Top 5 Sleeper Third Basemen for 2023 Fantasy Baseball Season
By Tyler Maher
Opening Day is just around the corner, but there's still time to research and prepare for your 2023 fantasy baseball drafts.
Thankfully, The Duel is here to help with our annual fantasy baseball preseason prep. You can check out our top 100 fantasy baseball player rankings here, as well as our top 25 team names.
In addition to our top 10 fantasy baseball third basemen for the 2023 MLB season, here are our top fantasy baseball sleeper third basemen as well.
Fantasy Baseball Third Basemen Sleepers 2023
5. Ke'Bryan Hayes, Pittsburgh Pirates
Hayes has fallen short of expectations since posting a scintillating 1.124 OPS in 24 games as a rookie in 2020, batting a mediocre .249/.315/.356 in the two seasons since. He's been terrific on the bases with 30 steals in 36 attempts, so now his bat needs to come around as well. The former first-round pick is still relatively young at 26, so it's possible this is the year he puts it together at the plate, especially after making strides with both his walk and strikeout rates last season.
4. Eduardo Escobar, New York Mets
It can be easy to forget about Escobar on the star-studded Mets, especially since his 2022 was nothing special. Still, 20 homers is 20 homers, and you've got to love the former All-Star's power bat in such a stacked lineup. Many players struggle in their first year in New York, but Escobar's strong finish to last season (8 HR, 25 RBIs, and .982 OPS) from Sep. 1 onward suggests he'll bounce back closer to 30 homers and 100 RBIs in 2023.
3. Justin Turner, Boston Red Sox
Last season was a tale of two halves for Turner, who posted a .673 OPS through the end of June and a .926 OPS afterward. He's shown no signs of slowing down at age 38 and now gets to take aim at the Green Monster on a regular basis for the first time in his career. Turner could very well threaten .300 this year after batting .278 in each of the past two seasons while continuing to pound out plenty of doubles, making him a formidable middle-of-the-order bat for Boston.
2. Yoan Moncada, Chicago White Sox
Last year was something of a lost season for Moncada, who's still trying to capitalize on the enormous potential that made him one of the highest-rated prospects in baseball before his MLB debut in 2016. Injuries limited him to just 104 games last year and caused his OPS to sink to .626, but he put up a .787 mark in 2021 and is still in the heart of his prime at 27 years old. This feels like it will be a huge comeback season for the White Sox in general with new manager Pedro Grifol at the helm, so Moncada could thrive under new leadership.
1. Josh Jung, Texas Rangers
Jung showed promise as well as room for improvement in his first taste of the big leagues last year, popping 10 extra-base hits in 26 games but also posting an ugly 4:39 BB/K ratio. He's having a hot spring, however, and has shown a bit more patience with a 3:6 BB/K ratio. The power is obviously there for the 25-year-old former first-round pick, so if he improves his batting eye he could really take off for a Rangers team that's looking to contend this year.