If you’re unfamiliar with this article series, each week I take a look at five hitting matchups you should take advantage of and five hitting matchups you should avoid, based on who the hitters will likely be facing on the mound.
So here’s who you should start and avoid in Week 3 (4/19-4/25) 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, especially given how fluid things are this season. 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.
Colorado Rockies hitters – The Rockies only have five games this week, but guess what? All five are in Coors Field, so I’m all about my Rockies hitters this week. Some of the pitching matchups will, admittedly, be tricky. They’ll face Lance McCullers, Jose Urquidy, and Aaron Nola. But unless the Rockies were facing an absolute murderer’s row of aces, I’d be hard-pressed to sit my Rockies hitters with five games in Coors.
Philadelphia Phillies hitters – The Phillies get three games in Coors Field to close the week, which already makes this week a good one for them, but they also start the week against the Giants where the most challenging pitcher they’ll face is Kevin Gausman. Didi Gregorius is hitting .368/.381/.579 over the past week and Jean Segura has been slashing .500/.476/.750 over the past week, both look like good starts this week among your Phillies studs.
Seattle Mariners hitters – The Mariners have six games this week, starting with two against the Dodgers, which generally would make me hesitant as a stream. However, they’ll get Dustin May and Julio Urias, so of all the Dodgers starters, I’d rather face those two than the others. And the main reason I like the Mariners this week is they’ll get four games against the Red Sox, who own the worst FIP in all of baseball right now. Over the past week, Kyle Seager is slashing .381/.440/.762 and Evan White (who’s fairly available) is slashing .333/.455/.667.
Chicago White Sox hitters – The White Sox start the week off finishing out a series with the Red Sox who, as I mentioned, have the worst team FIP in baseball right now. Then, they’ve got two games against Cleveland where they’ll see Zach Plesac and Aaron Civale, which isn’t as bad as facing Cleveland’s rotation could be, and they’ll close with three games against the Rangers, who own the eighth-worst team FIP in baseball. Over the past week, Adam Eaton is slashing .300/.440/.650 if you’re looking for an outfielder to stream this week.
Jorge Polanco – This week, the Twins have three games, and half of them will be against left-handed pitchers. That’s good news for Polanco, who last year had some serious lefty/righty splits, slashing .345/.351/.455 against lefties. So far this year, those splits have maintained, as Polanco is slashing .278/.300/.444 against lefties in what is a very small sample size so far.
New York Yankees hitters – The Yankees get six games this week but they’re likely to be six tough games. They start with two games against Atlanta where they’ll see Charlie Morton, and they close the week with four games against Cleveland, who owns the best team FIP in all of baseball. Outside of your Yankees studs, I’d avoid my Yankees hitters this week.
San Diego Padres hitters – The Padres have seven games this week, which would typically be very exciting for their hitters, but they’ll have seven games against tough pitching staffs. They start with three games against the Brewers, who own the fourth-best FIP in baseball, and in that series, they’ll face Corbin Burnes. Then, they’ll close the week with a four-game series against the Dodgers where they’ll get to see Walker Buehler, Clayton Kershaw, Trevor Bauer, and Dustin May. So yea, no thanks.
Los Angeles Dodgers hitters – Oh hey, speaking of the Dodgers, guess what? They get four games against the Padres, and that’s bad for their hitters too. They’re going to face Yu Darvish, Blake Snell, and Joe Musgrove in that series, which doesn’t sound super fun. They do start the week off with two games against the Mariners, so I’m fine with streaming my Dodgers in those games in daily leagues, but in weekly leagues, it looks like there are just two games worth using your Dodgers against, which isn’t enough for me.
Milwaukee Brewers hitters – The Brewers start their week off with three games against the aforementioned Padres who, as I neglected to mention, own the fifth-best team FIP in baseball. Their pitching staff is excellent and generally should be avoided. Then, they’ll face the Cubs for three games, a team that owns the ninth-best team FIP in baseball and a series in which they’ll face Kyle Hendricks. All in all, I’d avoid my non-stud Brewers.
Max Kepler – As I mentioned, three of the six games the Twins have this week will be against lefties, and that’s bad for Kepler. On his career, Kepler is a .217/.287/.364 hitter against lefties, meaning I’d probably dodge him in weekly leagues and certainly dodge him against lefties in daily leagues.
Photo by Keith Gillett/Icon Sportswire | Adapted by Ethan Kaplan (@DJFreddie10 on Twitter)