Jake Arrieta (SP - PHI) Arrieta continued to prove he is worth the $75 million the Phillies paid him as he earned his second win in the 7-0 victory over the Pirates Thursday. The former Cy Young winner went seven strong, fanning ten and walking two, while allowing just one hit and zero runs. In his first 17.2 IP, Arrieta owns a 16/6 K/BB%, along with a 2.04 ERA. His BABIP against is a measly .217 and he is allowing just 20% hard contact. Coming off a 2017 season that was looked down upon by many, he came at a discount in most leagues, and figures to be a big part of successful fantasy teams in 2018.
Cesar Hernandez (2B - PHI) Hernandez hit at the top of the order Thursday and did not disappoint in the Phillies 7-0 win over the Pirates. On the day, the speedy switch hitter went 2 for 4 with three RBI, a steal, and a run scored. On the season, Hernandez already has two homers, eight RBI, 14 runs and five steals, while slashing .286/.430/.413 and has been a valuable roto piece, providing cheap value across the board.
Jameson Taillon (SP - PIT) Taillon earned his first loss of 2018, as the Pirates were blown out by the Phillies 7-0 Thursday. The outing was Taillon's worst of the young season by far, as he went just 1.2 innings, allowing five earned runs on four hits, while striking out three and walking two. On the season, his ERA sits at 2.86, while he owns a 78.1% strand rate, and just a .200 BABIP, so his defense has been solid as well. xFIP should ease your concerns however, as it is at 3.32, which shows Taillon should round back into form. Being just 26 and having little major league experience, these games are normal. However, with his potential, they should begin to be few and far between as Taillon looks like the real deal.
A.J. Pollock (OF - ARI) The veteran slugged his fourth home run of 2018 in the Diamondbacks' 3-1 win over the Giants Thursday night. On the season, Pollock has some nice counting stats, with the four homers, as well as 14 RBI, 10 runs, and four steals. However, they have come at the expense of a 31% K% and just a 6.8% BB%, which gives him a slash of .254/.311/.582 thus far. It remains to be seen if he will continue to put these type of numbers on the board, but he will need to strike out less, and also stay healthy to continue to provide value in fantasy.
Kurt Suzuki (C - ATL) The Braves' backstop had himself a day in the Braves 12-4 win over the Mets Thursday. Suzuki went 3 for 5 with a homer, three RBI and three runs scored. It has been an excellent start to the season, as Suzuki has received the majority of the playing time with Tyler Flowers landing on the DL. With a .317/.420/.610 line, three homers, eight RBI and nine runs, the veteran has been a nice surprise for fantasy owners. While he will figure to lose some starts with Flowers' return, it could mean the production may not take too much of a dive, as the will save some wear and tear and figures to be a nice option at catcher for the remainder of 2018.
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