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Welcome to the 2016 Second Base Projections and Profiles for the American League, a part of the “So-Called” Fantasy Experts Fantasy Baseball Draft Package.

Second base is deeper than many people realize and many of the top options are in the American League. Jose Altuve and Brian Dozier offer solid production in four of the traditional 5×5 categories, and if Robinson Cano’s second half resurgence is a sign of what’s in store for 2016, he’ll just add to the riches in the AL.

What follows are the 2016 Second Base Projections and Profiles for the American League. The players are listed alphabetically to make it easy to find the player you’re looking for. We’ve used the 20-game played threshold for position eligibility. If a player did not play 20 games at any position, we used the position they played the most games at. We also try and list players at the position Fantasy owners are most likely to utilize each player. For example, Logan Forsythe has enough games to qualify at first base, but I can’t see a situation where a Fantasy owner is going to deploy him there.

The initial run of projections and profiles will focus on players with clear roles. As Spring Training approaches and rosters start to solidify, we’ll add names so that we can satisfy not only the needs of mixed league owners, but the traditionalists out there that play in 12-team AL-only leagues. These 2016 Second Base Projections and Profiles will be updated all the way up to Opening Day, so remember to check in occasionally to get the latest news.

2016 Second Base Projections and Profiles: American League

Jose Altuve, Houston Astros

Jose Altuve Projections

While there may be debate about when the time is to select Altuve in Fantasy drafts, there is general consensus that he should be the first second baseman taken. He may not hit .341 like in 2014, but an average just north of .300 sounds about right. His 35-40 steals are a great start for the category and topping 100 runs scored in an improving offense is a real possibility. Altuve even showed a little pop with 15 homers last year. This, however, looks a little suspicious and a return to single digits is likely. Considering the quality of the three tools he does offer, Altuve could help a roster significantly if an owner is able to surround him with complementary players. With a position thin on production, he offers quite a bit, but you may have to pay for it at your draft. – Graham Briggs


Tim Beckham, Tampa Bay Rays

Tim Beckham Projections

The former No. 1 overall pick has not been able to live up to expectations to this point, but he did finally get some time in the bigs last year. After a suspension and then a lost 2014 due to a torn ACL, this was a step in the right direction. Unfortunately, he was able to muster just a .222 average during his opportunity. There were some positive signs including nine long balls in half a season’s worth of games and some glimmers of clutch hitting. However, Beckham still has a long way to go if he is going to become Fantasy relevant. With Logan Forsythe set at second and the addition of Brad Miller at shortstop, Beckham will start out as a utility man, at best. It is also quite possible he doesn’t even make the opening day roster if his bat still looks troublesome during spring training. Unless he unleashes a dominant spring, Beckham is just a last round flier in deeper leagues. – Graham Briggs


Robinson Cano, Seattle Mariners

Robinson Cano Projections

By now, everyone knows Cano’s numbers may never return to his 2013 or prior levels. However, he really hasn’t regressed as much as so many assume. His power may be reduced somewhat, but his batting average remained above .280 in 2015 while his power allowed him to hit seven more homeruns than in 2014. Aging or not, a second baseman who can hit 15-plus homeruns, hit for near or above .300 and pile on 80 or more runs is a valuable asset. If he falls in drafts this year, I wouldn’t hesitate to snag him.- Chris Meyers


Starlin Castro, New York Yankees

Starlin Castro Projections

What a weird strange trip it’s been for Starlin Castro. At one time he was one of baseball’s brightest young players, and now at age 26 most of the spark is gone. A late season surge saved his 2015 season from being a total disaster, but he still wasn’t very helpful for his Fantasy owners. The change of scenery will likely help and I’d expect a bounce-back in the batting average category. Just don’t let your expectations get out of control. His power is limited and he just isn’t the base stealer we want him to be. Though he’ll be playing second base for the Yankees, Fantasy owners will likely want to use him at shortstop, where his modest stats put him in or near the Top 10 for the position. – Doug Anderson


Brian Dozier, Minnesota Twins

Brian Dozier Projections

Dozier continued to be a five category player in 2015. His stolen base numbers fell by nearly double-digits, while his average and OBP dipped slightly. However, his owners were still satisfied with his 28 homeruns. In 2016, the Twins will be using a younger lineup with more potential which should open up opportunities for Dozier to knock in more runs and steal more bases. He will remain a top option at 2B in 2016.- Chris Meyers


Ryan Flaherty, Baltimore Orioles

second base projections

Flaherty has a bit of pop, but the second half breakout by Jonathan Schoop likely limits any Fantasy value he had, even in AL-Only leagues. Unless Falherty somehow finds more playing time feel free to ignore him in all formats. – Doug Anderson


Logan Forsythe, Tampa Bay Rays

Logan Forsythe Projections

Forsythe will head to spring training this year penciled in as the starting second baseman for the Rays. With a full season’s worth of plate appearances last year, Forsythe delivered a robust .281 average and some middle of the road, if not spectacular counting stats, including 17 homers and nine steals. For 2016, expect the average to regress back to the .255-.265 range, but serviceable numbers in runs and RBIs along with double digit homeruns and steals are realistic. Forsythe is not going to win your league but could provide value in an AL-Only format or at your MI position. – Graham Briggs


Johnny Giavotella, Los Angeles Angels

Johnny Giavotella Projections

Giavotella probably won’t hurt your team with a decent batting average, but he isn’t going to help either beyond a handful of long balls and steals to go with about 100 combined runs scored and RBIs. As long as he can hold on to the everyday second base job, he should get a full season’s worth of at-bats, but this still makes him roster worthy as just a stop gap in AL-Only leagues. – Graham Briggs


Ryan Goins, Toronto Blue Jays

Ryan Goins Projections

Goins is likely the opening day starter for the Blue Jays with Devon Travis likely out recovering from surgery. Although he may not be gone very long, the opportunity to play will be there for Goins. Unfortunately, it should be just that and hopefully you are not drafting Goins, or hoping to rely on him in 2016. Aside from being a starter, he doesn’t add much to the Fantasy stat sheet. He may score you some runs given the potent lineup in Toronto, but that is about it. – Chris Meyers


Brock Holt, Boston Red Sox

Brock Holt Projections

Holt got full-time at-bats for much of the 2015 season and for the most part held his own. His power will never be an asset, but he’ll hit for average and has double-digit steal potential. He’s a nice fit at the middle infield slot in AL-Only formats and his position eligibility makes him a nice injury replacement in mixed leagues when he’s getting full-time play. – Doug Anderson


Ian Kinsler, Detroit Tigers

Ian Kinsler Projections

Kinsler may be getting a little long in the tooth but he put up another solid stat line in 2015. Some youth may be leapfrogging Detroit’s veteran, but that may actually lead to some draft day discount as the shiny new toys get the attention. Double digit homeruns and steals should be expected along with an average hovering around .280. Add in solid totals in runs and RBIs and you’ve got a solid five category contributor at a very thin position. Kinsler will be a consensus Top 10 pick at second base with the upside to finish in the Top 5 if things fall into place. – Graham Briggs


Jason Kipnis, Cleveland Indians

Jason Kipnis projections

Kipnis broke through the .300 mark last year after a disappointing 2014 and ultimately finished seventh in the American League in average. Unfortunately this looks somewhat BABIP fueled. HIs average was 30 points higher than his career norm while he posted an unsustainable .356 BABIP. Expect some regression as his average dials back a couple clicks in 2016. Looking for a 20/30 season for the Indian’s second baseman is probably asking for too much but 15 steals to go with 15 homeruns wouldn’t be a huge surprise. With little depth in the middle infield Kipnis is a player that can contribute in all five categories and should be considered among the top options at second in 2016. – Graham Briggs


Brett Lawrie, Chicago White Sox

Brett Lawrie Projections

Lawrie will likely not be changing his free-swinging ways anytime soon. While he does swing at seemingly every pitch that crosses the plate, he always has been able to make solid contact. His average is not fantastic, but hovers around .250. He is now playing in U.S. Cellular Field and this should allow him to remain on his career averages of 13-plus home runs and .250 avg, with the potential to hit 20 homeruns in his new park.- Chris Meyers


Rougned Odor, Texas Rangers

Rougned Odor Projections

The 22-year-old Rangers second baseman started out last year in a horrible funk and was sent back down to the minors to work out the kinks. It was a tale of two seasons when he returned to the majors and tore it up during the second half. Odor seems to be a fashionable pick and risks becoming overpriced in drafts this spring. However, he does bring a legit power tool to the plate and could pop 20 homers if things go well. He’s been caught stealing more than I’d like to see, but 10 steals should still be attainable. If you can get him as the eighth or ninth second baseman off the board, you’ve got a good deal, but taking him as the third or fourth is paying for production we haven’t seen yet. Odor is someone to target, but don’t overpay if the hype gets out of control. – Graham Briggs


Dustin Pedroia, Boston Red Sox

Dustin Pedroia Projections

It’s easy to root for Pedroia as a player, but at this point his name has more value than his stats in Fantasy. Knee and hamstring issues limited Pedroia to 93 games, but the bat was better than it has been in a while, popping 12 homers in just 381 at-bats. Pedroia doesn’t run much anymore and his power ceiling tops out at the 20-homer mark, so his value is hugely reliant on health. Pedroia has talked about running more this year, but everything is unicorns and rainbows in the offseason. Assume he gets 10 stolen bases or fewer and be happy if runs more. If you get 145-plus games from him, you’ll get what you paid for, but when it comes to Dustin Pedroia, there’s little chance of getting him at a discount. – Doug Anderson


Jonathan Schoop, Baltimore Orioles

second base projections

Schoop has been on a lot of sleeper lists due to his obvious power, but a .285 second half with 10 homers will have many Fantasy owners hot on his trail this spring. Schoop is young enough for the breakout to be real, but there’s still the matter of a 24.6 % strikeout rate to deal with. Schoop has also suffered from a reverse platoon split, batting just .216 against left-handed pitching over his career. As long as the sleeper hype stays under control, Schoop makes for a nice late-round play. Just realize there are plenty of flaws in his game and a repeat of that .279 average is very unlikely. – Doug Anderson


Eric Sogard, Oakland Athletics

Eric Sogard Projections

Sogard should be an option used only in the deepest of leagues. He will likely fill in on some favorable platoon matchups for Jed Lowrie, but on paper, Sogard isn’t much of a Fantasy asset. He hit for his highest average last season, but it was still below .250. He doesn’t provide power or too much in RBI potential. He has modest speed with double-digit stolen base potential, but nothing to get excited about. – Chris Meyers


Devon Travis, Toronto Blue Jays

Devon Travis Projections

Oh what could have been for Travis last season. A red-hot start made Travis one of the most acquired, traded and talked about Fantasy player last season, but sadly he got hurt. He will likely miss some time, at least through April, but if he can return to form, he could provide average, power and plenty of runs in the potent Toronto lineup. You can only hope Ryan Goins doesn’t start the season red-hot if you decide to draft him, or own him already. – Chris Meyers


We’ll be updating the 2016 Second Base Projections and Profiles for the American League right up until Opening Day. There will undoubtedly be some names we add to the list and some we need to get rid of. Check back regularly and let the “So-Called” Fantasy Experts get you ready for the 2016 Fantasy Baseball season.

Also please check out the rest of our 2016 Projections and Profiles

NL Catcher | AL Catcher | NL First Base | AL First Base | NL Second Base | AL Second Base | NL Third Base |  AL Third Base | NL Shortstop | AL Shortstop | NL Oufield | AL Outfield | AL DH | NL Starting Pitcher | AL Starting Pitcher | NL Relievers | AL Relievers |

 

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Doug "RotoDaddy" Anderson

Doug Anderson took on the moniker RotoDaddy with the birth of his son in 2003. He's a veteran of the industry and has been playing Fantasy Baseball for over 20 years. His work has been seen on RotoExperts.com, SI.com, Yahoo, USAToday.com and also in the pages of various Fantasy magazines. He's currently also in charge of aggregation efforts at The Fantasy Sports Network and represents them in the LABR Mixed Experts League.
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