Nathan Eovaldi (SP) TB - For the second time in three starts, Eovaldi picked up a win while allowing only 1 hit with 9 K's. He looked absolutely dominant Sunday against the Mets, generating a swinging strike rate of over 20% for the outing, continuing a trend this year that has seen him strike out more batters than ever before. He will allow some homers, but it seems like he's come back from TJ with even better control and stuff that is at least as good as it was before. He hasn't really pitched much at home yet, but he should get a decent bump from the Trop as well, which is playing 10-15% below average for offense over the past few years. I've been burned by Eovaldi plenty in the past, suckered in by the velo/occasional control combo, but I think I'm going back to the well here.....he looks viable to me in all formats as a back-end guy with upside.
Ryan Borucki (SP) TOR - So, through three starts, Borucki has tossed QS against the Yanks, Tigers, and Astros. Solid debut to be sure...he did allow a handful of hard-hit balls Sunday, but by and large he was decent. Here's the thing with Borucki though: he's essentially just a FB/change guy, so he does rather well against RHB. Two of the most RH-heavy teams in the league are the Yanks and 'Stros, so he actually matched up sort of favorably against them. The Red Soxx, up next, will be a better test for him I think. Since he's 80 starts into his pro career, it's a bit premature to be forecasting what he can be, but I see a much lower ceiling for him than he's shown through three starts. He's unlikely to strike out many batters and his control isn't that great...the GB rate is going to be critical to his ability to provide value, and pitchers like that are questionable for fantasy purposes. I would certainly risk shopping him now to see what return you might get.
Stephen Piscotty (OF) OAK - Piscotty homered for the second straight game Sunday, continuing a hot two weeks that have seen him average almost an XBH per game. He hit 303/382/517 in May and already has three doubles and two homers here in July in just five games, and his hard contact rate sat at 41% for the season prior to today's HR. Piscotty has dealt with a bunch of injuries plus his mother's battle with ALS over the past year-plus. I don't pretend to know how much that impacted Piscotty's play, but I think it's safe to say that there was an impact and it probably wasn't positive. There is plenty of talent in his bat, and it seems to be shining through a bit more over the past 5-6 weeks...like Walter, I see him as having OF5 value moving forward.
Jurickson Profar (IF/OF) TEX - Profar hit his 9th homer of the year Sunday to extend his hitting streak to 8 games (and his on-base streak to 10), as he continues to force the Rangers to play him almost every day. It seems amazing that Profar is still just 25, but it's true, and his performance at ages 18 and 19 will continue to buy him chances. Profar has been extremely unlucky on balls in play this year, maintaining a LD rate close to 25% and increasing his hard contact rate to 33%, yet he's only managed a BABIP of .267. The speed and contact ability still appear intact (he's 8 for 8 on steals with an 84% contact rate) and the power seems to be developing a bit finally. He's on pace to put up close to a 20/20 season with 80 runs and RBI, and with the likelihood of an improving AVG, he could very easily be a starting-caliber player in all formats for the second half and beyond. The scouts were all over this kid for a reason back at the beginning of this decade....there's still a nice ceiling here.
Matt Olson (1B) OAK - Olson singled and walked twice Sunday, marking the 8th straight game that he's reached base. I think Olson has a tendency to be a bit underrated due to his home park.....he's only 24, is 5th in MLB in exit velocity, has a very low chase rate with a hard contact rate of 53%, and is a 281/372/525 hitter on the road. The problem is that the Oakland Coliseum is perpetually on the short list for the worst hitter's parks in baseball, and obviously half of his games are played there (where he's hitting 198/276/401)....you'll want a caddy for him for home-heavy weeks on your squad unfortunately. If you can swing the space though, I definitely think he's worth it.....he's ranked 12th at 1B as it is. If you could swap him out for a few weeks of all home games, you've likely got a top-10 1B.