We’re towards the end of our marathon, friends. One or two weeks separate us from fantasy glory depending on your league settings. If you’re in a head-to-head league, you’re likely looking at the 7 & 30-day Player Rater. Middle infielders Willy Adames, Gleyber Torres, Marcus Semien, and Gunnar Henderson have been among the hottest bats at the position this past week. If you’re in a roto league, most of the major stats have been decided. Good luck to the Razzball faithful in their push for a money spot.
To those who have a clinched 2022 money spot, let’s take a look at some interesting players whose stock is trending upwards, downwards, and remaining stagnant for 2023:
Gunnar Henderson – Orioles: Gunnar’s making a name for himself on both sides of the ball, currently slashing 7/2/12/.345/.387/1 in 58 at-bats. Small sample size, but he’s been managing his strikeout rate as he’s K’ing at a 19.4% clip. Henderson has already qualified for third base eligibility in Yahoo, and may add second base in addition to his current SS/3B eligibility. A floor of .265, 20/15 seems like reasonable expectations from him and another year of growth from Henderson and Rutschman along with some potential Orioles free-agent additions in the offseason should provide Henderson with some more juicy counting stats.
Willy Adames – Brewers: If you’ve been a reader of Razzball, you already know Willy Adames is a sleeper. He’s been productive this year with a 77/30/92/.237/.301/6 line, but Adames has been steadily maturing the past few years as a hitter in some important facets of the game. His three-year barrel %, launch angle, HardHit%, and K% have ALL been trending in the right direction over the past three seasons. Adames turns 28 next year and remains in his prime. A hitter that has been progressing and that has the launching pad American Family Field to call home is a winning pick in my book.
Corey Seager – Rangers: Here’s a link to last week’s article as to why I think Corey Seager could be one of the biggest value gainers in 2023 due to the new rules changes.
DJ LeMahieu – Yankees: DJ’s been dealing with some nagging injuries throughout this season, but as he enters 2023 he should remain a similar player we’ve seen the past few years: high runs, average, and OBP. His HardHit%, K% and BB% are all within a few points of each other over the past few seasons and DJ should have another productive year or two before he’s done with his fantasy relevancy.
Ryan McMahon – Rockies: McMahon is in his prime and calls Coors Field his home, yet he’s been somewhat of a disappointment this season for a 61/17/63/.247/.332/7 line this year. He’s alternated strong first and second halves the past few years and is a perennial sleeper. As the 2022 season winds down and we look to 2023, I think McMahon is who he is at this point – a solid yet unspectacular MI or CI bat that you can platoon at home (if your league settings allows).
Gleyber Torres – Yankees: Gleyber seems to be the player that we’ve seen of him this season and last, which is a player with a middling average with some pop that will accumulate some counting stats in a good lineup. With the Yankees callup of Oswaldo Peraza and Anthony Volpe in the wings, along with a loaded shortstop free agent class (Trea Turner, Dansby Swanson, Xander Bogaerts, Carlos Correa), it’s conceivable the Yankees sign one of the aforementioned names especially if Aaron Judge bolts in free agency. Torres could be a roster casualty and get traded to a team like the Marlins (as rumored at midseason) for some pitching. A worse home ballpark and lineup would hurt a player like Torres more than the average player.
Trevor Story – Red Sox: BoSox and fantasy owners are aware of Story’s rough first season with the Red Sox. Story will enter his age 30 season next year, and his sprint speed has been steadily declining every year from 2019 (29.3 to 28.5). While Fenway is a high BABIP ballpark, if Story runs even less and maintains a K rate around 30%, he simply will not be worth a 4-6th round draft pick next year.
Chris Taylor – Dodgers: Taylor’s had an injury-plagued year and when he’s been on the field, it’s been ugly (42/9/37/.227/.312/10). Although he can potentially reap the benefits if Trea Turner leaves LA, Taylor is not an everyday player and is best suited for a super-sub role. Overpriced for fantasy, but great for real life baseball.
Good luck to those starting their championship week!