The Latest Fantasy Baseball Trends and Insights
September 1 is an interesting date in Major League Baseball. It is when rosters can be expanded to 40 players. Both of these will add new players to our Fantasy pool, Several top prospects could be called up. These prospects need to be evaluated carefully. Are they just getting called to see what life is like in the majors or are they going to play every day? These are questions that need to be asked and carefully considered before making any drastic roster changes as you push for a Fantasy championship.
- Andrew McCutchen, New York Yankees: McCutchen is not the player he used to be, but leaving San Francisco for Yankee Stadium would be a plus for anyone. Sure, Yankee Stadium is 399 feet to left-center but the ball travels much better in New York than it does in San Francisco. Also, McCutchen will enjoy the short dimensions of right-center and right field at Yankee Stadium.
- Jonathan Villar, Baltimore Orioles: The first thing you or I think about when we consider Villar is speed, and yes, he will run, but he’s also hitting well since being traded to the Orioles. Speed is enough for me to claim Villar, as most of us could use the help in that category and the fact that he’s not a drag on my average is just a bonus.
- Clay Buchholz, Arizona Diamondbacks: This is turning into one of the better comeback stories in MLB this season. In 14 starts Buchholz is 7-2 with a 2.07 ERA and 1.02 WHIP. He is also striking out just a little less than one batter per inning. Who can’t use those numbers? Do I trust him? No, but there is no denying how well he is pitching for a playoff contending team.
- German Marquez, Colorado Rockies: Marquez is yet another hot pitcher. In his last seven starts he has only allowed 12 earned runs. Maybe you’re thinking he must be lucky and has avoided either hot offenses or pitching at home in Coor’s Field. The answer to that question would be no on both. But two of his recent starts have come at home and they have been versus a pair of strong offenses in the Cardinals and Athletics. His road starts are even more impressive, as a trio of them have come versus the Braves, Astros, and Brewers. Marquez is not putting up these strong numbers versus patsies.
- Carlos Rodon, Chicago White Sox: I hesitated on picking up Rodon this past week because of who he was up against, not because of how he was pitching. Over his last nine starts he has only allowed 13 earned runs and may finally be realizing his potential. The White Sox are playing much better since the All-Star break and shouldn’t be looked at as the team that played so poorly in the early part of the season. The two teams that Rodon was facing this week were the Yankees and he still has a matchup this weekend versus the Red Sox. Rodon was exceptional versus the Yankees. We’ll see how he does versus what may be the best offense in MLB.
- Aaron Judge, New York Yankees: The Yankees may have told you all you need to know about the health and expectations for Judge for the rest of this season when they acquired McCutchen. Time is running out for Judge to be a help for Fantasy owners this season. Judge is still not swinging a bat and with the minor league season ending for most teams on Labor Day, there does not appear to be an option for him to get in a rehab assignment.
- Eloy Jimenez, Chicago White Sox: It was announced Friday that the Sox won’t be calling up Jimenez this month. There really is no good reason why, as he has dominated this season in the minors, they just want to delay his service time as much as possible. Any hope that Jimenez would be a help to Fantasy owners down the stretch is gone.
- Ryan Madson, Los Angeles Dodgers: Madson was traded to the Dodgers on Friday. It gives the Dodgers much needed bullpen support and also gives them a veteran reliever who can close out games should Kenley Jansen continue to struggle. That being said, he was the closer for the Nationals and he’s not for the Dodgers, so there is no guarantee that another save is coming his way this year.
- Eric Hosmer, San Diego Padres: The Padres signing of Hosmer to that massive contract in the offseason didn’t make much sense then, and it certainly looks even worse now. Hosmer is batting .251 with 13 HRs and 56 RBI. Hosmer is not worthy of a Fantasy start at 1B and is really barely worth considering as a CI or UT.
- David Price, Boston Red Sox: Price took a line drive off of his wrist Tuesday and although the X-rays came back negative, the Sox have already announced that his next start will be pushed back. This is bad timing for Fantasy owners, as Price was supposed to make two starts next week, now you will be lucky to get one. I have Price in multiple leagues and he will sit for me as these are each weekly lineup leagues and I won’t be taking the chance that the Sox decide to play it safe and place him on the DL.
As always feel free to follow me on Twitter and ask any questions you like, @georgekurtz.