As we inch closer to April, it is certainly not too early to begin scouting for your 2023 fantasy baseball squad. Even better, this year’s MLB season comes on the heels of the World Baseball Classic.
Whether playing Roto or head-to-head, your fantasy team will need to be bolstered by a strong outfield cast if your championship hopes are genuine. Naturally, superstars like Aaron Judge, Mike Trout and Mookie Betts will be in high demand by any fantasy manager (for good reason); Having a few “aces up the sleeve” in the outfield can go a long way, especially through an arduous 162-game regular season.
From us to you, here are four “sleeper” MLB outfielders to consider for your fantasy teams:
Fantasy baseball sleepers: Outfielders
LF Steven Kwan, Cleveland Guardians
Entering his sophomore campaign at the Major League level (after finishing 3rd in 2022 MLB ROY voting), Steven Kwan proved to be quite the productive hitter atop Cleveland’s lineup. Last season (Kwan’s rookie year), he was second in hits (168) and fourth in OBP (.373) among all MLB outfielders. Additionally, he landed well within the top-10 (seventh) through that same data field for runs scored (89). Simply, Kwan gets on base often and he scores runs for his team. Also a solid fundamental defender, Kwan plays a clean leftfield.
LF Randy Arozarena, Tampa Bay Rays
Perhaps less in the “sleeper” category (but still more under the radar someone like Bryce Harper), outfielder Randy Arozarena brings a five-tool skill set that provides a little more pop than Kwan. Playing his home games at the hitter-friendly Tropicana Field, Arozarena is one of the best offensive options in the OF outside the top-35 ADP. In 2022, Arozarena smashed 20 home runs with 89 RBI and 72 runs scored: All figures within the top 20 of MLB outfielders last year. Also, he stole 32 bases in 2022, which is a sneaky stat in fantasy baseball. Having recently defected from his native Cuba, he is continuing his hot hitting at the 2023 World Baseball Classic for Team Mexico, collecting nine RBI over four tournament games so far (2nd only to Japan’s Masataka Yoshida, who has played in five tournament games).
RF Seiya Suzuki, Chicago Cubs
Seiya Suzuki is another outfielder here coming off their rookie-MLB season, however, at age 28. Having played the majority of his professional career in Japan, Suzuki could be poised for a more explosive year in 2023. Fortunately for the natives of Wrigleyville, the Chicago Cubs have done well to overhaul their lineup, adding SS Dansby Swanson, 1B Eric Hosmer and former MVP OF Cody Bellinger. Especially offensively, the Cubs look much better and should present Suzuki with more favorable ABs compared to last season. If your draft approaches pick 150 and Suzuki is still available, feel confident about taking him.
CF Brandon Nimmo, New York Mets
Here’s another outfielder that could see his value boosted from an improved lineup around him: Brandon Nimmo. The nearly-30-year-old centerfielder did well in 2022 to log career highs in RBI (64) and runs scored (102). In the middle of a potent Mets batting order that also includes SS Francisco Lindor, 1B Pete Alonso, 2B Jeff McNeil, OFs Starling Marte and Tommy Pham, Nimmo is poised for another season with career highs. Additionally, Nimmo’s solid defensive skills make him a prime candidate for a well-rounded fantasy player. Remember, his OBP was .367 in 2022, scoring north of 100 runs.