As countless web sites and magazines start to construct their fantasy baseball rankings for the 2014 season, there are several players that are not being shown the respect they deserve. It happens every year and it is honestly the best way to look for sleepers.
One of these underrated stars to look for in the middle of drafts this year is 1B Adrian Gonzalez of the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Everyone is viewing the veteran’s 2013 fantasy campaign as a failure. Gonzalez hit just 22 home runs and the lack of power caused him to fall outside of the top-10 first basemen in most fantasy rankings. However, the veteran still posted strong numbers if you look a little deeper.
A-Gonz recorded an impressive 100 RBIs last year and he has eclipsed 98 RBIs in seven straight fantasy seasons. He even ended the year with a stellar .293 batting average and .342 On Base Percentage. Certainly not the numbers you would expect from 1B ranked 12th in most rankings around the web right now.
Even more promising for his 2014 fantasy value is that Gonzalez has shockingly played at least 156 games in eight straight seasons. He has been an Iron Man at first base, despite playing for three different teams, and he has found himself in the starting lineup game after game. Durability counts extra in fantasy baseball.
Gonzalez looked phenomenal in the MLB playoffs as well. In the team’s 10 postseason games, Gonzalez posted a .316 batting average, three home runs, seven RBIs, and slugged .605. He was producing like one of the best sticks in fantasy and his postseason numbers should foreshadow a bounce back performance in 2014.
Gonzalez will be a reliable contributor again this season, so never be afraid to go with consistency. He may not have another 40-homer this year, but he should easily hit .290 with 25-30 long balls and 100 RBIs. So if you are looking for a first basemen that will fall outside of the first three rounds, make sure to circle Gonzalez on your 2014 cheat sheet.