Hitters to Start and Avoid in Week 9 (5/27 – 6/2)
Each week, we’ve been taking a look at five hitting matchups you should take advantage of and five hitting matchups you should avoid. Here are the batters you should start and avoid for Week 9 (5/27-6/2) 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 either because of injury, weather or anything else. 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 get seven games this week at home in Coors Field, so you know what that means—it means you should start just about every member of the Rockies you’ve got. They start off with a four-game series against the Diamondbacks, and while matchups against Zack Greinke and Robbie Ray aren’t ideal, in Coors Field, I think you’ll be okay. Then, they’ll see the Toronto Blue Jays where they’ll see Edwin Jackson and Aaron Sanchez. If you’ve got just about any member of the Rockies on your team, I’d toss him out there.
Texas Rangers hitters – The Rangers also get a nice seven-game week this week, starting off with a three-game series against the Seattle Mariners who own the third-worst team ERA in baseball. Then, they’ll have a four-game series against the Kansas City Royals, who own the second-worst team ERA in baseball, and that four-game series will be at home in hitter-friendly Globe Life Park. Hunter Pence is slashing .325/.376/.727 over the past month and is still available in 53% of leagues, and Shin-Soo Choo, who’s slashing .297/.390/.560 over the past month, is available in 42% of leagues. Both warrant starts this week.
Atlanta Braves hitters – The Braves only have a five-game week this week, which kind of sucks, but I think you’ll be able to extract a good bit of value out of their offense this week. They start off with a two-game series against the Washington Nationals, and while they will get one game against Stephen Strasburg, that’s the scariest matchup they’ll get all week (and it’s worth remembering that, with the Nationals, you’ll get to face one of the worst bullpens in baseball). Then, they’ll have a three-game series against the Detroit Tigers, who own the ninth-worst team ERA in baseball. Typically I’d avoid teams with five-game weeks in weekly leagues, but given the matchups, I think your Braves are worth starting.
Kansas City Royals hitters – The Royals enjoy a nice seven-game week this week, starting off with a three-game series against the Chicago White Sox. Now, they will see Lucas Giolito, who’s been excellent this season, but they’ll also see Ivan Nova and Reynaldo Lopez, so I think you’re fine. Plus, they’ll be in hitter-friendly Guaranteed Rate Field (literally the worst name for a ballpark in baseball). Then, they’ll have a four-game series against the Rangers, who own the fourth-worst team ERA in baseball, in hitter-friendly Globe Life Park. Jorge Soler, who’s slashing .270/.316/.506 over the past month and is available in 72% of leagues, is worth a look this week. And if you need speed, Billy Hamilton is slashing .300/.333/.350 over the past two weeks and is available in 52% of leagues, and Nicky Lopez is slashing .303/.395/.394 over the past two weeks and is available in 92% of leagues. Neither will give you power, but there’s decent average potential and plenty of steals potential.
Ji-Man Choi – This week, the Tampa Bay Rays will get to see six right-handed hitters, and that’s good news for Ji-Man Choi, as he’s slashing .280/.361/.449 against righties this year, and slashed .280/.372/.536 against them last year. He’s available in 97% of leagues.
Miami Marlins hitters – It’s going to be a tough week for Marlins hitters this week, as they start off with one game against the Washington Nationals on Memorial Day where they’ll get to see Max Scherzer. Then, they’ll have a three-game series against the San Francisco Giants where they’ll see Madison Bumgarner, and then they’ll close the week against the San Diego Padres where they’ll see Chris Paddack and Matt Strahm.
Houston Astros hitters – The Astros start their week off with a three-game series against the Chicago Cubs, who own the fifth-best team ERA in baseball, and then close the week with a three-game series against the Oakland Athletics, where they’ll see Chris Bassitt, who owns a 2.87 ERA over the past month. They’ll also see Mike Fiers, who’s been pretty solid, posting a 2.53 ERA over the past month. In a daily league, I’m good starting your Astros against Brett Anderson, however.
New York Mets hitters – The Mets will start the week with a four-game series against the Los Angeles Dodgers where they’ll see Clayton Kershaw, Rich Hill, Walker Buehler, and Hyun-Jin Ryu, all of whom represent really tough matchups. Then, to make matters worse, they’ll close the week against the Arizona Diamondbacks where they’ll see Zack Greinke and Luke Weaver, the latter of whom owns a 2.97 ERA over the past month.
Los Angeles Dodgers hitters -And speaking of the Dodgers, they’ve got a pretty tough slate this week too. In the aforementioned four-game series against the Mets, they’ll get to see Jacob deGrom and Noah Syndergaard, as well as the sometimes great, sometimes not Zack Wheeler, not to mention Steven Matz, who owns a solid 3.22 ERA over the past month. Then, they’ll see the Philadelphia Phillies, who own the 10th-best team ERA in baseball, including a matchup against Zach Eflin, who’s got a 2.25 ERA over the past two weeks.
Jonathan Villar – The Orioles will see four left-handed pitchers this week, and that’s not great news for Jonathan Villar, who’s slashing .179/.179/.284 against lefties so far this year.
(Photo by Gerry Angus/Icon Sportswire)