Ben Lively(SP-PHI): Lively took a no-decision after allowing one run on five hits and three walks with four strikeouts over six innings vs. the Pirates. Lively has quietly posted a 21:6 K:BB ratio over 21.1 innings in 2018. A .385 BABIP has inflated the ERA and continues to leave him on the wire in too many mixed leagues, especially those with bench slots that allow for streaming. A heavier reliance on the curveball has lead to a modest increase in his swinging strike rate, so while the upside isn't high, the floor looks like a solid one.
Robert Gsellman(RP-NYM): RG won after allowing one hit and one walk with three strikeouts across two scoreless innings against the Braves. Gsellman, who stuggled mightily ou of the rotation last season, has reinvented himself in the bullpen and looks like a must-own in the majority of formats with daily transactions or H2H quirks. He now boasts a 60% GB rate and an 18:5 K:BB ratio over 12.1 innings. He's allowing consistently weak contact too with a heavier reliance on the sinker, and looks like a new man this season. He's worth a pickup in the majority of situations where ratio considerations come into play too.
Ryan Flaherty(3B-ATL): Flaherty went 2-for-4 with a double, one RBI, one walk and one stolen base vs. the Mets. While he doesn't bring ROTO-friendly skills to the table, Flaherty continues to impress with a solid EYE (10:12 BB:K ratio) and contact rate (87 percent). He is seeing the bulk of the playing time at 3B, but with the Braves signing Jose Bautista, that could change in short order. He remains a great play in deeper points leagues and only formats, but owners should monitor the situation closely.
Bud Norris(RP-STL): Norris picked up his fifth save of the season after allowing one run on two hits and one walk in an inning of work vs. the Reds. The right-hander is now 5-for-5 in save chances with a stellar 17:2 K:BB ratio in 10.1 innings. He's succeeding despite an insane .476 BABIP and an elevated 14 percent HR-FB rate too. Norris has been relying more on his sinker, and the results have been elite. While Holland and his big contract loom, Norris is the pitcher to own and looks legit.
Carlos Santana(1B-PHI): Santana went 2-for-4 with a double and a run scored vs. the Pirates. While the surface stats don't look pretty--.162 AVG with two homers--the peripherals indicate that Santana is about the bust out of his funk at the plate. He continues to demonstrate excellent patience and strike zone judgment with a 13:13 BB:K ratio, and he is posting the hard hit rate seven percentage points above where it was last season. The high fly ball rate is worrisome, but look for Santana to settle in and find his groove. Patience.
This is just a small sample of our daily analysis. Join our member area for over 80 player updates daily: http://www.fantistics.com/salesbaseball.php3 Click here for details: http://www.insiderbaseball.com/baseballsample.htm"