2024 Fantasy Baseball: The Most Underrated Players in Rounds 1-10 of Drafts

By | March 14, 2024

The second in a series, we’re stepping into the box to talk about underrated players in this article after wading through the safest players to the plate last time.

These are hardly considered under-the-radar players, as the first player a few paragraphs down has almost as many paparazzi following him as Taylor Swift.

These are the players whose ADP might be a bit low considering who else is in the same range or compared to others at their position who, for some unknown reason, are drafted higher. Sometimes considerably higher.

[Join or create a Yahoo Fantasy Baseball league for the 2024 MLB season]

It could be due to a bad year that has soured the fantasy community somewhat, or possibly due to missed time. It could even be a player who excels in a small market, outside the day-to-day spotlight of the baseball world. Yet these players all come off the board with an ADP that could be slightly to significantly lower than them could be to go.

[2024 Fantasy Baseball Draft Rankings: C | 1B | 2B | SS | 3B | OF | SP | RP]

So let’s go ahead and provide a round-by-round breakdown of 10 players who are underrated in the 2024 fantasy drafts.

Only being available at the right spot has to be the only reason why Ohtani isn’t solidly in the top half of the first round. Any player who has the ability to hit more than 40 home runs and steal more than 20 bags while still scoring 100 runs and RBI should be a top-10 pick. Maybe even in the first five selections.

Remember, Ohtani doesn’t start until this year, so he’ll be fresher than the last three seasons when he was pulling double duty. And he’ll do it with Freddie Freeman and Will Smith behind him. Can Ohtani look at more than 50 home runs?

On August 8, Turner had a .238 batting average before giving up three hits in a doubleheader. From then on, he never stopped hitting, blazing through the final 45 games of the season with a .343 batting average, 15 home runs, 41 runs, 37 RBI and nine steals. It’s rarely easy being the new kid at school, especially when he has so many zeros on his paycheck. Now in his second year in Philly, Turner should be second in Philadelphia’s high-octane lineup and produce solid to great numbers in all five hitting categories.

Round 3: Zack Wheeler, SP, Philadelphia Phillies (ADP: 28.7)

Somehow, Wheeler has gotten better. He pitched half of his games at the hitter-friendly Citizens Bank Ballpark, while striking out more than one batter per inning over the past three seasons with WHIP ratios of 1.08 and lower. Wheeler signed a monster three-year extension just before spring training, so the Phillies are counting on him to continue his stellar pitching streak. He could be a good anchor for a fantasy staff, allowing drafters to take hitters again for several rounds.

In 78 games from July 1 through the end of the season, Abrams hit 11 home runs, stole 36 bases and scored 52 runs. Prorated over 162 games, that would be 23 home runs, 79 stolen bases and 110 runs. Does that sound like Round 1 value?

At only 23, Abrams is rising in the game and learning to use his Grade-80 speed to torment the opponent. If these power numbers stick, beware.

A pitcher with a 99th percentile groundball rate, now backed up on the left side of the infield by Matt Chapman and (probably) Nick Ahmed, should make fantasy managers pretty happy. Webb will see a lot of worm burners turn into outs, which could help him go deeper in games and allow him to surpass last year’s 194 strikeouts.

Round 6: JT Realmuto, C, Philadelphia Phillies (ADP: 68.7)

The value of a catcher who has a 20 home run power and can steal bases in double figures is enormous. Realmuto has accomplished that goal the past two seasons, going 17-13 the season before. Even with Kyle Schwarber in the DH role, Realmuto appears to be a lock to reach over 500 plate appearances, a mark only 10 catchers reached last year.

Just pick it and forget the position.

If Lowe played for NL East rivals like the Yankees or Red Sox, he might move up a round. Maybe two. Take the discount on an outfielder in his prime – 26 years old – hitting in a lineup that ranked fourth in the MLB in runs scored. He finished his first full season in the big league hitting .292 with 20 home runs and 32 steals. Is that his minimum?

Round 8: Gleyber Torres, 2B, New York Yankees (ADP: 94.4)

It’s hard to imagine a Yankee being considered underrated, but Torres being the ninth second baseman off the board has tremendous value. He has the power to hit home runs and score in double figures over the past two seasons. This position has some depth, so make sure you maximize the best picks on outfielders and don’t confuse the second basemen. Save your lock for a value like Torres.

Round 9: Evan Phillips, RP, Los Angeles Dodgers (ADP: 103.1)

From July 29 until the end of the season, Phillips was used as the Dodgers’ primary closer. He recorded 12 saves, blew one with a 1.64 ERA and a 0.86 WHIP. To become a team’s best reliever, is it a good bet to win more than 100 games as the 12th closer off the board? Sign me up. The only reason he’s getting that much of a cut is probably because he’s split his duties more narrowly in the first part of 2023, limiting him to only 24 saves. That won’t be the case this season. He also gets style points for being an avid fantasy football player.

There has been quite a bit of positive talk surrounding Ragans; it’s almost hard to believe he’s considered the SP30 after pick No. 110. He became a revelation after joining the Royals rotation – following a trade from the Rangers – allowing just 50 hits in 71.2 innings, while striking out 89 batters. span. He will be solid in strikeouts and the ratio categories, and if the Royals improve offensively he should reach double figures with 30+ starts.

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