Batter’s Box: Uncle John’s Band

Photo by Steve Nurenberg/Icon Sportswire

Miguel Cabrera is out for the season with a biceps injury, which is undoubtedly a huge problem for a number of fantasy teams. But if you recently lost Cabrera (or if you’re just looking for a worthwhile waiver pickup), take a look at John Hicks, who’s slashing .301/.339/.472 on the year so far, including yesterday’s 2-4, 1 HR, 2 R, 1 RBI performance. More than likely, Hicks is going to be playing full time in place of Cabrera, and he’s been really solid this year. Now, Hicks’ .301 average is a bit inflated given his .381 BABIP and .264 xAVG, however I do believe that he can hit for a decent average with some good power, especially considering he’s got a 40.3% hard-hit rate on the year. And the added bonus? Hicks is eligible at the catcher position in most leagues. I don’t necessarily think Hicks is a must-add in 10-team leagues, but I think he’s worth a look in 12-team and deeper leagues. He’s available in 74% of leagues.

Let’s take a look at some of the other performances from yesterday’s games:

Didi Gregorius (SS, New York Yankees) – 3-4, 1 HR, 2 R, 1 RBI. Didi’s been struggling a bit this season but has been picking things up lately, slashing .317/.391/.537 over the past two weeks. He’s going to get better, he’s got a .241 BABIP which I’m sure will improve.

Yangervis Solarte (SS/2B/3B, Toronto Blue Jays) – 3-4, 2 HR, 2 R, 3 RBI. Solarte is capable of having one of these games any time out, his power has been excellent this year—amping up his ISO to a career-high .218.

Brian Dozier (2B, Minnesota Twins) – 1-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 3 RBI. Dozier’s been difficult to own lately, but remember that last year, he slashed .304/.394/.591 in the second half—he’s capable of turning it on in a big way pretty quickly.

Freddie Galvis (SS, San Diego Padres) – 5-5, 1 HR, 1 R, 4 RBI. A seriously good game from Galvis who’s been fairly mediocre this year. I don’t expect him to hit a whole lot better than he’s hitting now, but he’s got enough of a power/speed combo that makes him worth a look in deeper leagues.

Nolan Arenado (3B, Colorado Rockies) – 3-4, 1 HR, 3 R, 3 RBI. Nolan Arenado is amazing—more at 11.

Ian Desmond (1B/OF, Colorado Rockies) – 3-5, 2 HR, 2 R, 2 RBI. Ian Desmond is so frustrating. A .218 ISO? Awesome. On pace for a 20/20 season? Fantastic. A .203 average? Uh…. A .269 OBP? Well…..no, that’s not great. I have to believe that his .218 BABIP is going to get better, and I know how enticing that power/speed combo is. Personally, I want to own him if I have the roster flexibility to either wait til the average picks up, or take the hit in batting average. But yea, I just don’t know what to do with him.

Jurickson Profar (OF/SS, Texas Rangers) – 1-3, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI. I really want Profar to succeed, and he’s been alright lately, but I’m still really concerned about the fact that he’s got a 22.8% soft-contact rate. He’s really only worth a look in really deep leagues.

Hernan Perez (3B/2B/OF, Milwaukee Brewers) – 3-5, 1 HR, 2 R, 1 RBI. Perez has been pretty meh this year, though he is hitting .300 over the past two weeks (with a .286 OBP somehow). Between his mediocre play and inconsistent playing time, he’s not worth a look.

Jesus Aguilar (1B, Milwaukee Brewers) – 1-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 3 RBI. It looks like the Brewers are still giving Aguilar playing time, which is awesome. He’s still available in 37% of leagues and warrants a pickup if he keeps getting consistent playing time.

Evan Gattis (C, Houston Astros) – 2-4, 1 HR, 2 R, 4 RBI. I hope you didn’t hop off the Evan Gattis train when he was struggling, cause he’s been awesome lately, slashing .301/.351/.711 over the past month.

Albert Almora Jr. (OF, Chicago Cubs) – 3-5, 2 R, 2 RBI. Almora has quietly been hitting pretty well, slashing .353/.387/.459 over the past month. It’s been somewhat empty, as it’s come without a single home run and just one stolen base, but he’s also gotten 14 runs. If you need an average boost, he’s worth a look in deep leagues.

Addison Russell (SS, Chicago Cubs) – 3-4, 3 R, 1 RBI. Fun fact—Addison Russell is slashing .338/.390/.423 over the past month. There haven’t been a ton of home runs and stolen bases, but he’s been solid and is available in 69% of leagues if you need middle infield help.

Anthony Rizzo (1B, Chicago Cubs) – 3-3, 1 R, 1 SB. Hopefully you didn’t sell low on Rizzo, cause he’s been slashing .319/.404/.553 over the past month. Welcome back, Anthony Rizzo.

Ian Kinsler (2B, Los Angeles Angels) – 1-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI. I’ve really liked the idea of an Ian Kinsler bounceback this year. It hasn’t quite happened yet, though he has had a .357 ISO over the past two weeks. Still, he’s got a .206 BABIP and I expect that to improve.

Paul Goldschmidt (1B, Arizona Diamondbacks) – 3-5, 1 HR, 2 R, 2 RBI. Good lord Paul Goldschmidt, what a month. That’s a .354/.434/.768 slashline over the last month. That’s insane. I hope you didn’t sell low on him.

Daniel Descalso (2B/3B/OF, Arizona Diamondbacks) – 2-2, 1 HR, 1 R, 3 RBI. Descalso has been hitting .316/.397/.596 over the past month and doesn’t seem like he’s going to slow down. He’s available in 80% of leagues and his positional eligibility makes him worth a look at least while the hot streak is alive.

Pablo Sandoval (3B/1B, San Francisco Giants) – 2-3, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI. The Panda is back! Or is he? I mean, he’s got a 42.5% hard-hit rate, which is great, but his .281 average comes with a .354 BABIP that I don’t expect to stick.

Ben Palmer

Lifelong Orioles fan (which can be....painful at times) and a Ravens/Wizards/Terps fan. I also listen to way too much music and watch way too many movies.

sdf

Comments


Frankie

I offered up Goldschmidt in my league to at least 5 different owners, and was rejected on all offers. Am I allowed to gloat now or should I be embarrassed for nearly giving up?

Taylor

Desmond .256 past 30 days. He’s been hitting fine but he’ll go 1/4 a lot of games so he never gets a chance to increase the horrible BA he started with.

Derek

Do you see Profars playing time disappearing when Andrus comes back? Or does Tex stick him at 2B, corner OF, etc

Ben Palmer

I would imagine he’s going to lose a fairly significant amount of playing time once Andrus is back. I can’t see them benching Mazara or Gallo frequently in favor of an underperforming Profar.

Derek

I was thinking more about them playing him over Odor, Kiner-Falefa, and playing him at 3B when Beltre rests, maybe a platoon for Gallo. I’m trying to be optimistic, especially because he’s in the 3 hole

Ben Palmer

True, I could potentially see them working him in, but I don’t think he’s going to get as consistent of playing time as he’s gotten to this point. And even so, his production has been pretty mediocre.

Charlie

Hey Ben! Thanks for doing this.

I’m currently running without a catcher. I know I should pick one up (enter Hicks), but not sure who to drop.

10 team, 6×6 OPS/QS league

I’m between:
Nimmo (Marte, Beni, Haniger, Betts, Acuna fill the OF out)

And Newcomb (Stripling, Kluber, Thor, Taillon, Soroka, Pivetta for SP. Norris, Box, Strickland, Miller, Ottavino for CP/RP)

I’ve also been thiimg about dropping a RP but they seem so helpful with Ks and ratios.

Please help.

Ben Palmer

Of those, I’d probably drop Nimmo, it doesn’t seem like you’re going to be starting him over the rest of your outfield with any level of consistency.

Chad

So just traded my Benny for his Goldy/Eloy. 100% dynasty w no $ or yrs. Your thoughts? 1b was Carlos and Bird so liking that. Have Betts Maz Ozuna Soto Puig Polanco (Pitt-grrr), Domingo and Robles. Felt there was enough there to loose Benny esp if Eloy pans out. Let me know. Thanks as always for the great work! Happy pops day!

Launch Angle

In a standard 5×5 roto league (R, RBI, HR, SB, AVG). I lead in all categories, except HR (down by 1) but it’s a tight race in the HR and to a lesser extend RBI category. I’m looking to improve my C position if possible to get better BA without losing ground in the other categories. I currently own Perez and the KC lineup is garbage. Don’t know where he’s going to get the RBI opportunities he’s used to getting in past years when they had a better lineup. His average is horrible this year too, but his BABIP is below norms and should rebound. I was thinking of trading him for either Contreras or Posey. Was expecting better power numbers out of Contreras…ISO down, hard hit rate down, etc. In order of preference, who would you want ROS? Should I hold Perez?

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