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MLB Week 7 FAAB Insights

More MLB player debuts and IL returns this week!

Welcome back to another FAABulous Sunday! We have more prospect debuts, and IL returns this week, but overall I’m looking at some much more widely available players this week than last. That doesn’t mean there won’t be some high bids on a few of them – I’m still bidding pretty conservatively in most situations. Let’s get to some names!

 

Catcher

 

William Contreras (4% ME, 2% OC, 3% Yahoo) – With Manny Piña undergoing season-ending surgery earlier in the week, Contreras looks to remain with Atlanta backing up Travis d’Arnaud behind the plate. In only 26 PA on the season, Contreras has been a top-10 fantasy catcher thanks to his 4 HR and .273 BA. He will not be able to keep up that pace, but he may get additional opportunities to relieve d’Arnaud if he continues to swing a hot bat. Atlanta having only one scheduled day off in the next three weeks helps as well.

 

First Base

 

Edwin Ríos (2% ME, 1% OC) – Rios is hitting .303 and has all three of his home runs and all nine of his RBI vs. RHP leading to starts at DH in the Dodgers’ last three games vs. right-handed starters. The Dodgers have five of their seven games this week vs. righty starters – three of four the first half of the week and two of three over the weekend for those in NFBC formats.

 

Second Base

 

Brandon Drury (100% ME, 53% OC, 63% Yahoo) – 3B, OF – Drury has been remarkably consistent this season, hitting home runs in five of six scoring periods and putting up 17 RBI and 16 R thus far over the past three. He’s available in nearly half of NFBC 12-team leagues as the third-highest earning 5×5 roto second baseman and fourth-highest third baseman. The Reds have Monday and Thursday off this week, so save him for the weekend in Toronto and the seven games back home at Great American Smallpark next week.

 

Third Base

 

Brad Miller (55% ME, 3% OC, 10% Yahoo) – 1B, OF – It’s not a big surprise that Miller is pacing for about 25 HR in 400 PA. What is surprising are the four stolen bases. He hasn’t been caught stealing since 2017, but he had only six attempts over the past four seasons. Now, in Texas, he’s leading off most games vs. right-handed starters, and the Rangers face righty starters in five of their seven games this week. His batting average may creep up as well if he can maintain his 22.5 K%, his lowest since 2015.

 

Shortstop

 

Edmundo Sosa (2% ME, 0% OC, 0% Yahoo) – With the demotion of Paul DeJong to AAA and the Cardinals’ reluctance to call up Nolan Gorman, Sosa will get an opportunity to improve on his slow start. He was 1 for 3 in his first start after returning from the IL, and St Louis has a seven-game week ahead – four at the Mets and three at the Pirates.

Jeremy Peña (67% Yahoo) – If his knee is okay and he avoids the IL as the Astros claim he will, Peña should be rostered in the third of Yahoo leagues where he’s available. After just four hits in 46 PA from April 20 to May 1, he’s hit in nine straight, including two of his 6 HR, and his BA is back up to .276 on the season. We’re looking at a 20 HR, 70 R and RBI season with a handful of stolen bases for the 24-year-old rookie.

 

Outfield

 

Alek Thomas (9% ME, 0% OC) – Thomas has hit the ground running, going 7 for 17 in his first five games since getting the call by the Diamondbacks last Sunday. He’s just 22 years old, and double-digit HR and SB with a .260+ BA are realistic the rest of the way if he sticks in the lineup on a regular basis.

Ben Gamel (92% ME, 6% OC, 12% Yahoo) – With Dan Vogelbach moving from the leadoff to the cleanup spot for the Pirates, Gamel has led off in nine of his last ten games with seven multi-hit games in that span. He has 3 HR and 2 SB on the season and will get plenty of plate appearances in his new role.

 

Pitcher

 

George Kirby (2% ME, 2% OC) – An earned run in 4 IP with 1 H, 1 BB, and 1 K is not what Mariner fans were hoping would follow Kirby’s spectacular debut last Sunday, but that debut, along with an overall 10 IP, 0.90 ERA, 8 K line will most likely mean triple-digit bids on Sunday evening. My bids will be significantly lower in all leagues, with the possible exception of 15-teamers where I’m desperate for starting pitching. His next couple of starts appear to line up at Boston and back home vs. the Astros.

Ryan Pepiot (0%) – Sunday’s starter for the Dodgers hasn’t been announced as I’m writing, but it appears Pepiot will get his second start of the season as part of Tuesday’s doubleheader vs. Arizona. He had 36 K in 26 IP at AAA to begin the season but also 12 BB. The walk issue was more pronounced in his big league debut when he gave up five in just 3 IP, but he also only gave up 1 H and 0 ER. The strikeouts are enticing, but be wary of those BBs!

Jeffrey Springs (13% ME, 1% OC, 2% Yahoo) – It appeared Springs would get the Tigers this week, but he has moved up to face the Blue Jays on Sunday. Monitor this start and act accordingly, as his next start would be at Baltimore next weekend.

Félix Bautista (0%) – Bautista looks like a dominant closer in the making. Jorge Lopez may return to the role, but Bautista is worth a stash if you have the room. Two saves in a week usually means triple-digit bids, but hopefully, Lopez gets a save opportunity Sunday to drop the demand a bit.

 

As I mentioned on this morning’s episode of On the Wire with Adam Howe and our special guest Darek Buchar, if you’re in NFBC Cutline leagues (including RazzSlam), it’s time to start working on your FAAB lists for the second and final FAAB period in just over three weeks.  As always, good luck tonight, and enjoy the games!

 

Artwork by Michael Packard (@CollectingPack on Twitter)

Kevin Hasting

Kevin is a life-long KC Royals fan who resides with his amazing wife and daughter in Abilene, TX. He has been playing fantasy baseball for over 20 years, cohosts the On the Wire weekly FAAB podcast with Adam Howe on the PitcherList Podcast Network, and was the 2020 TGFBI overall champion.

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