Roster construction is so important at this time of year. Remember, MLB teams can expand rosters come Sept. 1 so you’re unlikely to see players added to the disabled list if they suffer a minor injury. This could impact your roster. As you into the playoffs and the remainder of the season, you better make sure you have a balanced roster. There may be no reason to hold onto three catchers or setup men. Look at what categories you need to protect or gain in. Don’t forget about playing defense also. Look at what your opponents need and maybe you can block one of their moves. There is always more than one way to win a league.
Ryon Healy, Oakland Athletics: Healy didn’t get off to a start this season that would’ve seen him secure a roster spot for Fantasy teams. In the end, though, he has done what we drafted him to do and that is, provide power. He is a one category guy as he doesn’t possess any speed; and although his batting average won’t hurt you, it won’t help you either. If you need power and he’s available on your waiver wire, he could be a good add for your stretch run.
Andrew Benintendi, Boston Red Sox: Perhaps too much was expected out of Benintendi this season. He was considered the top rookie coming into April and some have been down on him because he only has 18 HRs, 71 RBIs, and a .278 AVG. What’s wrong with those numbers? They are pretty solid when you consider that he also has swiped 15 bags. Is he an OF1? No, but he’s definitely earned much more than his draft cost and seems to be getting hot at the right time for both the Red Sox and Fantasy owners.
Curtis Granderson, New York Mets: Granderson is what he is at this point in his career. He is a power source with very little else to offer. However, if your head to head playoffs start next week, you may need a power supply that can be acquired cheaply off the waiver wire. Granderson has 22 HRs this season, three of which have come since being traded to the Dodgers on Aug. 19.
Carlos Rodon, Chicago White Sox: I understand how hard it can be to pick up a pitcher who may not be able to get you a W. The White Sox will likely lose many more games than they win over the remainder of the season but if he as a Cy Young candidate, then he wouldn’t be available now. He’s someone who is pitching well and striking out more than a batter per inning. You could do worse.
Alex Bregman, Houston Astros: The Astros were never in danger of missing the playoffs but Fantasy owners were certainly worried when George Springer and Carlos Correa both hit the DL. Those injuries, however, did give Bregman a chance to show what he could do at the top of the lineup. Over his last 30 games, he is batting .339 with seven HRs and 22 RBIs and is making everyone forget about his slow start to the season.
Jacob Faria, Tampa Bay Rays: Faria has had an impressive rookie season but one must wonder whether opposing teams have started to figure him out. His ERA is 3.32 with a WHIP of 1.19 on the season, but over his last five starts, those figures have ballooned to 4.71 and 1.40. There is video out on Faria now and batters have made the necessary adjustments. Now, it’s time to see if Faria can also adjust, but that will have to wait until after he recovers from an abdominal strain.
Miguel Cabrera, Detroit Tigers: I’m going to beat this drum once again. It’s time to move on from Cabrera. I’m not saying he will never be the player he used to be, just that it’s not going to be this season. You have to be able to do better. Throw in that he’s likely to be suspended for his part in the brawls with the Yankees on Thursday and there may be no better time to move on from Miggy than right now.
Gary Sanchez, New York Yankees: I’m sure you’re thinking, how can Sanchez be on this list? He’s been carrying the Yankees and seems to hit a HR every night. That’s true, I’m just letting you know that he will be suspended for the sucker punches he threw during the brawl with the Tigers Thursday. As we know with all professional sports, trying to guess how long that suspension will be is foolish but some are speculating 5-10 games. You better grab a replacement from the WW, if you don’t have one already. The suspensions are likely to be announced Friday but with an appeal, there is no telling when Sanchez would be forced to sit.
Robinson Cano, Seattle Mariners: While Cano is still batting .294 over his last 30 games (even higher in smaller sample sizes), he only has one HR during this span, and that HR came on July 22. He’s also dealing with a hamstring injury that may or may not lead to missed time. If he starts for SEA, he starts for your Fantasy team, but it’s possible the hammy will bother him for the rest of the season.
Welington Castillo, Baltimore Orioles: Castillo was a popular choice to replace Willson Contreras when he went on the DL but the Orioles are rotating both Castillo and Caleb Joseph at catcher and unfortunately for Castillo owners, Joseph seems to be betting more than his fair share of starts. If you own Castillo, this is extremely frustrating as he was/is hitting, but that’s the nature of the catching position. You just have to suck it up and deal with it, as there isn’t much left on the WW if you’re in a league that starts two catchers.
As always feel free to follow me on Twitter and ask any questions you like, @georgekurtz.