17. Adam Eaton, OF, Arizona Diamondbacks
Eaton likes to run
Unlike most of the other names on this list, Eaton wasn't a high draft pick (19th round) for the D-backs in 2010. He boasts an impressive .355/.456/.510 slash line in three minor league seasons with the Snakes, including hitting .381 with seven homers, 45 RBIs and 38 thefts in 488 at-bats with Triple-A Reno last year. In 85 at-bats for Arizona after his call-up, he hit only .259 with two homers and two stolen bases.
Eaton's size (5-foot-8, 185 pounds) and age (25) don't give him a tremendous amount of upside, and his short stature has limited his power potential severely; his career high for homers in a year was 10 back in 2011. But he's a scrappy left-handed stick who knows how to take a walk and can hit for a respectable average thanks to decent contact skills. His above-average speed makes him a threat to steal more than 30 bases, making him a nice late-round source for stolen bags.
Most importantly, thanks to Arizona's trade of Chris B. Young this offseason, Eaton enters 2013 as the favorite to start in center field in the desert. Their roster overhaul and rebuilding phase is more focused on scrappy gamers - as skipper Kirk Gibson refers to them - and Eaton fits that mold to a T. He's a bit of an underdog story and won't stand out on any fantasy baseball roster, but he has the playing time factor on his side and will aid you in the SB column this year while hitting leadoff for the D-backs.
On to No. 18
Top fantasy baseball prospects - AL 1-5 | 6-10 | 11-15 | 16-20 | 21-25
Top fantasy baseball prospects - NL 1-5 | 6-10 | 11-15 | 16-20 | 21-25
About Keith Hernandez
Keith, an editor with KFFL, joined the team as a Hot off the Wire analyst in 2008 and has been playing fantasy sports since 2005. He is involved in MLB, NFL and NASCAR content. He graduated from the University of California-San Diego in 2005 with a B.A. in Communications and was a four-year starter as a member of the baseball program.
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