Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Fantasy Baseball: Hitters to Stream in Week 14 (7/5-7/18)

Catcher: Max Stassi

The Angels play three games against the Red Sox and three games against the Mariners, which isn’t the greatest matchup but is good enough to justify starting Stassi. After an awful 2019 where Stassi hit to the tune of a 5 wRC+, he has had a 137 wRC+ in each of the past 2 seasons. He is hitting the cover off the ball with an 8.8% barrel rate and a 55.9% hard-hit rate. Catchers are notorious for having success in small sample sizes and falling off, so I’m not confident that Stassi will keep hitting like this in the future, but Stassi is a pretty good gamble if you’re in desperate need of a catcher, especially with Kurt Suzuki’s recent woes on both sides of the ball.

First Base: Garrett Cooper

With a 130 wRC+ in 2021, Cooper is on pace to have his third year in a row as an above-average hitter and his second year in a row with a wRC+ at or above 130. In Cooper’s 4 years in majors, he’s a career 118 wRC+ hitter with a .343 wOBA. Unfortunately for fantasy players, the Marlins calling up Jesus Sanchez makes it hard to gauge how much playing time Cooper will get. However, Cooper has been a better hitter against lefties with a career .356 wOBA against them, most likely locking down at least a platoon spot. While 4 of the Marlins games are against the Dodgers which makes me hesitant, four of the seven games they play this week are against lefties, which makes me optimistic that Cooper will have a productive week, even if he is relegated to a platoon.

Second Base: Donovan Solano

After a great 2019 and 2020, Solano got off to a bad start in 2021 but has been a better hitter as of late, pushing his wRC+ up to 97 for the year. Solano’s .400 BABIP from 2019-2020 has finally come down to earth and the schedule isn’t ideal this week. The Giants are playing six games this week with three games against lefties, which doesn’t bode well for his reverse splits. However, there aren’t a lot of good options to stream at second base, so hoping Solano can keep producing at a decent clip is your best bet.

Shortstop: Miguel Rojas

Like Cooper, Rojas has a good schedule despite four games against the Dodgers as he’s set to face four lefties. Rojas had a great year in 2020 with a .379 wOBA and a 142 wRC+, but he has been about average this year with a .312 wOBA and a 102 wRC+ However, his drop in production is in large part due to a BABIP that dipped to .278 despite a 26.7 sd(LA). While Rojas is overperforming his xwOBA, that should be expected since he pulls a lot of his flyballs and hits a lot of his groundballs the other way. Rojas is an even better choice if you are in a league that penalizes strikeouts as Rojas has maintained a very low strikeout rate throughout his MLB career.

Third Base: Yandy Diaz

I keep coming back to Yandy Diaz at third base, but there really are no other good options, and Diaz keeps walking more than he strikes out. The Rays are facing four lefties this week, against which Diaz hits better and starts more against. Diaz has always been a good hitter, and you should feel confident starting him this week, especially in on-base leagues or leagues that penalize strikeouts.

Outfield: Trevor Larnach

I used Larnach as my outfield streamer the first week and, while his stats have come down slightly, I still think he is a great player to pick up and start if you are in an on base league. He still has a .341 wOBA with a 121 wRC+ and the top prospect has hit himself into the 3 hole of the Twins lineup. He struggles against lefties but, fortunately, out of the Twins seven games this week Tarik Skubal is the only lefty starter they state.

Patrick Bowe

I am a Mets fan who takes an analytical approach to baseball and evaluating players. I prefer to focus on small details instead of broad generalizations.