As Fantasy Baseball draft season gets into full swing, Major League Mayhem writers Austin Perodeau (AP), Michael Ferro (MF), Connor Kurcon (CK), Jason Gold (JG), and Rhys White (RW) have compiled a list of the top 50 players in fantasy for 2017. We've used our own (biased) opinions and the information available to us from numerous sources to put together these rankings, so feel free to disagree with us in the comments and explain why every one of our picks is wrong.
31 Chris Sale – There’s a reason Chris Sale hasn’t been outside of the Top 5 in Cy Young voting since he began starting. The man is good. And consistent. 200+ IP and 200+ strikeouts are a lock. ERA could take a hit in Fenway though, permanently putting his ERA in the 3.30-3.40 range. Gets a little bump in typical standard leagues and others with “Wins” as a category. -CK
32 Jake Arrieta - The Cubs’ sometimes-ace is coming off a down year but seemed to rediscover the prime form of his signature cutter towards the end of 2016. If Arrieta is at his best in his contract year, he’s a safe bet to draft as your number one starter and you can safely expect 200 strikeouts and a sub 3.5 ERA. -JG
33 Ryan Braun - Braun is as consistent as ever, almost reaching 100 RBIs last season. His power numbers hold up even though his defense is average. Braun is a good pickup even if he isn’t in his prime anymore. Look for the same-old, same-old from Braun and that’s not a bad thing. -MF
34 Gregory Polanco - Polanco is on the cusp of becoming elite. He broke out last season, but had some road bumps in average and defense. He has all the tools to be a great player. Look for him to break out fully this year. He’s a steal in the 3rd and 4th rounds. -MF
35 J.D. Martinez, OF, DET - By far one of my favorite Tigers, J.D. is one of the best outfielders when healthy. His career year in 2015 showcases the outstanding power he posses when he mashed 38 homers to go along with 102 rbis. 2016 was still a good year with 22 homers and 68 rbis, but we saw what he was able to do in 2015. I'm willing to bet he is closer to what he did in 2015, but it all depends on if he stays healthy. -RW
36 Daniel Murphy – Mr. Murphy found his power stroke in 2016 with 25 HR and 47 doubles. I’m buying into the power, but I’m not buying into the .340+ batting average. Put me down for .310 and 25 HR and you’re still left with one sexy 2B option. He should cross the plate 100+ times this year too with a better season from Harper. -CK
37 Xander Bogaerts - Another 20/20 candidate if he really lets loose with the speed, Bogaerts should be one of the first shortstops off the board in any draft. He’ll benefit again in 2017 from leading off one of the most potent lineups in all of baseball and you can safely expect 100+ runs to go along with the above average power and speed. -JG
38 Yu Darvish - After missing all of 2015 because of Tommy John surgery, Yu had a rehabilitating year in 2016 with lower strikeout numbers and higher ERA. Look for him to complete his return this year with a resurgent season. -MF
39 Ian Desmond - One of my favorite players in the draft this year. He has the potential to contribute in all 5 categories. Could easily be looking at a player who puts up a slash of .290/90/25/90/25 with the added flexibility of OF/1B. That seems like a discount Paul Goldschmidt you can get nearly 30 picks later. -AP
Edit- Desmond has a left hand fracture. My Desmond hype meters have been reduced to minimal levels.
40 Johnny Cueto - Cueto is very much like Bumgarner in the fact that he provides a safe ace to your fantasy rotation. With him potentially being a free agent this year I expect a career year because this could be his last major payday. Minus the 11 starts he had in 2013, he has been as durable as they come. Cueto is not a huge strikeout pitcher but he provides you a career 1.170 WHIP and a 3.23 ERA, he is just a model of consistency and won't hurt you in any format. -RW