Hitters to Start and Avoid in Week 15 (8/1-8/7)

The hitters you should start and avoid in fantasy this week.

What’s up, everyone!

If you’re unfamiliar with this article series, each week I take a look at some hitting matchups you should take advantage of and some hitting matchups you should avoid, based on who the hitters will likely be facing on the mound.

If you’d like to learn more about when it becomes less risky to stream hitters (and pitchers), and when certain team stats start to stabilize during the year, check out this article.

One other quick note for this week in particular: The trade deadline is on Tuesday, and any trades that happen within the next few days leading up to the deadline could change some of the recommended players, so just keep that in mind.

Anyways, here’s who you should start and avoid in Week 15 (8/1-8/7) of the fantasy baseball season.

Notes: All pitching matchups mentioned here are based on projections as of this post’s publication. It is entirely possible that the actual matchups could change for any number of reasons. Keep in mind, this article is geared toward middle-of-the-road players, meaning you should be starting top-of-the-line bats regardless of the matchup. Always start your studs.

 

START

 

Baltimore Orioles hitters – The Orioles get six games this week, starting with three against the Rangers, who own the 12th-worst team FIP in baseball, and closing with three against the Pirates, who own the sixth-worst team FIP in baseball, so two very beatable pitching staffs. There have been plenty of Orioles who have been hitting well lately, including Adley Rutschman, who’s slashing .400/.559/.560 over the past two weeks, and Ramón Urías, who’s been hitting .343/.389/.612 over the past month. But wait! There’s more! Anthony Santander has also been crushing the ball, slashing .387/.457/.742 over the past two weeks, so make sure you start him too.

Miami Marlins hitters – The Marlins also get six games this week, and they also get to see two very beatable pitching staffs. They start the week against the Reds, who own the second-worst team FIP in the majors and they close with three games against the Cubs, who own the fifth-worst team FIP in the league. If you’re looking for a deeper-league play, Miguel Rojas has been hitting pretty well lately, slashing .310/.355/.414 over the past two weeks, and might be worth a snag if you’re in need of a middle infielder.

Milwaukee Brewers hitters – The Brewers have sort of a blend of the Orioles’ and Marlins’ schedules this week. They’ve got six games, starting with three against the Pirates and ending with three against the Reds, and as I mentioned earlier, both have very bad pitching staffs, meaning it should be a good offensive week for the Brewers. Rowdy Tellez is sporting a .334 ISO over the past two weeks and Hunter Renfroe owns a .394 ISO over the same time period if you’re looking for some power. Also, Kolten Wong is slashing .393/.469/.607 over the past two weeks and is worth a look this week.

San Diego Padres hitters – The Padres get to have an eight-game week this week, which immediately makes me more inclined to start my Padres hitters. On top of that, they start the week with five games against the Rockies, and while those games aren’t in Coors Field (that would’ve been awesome), the Rockies still own the fourth-worst team FIP in baseball, so I’ll gladly take five games against their pitching staff. The Padres then close the week with three games against the Dodgers, and that’s what stops me from making this an extremely enthusiastic “you must start your Padres.” The Dodgers own the best team FIP in baseball, so that could be tough. But here’s the thing—the Padres get eight games, five of which will be against a bad pitching staff. I still think there’s enough value there this week given the circumstances to warrant starting your Padres. Over the past two weeks, Eric Hosmer is slashing .360/.429/.680 and is worth a look this week.

 

AVOID

 

Oakland Athletics hitters – The A’s have just five games this week, which right off the bat puts them at a disadvantage. They start the week with three games against the Angels, where they’ll see Noah Syndergaard and Shohei Ohtani, and they close with two games against the Giants, where they’ll see Carlos Rodón and Logan Webb. All in all, this is definitely a week to avoid your A’s hitters.

Washington Nationals hitters – The Nats have seven games this week, which would normally make me excited to start my Nats hitters, but they’ll be facing two very solid pitching staffs. They start the week off with three games against the Mets, a series in which they’ll see both Max Scherzer and Jacob deGrom, and they close the week with four games against the Phillies, a team that owns the seventh-best team FIP in baseball.

San Francisco Giants hitters – The Giants have six games this week, starting with four against the Dodgers who, as I mentioned earlier, have a great pitching staff. Like, best FIP in all of baseball good. The Giants close the week with two games against the A’s, and I’m fine starting my Giants hitters in daily leagues in those two games, but in weekly leagues, there’s not enough value here for me to warrant starting my Giants.

Los Angeles Dodgers hitters – Speaking of the Dodgers, they’re going to be up against some pretty good pitching staffs this week too. You can probably piece together based on the previous entries here who the Dodgers will see this week—the Giants and the Padres. Unfortunately for the Dodgers, the Giants have the fourth-best team FIP in baseball (and that whole series will be in Oracle Park, one of the more pitcher-friendly parks in baseball), and the Padres own the eighth-best team FIP in the league. The Dodgers’ lineup is loaded up with fantasy studs, so I’m not saying you should bench Mookie Betts or Trea Turner or anything like that, but the more borderline guys might be worth benching this week.

Ben Palmer

Managing editor at Pitcher List. 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.

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