In Part 2 of our Sleepers segment, we include the rest of your team’s offensive players. Outfielders are in abundance once again while the Catcher’s slot is one of the trickiest position players to calculate. It’s probably the hardest position player to keep on your roster as well, due to the many injuries likely to take its toll on the most taxing of all positions on the field. Case in point; only nine catchers in all of baseball had 500 or more at bats last year.
Sleeper: C-Salvador Perez-Royals- In several of our mock drafts, Perez has been the 10th -12th catcher plucked off the boards and any catcher that can bat right around .300 and hit 15 home runs with 75-80 RBIs should be taken a little earlier. Perez makes for an excellent back-end C2 in most standard leagues.
Deeper Sleeper: C-Wellington Castillo-Cubs- Castillo became the Cubs everyday catcher in August, as the team continues to rebuild, and batted .294 with 13 extra-base hits and 18 RBI over 41 games in August and September. In 428 plate appearances he posted a .349 on-base percentage which ranked him seventh among catchers with a minimum 300 PA. In four out of his five minor league seasons, Castillo put up double-digit home runs.
Sleeper: OF-Kole Calhoun-Angels- With Peter Bourjos being traded to the Cardinals, 26 year old Calhoun should slip right into the starting right field job for Los Angeles. In just about 1/3 of a season in 2013, Calhoun showed us a sample, albeit a small one, of what he is capable of doing. When you pro-rate his numbers to a full season you get a stat-line resembling 88/24/96. And if he comes close to the .282 batting average he put up last year, then you have the makings of a genuine sleeper.
Deeper Sleeper-OF-Khris Davis-Brewers- The Brewers are as high on this kid as we are apparently as they moved their franchise player Ryan (send it FedEx) Braun from left field to right in order to give Davis the start in left- at least to begin the year. The results of the tryout that he was given over 56 games last season proved to be enough not only to move Braun but to trade away Norichika Aoki over the winter, locking up left field for the 26 year old. All Davis did over that 56 game-stretch was to belt 11 home runs with 27 RBIs and post a modest 3 steals. What stood out for us was his slugging percentage of .596 and his ability to hit left handers as well as righties. If Davis picks up where he left off he could be a steal of a sleeper this season!
Low risk/High reward-OF-Billy Hamilton-Reds- At the outset, Hamilton is a huge gamble. That being said, if he doesn’t start the season in the minors or on the bench, we think the skies the limit when it comes to the amount of steals that this 23 year old could garner for your team. Should Hamilton get that chance to start in center field and if he can lift his batting average from the .256 he put up at Louisville last year, there is no doubt that he could shatter some of the existing steal records at some point in his career. When called up last year down the stretch, Hamilton, over 13 games, attempted 14 steals and was successful 13 times! If he is still on the board at say round 10 or later, grab him, cross your fingers, and watch him fly…
I’m just glad that the Braves have an array of options at the position of catcher !
Outside of Hamilton, I don’t know any of these guys. Which is why you do what you do, and I listen intently. But, thanks to this post . . Wellington Castillo becomes one of my very favorite baseball names. That is just like, an AWESOME name. Somehow, the fact that he is a catcher only makes the name that much cooler to me. Am I strange?
Bizarre!! But that’s why I read every single one of your articles… Am I also strange??
Umm, you’re different. But it’s a really, really good kinda different. Okay, you’re strange too.