I realize that over the last couple of months I have largely neglected non-standard scoring leagues. I have covered 5×5 and points leagues, but not 10×10 leagues. So that is what we will cover for the next week. The players who have hidden value in 10×10 leagues because of doubles, triples, holds, etc. The things that don’t stand out in a standard league.
The standard 10×10 categories are hits, runs, average, doubles, triples, home runs, RBI, walks, steals, and OPS. For pitchers it is wins, losses, ERA, WHIP, saves, holds, strikeouts, quality starts, K/9 and complete games.
We will go position by position and find the hidden gems in 10×10 leagues.
This piece will focus on the first basemen. The catchers are here.
Anthony Rizzo, Cubs: This is the season that everyone has been predicting from Rizzo. If you drafted him anywhere outside the top 25 picks, you got an absolute steal. Especially so in 10×10 leagues. Everyone knows about his 17 HR and 52 runs scored, but did you know that he is second among first basemen with 48 walks? That helps keeps his OPS ridiculously high at .923. The only thing he doesn’t do is hit doubles. He has just 12 on the season…..
Paul Goldschmidt, Diamondbacks: Like Rizzo, it is no secret as to what kind of year he is having. Unlike Rizzo, Goldy might be the most valuable first baseman around in a 10×10 league. He ranks in the top ten at the position in every category except triples. 57 runs (1st), 93 hits (tied for 1st), 28 doubles (1st), 15 HR (7th), 53 RBI(6th), 40 walks (6th), 7 steals (1st), .301 average (10th), and .918 OPS (9th). Yes, Miguel Cabera is eligible at first base….
Freddie Freeman, Braves: He has high number across the board as well, and he has even thrown in two triples for good measure. He is fourth in runs, third in doubles, tied for second in triples, and sixth in walks. His home runs are out of the top ten, which helps keep his OPS just below .900, but he is still a great value in 10×10 formats.
Joey Votto, Reds: While his overall numbers are down, he is still drawing a lot of walks and scoring runs. His OPS is still solid at .861, so the rest of the numbers could come around as well. If you can find a frustrated Votto owner in a 10×10 league, buy low. He still does enough in the other categories to make him valuable.
Steve Pearce, Orioles: Pearce is hitting everything in sight right now, and he might just be available for the best price – free – in your league. He has 10 doubles, 16 runs scored, 13 walks, seven homers, 20 RBI, a .330 average, and an outstanding .961 OPS in just 130 at bats. I have my doubts about whether he can sustain this, but he is worth taking a shot on in the short term, and you may even be able to sell him at a premium.
James Loney, Rays: He is largely ignored in most leagues because he doesn’t hit for power. He does walk a lot and hit a lot of doubles, so he has value in a 10×10 league. He also drives in quite a few runs and keeps a good batting average. If he is available in any non-standard league, he shouldn’t be.
Come back tomorrow for the second basemen!