Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire
If you’re a Giancarlo Stanton owner this year, you’ve been disappointed. I get it. He’s slashing .252/.339/.516 on the year so far with a 31.3% strikeout rate, up from 23.6% last year. While the average hasn’t been there, though, the power has, as he’s got a .265 ISO on the year so far. There is one positive though, and one scenario where you can almost always bank on a good game from Stanton, and that’s against a left-handed pitcher. On the year so far, he’s slashing .457/.487/1.171 against lefties, and yesterday he knocked around lefty Brett Anderson, going 4-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 3 RBI. You can expect more goodness from Stanton this week, as I outlined in my weekly hitter matchups article, as Stanton will be fortunate enough to see three lefties this week out of their five games—Gio Gonzalez, Danny Duffy, and Eric Skoglund. Gonzalez is the scariest of those three, and he’s not all that scary, so roll Stanton out there with confidence this week.
Let’s take a look at some of the other performances from yesterday’s games:
Trey Mancini (OF, Baltimore Orioles) – 2-5, 1 HR, 2 R, 2 RBI. The Orioles had themselves quite a day against the Rays yesterday, and Mancini joined in on the fun. After somewhat of a slow start, it’s good to see Mancini getting back into form.
Joey Rickard (OF, Baltimore Orioles) – 3-5, 2 HR, 3 R, 5 RBI. Welcome back to the big leagues Joey Rickard. Great game for the guy, but he’s got a career .373 slugging percentage, so it’s best to ignore this.
Michael Brantley (OF, Cleveland Indians) – 1-5, 1 HR, 2 R, 3 RBI. Brantley is slashing .314/.368/.588 over the past two weeks and has just been awesome this year. The steals might not be there as much as they used to be but who cares? As long as he’s healthy, he’s great, and he’s somehow available in about 33% of leagues, which is insane.
Jose Ramirez (2B/3B, Cleveland Indians) – 2-3, 1 HR, 2 R, 3 RBI, 1 SB. Jose Ramirez is awesome, not much more to say than that.
Yan Gomes (C, Cleveland Indians) – 4-5, 1 HR, 3 R, 3 RBI. So Yan Gomes has a .213 ISO on the year so far, and I think that’s more legit than not. He’s amped up his hard-hit rate from 29.1% last year to 41.4% this year which is an insane jump. He’s also got a ridiculous 8.6% soft-hit rate. His .266 average is going to come down thanks to his .377 BABIP and gross 34.3% strikeout rate, but if you need power and are looking for a catcher to snag, Gomes is interesting.
Niko Goodrum (2B/1B, Detroit Tigers) – 3-4, 1 HR, 2 R, 1 RBI. Given the number of injuries the Tigers have, I wouldn’t be shocked if Goodrum gets some more playing time, but for the time being, there’s nothing here for fantasy just yet.
Evan Gattis (C, Houston Astros) – 1-3, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI. Something’s breathed some life into Evan Gattis over the past week, as he’s slashing .353/.389/.705, but given that his .214 average on the year comes with a .275 BABIP (he had a .278 BABIP last year), I’m still concerned about his production. It’s also concerning that his strikeout rate has jumped from 15.4% last year to 27.4% this year, and that his hard-hit rate is sitting at a career-low 29.2%.
Matt Davidson (3B, Chicago White Sox) – 2-3, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI. We’ve always known Matt Davidson has good power, it’s just been his strikeout problem, but he’s changed his approach this year. His strikeout rate has dropped from 37.2% last year to 30.5% this year, and his walk rate has more than tripled from 4.3% last year to 15.6% this year. Not only that, but both his chase rate and whiff rate have noticeably dropped. While a 30%+ strikeout rate isn’t great, if he can keep walking like this, he’s a much more bearable option than he was last year.
Kyle Schwarber (OF, Chicago Cubs) – 0-2, 1 R, 2 SB. Coming into this game, Schwarber had four steals in his entire career. What an odd game for him. He also had two walks, which is great to see, as his plate discipline has gotten significantly better this year.
David Dahl (OF, Colorado Rockies) – 2-3, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI. It’s looking like Dahl is getting more regular at-bats, which is really good news for him. He’s available in about 83% of leagues, and if he’s getting regular at-bats, I’m interested.
Eugenio Suarez (3B, Cincinnati Reds) – 2-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI. Suarez continues to hit the ball well, slashing .302/.371/.604 over the past two weeks. He’s still available in about 31% of leagues, so grab him if he’s there.
Billy Hamilton (OF, Cincinnati Reds) – 2-3, 1 R, 3 SB. This is peak Billy Hamilton. It’s games like these that remind you why you drafted him, because I’d wager that his three stolen bases in one game yesterday helped a lot of people win their weeks.
Mark Reynolds (1B, Washington Nationals) – 3-4, 2 HR, 2 R, 3 RBI. Welcome back to the majors Mark Reynolds. Reynolds had a solid year with the Rockies last year, slashing .267/.352/.487 with 30 home runs, and I don’t think it’s insane to think he could be productive if given playing time this year. Given that Ryan Zimmerman is hurt (shocker), Reynolds could be in line for some more playing time. He’s available in over 95% of leagues, so he might be worth a speculative pickup in deeper leagues, and in shallower leagues, he’s worth keeping an eye on.