Braves Dansby Swanson: Who is He?

The Braves are an interesting team. They have some older veterans and a few young prospects to watch out for. Dansby Swanson is one of them.

The Atlanta Braves enter the 2017 season with a lot of questions. The rotation may be the oldest in the league, while their offense is pretty young. With a few prospects in the organization, they could make an impact. Shortstop Dansby Swanson is one of them, but who exactly is he?

Swanson was drafted by the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2015 but arrived in Atlanta as a part of the one-sided Shelby Miller trade last December.

He played in just 22 games in Single-A in 2015. He played in 105 combined games between High-A and Double-A last season. In those games, he hit .275/.362/.426 with nine home runs and 55 RBI. He also had an 84:50 K:BB ratio. His plate discipline is something that can help him in his future.

Swanson made his MLB debut on August 17 and played in 38 games. He hit .302/.361/.442 with three homers, 17 RBI and 20 runs scored.

He walked 13 times but struck out 34 times. At that pace, he would have a 145:55 K:BB ratio, not that good.

When he was in the lineup, Swanson batted eighth in the Braves lineup, behind Jace Peterson. If that stays the same in 2017, he won’t get as many at-bats as fantasy owners hoped he would.

The shortstop pool is very deep this year. There about 12 or 13 players I want to rank in my top 10. Swanson is one of them. However, he is just outside at No. 11. While he hasn’t shown much at a major-league level, he has a lot of upside.

The downside is the rest of the Braves offense. I’ve mentioned it before when talking about other pitchers within the division, but not that in-depth. The Braves finished 29th in runs scored, 29th in RBI, 19th in batting average and 16th in on-base percentage. The top of the lineup can get on base, but the bottom half couldn’t drive them in.

Swanson isn’t someone I will target in my drafts, especially in standard leagues. There are better shortstops available earlier or more proven options to be had later. He will be a top-10 shortstop in NL-only leagues, but possibly by default.

While some of the rookies can pay off, like Corey Seager or Trevor Story (before he got hurt), they are the minority. Swanson is a contact hitter with some speed. Nothing special, yet. Draft him with caution.

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