Fantasy Baseball Rankings 2022: Top sleepers, breakouts, busts from computer that called Hand’s down year

The MLB has officially delayed the start of spring training until at least March 5 due to negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement. Spring training games were originally scheduled to start on Feb. 26. However, it is still important to begin preparing for 2022 Fantasy baseball drafts, as the season could still begin close to its normal start date. Who are some of the 2022 Fantasy baseball picks that you should be targeting?

Atlanta is coming off a World Series title, but All-Star first baseman Freddie Freeman’s future remains uncertain. Could he be one of the 2022 Fantasy baseball busts this year? Before going on the clock, be sure to see the 2022 Fantasy baseball cheat sheets and rankings from the proven computer model at SportsLine.

Last season, SportsLine’s Projection Model identified several top Fantasy baseball sleepers, breakouts and busts, including reliever Brad Hand.

The team at SportsLine was all over Hand as a Fantasy bust from the start, and he went on to lose his job as a closer as he bounced around between three teams. He had a disastrous 7.57 ERA in a stint with the Blue Jays later in the season. Their model had him listed much lower than expert consensus rankings, and anyone who listened to their advice avoided a major speed bump that could have derailed their season.

Their model is powered by the same people who powered projections for all three major Fantasy sites. And that same group is sharing its 2022 Fantasy baseball rankings and cheat sheets over at SportsLine, helping you find Fantasy baseball sleepers, breakouts and busts long before your competition. Their cheat sheets, available for leagues on many major sites, are updated multiple times every day.

Any time more MLB news comes out about the updated 2022 MLB schedule or Fantasy baseball injuries, the team at SportsLine updates its projections. Go to SportsLine now to see these proven Fantasy baseball cheat sheets.

Top 2022 Fantasy baseball sleepers

One of the 2022 Fantasy baseball sleepers the model is all over: Cleveland Guardians starting pitcher Triston McKenzie. He had a rough finish to the season, giving up 14 combined runs earned in his final three contests, but those were meaningless games following Cleveland’s playoff elimination. McKenzie was fantastic for most of the season, allowing one earned run or fewer in five straight starts prior to his final three games. He was a strikeout machine during that stretch, sitting down at least six batters in all five contests.

McKenzie spent some time in the minors early in the season, but he returned as a high-level starter for Cleveland. He has earned a spot in the rotation heading into the 2022 MLB season. SportsLine’s model views him as a sleeper due to his three-game rough patch to end the 2021 campaign, as he was electric prior to that skid.

Top 2022 fantasy baseball breakouts

One of the 2022 Fantasy baseball breakouts the model is all over: Chicago Cubs center fielder Rafael Ortega. After bouncing in-and-out of the majors since 2012, he had a significant role in the Chicago outfield last year and started in 73 of his 103 appearances. He finished with career-highs in batting average (.291) and slugging percentage (.463), as well as home runs (11) and RBI (33).

Barring injury, Ortega should be in line for more starts in center again this season, and should have a little more help in the batting order around him. Nick Madrigal and Nico Hoerner should add some more pop out of Chicago’s infield this year, which should help keep opposing pitchers from throwing around Ortega at the plate. Most promising for Ortega is the way he finished last year, when he hit .306 with an OPS of .870 during the second half of the season after taking a more regular role in the lineup.

Top 2022 Fantasy baseball busts

As for players to avoid, the model has pinpointed Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Shane Baz as one of its top 2022 Fantasy baseball busts. A draft pick spent on Baz at his current 2022 Fantasy baseball ADP of 77.5 is largely a gamble after just four appearances with the Rays at the end of last season. In three regular season starts, he finished with just 13.1 innings pitched and gave up three home runs despite finishing with a 2.03 ERA.

During his lone postseason appearance against Boston in the American League Divisional Series, he gave up six hits and three earned runs in just 2.1 innings pitched as the Red Sox trounced the Rays, 14-6. As it stands, Baz’s role on the pitching staff is still a question, with recently-acquired right-handers Drew Rasmussen and Corey Kluber also favorites to land a spot in the rotation. The SportsLine model projects come names like Cal Quantrill, Yu Darvish and Kyle Gibson to all outperform Baz, despite having much higher ADP’s

How to find proven 2022 Fantasy baseball rankings

SportsLine is also high on a surprising starting pitcher who lands in the top five of its positional rankings. This player is barely going off the board in the top 100 picks, but is projected to outperform starters such as Julio Urias, Max Scherzer and Lucas Giolito. This pick could be the difference in winning your league or going home with nothing. You can only see who it is here.

So which 2022 Fantasy baseball busts, breakouts, and sleepers should you target or fade in your drafts? Visit SportsLine now to get 2022 Fantasy baseball rankings for every single position, all from the model that called Brad Hand’s disappointing season, and find out.

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