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Fantasy Baseball Sleepers

The difference between a mediocre finish and league championship often comes down to the production you get from mid/low-round picks and free agent pickups. It's all about predicting the breakout season,whether the result of a positional battle/switch, post-injury upside or other intrinsic factors. Check back often as we rank our top fantasy baseball sleepers every month of the season. If a player in our top 3 is a free agent in your league, seriously consider upgrading your depth at that position or stockpiling them as future trade bait (when their value skyrockets).


FIC's 2012 Sleepers - APRIL (locked 3/31/12)

Rank
Player
Notes
Hit/Miss
Jason Kipnis
Kipnis has plus power and above average speed for a second baseman. He figures to start the year down in the order, but should move up quickly... particularly with injuries to Grady Sizemore and now a nagging injury for Michael Brantley. Batting in the two hole, Kipnis should score 90 Runs with 70 RBI and an outside shot at 20/20. If he can hit for average like he has coming through the minors, he will be top five at the position by the end of the year.
TBD
Jaime Garcia
For a guy who is occasionally described as a finesse lefty, Garcia gets an awful lot of swings and misses (10.5% Swinging Strike Percentage last year). If he can get ahead in the count just a little more often (57.6% last year was below the league average), Garcia should see an uptick in his strikeouts as well as a drop to his 1.32 WHIP from a year ago. With improvements in those areas and his ERA likely to come down a bit based on his FIP, Garcia should be a legit number two fantasy starter in 2012.
TBD
John Mayberry Jr.
Mayberry and Domonic Brown will be the two primary beneficiaries of Ryan Howard\'s injury, as they won\'t have to fight for playing time. Brown has always had the bigger hype, but Mayberry has just been better the past few years. In 296 plate appearances last season, he hit 15 HR and stole 8 bases while keeping a passable .273 average. Give him 550 plate appearances and we could see a 25/15 guy who both scores and drives in 70 runs.
TBD

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