Yangervis Solarte (3B-NYA). Solarte continued with his hot start to the season, going 1 for 3 with a run scored, to run his season line to .370/.452/.556. If you're a Solarte owner, enjoy the ride while you can. His current level of performance far outstrips anything he's done in the past and is completely unsustainable. His ___ BA is being supported by a .429 BABIP, which cannot possibly last, given his 16.3% LD rate. His .569 slugging % is also not going to last, as the highest slugging % Solarte managed in the minors was a .466 mark in AA in 2011. Although Solarte has demonstrated admirable plate discipline in the early going with a 10.3% walk rate, that is also out of line with his minor league performance, where the highest walk rate he managed was a 7.2% mark in AAA in 2012. If you can convince another owner in your league that Solarte can keep this up, you should get what you can for him know. Otherwise, keep running him out there until the inevitable end of his streak, but make sure you have a plan B in place for that occurrence.
David Ortiz (DH-BOS). Ortiz is not in the lineup Friday night against the Orioles. It's just a night off for Papi, as he is off to a slow start this season and he is just 2 for 19 lifetime against Orioles' starter Chris Tillman. Ortiz owners shouldn't panic, despite his ugly .222/.290/.365 line in his first 69 PAs. Ortiz is hitting in bad luck, as evidenced by his .235 BABIP, which is roughly 70 points below his career mark. All of Ortiz' other peripherals indicate that Ortiz will be fine, once regression to the mean kicks in. Ortiz' plate discipline is still good, with an 8.7% BB rate and a 14.5% K rate, although the walk rate is low by Ortiz's standards (13.1% career rate). Ortiz' swinging strike and contact rates are better than his career norms, which indicates that Ortiz' early season struggles are not the result of declining bat speed. Ortiz will be fine and should remain a fixture in fantasy lineups.
Jarred Cosart (SP-HOU). As previously predicted, regression hit Cosart and hit him hard on Friday night, as he lasted only one-third of an inning against Oakland, giving up 7 ER on 4 walks and 3 hits. The rough outing raised Cosart's ERA to 7.36 for the young season, even while Cosart is still benefiting from a .245 BABIP (although this is somewhat offset by an abnormally low 52.6% strand rate). While Cosart is neither as good as he appeared at the end of last year or as bad as his current ERA (his xFIP is 4.34 for 2014), the simple fact is that, until he improves his control (current BB/9 rate of 4.91) he will not be a viable major league or fantasy starter.
Leonys Martin (OF-TEX). Martin broke out in a big way on Friday night, going 3 for 5 with 4 RBI, including his first HR of the season. The outburst improved Martin's line to .315/.373/.444 on the season and cements my opinion of Martin as a huge breakout candidate in 2014. I liken Martin to a poor man's Jacoby Ellsbury, as he can provide similar production at a much lower cost. Although Martin hit only .260 in 2013, if he can reduce his 20.5% K rate to around the 15% mark he posted in the minors, Martin could post an average closer to .280, with double digit homers (he hit 12 in only 260 ABs in AAA in 2012) and 30 plus steals.
Jonathon Schoop (2B-BAL). Schoop went 4 for 5 on Friday night. Schoop is now hitting .304 on the young season, to go with 1 HR and 8 RBI. If he continues performing like this, he will likely keep the 2B job even when Manny Machado returns. Schoop has legitimate power and could make an attractive add for teams in need of help at the MI spot. While the power is legit, the average likely is not, as it is being supported by a .400 BABIP, and Schoop is striking out 28% of the time. The power potential make him worth the risk, at least for teams that can afford a potential BA hit.