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. Next on our “Sleeper Series” is a late-round favorite for many fantasy baseball players. Jed Lowrie.
One of the best things about the Oakland infielder is his versatility, which is huge in fantasy baseball. Lowrie is eligible at shortstop and second base, which allows you massive flexibility in your draft if you plan on taking Lowrie. Shortstop is a scarce position in fantasy baseball as the position is top-heavy in Troy Tulowitzki and Hanley Ramirez. But, second base is also a scarce position, so if you decide to go one or the other (highly advised) early, Lowrie can be a bit of a savior in the mid to late rounds.
Currently, Lowrie’s ADP sits as the 16th shortstop drafted, and the 16th second basemen drafted at an overall number of 193. Pick 193 is usually in the 16th t0 19th round depending on the size of your league. If you can get Lowrie as the 17th player on your roster, that is a steal in itself.
Last season he hit .290 with 15 home runs and 75 runs batted in. A .290 batting average was good for fourth among shortstops with over 400 at-bats, and seventh among second basemen. His 15 home runs were 10th among second basemen and sixth among shortstops. His 75 runs batted in was eighth amongst second basemen, and fourth among shortstops. Finally, Lowrie also scored 80 runs which was tied for eight among all middle infielders. He scored one less run than Robinson Cano. Needless to say, Lowrie was one of the better fantasy middle infielders last season and should be able to produce at the same level, if not better, this season. Although he’s a six-year vet, 2013 was his first full season in the MLB, and 2014 will be his second, and likely his best.
At Lowrie’s ADP, the two shortstops after him are Jimmy Rollins and Jonathan Villar. Before him are Jurickson Profar and Xander Bogaerts. Lowrie has proven better in four of categories (stolen bases) than Rollins and Villar, and Profar and Bogaerts are unproven, though with a lot of potential.
In deeper leagues, Lowrie is almost a must-have due to the lack of production that late round middle infielders can contribute, so he will be drafted earlier than his ADP, but remember it is nearly impossible to find an infielder that can boast a .290 average with 15 home runs and 75 runs batted in while scoring 80. Lowrie has gone as high as the 12th round, and while that could be a reach, if there are 15 shortstops off the board and he is there, you just committed fantasy robbery.
Expect Lowrie to accrue similar statistics this year as he did last season. That’s .290, 14-17 home runs, 75-80 runs, and 75-80 runs batted in.
ADP’s are based on data from FantasyPros.com
Stay tuned for the rest of the “Fantasy Baseball Sleepers Series”