These players are falling too far in drafts, which could make them a great value pick.
David Ortiz (ESPN: 46, Yahoo: 81)
You won’t find many hitters with a wider range between rankings on various sites than Ortiz. ESPN has him in about the right range, but he’s a bit of a risk at that price given that he’s now 40 years old. However, his ranking on Yahoo makes him a bargain. Ortiz has hit 30+ homers and driven in 100+ RBI in each of the last three seasons, which is production you won’t find easily in the 9th round or later.
There is some concern that Ortiz will start to slow down at his age or be more susceptible to injury, but those risks tend to sink his draft price below where it should be. His role as a DH is another reason why he is under-appreciated in fantasy circles, as some owners don’t want the hassle of drafting a player that limits flexibility by only being eligible to plug into the utility spot. Ortiz is eligible at first base in some leagues after manning the position in a handful of interleague games last year, so check your league settings to see if he played enough games at the position to qualify. If he can be played at first, give his value a slight bump.
Hanley Ramirez (ESPN: 110, Yahoo: 109)
This is a guy that was drafted in the third round in many leagues last year, who now can’t even crack the top-100. Losing SS and 3B eligibility certainly hurt his stock, but one bad season shouldn’t have caused him to drop this much. Ramirez hit 10 home runs last April before a shoulder injury sapped his power and he managed only 9 more the rest of the way. His history suggests that he remains an injury risk, but also shows what he can do when healthy. He has looked good so far this spring, so as long as he can stay out of the trainers room then he should deliver a solid average with 20-25 homers, while also getting the opportunity to drive in a bundle of runs hitting fifth in the Red Sox lineup.
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It’s not quite as much power as you would like from your first baseman, but he is capable of offsetting that with some speed. Hanley doesn’t run like he used to, but if he manages to get on base more often then he can get back to swiping double-digit bases, which was accomplished by only a few first baseman last season. He should also retain his outfield eligibility in most leagues, so that’s an added bonus.
Ramirez may not be an All-Star caliber hitter anymore and shouldn’t be drafted as one, but if he falls outside of Round 10 then there is a good chance of his delivering a strong return on investment with a bounce-back season.