2016 Fantasy Baseball Draft Value Picks: Starting Pitching

The fantasy draft season is upon us and all of the chatter out there is usually discussing which player to take in the first round of the 2016 draft season.  And yet, most fantasy owners know that the picks made late in the draft are usually the ones that make the difference between raising flags of victory and checking out in July.  In this article we will review 2016 fantasy baseball draft value picks.  So for those fantasy owners that are looking for the value on the mound in 2016 may I submit the resumes of two players that may just fit the bill.

2016 Fantasy Baseball Draft Values: Starting Pitching

Wei-Yin Chen

Chen makes the move this season to a pitcher friendly environment in Miami from the power alley of Camden Yards.  Chen is often the pitcher that is taken very late in a draft or picked up early in the season from the free agent scrap heap.  And yet when taking a closer look at his performance on the diamond is becomes evident that there may be exciting value with selecting him late in the draft.  Over the past three seasons Chen has averaged over 170 innings pitched per year, showing his durability.  He has also averaged a 3.57 ERA  while picking up 11 wins per season over that same time period.  There are concerns with his ability to build a healthy collection of strikeouts with only a 6.88 K/9 ratio over the past three seasons coupled with a fairly low velocity fastball averaging just over 91 MPH.  Chen has also proven however that he does not walk many batters which has resulted in a solid 1.26 WHIP over the past three seasons, as well as allowing him to pitch deeper into games which is favorable to recording consistent win totals.  Chen currently has an average draft position of well outside of the top 200 players which could spell late round value in 2016.

Jon Niese

Niese has spent his entire major league career with the Mets, and now finds himself in the NL Central as a valuable member of the Pirates rotation.  He is coming off of a tough 2015 season, however, when looking at his track record over the past 3 seasons there are signs of positive value for fantasy owners this season.  Niese has always been considered a pitcher and not a hard thrower as a result of his lower velocity fastball which has dipped under 90 MPH each of the past two seasons.  Niese is a left-handed pitcher that has issued his share of walks he typically has not given up the deep ball with a 9% HR/FB ratio from 2013 through 2014.  Additionally he proved last season that he can keep the ball down consistently posting 54.5% GB rate.  He has averaged a 3.73 ERA over the past three seasons while working against a high BABIP of .316.  Pitching in Pittsburgh has seemed to be of great benefit to other veteran pitchers in the recent past including Francisco Liriano and A.J. Burnett, and the NL Central has its fair share of pitcher friendly ballparks.  Niese may not be a player to carry a rotation, however in NL only leagues and deep mixed formats, he can deliver significant late round and low auction cost value for fantasy owners in 2016.

Main Photo: