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Staff Post: Third Basemen to Avoid in 2018

The Fake Teams staff tell you who to avoid at third base in 2018, including Alex Bregman, Miguel Sano, Jake Lamb, and Evan Longoria.

MLB: San Diego Padres at Arizona Diamondbacks Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

Earlier today we discussed our third basemen to target. Now it’s time for the underbelly, the guys we think you can avoid for one reason or another.

One caveat: Just because someone is being avoided doesn’t make them a bad player. ADP has to be considered as well. Let’s hop to it.

MLB: World Series-Los Angeles Dodgers at Houston Astros Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Alex Bregman, Astros (Brian Creagh)

ADP: 32.0

I really like Alex Bregman, but he seems mispriced. He does a little bit of everything, but he’s lacking the 30 HR or the 20 SB upside or the .300 AVG upside to go that early. Further development is to be expected and he had a monster second half of last season, but you are paying for his improvement and not getting any value if it occurs. Rendon 20 picks later is going to offer a similar stat line with just a few less stolen bases.

MLB: Cleveland Indians at Minnesota Twins Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Miguel Sano, Twins (Heath Capps)

ADP: 108.0

Off-the-field concerns are something I avoid. I prefer to draft a third baseman who didn’t just meet with MLB investigators on Tuesday about an alleged assault. There are enough risks to take in fantasy sports, so why on earth would I want to add off-the-field risks as well? Steamer projects only 472 PA for Sano in 2018, too, so don’t call me crazy. Last year’s surgery to repair a stress reaction in Sano’s leg probably adds to the low PA projection as well. In summation: suspension risk and injury risk are too much for me to care deeply about a guy with a mammoth 35.8% career strikeout rate.

MLB: All Star Game-Batting Practice Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Jake Lamb, Diamondbacks (Punk is Dead)

ADP: 121.5

Jake Lamb is an obvious avoid for me in 2018. Even pre-humidor there are a ton of red flags. Lamb hit just .144 against lefties in 2017 and just .204 overall in the second half. He’s well on his way to being a platoon player and although that could help his overall ratios, the counting stats will suffer. Factoring in the humidor, which has the potential to cut his power numbers (his only fantasy value) in half, you get a .250 hitter with 20 homers. Certainly not worth his current ADP of 113 overall.

MLB: Spring Training-Los Angeles Angels at San Francisco Giants Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Evan Longoria, Giants (Eddy Almaguer)

ADP: 199.8

Some are still vouching for Evan Longoria even after his move to SF but I can’t get on board. At pick 200 he’s not going to break your bank, but he’s more of a “shoot, I forgot to draft a third baseman” emergency pick. His best asset is his health, having logged at least 670 PA since 2013. But what is he providing you? He hasn’t hit above .275 since 2012, hasn’t had an OBP north of .330 since 2013, and has hit more than 22 home runs just once since 2014. Do we really think he’s going to experience a career renaissance in AT&T park, the place that’s finished 30th, 27th, and 28th the last three seasons in home run factor? If you are without a third baseman this late, punt it and shoot for Matt Chapman as a last-round add.

Be sure to follow along with The Great Fantasy Baseball Invitational as Eddy, Heath, and Brian represent Fake Teams in an epic field of fantasy baseball experts.