If I’m putting all my cards on the table, I’m not even sure where to begin with advice. This season is just plain crazy. Figuring out who, what, where, when and why almost seems impossible. I’m certainly not the first to say this, but it seems like the best thing we can do is to play the hot hand. As Frank the Tank said, we’re going streaking! Not to show of my math skills, but in a 60-game season a 8-game hot streak is the equivalent of 21 game hot streak in a regular season. That’s one hell of a month of baseball. In years past we’ve looked at small sample sizes and pointed out that they were just that, small samples. No such thing as a small sample size in 2020.

Before I jump into a few players to whom I intend to give a shout out, I’d like to bring up a few points. With all of the game cancellations and postponements, fantasy leagues with weekly lineups just aren’t going to work. For years I’ve always hated when a player hits the IL on a Tuesday in a weekly league and I end up practically taking a zero. It seems senseless. In order for things to work, head-to-head points leagues need to have daily lineups this year. Owners need the ability to adjust to the constantly changing landscape. We need to be able to pivot. Losing a week simply because you had more players have their games canceled is garbage. Especially in a season that has so few weeks. While I realize that at this point in the fantasy season it’s too late to make these kind of changes, I still feel compelled to say so.

One of my “go to” stats every year is points per plate appearance (PPPA). How many points does a player get every time he steps into the batters box. While it’s an important stat every year in points leagues, I think more than ever, plate appearances are one of the most valuable commodities this year. This might be an unfair example, but it should get my point across. 51 plate appearances from David Fletcher is worth more than 36 from Mike Trout even if Trout is doing more with his. In a longer season this will likely even out, but time stops for no one in 2020.

All I keep hearing that past few weeks is that Corey Seager looks like the stud everyone thought he was when he came into the league. There’s plenty of truth to that opinion. Seager has three home runs, seven runs batted in and a .347 batting average. But when it comes to points leagues those stats are all noise. In points leagues Corey has 45 points and 0.849 points per plate appearance. While those are great numbers, they’re not the best in the Seager household. Kyle has 53 points (0.929 PPPA). Now in a normal 162-game season I likely wouldn’t blink an eye in his direction, we’re not in Kansas anymore Toto. Kyle Seager has more points than Nolan Arenado and Vladimir Guerrero combined. Let me spell it out in simple terms, both Seagers are must owns in 2020.

If I were in charge of a baseball themed spelling bee the final word would be “Yastrzemski”. I’m not even sure I just spelled it right and I copied it from one of his profile pages. If you missed the boat to grab Yaz off the wire then that ship has sailed. I actually drafted him all of my leagues. He’s a guy I was high on coming into the season. If we had more of a normal draft season this year I probably would have gotten around to sharing that detail. In my last post I said that Michael Brantley should have been my most valuable fantasy hitter selection. Well I think I might have been wrong. When you factor in ADP, Yastrzemski is blowing the competition out of the water.

Speaking of my preseason favorites, did any of you see Dylan Bundy’s gem this week? Good riddance Baltimore. Hello Los Angeles of Anaheim of California of the United States. The only starting pitchers that have been better so far, at least from a fantasy perspective, are Shane Bieber, Trevor Bauer and Sonny Gray. And let’s face it, the fantasy perspective is the only one most of us really care about. Bundy has always had the pedigree, he just couldn’t stay healthy. Dude only has two walks. Are we witnessing his ascension? Lord Bundy. Rise.

Here are some other players that need to in your starting lineup until they prove otherwise.

Donovan Solano – 43 FPTS (0.934)
David Fletcher – 47 FPTS (0.783)
Wil Myers – 40 FPTS (0.816)
Leury Garcia – 38 FPTS (0.791)
Gio Urshela – 42 FPTS (0.976)
Max Stassi – 35 FPTS (1.458)
Teoscar Hernandez – 33 FPTS (0.825)
J.P. Crawford – 43 FPTS (0.704)
JaCoby Jones – 31 FPTS (1.000)
Renato Nunez – 38 FPTS (0.745)

I want to say that you should try and shop around Christian Vazquez, but does it really make sense to move one of the top catchers in the league in this shortened season. You’ve got that position locked in, why screw with it. The answer is, it depends on who you can get in return and who you will replace him with. Max Stassi has apparently come out of nowhere, but is another hot hand that deserves riding.

Best players so far:

C: Max Stassi
1B: Renato Nunez
2B: Whit Merrifield
3B: Kyle Seager
SS: Fernando Tatis
OF: Nick Castellanos
OF: Charlie Blackmon
OF: Mike Yastrzemski
UT: Aaron Judge
SP: Shane Bieber
SP: Trevor Bauer
SP: Sonny Gray
SP: Dylan Bundy

Not exactly the list one might expect. The best part is that you could have drafted this team. Heck you could have picked a few of them off the wire. Did you notice there are three Reds in the list. If Luis Castillo cuts back on the ERA and WHIP, what out in Cincinnati. They gonna be dangerous in a series.

If you are in a redraft league do not hesitate to drop a player you’d normally be less inclined to part with in a full season if he is battling injuries and/or just not hitting. There’s no time for cold streaks. Move it or lose it. In keeper leagues if said player isn’t going to be a keeper, I offer the same advice.

If there is a topic you’d like me to cover, please let me know.

Follow malamoney on Twitter at @malamoney

 
  1. Sagacious Sally says:
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    Great article-
    Play in Weekly H2H Mixed Points League. 1C, 1 1st, 1 2B, 1 SS, 1 3B, 3 OF, 2 DH, 4 SP, 2RP
    TB, R, RBI, SB-CS, BA (up to 24 pts can be earned for ea batter, i.e. 333 BA for week =14pts.)
    Grandal
    Abreu
    Hiura
    Story
    Bregman
    Castellanos
    JD Martinez
    A. Garcia
    Chapman
    Sano

    Clevinger
    Carrasco
    Gray
    Maeda
    Lamet
    Montgomery
    Pearson

    Hendricks
    Rogers (Twins)
    Lugo
    W. Smith

    I will be trying to get one of Civale, Plesac or Bassitt off the wire. I’m dangling Clevinger and the owner gave me a hard “no” for Blackmon. Other guys I like include Yaz, Osuna ( don’t think he’d part with) Meadows and C. Seager. What is fair to ask for? Or hold and try to get Grisham, T. Hernandez, K. Lewis, R Nunez, J. Jones, K. Seager.
    Thanks in advance.

    • Sagacious Sally says:
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      Grisham and company are on the wire.

    • malamoney

      malamoney says:
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      Thanks. Is this a redraft league?

      Do you need to make a trade? Not sure I give up Clevinger for any of those guys. I’d have to think about Blackmon. What’s your scoring system?

      I don’t like Avisail Garcia. I’d grab any of those guys on the wire for sure.

      • Sagacious Sally says:
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        Thanks Malamoney. It’s redraft league, TB, R, RBI = 1 and SB=2., BA=up to 24 pts. W=10, L=-3? K=1, S=8, BS=-3, ERA= up to 24pts for 0 earned runs.

  2. Sagacious Sally says:
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    Continued…. On my bench I have Braun, Cron, J. Iglesias, T. Edman, Akiyama, Newman

    • Sagacious Sally says:
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      How could I forget Lynn, also one of my SP’s

      • malamoney

        malamoney says:
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        Can’t forget LL!

  3. H Bomb says:
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    Recommendation for tracking PPPA or Points League rankings for a shallow 8 team mixed league?

    A lot of the names above are on the wire, but trying to weigh them against scuffling guys like Donaldson, Albies, Carlos Santana, Mercado is a bit troublesome. Guessing a guy wouldn’t drop or try to ship a Trea Turner, would he? Thanks for any help!

    • malamoney

      malamoney says:
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      What do you mean by “recommendation”? Like how can you calculate it? You’d have to download stats into an Excel spreadsheet and do it yourself for the most part.

      What’s your scoring system?

      I can’t think of anyone that would drop Trea Turner.

      In a redraft league I’d have dropped Mercado by now for sure.

  4. RicoSuave says:
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    Nice work Malamoney!

    16 team Points league redraft…

    I got offered Merrifield and Mondesi for Trea Turner… what do you think?

    I have H Alberto at 2B and Trea Turner at SS atm…

    Thanks

    • malamoney

      malamoney says:
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      This year I am taking Merrifield over Turner. Done deal.

      I’m sure Trea will turn it around, but I was never high on him in points leagues and there’s no time to wait. The Nationals don’t look like MLB Champs.

  5. johnnyhobbes says:
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    Off the rails of your last bit of advice about not waiting too long….. Renato Nunez over Christian Walker ?

    • malamoney

      malamoney says:
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      That’s close, but I’m going Nunez at this point.

  6. TC says:
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    Good time to buy low on Alonso in a keeper league, or signs of trouble in this year of small sample sizes?

    • malamoney

      malamoney says:
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      It’s really too small of a sample size to determine much. That’s that point I’m trying to make. In any other year, this post might be silly as we’d write most results off at this point as “small sample”.

      The only thing we can do is capitalize on the players that are producing. If you can buy low, sure. What are you keeper rules? How many players can you keep and who are your other keepers?

      Also, what is your scoring system. Does you league penalize for strikeouts? If so, how many points?

  7. TC says:
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    Standard roto 5×5. 10 teams and keep 15. Champion last year in year 6 of our keeper league.
    Cole, Scherzer, Corbin, Clevinger, Pearson, Fried
    Trout, Trea, Lindor, JRam, Hiura. Castellanos, Muncy, J. Abreu and Conforto would be my 15 right now if the season ended today. Worked hard through trades and lucky drafting to build this squad. Lol

    • malamoney

      malamoney says:
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      Definitely would try and buy low on Alonso.

  8. Systems Overload says:
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    Great write-up Mala and good to see you back! Time is of the essence and I’m trying to navigate the waiver wire and when to use my #1 priority. I would like to shore up my OF. Currently have Springer, Merrifield, and Rosario. Dahl is currently on waivers and Akiyama, Benintendi, and Mercado available in the pool. 10 teamer and standard point scoring that penalizes -1 for K’s. Put the claim in for Dahl or stand pat? Thanks!

    • malamoney

      malamoney says:
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      I’m not interested in any of those players.

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