Julio Urias, SP, LAD
Urias dominated the Mariners on Tuesday, allowing just 1 hit and 1 BB in 7 shutout IP while striking out 11 in the victory. The strong outing lowered Urias' ERA to 2.81 and his xFIP has dropped to a career-best 3.48. He entered Tuesday's game leading the league with a 47.8% O-Swing%, and if he can continue getting hitters to chase at an elite rate, we can expect his strikeout rate to grow from its current 9.12 K/9. Besides for the fact that Urias may be taking his game to the next level, it shouldn't be overlooked that he completed 7 innings for the 2nd time in 4 starts this season. This would normally not be noteworthy, except that Urias had never pitched 7 innings in an MLB game until this season. In 5 previous MLB seasons, his career high in IP is 79.2 and he averaged under 5 IP per start, which is a big reason why he only had 12 career wins entering this season. This season has been a different story though, and Urias now has 3 wins in 4 starts. If the Dodgers are really going to keep letting him go deep into games, Urias should well outperform his 12th round draft value.
Ozzie Albies, 2B, ATL
Albies returned to the Braves lineup on Tuesday after missing a few games with a calf injury, and went 0-3 with a BB while hitting out of the #5 spot. It's been a rough start to the season for Albies who is slashing a weak .148/.262/.333 through 65 PA's. Everything points to this simply being a case of bad luck for Albies, as he has a very good 16.9% K% and has been dragged down by an uncharacteristically low .140 BABIP (career .302). In fact, his 89.9 EV and 39.5% HardHit% entering Tuesday would both be career bests, and his .311 xBA and .513 xSLG are excellent. Albies is bound to turn things around soon, and could be a good trade target if you think his owner doesn't like seeing the 1 at the beginning of his BA.
Josh Bell, 1B, WAS
Bell finally got on the board with his 1st HR of the season against the Cardinals on Tuesday, as he tries to break out of his early season slump. Bell had a rough 2020, and things haven't gotten better in 2021, as he's hitting just .143 with the 1 HR and 3 RBI through 33 PA's. After 4 straight years with a K% below 20%, he struck out 26.5% of the time last season, and he's up to 30.3% this season. He has also been hitting the ball on the ground too often, as he entered Tuesday with a 52.9% GB%, compared to the 44.0% GB% he posted in his 37 homer 2019 campaign. Bell has still been hitting the ball very hard with a 92.5 EV, but it's kind of hard to put up big power numbers when you're striking out and hitting groundballs all the time.
Buster Posey, C, SF
Posey went 3-4 with a pair of dingers against the Phillies on Tuesday, and is now hitting .316 with 4 HR's across 42 PA's. The power surge has to be considered somewhat shocking for Posey, as he hit just 12 HR's in 219 games over his last two seasons (2018-19). One would assume he can't keep up this pace, but he does have a very good 90.9 EV and 11.5% Barrel%. While he's bound to cool off at some point, it looks like Posey is once again a worthwhile catcher to own in fantasy.
Adam Wainwright, SP, STL
Wainwright struck out 10 in 7 IP against the Nationals on Tuesday, allowing 1 ER on 5 hits and 1 BB in the contest. Wainwright still has an ugly 5.03 ERA for the season, but he has actually been surprisingly good with a 3.36 xFIP, and a 24:6 K:BB through 19.2 IP. His 10.98 K/9 would be a career high and is backed by an also career high 12.1% (entering Tuesday). He has been hurt by a .382 BABIP, but his Statcast numbers are actually not bad (87.3 EV, 34.9% HardHit%). It's tough to recommend a 39 year old pitcher who hasn't recorded an xFIP south of 4.00 since 2015, but right now Wainwright seems very usable.
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