2024 Spring Training Risers and Fallers (3/11)

by Connor Thomure
2024 Spring Training Risers and Fallers

One more week of spring training has passed, and opening day rosters are starting to take shape. The 2024 Spring Training Risers and Fallers (3/11) is arguably the most important one yet.

This week, we have four risers and five fallers on the 2024 Spring Training Risers and Fallers. The risers include two pitchers with average draft positions of 140 and 236. Two top-10 prospects are also rising up draft boards as we get closer to the regular season.

This week, the three best free agents, a freshly suspended prospect ranked 21st on MLB.com's prospect rankings, and an outfielder whose spot is being challenged by teammates are falling.

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2024 Spring Training Risers and Fallers

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Jackson Chourio, OF, Milwaukee Brewers

Listed as one of the 2024 Fantasy Baseball Breakout Candidates, Brewers' future star, and MLB.com's No. 2 prospect, Jackson Chourio continues to rise up rankings and draft boards. Since February 25, Chourio's ADP has risen from 138 to 127.

Chourio's spring stats are decent but not great by any means. He's slashing .314/.351/.400 with a 104 wRC+ across 10 games. His power hasn't shown up yet, as he is still without a home run.

Rather than forcing managers to draft him earlier, it seems Fantasy Baseball managers are excited at what the talented 20-year-old can bring. Is he the next Michael Harris II, or maybe even the next Julio Rodriguez? This alone can entice managers to target him.

Merrill Kelly, SP, Arizona Diamondbacks

Merrill Kelly made his spring debut on Friday, March 8 and it was a good one. Over two perfect innings, he struck out three batters while throwing 16 of 21 pitches for strikes. With an ADP of 140, Kelly is becoming increasingly attractive as a Fantasy piece.

Kelly isn't a flashy pick for Fantasy Baseball, but he is a dependable one. Since 2021, Kelly has started 90 games, recording 32 wins and 27 losses. He's struck out 8.29 batters per nine in this span and allowed 2.87 bases on balls per nine to pair with a 3.66 ERA and 3.85 FIP.

Wyatt Langford, OF, Texas Rangers

Wyatt Langford is the other top prospect to make the 2024 Fantasy Baseball Risers and Fallers. The Rangers drafted Langford with the fourth overall pick in the 2023 MLB Amateur Draft. After a vital spring training, it appears that Langford is more than ready to make his MLB debut less than a year after the draft.

This spring, he's slashing .304/.414/.826 across nine games. He's also belted four home runs while striking out nine times and grounding into three double plays.

Since February 25, Langford's ADP has risen from 167 to 151. If he keeps performing well, this will continue growing. RosterResource currently lists Langford as the everyday designated hitter.

His position is all but secure, as the Rangers do not have much depth on the bench or in their system. Their depth is strained because Corey Seager and Nathaniel Lowe are unlikely to be healthy for opening day. The Rangers have no choice but to include Langford on the opening-day roster.

Brayan Bello, SP, Boston Red Sox

Brayan Bello is on the rise after securing a long-term contract with the Boston Red Sox. On March 7, Bello and the Red Sox agreed to a six-year $55M contract. Bello was the best pitcher on the staff in 2023 and, at 24 years old, can continue developing into a top-of-the-rotation arm.

In 2023, he posted a 4.24 ERA across 28 starts and 157 innings. He recorded 7.57 strikeouts per nine, 2.58 bases on balls per nine, and 1.38 home runs per nine.

This spring, he appeared in two games, totaling five innings. He's allowed one hit, two walks, hit two batters, and allowed two earned runs. Bello struck out five batters in these two appearances.

Since February 25, Bello's ADP has risen from 249 to 236. It's not a huge jump, but this new contract may move him higher.


Leody Taveras, OF, Texas Rangers

With the rise in top prospects Evan Carter and Langford, Leody Taveras better perform before he gets replaced in the lineup. The 25-year-old outfielder is off to a horrid start this spring and is slashing .182/.296/.273 in 10 games.

Taveras isn't a significant offensive threat, but he has a solid power/speed combo and plays in one of the best lineups in baseball. However, Carter and Langford are now threatening his starting job.

Taveras is the best fielder, but Carter can also hold his own in center field. If Taveras continues struggling with the bat, he might end up on the bench after Lowe and Seager return from injury.

Noelvi Marte, 3B, Cincinnati Reds

The most apparent faller is Noelvi Marte. On March 8, Major League Baseball suspended the No. 21 prospect for 80 games after he tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs. Marte was set to be the everyday third baseman before the ruling.

On March 6, Marte's ADP was 164, but now there is a good chance he will go undrafted in many leagues.

Jeimer Candelario is the real winner here, as he is taking over the position for now.

Blake Snell, SP, Free Agent

This one hurts because I am a Blake Snell fan, but it is no secret that he is still a free agent. As each day passes, his time to prepare for a spot on an opening-day roster gets smaller. I'm sure Snell is in great shape and has been preparing on his own time, but it's not the same as facing MLB opponents in game situations.

In his 2024 Fantasy Baseball ADP Movers article, Mike Sollicito did a great job of explaining why he is avoiding Snell.

The MLB Cy Young will eventually sign with a team, but for now, he is falling down draft boards.

Jordan Montgomery, SP, Free Agent

The next free agent to discuss is World Series winner Jordan Montgomery. After turning himself into an ace with the Rangers, Montgomery expected to sign a deal early in the offseason. However, it's now March 11, and he is still without a team. This spells trouble, and I am staying away from Montgomery.

J.D. Martinez, OF, Free Agent

The last free agent to discuss is J.D. Martinez. Martinez is the least to worry about in this group because, as a batter, it will take him less time to get to game speed. Still, not being on a team at this point is a major red flag.

Most projections have him playing about 115 games, recording 21 homers, scoring 60 runs and 75 RBI. This is a good year and would be well worth his current ADP of 229. However, I'm not drafting Martinez in any league until he signs.

Check out the rest of F6P Spring Training coverage!

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Bobby March 12, 2024 - 12:26 am

Good overall read. Not a fan of “fallers” designation simply because they aren’t signed yet. Yes, it might take a little longer to get up to speed. But I’d rather see more “fallers” that are under-performing, seriously injured or losing out on position battles. If Montgomery signs with the Dodgers (rumored), his wait will be well worth it. And I’ll take the discount on professional hitter JD Davis.

Connor Thomure March 12, 2024 - 2:38 pm

Hey Bobby, thanks for reading! I see your point, but I am staying away from these players. I would rather have a player that is performing badly in spring training than a player that isn’t playing at all. There were some possible injuries to include, but not enough insight has come out if they will miss time.


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