Josh Bell (1B-PIT): Josh Bell went 2-for-4 with a double, a walk, a RBI and two runs scored, but the Pirates fell short to the Reds. When the Pirates went way over slot to sign Bell away from his commitment in 2011, they did so believing that his plate discipline and contact skills would carry him. Through 72 plate appearances, Bell has posted a 13:6 BB:K ratio with a 36 percent hard contact rate. As long as he can provide adequate defense, Bell should be a fixture in the Pirates lineup in 2017 and atop many sleeper lists come spring.
Hunter Pence (OF-SF): Hunter Pence went 3-for-3 with a homer, a walk and four runs scored to back up Johnny Cueto. Pence has collected 11 hits and scored eight runs in his past three games and looks over his early-season injury woes. While he has attempted only one stolen base all season, a trend not likely to improve heading into his age 34 season, Pence still brings plenty of value to the fantasy table, especially in points leagues, and could be a mid-round value in 2017. His batted ball speed and hard hit rates are down yet again, which hints at the beginnings of a minor age decline, however, so the upside is limited.
Keon Broxton (OF-MIL): Keon Broxton went 2-for-3 with a homer and a walk but the Brewers fell to the Cardinals. The 35 percent K-rate may scare drafters off in the spring, but Broxton is showing plenty of overall skills to warrant a pick in the early-mid rounds in ROTO leagues. His 16 percent walk rate, 41 percent hard hit rate and 89 percent stolen base efficiency give me plenty of confidence that he could be one of the top draft day steals.
Joc Pederson (OF-LAD): Joc Pederson went 3-for-3 with two homers and a walk. The left has quietly put together a solid 2016 campaign that is backed up by the peripherals. He has improved his contact rate 10 percentage points while maintaining an elite 38 percent hard contact rate. The .202 wOBA vs. lefties continues to weigh down his overall value, especially in points leagues, but the 24-year old could be undervalued heading into 2017.
Kenta Maeda (SP-LAD): FanDuel players can look to Kenta Maeda, priced at $9100 for his matchup in Miami, if they want to save money to spend up on bats. Maeda has posted a .260 wOBA on the road and hasn't allowed more than three earned runs in a start since mid-July. Miami, who is 21st on overall offense vs. righties and 27th at home, is sending Jose Urena to oppose Maeda. Tournament players can save over a grand from the top options and may not miss a beat by working Maeda in the mix.