Yu Darvish (SP - CHC) Darvish put together a quality start, and his best thus far in 2018 as the Cubs held off the Brewers 3-2 Friday. In six innings on the hill, the 31 year old allowed no earned runs on three hits while striking out eight and walking two. The outing lowered his still beefy ERA to 5.26 on the season, but the start is a step in the right direction for both the Cubs and fantasy owners. Darvish is having issues holding runners on as his 64% strand rate suggests. Luckily his hard contact is only sitting at 28.3%, as he is also allowing 1.37 HR/9, which could get him into trouble on days the wind blows out at Wrigley in 2018. That said, Darvish will figure it out, and become the pitcher owners invested in on draft day.
Odubel Herrera (OF - PHI) Herrera had himself a day at the plate, as the Phillies topped the Braves 7-3 Friday. The outfielder went 2 for 3 with two home runs, four RBI and two runs scored. On the season his slash is impressive as it sits at .352/.396/.534 with three homers, 13 RBI and 16 runs scored. While the production thus far is impressive, his .406 BABIP doesn't figure to last, but Herrera still proves to be a useful piece in most leagues, especially for the price paid. If he can replicate his 25 steals from 2017, it will be an all around productive campaign.
A.J. Pollack (OF - ARZ) Pollack chipped in Friday in the Diamondbacks 5-4 win over the Nationals Friday. On the day, the speedy outfielder went 3 for 3 with a homer, two RBI and three runs scored. On the season, his line reads .289/.343/.622 with six home runs 19 RBI, 17 runs scored and six stolen bases. Early on, health has been on his side, and as we know, that is really his main limitation. He is currently sitting at a 27% K%, which is 12% higher than his 2017 total, and is limiting his OBP. As long as he contributes across categories, and keeps up his 42% hard contact rate, the strikeouts are a bit less hurtful. Just cross your fingers that he is able to suit up for 150 games in 2018. If that happens, a 25/25 season is likely.
Marcell Ozuna (OF - STL) Ozuna contributed a 3 for 4 performance at the plate, driving in two runs in the Cardinals 6-5 loss to the Pirates Friday. Overall, Ozuna is slashing and unimpressive .260/.279/.350 up to this point. After sporting a .376 OBP in 2017, largely in part to a 9.4% BB% and a .355 BABIP, it was unrealistic to expect that type of production in 2018, and so far that has been a spot on prediction. The slugger is walking just 3% of the time, and owns an 0.83 ISO, which all contribute to his -0.2 WAR. Ozuna will pick it up and post a solid year, but 2017 figures to be an exception when compared to other seasons. He needs to be held onto, as his trade value couldn't be lower now, but could make for a nice buy low candidate.
Jacob deGrom (SP - NYM) degrom earned his third win of 2018 in the Mets' 5-1 win over the Padres Friday. The righty went 7.1 innings, allowing no runs on five hits, while striking out eight and walking three. On the season his ERA sits at 2.06 with a 48:11 K/BB%. He's allowing less than half a home run per game, and his hard contact rate is down nearly 9% to 23.1% in 2018. Often overshadowed by Noah Syndergaard, deGrom has arguably been the best pitcher in the Mets' rotation so far in 2018.
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