Bo Bichette, SS, TOR
For the first time in his young career, Bo Bichette failed to record a hit. He started his career with an 11-game hitting streak and had hit a double in each of the last nine games. Bichette did get aboard with a walk in the contest, so his on-base streak is still alive. The youngster has come out on absolute fire through his first twelve big league games. His stats are absolutely insane thus far: .385/.439/.788 triple slash to go along with a .495 wOBA and 217 wRC+. Of course this is highly unsustainable, but it's encouraging and a lot of fun to watch. The only real negative thus far is that Bichette has been chasing a lot of pitches (40.2% O-Swing%), however, his O-Contact% is a stellar 75.5% so it hasn't really mattered.
Mike Fiers, SP, OAK
Fiers hurled 7.0 shutout innings on Friday against the White Sox. This is the second time in the past month that Fiers has shutout the White Sox for 7+ innings. The veteran righty has been very good this season and has been fantastic since April 26th. Fiers hasn't given up more than three earned runs in his last 19 starts and owns an ERA of 2.28 during that span. For the season he has an 11-3 record and 3.30 ERA--which are obviously great numbers--however, his xFIP for the season is 5.25 and it has been over five during the awesome 19-game streak as well. Additionally, he strikes out just 6.05 batters per nine and is posting a career low 7.7% SwStr%. You shouldn't be dropping Fiers by any means, but just know that some regression could be forthcoming.
Whit Merrifield, 2B/OF, KC
Merrifield hit a homer to extend his hitting streak to five games on Friday night. The homer was his 12th of the season but just his second since June 24th. He is batting .429 over his last five contests and his season average is now back up over .300 at a healthy .304 clip. Most of Merrifield's 2019 stats are identical to his 2018 stat line; such as average, OBP, wOBA, and, wRC+. Though his power numbers have risen and his stolen bases have decreased. He is currently posting a career high .180 ISO (.044 points up from '18) and his 12 dingers already match his total output from the whole of last season. However, Merrifield's main draw at the start of the season was his ability to steal bases. Last season he swiped 45 bags and got caught just 10 times; this season he has stolen just 16 bases and has been caught eight times.
Wade Miley, SP, HOU
Miley gave up just one run in 5.2 innings of work on Friday night in Baltimore. He allowed five hits and walked two on his way to earning his third consecutive victory (11-4 overall). The 32-year-old has been a pleasant surprise for the Astros, and fantasy owners alike, this season. His ERA now sits at a fantastic 2.99 this season--though his xFIP isn't quite as impressive (4.40). The 32-year-old is putting up one of his best career seasons and he is doing it with a career worst chase rate (29.0% O-Swing%). It's unlikely this kind of success will continue for Miley, but he should eat up some innings and get plenty of wins. He is still available in almost 20% of ESPN leagues and it's probably worth checking your free agency to see if he is still there.
Shane Bieber, SP, CLE
Bieber went 7.0 innings and gave up just two runs against the Twins Friday night. The budding stud pitched quite well in a very big game for the Indians. He earned his 12th win of the season and saw his ERA drop to 3.28 in the process. Bieber isn't a flamethrower (93.5 MPH avg fastball), but he uses four pitches effectively and can locate them all well. His K-rate is an impressive 11.11 K/9 this season and he has been very stingy with free passes as well (1.84 BB/9). The 24-year-old has stepped up for the Indians pitching staff in 2019 and should be a top end option for fantasy purposes as the season progresses.
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