Jacob deGrom- Jacob deGrom reminded everyone of his elite value on Wednesday with a 10 strikeout, 1 walk performance over 8 innings pitched. I've spoken about deGrom's talents before in this space, but I wanted to go over just how good he has been again for readers. His 24.6% K Rate is in line with his rookie of the year campaign in 2014, and he has actually decreased his walk rate substantially. He was at 7.6% in 2015 and has decreased that number to 4.8% in 2015. Everything in his profile paints deGrom as one of the best fantasy bets in the second half in 2015. His major league sample is fantastic, and there is no reason to believe he can't sustain this type of success over the course of the next three months.
Hunter Pence- Hunter Pence returned from the disabled list yesterday. Pence's 2015 has largely been spent recovering from injuries so it has been difficult to fantasy owners to accurately evaluate his talent. Pence's numbers, in an extremely small sample thus far, seem to mirror his 2014. This is a bit troubling for those expecting a power push from Pence in the second half. He only had 20 home runs in 708 plate appearances last season. There isn't much in his 2015 sample size to indicate that he will increase the frequency of his home runs in the second half, which means that Pence could struggle to break the 10-12 home run mark in 2015. Otherwise, he should be a fair value as a middle of the lineup bat for the Giants. Just be cautious that his power may not be what you would expect from his history.
Adrian Gonzalez- Adrain Gonzalez has made a living out of killing right handed pitching. He has 14 of his 15 home runs against right handers and is slashing .297/.380/.548 against them in 2015. He's started July with a power surge by hitting three home runs in the first 8 days of the month. On Thursday, Gonzalez and the Dodgers are facing Severino Gonzalez of the Phillies who has struggled badly against left handed hitters thus far. Gonzalez is a favorite value play for Thursday based on his match-up. Fanduel Salary- $3,600.00
Cameron Maybin- It's been 8 years since Cameron Maybin was an all world prospect that was being traded for Miguel Cabrera. Since then he has had his ups (a 2011 season that saw him steal 40 bases while hitting a reasonable .264), but he has had far more downs. He was basically fantasy irrelevant in 2013 and 2014, but at age 28, he has re-emerged as a very favorable fantasy play. Maybin is in the midst of his best season ever. He has 8 home runs through 299 plate appearances, which puts him one away from his career high. Additionally, he is back to being a valuable stolen base asset as he has 15 steals thus far. The power is unlikely to continue based on his 54.5% ground ball rate, but he should still get close to 12-13 home runs on the season with the very realistic chance of hitting 30 steals. Overall, Maybin should turn in a solid 3rd outfielder value the rest of the way this season, which is more than anyone thought was possible.
Khris Davis- Khris Davis is back with the Brewers and wasted little time in reminding us that he has some pop when things are right. Davis went deep for the sixth time this season on Wednesday. Davis has actually been better offensively this season than in 2014. He is walking 11.6% of the time in comparison to 5.8% in 2014. He is also putting the ball in the air more frequently (45% to 39.7%), which should be a good thing for a player relying on power for his fantasy value. The biggest negative from Davis is that he just isn't connecting frequently enough with the power to drive the ball out of the park. His 10% HR/FB rate is the lowest its been in his major league sample. For Davis to show owners the value they want out of him, he needs to start driving the ball out of the park with a higher frequency. Unitl then, he is merely a bench bat or waiver wire fodder.
Today's National League Player Blog is brought to you by Nicholas Rossoletti. You can follow Nicholas on Twitter @NRoss56.
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