, Devers roared back with .311/.377/.578 numbers between Double- and Triple-A early last season, propelling himself into the Red Sox's starting third base role in late July despite only 77 and nine games' experience at the aforementioned minor league levels. He held his own as a 20-year-old, even hitting left-handers better than right-handers (albeit in a limited sample), but showed the typical signs of a player adapting to the game's most competitive level: His 49.7 percent ground-ball rate warns to not go heavy on power projections, and his 33.6 percent chase rate (swing percentage at non-strikes) said be careful not to expect an improvement upon his .284 batting average. That Devers has accomplished what he has at such a young age supports his candidacy as one of the very best dynasty building blocks at his position, but for those in redraft leagues, he's more corner-infield, midround material.
2018 Outlook: Turner's 2017 was quietly excellent, as he filled five categories and nearly produced a top-50 fantasy point total despite being limited to only 130 regular-season games. He continued the trend of elevating his contact rate, in fact finishing the season sixth in the category among qualifiers (87.7 percent), and shifting his batted-ball profile more toward a power stroke, which helped explain the gains in points-based formats. He's a high-floor player who has a higher statistical ceiling than you might think, and while it's odd to think of a 33-year-old as still getting better, he's certainly trending that way.