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Thinking about Francisco Lindor's fantasy potential

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Francisco Lindor
Francisco Lindor
Hannah Foslien

Cleveland Indians shortstop prospect Francisco Lindor was promoted to the Triple-A Columbus Clippers of the International League yesterday. Before moving up, he was hitting .278/.352/.389 in 342 at-bats for Double-A Akron in the Eastern League, with 40 walks, 61 strikeouts, and 25 steals in 34 attempts over 88 games. He's collected 12 doubles, four triples, and six homers on the year.

I was recently asked about Lindor's fantasy potential. The general idea behind the interlocutor's question was that Lindor ranks very highly on lists of shortstop prospects from a general baseball perspective, but that he would not rank as well on a list generated from a fantasy point of view.

It is true that Lindor doesn't project to provide the same kind of home run/power production as someone like Javier Baez or Addison Russell. His defense is one of his best attributes and that doesn't have value in many fantasy contexts.

However, that doesn't mean Lindor won't be a good fantasy player. Lindor's on-base ability helps him make the most out of his speed and I think he should be good for 20 or more steals in a full big league season. Although he's not going to become a home run masher, Lindor isn't punchless. As he matures physically, I suspect he will develop more power than you might think given his size.

If Lindor develops as hoped, I think he can be a .280-.300 hitter with a high on-base percentage, a good number of doubles, 10-15 homers a season at his peak, and 20 or more steals. He's not going to be Troy Tulowitzki, but he should be a very productive long-term regular who contributes in multiple categories.

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