With XN Sports’ “Sleepers by Position” series in the books, you may be wondering why certain players were selected, and what warrants them as “sleepers” for this season. Starting off the “Sleeper Series” is a late-round ace for many fantasy baseball players. Enter Johnny Cueto.
Johnny Cueto seems to be an afterthought for some in fantasy baseball so far this draft season, but do not discount him. Cueto is just 28 years old, and still has a lot of good pitching left in his career. His hip injury is a concern, but that seems to be taken care of.
Cueto is currently being selected in the 15th to 17th rounds at an ADP of 169. On average, he is the 42nd pitcher taken in your fantasy drafts. Would you want an ace on your team in the 16th round? How about a sub-2.7 ERA and a 1.10 WHIP with anywhere from 13-16 wins? That seems too good to be true for a pitcher in the 16th round, but that is exactly what Johnny Cueto is. Last season Cueto missed 20 starts due to injury, but prior to that he has averaged just under 30 starts per season in his career. Last season’s injury was an anomaly and Cueto should be just fine this year.
In Cueto’s last 68 starts, he has allowed just 126 earned runs. For those trying to do the math, that is 1.85 earned runs per start. Not to mention he has thrown 433 innings in these last 68 starts. All these numbers come out to a 2.61 ERA. Johnny Cueto is an ace, and his last three seasons (68 starts) have proven that. Getting him in the 16th round is highway-robbery, and be sure that he is on your team this season. Expect Cueto to rise to the top of your staff before you know it, and 15 wins with a sub-3 ERA can be expected.
Not bad for the 42nd pitcher taken in your draft.
ADP’s are based on data from FantasyPros.com
Stay tuned for the rest of the “Fantasy Baseball Draft Advice: Sleepers Series”