It’s important to remember that April is not a good month for hitting. Add in what appears to be more monkey business with the baseballs, we shouldn’t be hitting the panic button yet. However, these stats still count and we must do what we can to be maximizing matchups, playing hot hands when possible, and maximizing IP and PAs.
10/12 Team Adds
Cristian Javier (HOU/SP) – Recently inserted into the Astros’ starting rotation as the 6th man. Javier owns a career 3.36 ERA along with a 29% K-rate across 169 IP. Jake Odorizzi has struggled mightily in his time with the Astros and Javier could easily steal that 5th spot and put Odorizzi in the swing man role. (10-12% FAAB)
Anthony Bender (MIA/RP) – He has emerged as the lead guy for saves in Miami. Racking up 3 saves in the team’s last four chances. He now has five saves on the year. Bender was unavailable Thursday after pitching consecutive days. (8-10% FAAB)
Drew Rasmussen (TBR/SP) – His swinging strike rate currently sits at 14.6%, a 3.7-point increase over last season. He also added a cutter this season and slashed his 4-seam usage in half from 2021. His cutter is inducing whiffs 31.4% of the time vs his 4-seam of 22.5%. This could be his ticket to an increased K-rate. (6-8% FAAB)
Chris Paddack (MIN/SP) – I am Chris Paddack??? The last two seasons for the Sheriff have been pretty terrible. Limited by a two-pitch mix with one of those being not-very good. This year he’s upped his curveball usage (21.2%). While that pitch isn’t anything amazing, it has caused hitters to respect it. We see the impact on his fastball. In 2021 that pitch had 21.1 whiff and a .373 wOBA, so far in 2022, whiff is up to 29.9% and wOBA of .298. (4-5% FAAB)
Taylor Ward (LAA/OF) – Arguably the hottest hitter on the planet, slashing .404/.517/.830 since being activated off the IL. Propelled by a gaudy 18.9% barrel-rate, he has entrenched himself in the top half of the Angels lineup. A career max EV of 110.0 limits his overall power but hitting in front of Trout and Ohtani is a great place to be. (4-5% FAAB)
Brandon Marsh (LAA/OF) – Marsh was one of my favorite sleepers coming into the season. In 2021 he had 10.9% barrel-rate along with a 51.7% HH-rate, with his only black eye being a 35% k-rate. In 2022, he’s kept his hard hit and slashed his k-rate down to 26.2%. Marsh isn’t in a strict platoon as he will play against some lefties but is a very interesting power/speed guy who’s slashing .308/.377/.481. (2-3% FAAB)
Cesar Hernandez (WAS/2B) – Cesar has found a grove over the last 7 days with 11 hits in his last 26 ABs (.423 average). They get a series against the Rockies at Coors Field to start the week and round it off with the weaker portion of the Angels starters over the weekend. Best used as a streamer in shallow leagues but will always be of some value as the leadoff hitter for the Nationals. (1-2% FAAB)
15 Team adds
Santiago Espinal (TOR/2B,3B) – In terms of power, he is capped out around 10-15 homers and could touch double digit steals. More importantly, locked into an everyday role for the Blue Jays. Granted he’s stuck in the lower third of Toronto’s lineup. However, that offense is so good, that the counting stats should be there. At worst, he is a solid bench bat to have with MI and CI eligibility. Currently holds a 9.8% barrel-rate and a 45.1% HH rate, en route to a .273/.338/.455 slash. (2-3% FAAB)
Maikel Franco (WAS/3B) – He has slowly crept up the batting order for the Nationals. Franco isn’t anything special but offers power (7.9% barrel, 44.4% HH) and could offer up some decent counting stats if he can slide in behind the Soto, Bell, and Cruz group. (2-3% FAAB)
Reid Detmers (LAA/SP) – Other than his blow up against the Rangers, Detmers has allowed 5 ERs, 11 Ks, 4 BB, across 14 IP (3.21 ERA). Even with his blow up he still maintains a 3.63 SIERA. He also has 8.4% swinging strike rate. Which is a little low for my taste but at 22 years young, there is still plenty of room for growth. (5-6% FAAB)
Kyle Bradish (BAL/SP) – Off to a hot start in triple A. In three starts he compiled a 24.6% K-BB, allowing 2 ERs in 15 IP. He made his MLB debut on Friday, allowing 2 ERs, 1 BB, 2 Ks against the Red Sox. There might be more strikeouts as he recorded a 9.9% swing strike rate but I wouldn’t count on him yet in anything other than deep formats.