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MLB Week 8 FAAB Insights

More MLB player debuts, but some boring old vets may be more appealing!

Welcome back to another FAABulous Sunday! Yet again we have some exciting young prospects making their MLB debuts. We also have some old, boring guys that show up in this article multiple times throughout the season that have favorable schedules upcoming. Adam Howe (@EightyGrade) and myself were honored to have Derek Carty (@DerekCarty) join us on this morning’s episode of On the Wire (@OnTheWirePod). Where I mention rest of season projections, Derek’s The Bat X ROS (rest of season) as of this morning was used. Let’s get to some names!

 

Catcher

 

Adley Rutschman (100% ME, 98% OC, 67% Yahoo) – I knew Rutschman was drafted everywhere — the 11th catcher off the board on average in all NFBC leagues over the entire draft season. I am a bit surprised he was held onto for eight weeks in nearly all of them. So, he’s only available in in a couple of 12-team two-catcher leagues — check! He is available in a third of Yahoo leagues, and I’d probably give him a shot unless I’m starting Will Smith, Wilson Contreras, JT Realmuto, or Daulton Varsho this week.

Mitch Garver (89% ME, 82% OC, 51% Yahoo) – Now the primary DH in Texas due to a forearm strain, Garver was dropped in some places while on the IL as most fantasy players don’t like using a bench spot for a catcher. He’s projected to be the eighth best catcher the rest of the way with 15 HR and over 40 each of RBI and R — really nice catcher numbers.

 

First Base

 

Joey Votto (100% ME, 87% OC, 44% Yahoo) – As Derek pointed out on this morning’s On the Wire episode, the Reds are not as bad as what we’ve seen early in the season, and projections still like several of their hitters. Votto had a horrible start to the season and spent nearly three weeks on the COVID IL, but has went 1 for 4 with a double in each of his two games since returning, hopefully a sign that it was indeed just a slow start. A bit of caution as I’ve heard reference to his career 18.4 K% – It’s probably more realistic to hope for regression from his current 30.6% towards the 23.8% we saw last season when he admittedly changed his approach in search for more power.

Christian Walker (100% ME, 70% OC, 28% Yahoo) – Walker appeared here two weeks ago as we were beginning to see the power he exhibited in 2019 return. In the two scoring periods since he has hit .283 with 4 HR, 7 RBI, 8 R, a 13.0 BB%, and 18.5 K% in 54 PA. He’s still available in 30% of NFBC 12-teamers and nearly 3/4 of Yahoo leagues.

 

Second Base

 

Nolan Gorman (2% ME, 3% OC, 57% Yahoo) – Like Rutschman, you knew Gorman would be included this week as he was finally called up by the Cardinals. Unlike Rutschman, he’s widely available in NFBC formats where he wasn’t added to the player pool until this weekend in leagues where he wasn’t drafted. I’m not as worried about this season’s AAA K% as some (it was much lower last season in many more PA), but I am leery of what the Cardinals will do when Tyler O’Neill returns. They have guys they can move around, so there is a path for Gorman to hit his way to remaining in the lineup, but I’m probably not bidding the triple digits it will take to roster him in most $1,000 FAAB leagues.

 

Third Base

 

Luis Arraez (98% ME, 82% OC, 28% Yahoo) – 1B, 2B, OF – Some say Arraez is an empty batting average play, but he’s hitting in the top third of the Twins’ lineup most days, and they don’t have a day off until June 6. On top of the full schedule they have 12 games vs. Kansas City and Detroit pitching over the next 11 days. Not only should Arraez give your batting average a boost, but he should help in the RBI and R categories as well. He can also be used everywhere except catcher and shortstop.

 

Shortstop

 

Kyle Farmer (30% ME, 1% OC, 5% Yahoo) – Farmer is a better baseball player than fantasy baseball contributor, but he has my interest this week in deep leagues where I’m in need of a middle infielder. The Reds have a seven-game week and look to face four left handed starters — two in both the first half of the week and over the weekend. Farmer has hit .303 with his lone HR vs lefties this season, and while that’s only a sample of 35 PA, he’s hit .279 with 11 HR in 300 career PA vs southpaws.

 

Outfield

 

Kole Calhoun (34% ME, 1% OC, 19% Yahoo) – He’s always been a streaky power hitter, so his 6 HR with a .362 BA in 54 PA over the past two weeks is not a huge surprise. What is intriguing is a change in his batting stance that Eno Sarris mentioned on this week’s Rates and Barrels that may be contributing to his recent production. He’s hitting in the middle third of the Rangers’ lineup on a daily basis, and after an off-day tomorrow they play daily until June 9.

Avisaíl García (37% Yahoo) – Garcia is universally rostered in five-outfielder leagues but available in 2/3 of Yahoo leagues. He’s a top-30 outfielder by ROS projections, and while Miami has just a five-game week they begin their seven-game following week with a trip to Colorado. Save some FAAB money by grabbing him this weekend.

 

Pitcher

 

Dylan Bundy (62% ME, 21% OC, 20% Yahoo), Chris Archer (60% ME, 12% OC, 5% Yahoo), Emilio Pagán (100% ME, 97% OC, 37% Yahoo), Jhoan Duran (100% ME, 100% OC, 38% Yahoo), Tyler Duffey (4% ME, 1% OC, 3% Yahoo) – As mentioned above with Arraez, the Twins have a very favorable schedule upcoming for their pitching staff as well. The Royals and Tigers are 27th and 30th in the league when it comes to runs scored. Bundy and Archer get them both this week. Bundy is high risk, high reward. Archer has not been being allowed to start an inning when he’s due to face the top of the lineup for a third time limiting him to four innings in recent starts. If there’s a week where he could still get five innings and qualify for a win, it’s when facing these two teams. With such a full schedule, all three relievers should see plenty of work and potentially be used in save situations.

Brock Burke (15% ME, 2% OC, 10% Yahoo) – Burke has been amazing posting a 1.29 ERA with 28 K in 21 IP and has pitched at least two innings in eight of his twelve appearances. He may also find his way to some save opportunities if Joe Barlow falters or has any more blister issues.

David Peterson (66% ME, 2% OC, 7% Yahoo) – With all of the injuries to the Mets’ pitching staff, Peterson looks to enter the rotation Monday and face the Giants in San Francisco. His BB% has been slightly above 10% in his MLB career thus far, but a 1.89 ERA aided by his 55.8 GB% in 19.1 MLB innings this season is appealing. The schedule may not be as daunting as it appears at first glance as the Giants and Dodgers have been middle-of-the-pack vs. lefties, and the Nationals sandwiched between them are 25th in OPS vs left handed pitching.

 

One quick scheduling note — while the Marlins are the only team with both Monday and Thursday off this week, the Cubs and White Sox are off Friday giving them just two games for the weekend in NFBC formats. Conversely, the Orioles and Red Sox have a doubleheader Saturday giving them a four-game weekend. As always, good luck tonight and enjoy the games!

 

Feature image by Michael Packard (@CollectingPack on Twitter) / Photography by Doug Murray & Mark Goldman/Icon Sportswire

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.

  • Trevor Yan says:

    Enjoy your analysis! Do you have thoughts on Aaron Ashby’s value following the news of Peralta’s expected IL stint?

    • Kevin Hasting says:

      Thank you, Trevor! I really appreciate it! I believe Ashby should be rostered in 12-team leagues and deeper. His BB% has been an issue at times, and I do not like the Padres matchups in two of his next three starts – they have a .750 OPS vs lefties, and only the Yankees have hit more HR vs LHP. Ashby will probably have some great outings with a few blow-ups as well as we have seen with other young pitchers this season. Long term he’s a nice piece if you are able to play matchups for a while. Hope that helps! Thank you again!

      • Trevor Yan says:

        Thanks for your thoughtful reply, Kevin! I was able to win Ashby in FAAB and reserve him for this first start. Hopefully he takes advantage of the rotation opportunity!

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