Fantasy Baseball: Players About to Qualify for Multiple Positions
Position eligibility is often overlooked in fantasy baseball, but given the right players it can be one of your greatest assets.
It wasn't that long ago that both Albert Pujols and Miguel Cabrera were eligible for both corner infield positions. That almost doesn't seem fair.
Then there's super utility player Ben Zobrist, who's glove makes owners' lives easier year after year.
Given how important multiple positions can be to an owner's lineup, we're taking a look at players who are on the cusp of adding new positions to their repertoire.
Since leagues have different rules, we're looking at players who are close to five and 10 starts at positions.
Primary positions and number of games played from ESPN.com.
Encarnacion proved a boon in 2011 when the slugger gained eligibility at both first and third with the Blue Jays. That came to an end last year, with the emergence of Brett Lawrie keeping Encarnacion at first.
While first continues to be the 30 year old's primary position in Toronto, an ankle injury to Lawrie has changed that.
Encarnacion already has six games at third, five of which have come in June. Depending how long Lawrie is out, Encarnacion should have eligibility at the hot corner by the end of the month.
When you hear the name Jeff Baker, you probably don't think fantasy stud. But since he's been getting playing time—due to a Mitch Moreland injury—the veteran has been raking.
And he's about to get even more valuable. Already eligible in the outfield and at first, Baker already has seven games at third base.
Of all the players on this list Baker is the worst long-term investment, but he could be your man if you're looking for some short-term flexibility.
It seems everyone is waiting for Nava's production to drop off, but the 30-year-old continues to hit. With an OPS well north of .800, fantasy owners are starting to take notice.
Nava is an outfielder by trade, but already has four games at first base this season. Given Boston's flexibility with its lineup, Nava could qualify at first sooner than later.
Aviles has always been a super utility player. Though he may not be as valuable as Ben Zobrist, he can still play a role in deeper fantasy leagues—especially during his hot stretches.
The 32-year-old is currently eligible at both shortstop and third base. With two more games at the position, he can add second base as well.
It's also worth noting he has three games in the outfield, though he has a little further to go in that department.
Most leagues use three standard "OF" positions, but some require you to have a left, center and right fielder.
Since there's quite a few players about to gain multiple outfield eligibility, this slide is intended to sum them all up.
Player's Name- outfield position to be gained, how many games they currently have there
- Allen Craig: LF, six games
- Starling Matre: CF, seven games
- Ryan Doumit: RF, eight games
- Lorenzo Cain: RF, five games
- Andre Ethier: CF, nine games
- J.D. Martinez: RF, eight games