Fantasy Baseball Rankings 2020: Top sleepers, breakouts, busts by same model that called Bieber’s big year

The coronavirus pandemic has essentially shut down the world of sports, but last week, athletes hoping to take this time off to get needed orthopedic surgeries were dealt a blow when an order from Florida Governor Ron DeSantis stopped all non-essential medical procedures, forcing renown sports surgeon Dr. James Andrews to temporarily stop surgeries. Luckily, Chris Sale, Noah Syndergaard and Luis Severino were all able to get their Tommy John surgeries done elsewhere and are healing up. How will their absences affect your 2020 Fantasy baseball picks?

With starting pitching depth already taking a blow and so much uncertainty over when the season will begin, a reliable set of 2020 Fantasy baseball rankings will be key as you continue your 2020 Fantasy baseball draft prep. Identifying potential 2020 Fantasy baseball sleepers, breakouts and busts before you enter the draft room can help ensure you’re getting maximum value out of every pick. Before you go on the clock in your drafts, be sure to check out the 2020 Fantasy baseball cheat sheets from the proven computer model at SportsLine.

Last season, SportsLine’s Projection Model identified several top Fantasy baseball breakouts, including Cleveland Indians All-Star starting pitcher Shane Bieber. The 24-year-old broke through with a 15-8 record, 3.28 ERA and 259 strikeouts over 214.1 innings to finish as the No. 5 starting pitcher in all of Fantasy baseball even though he was being drafted in the 15th round in standard 12-team leagues. 

The team at SportsLine was all over Bieber as a Fantasy breakout from the start. Their model had him listed much higher than expert consensus rankings, and anyone who listened to their advice was well positioned for a league title.

Their model is powered by the same people who powered projections for all three major Fantasy sites. And that same group is sharing its 2020 Fantasy Baseball rankings and cheat sheets over at SportsLine, helping you find Fantasy Baseball sleepers, breakouts and busts long before your competition. Their cheat sheets, available for leagues on many major sites, are updated multiple times every day. Any time an injury occurs or there’s a change on a depth chart, the team at SportsLine updates its Fantasy baseball cheat sheets.

When it came to ranking players in Fantasy football, SportsLine’s Projection Model beat human experts last season when there were big differences in ranking. And the model was the closest to the hole overall, meaning it best pinpointed where every player would finish each week. That could literally be the difference between winning your league or going home empty-handed.

Top 2020 Fantasy baseball sleepers

One of the 2020 Fantasy baseball sleepers the model is all over: Red Sox outfielder Kevin Pillar. He showed off increased power in 2018, hitting a career-best 21 home runs and recording 87 RBIs with the San Francisco Giants. 

Now back in the American League and hitting in a more potent lineup, Pillar has a chance to see his numbers go up even more. Fantasy owners, however, are sleeping on him in drafts, as he has a 2020 Fantasy baseball ADP of 124.4 overall.

SportsLine’s model says you’ll get more production out of Pillar than players like Danny Santana (ADP of 101.3) and also projects you’ll get about the same production as Joey Gallo, who is going off the board six rounds earlier on average.

Top 2020 Fantasy baseball breakouts

One of the 2020 Fantasy baseball breakouts to target: Royals first baseman Ryan O’Hearn. After earning a call-up in August 2018, O’Hearn showed plenty of potential by slugging 12 home runs and posting a .950 OPS over his first 170 plate appearances. However, O’Hearn struggled in 2019, hitting just 14 home runs and posting a .650 OPS.

O’Hearn’s struggles were rooted largely in a .230 BABIP that was 63 points worse than it had been in 2018 and nearly 100 points lower than he posted in the minors. O’Hearn’s hard-hit contact rate last season was virtually identical to what we saw in 2018, while his average exit velocity (90.4 mph) in 2019 was still in the 76th percentile of all hitters. O’Hearn is going undrafted in standard CBS Sports Fantasy baseball leagues thus far, but the model ranks him ahead of players like Paul Goldschmidt and Edwin Encarnacion, who are going in the 14th round or earlier.

Top 2020 Fantasy baseball busts

One of the 2020 Fantasy baseball busts the model is fading: Nationals shortstop Trea Turner. The 26-year-old and former top prospect hasn’t hit the ceiling many had hoped for as he was coming up through the farm system, but he is coming off his best full season, hitting 19 home runs and stealing 35 bases while posting an .850 OPS. 

However, Turner saw his strikeout rate climb and his walk rate fall from 2018 to 2019. Without the protection of Anthony Rendon in the Nationals’ lineup, Turner is bound to see fewer fastballs in 2020. That’s a major problem, as Turner slugged .596 against fastballs last season and just .353 against breaking balls and .332 against off-speed pitches. That’s why the model ranks him as its No. 10 shortstop despite the fact that he’s been the sixth drafted on average.

How to find proven 2020 Fantasy baseball rankings

SportsLine is also fading one of the top 10 catchers off the board, saying he doesn’t even crack the top 20 when the season is over. This pick could be the difference in winning your league or going home with nothing. 

So which 2020 Fantasy baseball sleepers, breakouts and busts should you target or fade in your drafts? Visit SportsLine now to get 2020 Fantasy baseball rankings for every single position, all from the model that called Shane Bieber’s All-Star season, and find out.

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