The 2016 MLB Draft will be held on June 9, 2016, and for fantasy baseball, that means a huge influx of talent is about to join the player pool. Leading up to the draft, I will be ranking the top players for fantasy, and writing about anything that might catch my eye in general, like deep sleepers. Keep in mind that value can change post-draft depending on what team/ballpark a player gets drafted to. For example, you should upgrade hitters drafted by Colorado and downgrade pitchers. How players perform once reaching pro ball can also have a big impact on their value. With all that in mind, here are the 2016 MLB Draft Fantasy Baseball Prospect Rankings: 6-10:
6) Nick Senzel Tennessee, 3B – Senzel would rank higher if not for his moderate home run power, but he is still one of the most advanced college hitters in the draft, and he has some speed, as well. He is currently dominating the best conference in D1, slashing .344/.446/.583, with 8 homers, and 23 steals in 53 games in the SEC. He has displayed more raw power in batting practice than in games (don’t we all), and he has a good chance of sticking at 3B. If you want a fast moving, safe college bat who should provide solid numbers across the board, Senzel is your man.
7) A.J. Puk Florida, LHP – A.J. Puk sounds like the name of a bad guy in a Mighty Ducks movie, and he has the size to fit the role too, standing a gangly 6’7’’, 230 pounds. His best pitch is a mid-90’s fastball that has good deception and swing and miss ability, and he pairs that with an inconsistent slider and changeup. He strikes out a ton of batters (13.1 K/9), but it comes with serious control and command issues (4.31 BB/9). Puk is a high risk, high reward college pitcher who tops out as a strong #2 fantasy starter, and bottoms out as a guy who just can’t command his pitches well enough to remain an effective starter.
8) Jason Groome HS, LHP – The 6’6’’, 220-pound Groome is known for his devastating curveball that he already has good command over. He also throws an effortless low 90’s heater that he can dial up to the mid-90’s at times, along with a still developing changeup. There is no denying that if you were going to build a pitcher from scratch, he would look something like Groome, but without the no doubt upper 90’s heater, and considering the development time and inherent risks with high school pitchers, I can’t place him higher than 8th.
9) Ian Anderson HS, RHP – Anderson doesn’t have the upper 90’s fastball, either, sitting 91-95, but he has an advanced feel for pitching and can already throw 3 above average pitches in any count (fastball, changeup, curveball). This video at the 25 second mark is a great example of his easy, repeatable delivery, and how he can throw all of his pitches with the same arm speed and arm angle. I actually really like Anderson a lot, and was very close to ranking him ahead of Puk and Groome.
10) Dakota Hudson MISS ST, RHP – Hudson is your typical low risk college starter who can reach the Big Leagues in a hurry. He is a sturdy 6’5’’, 205 pounds, with a 92-96 MPH fastball, and a MLB ready hard curveball/slider. There isn’t even much projection left to see a mid-rotation starter with some strikeout ability, but don’t expect a true difference making fantasy starter.
2016 MLB Draft Fantasy Baseball Prospect Rankings: Complete Top 30
By Michael Halpern
Twitter: Imaginary Brick Wall (@ImaginaryBrickW)