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Fantasy Baseball Sleeper: Avisail Garcia

Josh Collacchi looks at Avisail Garcia’s potential and why he could be a major late-round fantasy baseball sleeper in 2014.

Avisail Garcia
Avisail Garcia

Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

With XN Sports’ “Sleepers by Position” series in the books, you may be wondering why certain players were selected, and what warrants them as “sleepers” for this season. Starting off the “Sleeper Series” is a late-round favorite for many fantasy baseball players by the name of Avisail Garcia.

Avisail Garcia will be 23 in June, and by that time will be just starting to become a household name for fantasy baseball fans. At 6-foot-4, 240 pounds, he has an incredibly powerful swing and the potential to be one of the games next great outfielders. This sounds like high praise, but that is how the Chicago White Sox feel about him.

In terms of fantasy, Garcia is not being selected until the last few rounds of most fantasy drafts, and at the moment is the 67th outfielder selected. Take Garcia late and slot him into your fifth outfielder position and reap the benefits. If Garcia continues last year’s pace, his final line in 2014 could be .283 with 20 home runs and 80 runs batted in. Not to mention the 80 runs scored and double-digit stolen bases. There is reason to believe his production will improve this season as well, seeing as he will be in the middle of the White Sox order. This will lead to more opportunities to rack up the runs batted in. Garcia is slated to hit fifth for the White Sox this season, and last year, in the same slot, he had 11 hits in 33 at-bats. All signs point to Avisail Garcia being the next multi-category star, and should it start this year, he is a steal at an ADP of 261.

One thing Garcia needs to improve is his plate discipline. He struck out 59 times and only walked nine times last season, but that is common in a young player. Once he gets comfortable being an every day player he’ll be able to increase his discipline. But, seeing as he only walked nine times last season and was still able to hit .283, that shows how well Garcia can hit a baseball.

Garcia’s BABIP (batting average on balls in play) was at .344 last season which is his lowest since 2012 in Single-A. That is yet another indication that his production will rise. His BABIP throughout the minor leagues was well over .350 and he should see that number in his Major League career, leading to a higher batting average overall. If Garcia can maintain his high BABIP (his past shows he can) and increase his plate discipline he could be a .300 hitter for a long time.

Be patient with Garcia, as he may struggle early on due to the cold weather in Chicago in April, but once the weather gets warmer, watch out. Keep this in mind for those owners who are quick to bail as if you missed on Garcia in your draft, he can be picked up on waivers.

ADP’s are based on data from FantasyPros.com

Stay tuned for the rest of the “Fantasy Baseball Sleepers Series”

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