The following is a profile of Dan Johnson, one of my 2011 fantasy baseball deep sleeper candidates (affectionately called narcos). For more information on the thought process behind the narcos, please visit the introductory post on this topic.
Average Draft Position: Undrafted
Others drafted around that time: N/A
2011 Role: Starting 1B
2010 Production: .198 AVG, 7 HR, 15 R, 23 RBI, 1 SB in 111 AB
My 2011 Prediction: .250 AVG, 30 HR, 70 R, 90 RBI, 0 SB (if he starts)
You may remember Don Johnson from Miami Vice and Nash Bridges while you may remember Dan Johnson as the guy who occasionally stood at first base for the A’s a few years back. He was fairly underwhelming there but found his way into the Rays organization where he smashed 25 HR with a .307 average over 113 minor league games in 2008. He took his talents to Japan for a year before returning last year to the tune of 37 HR’s between AAA and the majors (in only 128 games). Since 2008, he’s hit 86 HR’s (including his time in Japan) compared to the 50 he hit over three years with the A’s so he has certainly found a power stroke.
With that being said, he doesn’t bring many other tools to the fantasy table. He hit for .198 last year in the majors (a ridiculously unlucky .188 BABIP could be to blame). But, in 449 AAA games over his career, he hit for a .307 average so he has the potential to hit for a decent average. However, that hasn’t necessarily translated over to the majors so don’t put much stock in it. While tempering expectations on batting average, don’t expect any sort of stolen base numbers from him and don’t expect a ton of runs either. With all of the underselling aside, you can still expect the possibility of a boatload of homeruns and good RBI potential.
If you’re in a vastly deep league, he could give you a nice boost in power production from a corner infield spot on your team once he gets going. He’s the starting 1B in a lineup that should have decent firepower which should go well with his great power potential. Plus, he’s undrafted at this point in most leagues so it doesn’t hurt to take a chance on him or pick him up off the waivers early on.