We’re beginning week 6 of the MLB season, friends, and as I type this baseball is still being played, stats are being counted, and fantasy leagues continue to hum along. If you’re in one of those fantasy leagues and need some hitting reinforcements over the next month, let’s take a look at some names that may be of interest to those of us in the deeper end of the fantasy baseball world — we’ll concentrate on guys that are under 15% owned in CBS leagues this week.
Raimel Tapia. I expected his ownership percentage to be higher than 11%, given that he was playing fairly regularly before David Dahl got hurt (don’t get me started) — and with Dahl’s placement on the IL, Tapia has an even clearer path to playing time. He doesn’t have a homer yet this year and certainly isn’t a slugger by nature, but he’s hitting .288 on the season, has been leading off recently, and has 3 steals. The Rockies have a couple long-ish (for 2020, anyway) homestands coming up, so who knows, maybe we’ll even see a little pop from Tapia sooner rather than later as well.
Brad Miller. Miller is hitting a fairly ridiculous .348 with 2 homers and 10 RBI in 9 games — obviously he can’t continue at that pace, plus the Cardinals infield has recently gotten more crowded with the return of Paul deJong from the COVID IL list. If nothing else, though, Miller has reminded everyone in St. Louis and in deep fantasy leagues that he is a capable utility man/back up player with some pop (he did have 13 homers in just 79 games last year, after all). I’ve picked him up in a couple of NL-only leagues in case I’m in need of a hitting fill-in over the next few weeks.
Eric Thames. He’s only hitting .218 and has just one homer, but I’ve grabbed Thames in one deep league where I really need some homers in the hopes that he’ll be able to get things going and provide some power in limited duty for the Nats. His plate discipline has basically been non-existent this year with 17 Ks to only 2 walks, but maybe he’ll start seeing the ball better and find some type of groove at the plate… even a few days of production could be huge in the right league during this mini-season.
Jason Heyward. At 14% owned in CBS leagues, Heyward doesn’t get much respect from the fantasy community, and perhaps he shouldn’t, given how badly he burned so many of us a few years ago. But things are different in 2020 — while he’s not swimming in counting stats and may never again be a fantasy monster, it’s worth noting that Heyward is hitting .346 (and has an insane .500 OBP) with a homer and 7 RBI over the last two weeks.
Rowdy Tellez. He’s not going to give you much more than the occasional burst of power, but if that’s what you’re looking for he may be able to help you out. He’s currently hitting .234, right around his career average of .240, but that’s not what we’re interested in him for — he already has 4 homers and 13 RBI in 19 games for the Blue Jays, and let’s not forget that their new home field in Buffalo has been playing extremely hitter-friendly.
Chance Sisco. The Orioles’ catching tandem of Sisco and Pedro Severino is going so surprisingly well this year that Severino has already gone from a fringe AL-only fantasy start, to a player owned in a whopping 90% of CBS leagues. Cisco has held his own too, however — he’s hitting a not-horrific .268 and quietly has 8 runs scored, 4 homers and 9 RBI. The Orioles are finding a way to get both bats into their lineup regularly – as I write this on Sunday, Severino is catching, Cisco DHing, and they are hitting 4th and 5th.
Mike Brosseau. If you’re just looking for at bats, Brosseau may not get them every day, but he’s getting enough of them to make a ripple or two in the deep-league world. It always seems like the Rays have about a dozen extra infielders and outfielders floating around, but somehow most of them tend to be relatively productive. Brosseau has been a true utility player — he qualifies at 1B and 2B in most leagues, and has also played 3B and OF this year… and that’s not even counting his appearance on the mound. In 39 at bats, he’s hitting .333 and has 7 runs scored, 3 homers, and 7 RBI.
Sam Haggerty. Haggerty is a 26 year old who didn’t exactly open the season atop the Mariners’ second base depth chart, but he should get some playing time there now with Dylan Moore sidelined. He’s this week’s featured 0% owned player, at least according to CBS. Haggerty has shown impressive speed in the minors, including stealing 49 bases in 2017, and already has 2 swipes in 4 games with the big club this year, so do with that information what you will.