Being able to identify the overvalued pitchers in you draft allows you to get value later on, and give you a better chance to win your league. Injuries play a big part during the Fantasy season. The teams who can minimize their misses puts them at a greater advantage over their opponents.
Obviously, pitchers stats fluctuate the most from year to year. Just because they have the ball in their hands does not mean they can control everything. That may seem wrong, but a pitcher who pitches to contact can easily be let down by the defense behind them.
On the flip side, a strikeout pitcher throws more pitches, allowing the hitter to see more of what he is trying to do and can issue more walks and/or hits.
Just because pitchers are on this list does not mean they do not hold value. It just means the risk in taking them where they are being drafted is not worth it. I will be using the NFBC ADP for the rankings.
So let’s get the overvalued pitchers to stay away from come draft day.
Noah Syndergaard, New York Mets (ADP: 19.91)
Don’t get me wrong, Noah Syndergaard is a phenomenal talent. But being the fifth pitcher off the board ahead of players like Chris Sale (20.92), Corey Kluber (24.01) and Jake Arrieta (33.16) is a little high. Even for some of the other pitchers ranked a little lower, such as David Price (44.84) and Chris Archer (53.76), the point differential is not that great.
Out of all of these pitchers, Syndergaard has the most risk. He had some elbow issues last year. It was revealed that he had a bone spur, but did not require surgery. With the injury history, I would gladly let someone else have the headache of owning Syndergaard, and take one of the other aforementioned options available to me.
Carlos Carrasco, Cleveland Indians (ADP: 56.08)
Much like Noah Syndergaard, Carlos Carrasco comes into the season with some injury concerns. Granted it was a broken hand, and Carrasco had a nice season, but I believe he will be over drafted after the Indians made it to the World Series. Before the injury, he compiled a 11-8 record, with a 3.32 ERA, 1.15 WHIP and 150 strikeouts in 146.1 innings pitched.
Those are nice numbers, and he is still a really good pitcher, but some pitchers being taken after him should be going ahead of him. Pitchers I like ahead of Carrasco are Kyle Hendricks (65.68), Carlos Martinez (69.08) and Cole Hamels (82.87).
Carrasco has really nice strikeout rates, but I look for Hendricks and Martinez to continue their development and take the next step in their career. You also know what you are getting with Hamels. Since 2008, Hamels has averaged over 200 innings pitched, 200 strikeouts and a 3.25 ERA over that span. It doesn’t look like a lot, but when you can take that extra hitter for your lineup and get an equal or better pitcher a round later, that goes a long way to edging out your competition.
Zack Greinke, Arizona Diamondbacks (ADP: 97.64)
It was a rough 2016 campaign for Zack Greinke in his first year in Arizona. While it is not an ideal place to pitch, Greinke still tallied 13 wins. The problem was he had seven losses, a 4.37 ERA and only managed 158.2 innings pitched. Maybe he can bounce back and be a trade candidate come the deadline. But do you really want to wait that long for him to possibly go to a contender? I would not.
Some pitchers I would rather draft are Aaron Sanchez (104.22), Jose Quintana (107.58) and reigning AL Cy Young winner Rick Porcello (110.21).
Sanchez is getting better, while Quintana will more then likely get moved to a contender. He does well in the counting stats. He’s a quality start machine and keeps his ERA manageable for being in the American League. His only knock is his high loss total, but that is because of the run support he doesn’t often get.
Porcello gets bumped to the third rotation spot with Sale coming over via trade. Do I expect another Cy Young performance? No, but he will not need to win 22 games again to hold value higher than Greinke. His lineup alone should get him 15-18 wins. And that will be more than the D’Backs will be able to get Greinke.
A Couple More Pitchers To Consider
- Kevin Gausman, Baltimore Orioles (ADP: 148.82)
- Marcus Stroman, Toronto Blue Jays (ADP: 161.05)
These guys are even more of a bargain, coming in 50 ADP points or more from Greinke. The 26-year-old Gausman posted a 9-12 record, with a 3.61 ERA, and 174 strikeouts in 179.2 innings pitched. While the win total wasn’t there, he should take another step this year, and the Orioles have basically the same lineup as last year.
Stroman came out of the gate a little slow last year while recovering from ACL surgery. He posted a 9-10 record, with a 4.37 ERA and 166 strikeouts in 204 innings pitched. Now Stroman is fully healed and has a full spring at 100 percent health ahead of him. Look for Stroman to do some big things this year. The biggest plus for the youngster is his amazing repertoire of pitches for the catcher to use against batters.
So there are your three overvalued pitchers that I would avoid during draft day this spring.
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