The hot corner is actually a bit of a strange landscape this year with three fat tiers among the top-30 options. Yes, you could argue that Nolan Arenado and Kris Bryant are a slice above, but after Jose Ramirez’ breakout season, a studly second half from Josh Donaldson and some surprise eligibility out of Freddie Freeman, we really have a seven or eight legitimate contenders to finish as the years top third baseman.
Top Tier Bargains
That top-eight, of course, includes the perennially underrated Anthony Rendon. Rendon has quietly averaged a .282-99-22-89-12 5×5 line per 162 games played over his past four seasons while hitting career bests in home runs, average and RBI last season. If you fail to snag a third baseman with one of your first few picks on draft day, Rendon deserves serious consideration anywhere beyond the top-30 overall and makes a nice value around his ADP of 49.
Going about 10 spots ahead of Rendon, on average, Alex Bregman is coming off a very useful roto season with a .284-88-19-71-17 line of his own. He slashed his K-rate in 2017 and benefited from a surging Houston offense. I prefer Rendon of the pair, but a similar argument could be made for Bregman here as a balanced contributor with some upside. It’s no surprise he’s rocketing up draft boards.
Thanks, but No Thanks
It’s hard to find a player whose ADP is completely out of line with their expected production at third base, so I’ll take the chance to throw a tiny cup of cold water on Rafael Devers. He’s the 11th third basemen off the board on average. just ahead of veterans Mike Moustakas, Nick Castellanos, Kyle Seager and Jake Lamb. If Moustakas had a team, he’d probably sit 20 picks higher in the early ADP and I’d put him at the top of this group after a monster 2017 season. Devers is projected somewhere in the neighborhood of 22 homers, 75 runs scored and 75 RBI with a .280 ish average. You can take those numbers to the bank with Castellanos, Seager and Lamb, so I’m likely to hedge toward the veteran here.
When Adrian Beltre is on the field, he’s a stud. He’s slipping in drafts thanks to durability concerns, but there’s really no reason to doubt his ability to produce when healthy. Depending on the your league’s roster settings (DL spots anyone?), he could be a steal going around pick 140.
Digging a bit deeper, Josh Harrison carries some solid 5×5 value after blasting a career best 16 homers in 2017. He can give you a little bit of everything with some helpful positional flexibility.
Third Base Draft Rankings 2018