We have finally made it through the infield in our positional primers. Don’t forget to check out Catcher, First Base, Second Base and Shortstop. The third base position is loaded, extremely deep. As we got the primer ready, Lucas and I laughed at how close the rankings are and that you could literally have these rankings all over the place. Splitting hairs for certain players was a phrase used. It’s a great position for the 2020 fantasy season and a great position to discuss. Let’s see the rankings and more for the 2020 Fantasy Baseball Third Base Primer.

Lucas (@BieryPlox33)Bubba (@bdentrek)
1- Alex Bregman1- Alex Bregman
2- Nolan Arenado2- Jose Ramirez
3- Jose Ramirez3- Nolan Arenado
4- Anthony Rendon4- Anthony Rendon
5- Rafael Devers5- Rafael Devers
6- Kris Bryant6- Kris Bryant
7- Eugenio Suarez7- Eugenio Suarez
8- Vladimir Guerrero Jr8- Vladimir Guerrero Jr
9- Josh Donaldson9- Yoan Moncada
10- DJ LeMahieu10- Matt Chapman
11- Yoan Moncada11- Mike Moustakas
12- Manny Machado12- Manny Machado
13- Max Muncy13- Josh Donaldson
14- Matt Chapman14- Max Muncy
15- Jeff McNeil15- Miguel Sano
16- Mike Moustakas16- Jeff McNeil
17- Tommy Edman17- Justin Turner
18- Yuli Gurriel18- Yandy Diaz
19- Miguel Sano19- Eduardo Escobar
20- Justin Turner20- DJ LeMahieu

Overall Thoughts on the Position-

Lucas- The hot corner is a spot that is absolutely loaded at the top, it’s depth is paralleled only by SS. You can do just fine plugging other holes all draft and then using a Justin Turner or a Hunter Dozier on the relative cheap. Personally I want to stock up with some supreme talent and pick one of the top guys, as their skills and repeatability is bankable enough for me to invest heavily (I’m looking at you, Nolan Arenado/Alex Bregman.) Don’t worry about filling up 3B too early with a guy like Jose Ramirez if the value feels right, but also don’t fret if you have to start a J.D. Davis level player because you used previous picks on other positions.  

Bubba- Third Base is one of the deeper positions this season. There are some really nice power bats and more importantly power bats that you can get at a bit of a discount compared to some other positions. You can get some of the big guns early like Arenado and Rendon, or wait for the likes of Chapman, Moose or Sano. So many ways to attack the position and a great position to target for your CI position as well. As of now, I won’t be rushing to take a 3B as I like a good amount of options. This can obviously change in the heat of a draft, but I could easily wait for that trio mentioned above and some others as well.

Potential 2020 Busts-

Lucas- Eduardo Escobar is the easy answer here (118 ADP), as he will not come close to repeating his 2019 stats (35 HR’s, 118 RBI). Even with regression baked into his cost I cannot invest in Escobar when I can get Edman or Sano cheaper per ADP. Going out on more of a limb, Anthony Rendon is a guy I cannot endorse investing in at pick 21 overall. You can typically find more productive roto hitters such as J.D. Martinez or Bryce Harper behind him. Rendon is as steady as they come, but his 34 homers in 2019 is 9 more than his previous career high (25 in 2017), so expecting 32+ homers may not be as good of a bet as paying for Harper or Martinez.

Bubba- My bust pains me as I want baseball to be fun and a big year from this player would be a lot of fun. My 2020 third base bust is Vladimir Guerrero Jr. I love Vladito, but there are some things he definitely needs to improve on. We saw a near 50% GB rate in 2019, and that isn’t gonna help the power department that we are drafting Vlad for. Steamer projects Vladito for only 25 home runs and a .295 average. Also less than 200 runs + RBIs. Where Vlad is being drafted we need a lot more than that and I can find power like that at 3B for a lot cheaper. Sadly Vladdy won’t be worth that draft price in 2020.

Top Third Base Targets for 2020-

Lucas- I’ll gladly start my team with Nolan Arenado if given the opportunity to pick him after pick 10, same with Jose Ramirez at any point after pick 20. The consistent play of Arenado is too good to pass up and the power-speed of Jose Ramirez cannot be ignored, even if it comes with great inconsistency. The guy puts up the numbers you need by the end of the year. Eugenio Suarez is a guy that feels like he’s being slept on some, perhaps because people are banging the regression drum as loud as they can or maybe it’s because he’s never been a sexy name. Either way Suarez will continue hitting in the heart of a great order and playing in a spectacular home park. Suarez amped up the K’s (28.5% in 2019, 24.5% career K rate) but he hit for way more power and his barrel numbers (14% barrel rate, top 7% in the league for barrels) support the growth. I’m gladly buying back into Suarez.

Bubba- My top targets for 2020 are quite simple. If I am paying up I will go back to my guy, Eugenio Suarez. He’s a hard hitting monster and will once again be in Great American Small Park with an even better lineup around him. If I am waiting I will jump on Matt Chapman who is so close to a monster season. Just needs to elevate the ball more as he hits it harder than most in baseball. Lastly, if waiting give me all the Mike Moustakas and Miguel Sano. 

Top Third Base Sleeper Targets for 2020-

Lucas- No one is sleeping on Josh Donaldson but this guy’s skills are absolutely unmatched. His Baseball Savant page is absolutely blood red and his plate discipline was like peak Donaldson. Landing spot will affect his value and of course injuries will continue to worry owners while decreasing his price (ADP 109.) A steal outside the top 100 in my books. Another great 3B option is Jeff McNeil, who is a pure hitter with BA expertise (88th percentile xBA) and budding power. McNeil hit only 2 homers from March 28th to June 4th, then from June 4th on he managed to crank 21 bombs in just 86 contests. Growth could be incoming. Even if he is just a 20-something homer guy with good BA I’d be happy given his ADP (83rd player off the board in NFBC leagues.) J.D. Davis must be mentioned in this discussion given his incredible batted ball profile. Like Donaldson, Davis’ baseball savant page is off the freakin’ charts. He’s a nice sleeper target at ADP 175. 

Bubba- My sleeper is currently the 35th third basemen off the board in NFBC DC’s and is going 346 overall. Travis Shaw is basically free and is getting a fresh start with the Blue Jays. Roster Resource has Shaw hitting 5th for the Jays, which is outstanding if true. He will be surrounded by a solid, young offense in a really nice hitters ballpark. We all know Shaw had a horrible 2019, but we shouldn’t forget that Shaw hit 30+ home runs in 2018 and 2017. He’s a power machine and can give you some sneaky great production at his draft price.

Dynasty Third Base Targets-

Lucas- From a dynasty perspective 3B is a little weak at the top, with Jordan Groshans, Nolan Jones, Ke’Bryan Hayes representing some of the top guys. For a cheaper target Sherten Apostle is a good guy to go for. He’s an OBP guy who needs to show a little more consistent power, but he could put it all together in 2020 (his age 21 season). On the slightly cheaper end Aaron Schunk is a nice target for your FYPD drafts, as he was a 2019 2nd rounder from Georgia who could call Coors Field his home in due time. 

Bubba- The Phillies are loaded around the diamond, so this may not be the season we see Alec Bohm, but he’s by third basemen to target for your dynasty teams. Bohm is coming off a 14 home run season in AA over 238 at bats. He had a solid Arizona Fall League and should start the season in AAA for the Phillies. If they need Bohm, we may see him late in the season, but I think 2021 is the season for Bohm.