It is almost time to start preparing for fantasy baseball drafts, and the Seattle Mariners added one of the top outfielders in the game this offseason in Teoscar Hernandez. The Mariners undoubtedly added a great offensive player with a track record of success and a top-notch fantasy player.
The new Mariners outfielder is drafted on average with about the 64th pick according to FantasyPros. In a 12-team league, that roughly equates to a 5th-round selection. His average rank is 61st overall, with his highest ranking being 36th, and his lowest coming in at 97. So according to people who are doing drafts already, Hernandez will be a critical part of many fantasy teams out there.
In the real world, the 30-year-old has never had a lousy wRC+ since his first year in Houston in 2016. In the last three seasons, Hernandez has posted a wRC+ of 142, 132, and 129. Those are outstanding numbers; he should stay in that range according to many projection systems. ZiPS has the righty slugger projected for a 123 wRC+, but he could easily put up a 140 wRC+ and it would not be a total fantasy.
For some of his counting stats, Hernandez has hit at least 16 home runs each of the last five seasons, and the 16 came in 50 games in the covid shortened 2020 season. Besides that year, he has hit at least 22 bombs while hitting 32 in 2021. T-Mobile Park may not be as conducive to Hernandez's home run power, but he will still play 81 games in other ballparks. One benefit of playing in the A.L. West is he will face many left-handed starting pitchers.
The Angels have lots of lefties in their rotation, the Astros have Framber Valdez at the top of their rotation, the Rangers have Martin Perez, and the A's have a few lefties as well, and Teoscar Hernandez has a career 140 wRC+ against lefties with a .273/.334/.568 career slash line against lefties. He will give lots of right-handed thump to this lineup, and he should hit well against the many lefties in the A.L. West.
Overall, the new hard hitting outfielder for the M's should be a very valuable player in fantasy this season as well as in reality. He is a great bet to continue to hit at a high level in his new environment, so don't forget to draft this Mariners slugger in your draft!