In The Field
SS Corey Seager (hand) no longer has a cast and is doing some baseball activities. It is still likely that he is out until the middle of June. This is important for the short-term playing time of 2B/SS Gavin Lux who needs to play regularly and stay healthy. The talent has started to show through recently so this is a critical time period for him. OF A.J. Pollock (hamstring) has been running and is expected to start a rehab assignment this weekend which means he could return early next week. OF Cody Bellinger has been activated and was in the starting lineup Saturday. OF Zach McKinstry was also activated but his role going forward will be unknown. That means 1B/DH Albert Pujols and OF Yoshi Tsutugo will no longer be fantasy relevant due to loss of playing time. 1B Darin Ruf (hamstring) has been placed on the 10-day IL. SS Trevor Story (elbow) has been placed on the 10-day IL which means that SS Brendan Rogers will fill in for him. C Austin Nola (knee) was placed on the 10-day IL which opens up regular playing time for C Victor Caratini in the short term. SS Miguel Rojas has been put on the 10-day IL with a dislocated finger. This is not good news for managers in deeper leagues because Rojas had been performing well (.275 AVG with 3 HR/4 SB). SSJazz Chisholm will likely slide over to short when he returns from his ankle injury which would open up an opportunity for 2B Isan Diaz who has struggled (.130/.273/.241) but does have power upside and should play every day. OF Starling Marte (rib) was activated on Friday. This is awesome news for both the Marlins offense and fantasy managers. He was hitting .310 with 2 HR/3 SB in 16 GP prior to the injury. This means less playing time for OF Adam Duvall or 1B/OF Garret Cooper. Neither are lighting the world on fire and Cooper is dealing with a minor injury so it would be wise to wait and see how playing time shakes out. 3B/OF Brian Anderson is going to be out multiple weeks and 3B Jon Berti is going to play in his absence. Berti is a legit speed threat and that is the extent of his fantasy value. 3B J.D. Davis was close to a return last weekend but had a stiff neck and new inflammation in his left hand set him back. He is expected to resume hitting this weekend which would get him closer to a return. 1B Brandon Belt was placed on the 10-day IL. 2B Nico Hoerner has been placed on the 10-day IL which will open up regular playing time for 2B David Bote. Bote has struggled (.193 AVG with 4 HR/0 SB). His plate skills (23% K and 8% BB) and quality of contact (45% Hard and 13% Barrels) paint a different picture. The only problem is that Bote left Saturday's game with what looked like a pretty serious shoulder injury. OF Marcell Ozuna (fingers) is going to be out for at least six weeks. Currently, the Braves are going with an outfield of OF Ronald Acuna Jr., OF Ender Inciarte, and OF Guillermo Heredia. Inciarte is a nice add if you need stolen bases but other than that he is not a good hitter and Heredia is playable in deep mixed leagues but is more known for his defense than offense. OF Christian Pache is going to start a rehab assignment starting this week. OF Nick Senzel is going to be out 4-6 weeks after his knee injury will require surgery. The main beneficiary of this is going to be OF Tyler Naquin who has performed well (.255 AVG with 10 HR/3 SB) in 43 GP. OF Shogo Akiyama is back but he has not shown the ability to be more than a fourth outfielder relegating him to the bench on most days. C Carson Kelly returned to the Diamondbacks lineup this week which is great news because he has started the year extremely hot (.311/.458/.556). 1B Christian Walker was activated on Saturday. This means that 1B/OF Pavin Smith will likely shift to the outfield and OF Josh Reddick slides to the bench or is released. OF Bryce Harper was placed on the 10-day IL with a forearm contusion. OF Odubel Herrera is going to play regularly and he is showing nice skills (17% K and 9% BB) to go along with a .258 AVG and 2 HR/3 SB. OF Harrison Bader has been placed on the 10-day IL. OF Justin Williams is the winner in the short term but his profile (high strikeouts) isn't conducive to fantasy. 1B Anthony Rizzo was not in the lineup on Saturday which marks four straight games he has missed due to back stiffness. 1B Eric Hosmer's x-rays on his right forearm were negative after getting hit by a pitch Friday night. He was in the lineup on Saturday. 1B Pete Alonso (hand) was able to take batting practice on Friday and is getting close to a return. The Mets have to decide if he is going to need a short rehab assignment or not. C J.T. Realmuto was activated off the IL and was hitting fourth on Saturday.
On The Mound
Miles Mikolas (forearm) doesn't have any further damage but the timeline for his recovery is unknown. At this point, I would not count on him for anything going forward. Josiah Gray (shoulder) has been out and manager Dave Roberts said on Wednesday that he would have made a spot start if he were healthy. While not actionable right now, it is positive news for Gray once he gets healthy, he will be considered for a callup. The bad news is that he isn't close to returning and the Dodgers have unlimited resources so there may not be an opening. Tony Gonsolin (shoulder) needs two more rehab starts to get his pitch count up and then he will return to the Dodgers rotation which is in need of a fifth starter. If he is still on the waivers now is the time to pick him up. Luke Weaver (shoulder) has been transferred to the 60-day and is going to be out for at least another month if not more. Taijuan Walker (side) was activated and started Saturday against the Braves. Noah Syndergaard suffered a setback in his rehab from Tommy John surgery and is going to stop throwing for six weeks. From a redraft perspective, he does not have any value this year. Wade Miley (foot) is going to return on Monday. He has pitched well this year (3.50 ERA and 1.08 WHIP) but be careful of the matchups given his lack of strikeouts (19% K). Jeff Hoffman (shoulder) has been placed on the 10-day IL with a shoulder impingement. The length of his recovery will require more testing so it is unknown at this time. Vladimir Gutierrez was called up and started on Friday (5 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 3 K). It is looking like he will get an extended look as the Reds try to fill the back end of their rotation. His minor league track record doesn't suggest that he is worth picking up. Logan Webb (shoulder) was activated and started against the Dodgers on Saturday. He has shown increased skills this year (25% K and 11% SwStr) but the results haven't followed. His 3.51 SIERA suggests he is someone to pick up or buy low on. Zac Gallen (elbow) is getting close to bullpen work which is a positive sign for the right-hander. His recovery will be based on how his arm responds to throwing so he is not out of the woods yet. Elieser Hernandez (bicep) made his third rehab start on Friday (4.2 IP, 6 ER, 1 BB , 5 K). He will presumably be activated next week.
In The Bullpen
Andrew Miller (toe) is getting close to a return but doesn't hold much fantasy value due to declining skills and lack of save opportunities with Alex Reyes locking down the closer's role in St. Louis. Brusdar Graterol has started throwing live batting practice and should return soon. Kenley Jansen has a stronghold on the closer's role for the time being making Graterol unappealing. Lucas Sims has not been named the closer in Cincinnati but he did pick up two saves this week. The hard part about rostering him is that it is also possible that Amir Garrett and Tejay Antone get opportunities depending on the matchup.
Players to add this week:
SP Logan Webb (SFG)- Logan Webb was activated and started against the Dodgers on Saturday. He has shown increased skills this year (25% K and 11% SwStr) but the results haven't followed 4.09 ERA and 1.41 WHIP. His 3.51 SIERA suggests he is someone to pick up or buy low on. He's been unlucky with batted balls (.350 BABIP) which should regress as the season goes on.
2B David Bote (CHC)- *Check Injury status on Sunday* David Bote has struggled this year (.196 AVG with 5 HR, 15 R, 23 RBI, 0 SB). With Nico Hoerner going on the IL it opens up regular playing time for Bote. The production might not be there but the underlying skills paint another picture. He has good plate skills (23% K and 8% BB) and quality of contact (45% Hard and 13% Barrels).
OF Ender Inciarte (ATL)- Ender Inciarte should play regularly with Marcell Ozuna hitting the shelf. Inciarte has not been a league-average hitter in terms of wRC+ since 2015 (100 wRC+). He is not a good hitter but he provides stolen bases which are rare in fantasy. He has an above-average strikeout rate (18% K) but his hard-hit rate has been higher than 19% which is well below average. Pick him up if you need playing time and speed.
OF Tyler Naquin (CIN)- Tyler Naquin is going to play regularly with Nick Senzel out 4-6 weeks with knee surgery. Naquin has earned this opportunity (.255 AVG with 10 HR, 18 R, 31 RBI, and 3 SB). His plate skills are good (25% K and 9% BB) with above-average quality of contact (49% Hard and 13% Barrels). If he is still available, he needs to be rostered.
OF Odubel Herrera (PHI)- Odubel Herrera is going to play regularly while Bryce Harper is on the IL. Herrera has been hitting well (.258 AVG with 2 HR/3 SB) to start the year. His plate skills are above average (17% K and 9% BB) and he is hitting the ball harder more often (45% Hard).
SS Brendan Rodgers (COL)- Brendan Rodgers is going to be the everyday shortstop while Trevor Story is out. Rodgers has been a highly touted prospect and will get an opportunity to show his skills. He has power and enough speed to be a non-zero. There isn't much in terms of stats to back up Rodgers breaking out but his prospect pedigree and home park make him a nice upside play.
3B/OF Jon Berti (MIA)- This is a pure speed play as he does not provide much value otherwise. The playing time should be there with Brian Anderson and Miguel Rojas on the IL.
SP Vince Velasquez (PHI)- Vince Velasquez has burned a ton of fantasy managers as he has not fulfilled his perceived potential. However, this year he has pitched well with a 295 ERA and 1.28 WHIP. The strikeouts are there (29% K) but he is struggling with control (14% BB). He has benefited from a .228 BABIP and 94% LOB. Despite this, even if he regresses towards his 4.22 SIERA he would still be a useful fantasy starter.
Potential Streamers (matchup subject to change):
Merril Kelly (ARI)-Merril Kelly gets a two-start week with a nice matchup against the Mets and then a tougher one on the road against the Brewers.
Cody Poteet (MIA)- Cody Poteet doesn't have great stuff but pitching in pitcher-friendly PNC Park against the Pirates offense is about as good of a matchup as possible.
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