The 2017 first base fantasy baseball rankings are loaded, whether you're looking for first-round picks or mid-/late-round sleepers. There's something for every cheat sheet among 1Bs, so there's no excuse for not drafting a good one.
Of course, there's always an excuse for nothavinga good one once the season gets underway. Injuries can cripple any player, and surprise busts can cripple any team, but, at least in spring training, it looks like there are enough solid first basemen to go around.
We know what the top 15-20 players at this position offer: Good average, big homer potential, a ton of RBIs, and a good amount of runs. There are a few who can steal 20-plus bases (Paul Goldschmidt, Wil Myers, Ian Desmond) and a few that overcome poor averages with league-leading homer upside (Chris Davis, Todd Frazier), but things are pretty standard at the top.
Fantasy Baseball Draft Strategy 2017: First Base
The blessing of first base is also a curse. Virtually all players further down the rankings also look like they'lloffer the same type of production -- moderate average, decent power, decent RBIs. The difference between No. 20 and No. 30 might be 10-15 points in batting average, four more homers, a slightly more proven track record, and/or a better medical record. The difference in No. 30 to No. 40 might simply come down to playing time concerns.
So, yeah, there are plenty of sleepers -- and one or two of theguys in the 20-40 range will probably have big years and be in the top 10 next year -- but it's tough to discern just which one is the guy to get. And because you really can't play the category game outside of maybe getting a guy with less power but a better average (Josh Bell? Joe Mauer?), you're basically just stuck hoping the guy you draft hits a few more homers or gets lucky in the RBI department.
When it comes to drafting this position, you're going to want a bona fide stud relatively early on, but you don't have to rush to get a corner infield/UTIL/backup (though if you can get two 40-HR bombers or a pair of .300-30-100 players, there's nothing wrong with going that route).
Chances are, you're going to be cycling through guys for your CI/UTIL spots anyway, so you don't want to overdraft Eric Thames or Justin Bour or Brandon Moss or Mitch Moreland or whoever else fits that profile, especially if there are worries about platoons (which there almost always arefor these types of players, especially the lefties). Again, one of those guys could have a big year, but it's nearly impossible to predict which one. Really, the goal is to find a guy who gets off to a hot start. Bank those stats, then move on when the inevitable slump comes.
That's actually a good reason why you should familiarize yourself with this list. Some of these players will slump early and be on the waiver wire, but they will eventually heat up, if even for a short time. You should also always be on the lookout for increased playing time opportunities.
2017 Fantasy Baseball Rankings: First Base
Note: These rankings were compiled as if every player is only eligible at 1B. A player like Buster Posey will be ranked higher overall because he is also eligible at catcher.
2B, 3B, SS
2B, 3B, SS, OF
2B, 3B, OF
13 Eric Hosmer Royals --
*Eligible at another position
^Won't be eligible at 1B on draft day but expected to play 1B during season