Isiah Kiner-Falefa (NYY): 3-8, HR, 3 R, 5 RBI, BB, 2 SB.
After an OH MY! performance on Labor Day, Isiah Kiner-Falefa (IKF) followed things up by going 3-8, HR, 3 R, 5 RBI, BB, and 2 SB. Now, obviously, that’s not in one game but over the course of both doubleheader games. Additionally, his 12th-inning single tied the game in the first game, and he eventually crossed home plate to score the winning run. Honestly, though, IKF pretty much did it all, and let’s not forget that he held down the hot corner for 21 innings.
It should also make his night taste even sweeter because it was against his former team. Well, sort of? If you remember, just after pitchers and catchers reported, Kiner-Falefa was dealt from the Texas Rangers to the Minnesota Twins…and then to the Yankees.
- March 12th – Mitch Garver traded to the Rangers / IKF, and Ronny Henriquez traded to the Twins
- March 13th – IKF, Josh Donaldson, and Ben Rortvedt traded to the Yankees / Gary Sánchez traded to the Twins
Not even a day on the Twins and shipped to the Yankees! Now, everything that IKF is as a defender, he gives back at the plate. If you don’t believe me, check out his spray chart below.
He’s a light-hitting infielder with a bit of speed(15 SB) and a plus-defender. Unfortunately, it’s not as valuable from a fantasy perspective as he will limit you in several other categories. Even though he’s available in over 80% of Yahoo leagues, the profile is someone you should pass on.
Let’s see how the other hitters did Wednesday.
Corbin Carroll (ARI): 2-4, 2B, HR, R, RBI.
After watching his teammate go yard, Carroll took the second offering from Yu Darvish and deposited it 406 feet into the centerfield bleachers for his first career HR. Additionally, he wasn’t done flexing his skills, and in the 7th inning, he added a double for good measure. The prospect community has been salivating over Carroll’s abilities for quite some time, and my re-drafters need to make him a priority pickup.
Tyler Naquin (NYM): 4-8, HR, 2 R, 4 RBI.
After a massive night in both games of the doubleheader, playing time may have opened up a little bit more. Reports, however, are pointing toward Starling Marte playing through his fractured finger. Since being acquired from the Reds, Naquin has been buried on the roster and utilized in certain situations. The underlying metrics suggest he’s a league-average bat with a bit more power than most and should never face a southpaw (37 wRC+ vs. LHP).
Aristides Aquino (CIN): 3-4, 2 HR, 2 R, 3 RBI.
It feels like Aquino does this once a year. He’ll put a couple of pitches over the fences, and we’ll stop and wonder if “The Punisher” is here to stay. Unfortunately, in a little over a 600 AB sample size, he still showcases a dreadful 34% K-rate fueled by swinging outside the zone 43% of the time. Furthermore, he’s putting nearly half of his batted balls on the ground. Nope! Don’t fall for this trap again!
Eugenio Suárez (SEA): 2-5, 2 HR, 2 R, 3 RBI.
Since moving to the Mariners, we’re seeing A LOT of similarities to Suárez’s time in Cincy. His two-HR night bumped the season-long total to 25, and he’s currently on pace to chase down his fourth consecutive,30 HR season; excluding the 2020 shortened season. Indeed, the strikeouts are a bit problematic and keep the batting average down. However, he’s providing any fantasy manager with a valuable commodity: power!
David Villar (SF): 2-3, 2 HR, 2 R, 3 RBI, BB.
We last saw Villar for a stretch in July that ended with him back down in Triple-A during early August. The main reason for his demotion was the 35% K-rate and 89 wRC+. However, with the rosters expanding in September, our old friend is back, and this time a bit more improved. Since making his way back, Villar has cut the strikeout rate back to 16% and put more balls in play. He’s worth keeping an eye on, even stashing in deeper leagues, as he did blast 27 HRs in 298 minor league ABs already.
Michael Toglia (COL): 2-4, 2B, HR, 2 R, 4 RBI.
Toglia started the scoring with a 2nd inning double to score Brendan Rodgers and later took Eric Lauer deep in the 3rd inning. While that was all the run support Toglia provided, Colorado cruised to an 8-4 victory. Furthermore, since joining the team in late August, he’s been a fixture in the lineup. Sometimes at 1B, and sometimes in the outfield. Sadly, you can ONLY plug him in at home or against RHP.
Daulton Varsho (ARI): 2-4, 2 HR, 2 R, 2 RBI.
Varsho only had two hits last night; however, both were HRs against Yu Darvish. His powerful night brought his HR total up to 25, seven shy of team leader Christian Walker. From all the indicators, Varsho is doing things relatively similar to the previous season. The barrel rate has climbed two ticks, but the contact and strikeout rates remain intact. He looks like a 20-25 HR power player who can swipe quite a few bags.
Edmundo Sosa (PHI): 3-3, 2B, HR, R, 3 RBI.
Sosa doesn’t get in the lineup very often, so he’s got to make the most when he does. Last night, he did just that. His 2nd-inning HR gave the Phillies the lead and followed up the hot start by driving in Matt Vierling for the deciding run. Since being traded from the Cardinals, Sosa has put up a 143 wRC+ and made a difference on the base paths(3 stolen bases). Although, he’s on the wrong side of the platoon, which significantly hinders his fantasy value.
Eric Haase (DET): 5-5, 2 2B, HR, R, RBI.
HUGE night for Haase! Rarely does a player go 5-for-5, let alone from the catcher position? However, I wouldn’t get too comfortable thinking this is close to his typical outing. In fact, Haase is having a big step-back season compared to his previous season. While he’s managed to shave a little off the K-rate, it’s still nearly 30%. Furthermore, he’ll likely finish with half as many HRs as he hit in 2021 (22 HR).
Featured image by Justin Paradis (@JustParaDesigns on Twitter)