Welcome to July where we are only two weeks away from the All-Star game and fantasy baseball owners are trying to gear up for the second half. This week, our rest of the season rankings take on a little shake-up thanks to injury (sorry, Bryce Harper and Salvador Perez) and the continued breakout of young stars like Julio Rodriguez and Bobby Witt Jr. In the coming weeks, we also hope to welcome back a healthy Eloy Jimenez, Fernando Tatis Jr. and maybe even Mitch Haniger. Because we know you have already skipped this short introduction, let us move on to the rankings for the rest of the 2022 fantasy baseball season.
- Ryan Mountcastle – Mounty absolutely crushed in the month of June finishing with a .297 average, 7 long balls and 19 runs batted in. What might be even more impressive is that his hard hit rate is now over 50% for the season which is good enough for top 5% in the league all while carrying a xBA of .319. He is still a bit under the radar, but he is also breaking out. Maybe I should have moved him up further!
- Julio Rodriguez – There is not much to say on Julio. While his outfield protégé partner in Jarred Kelenic has continued to scuffle, there has been no such challenge for Rodriguez. In what should be a clear rookie of the year campaign finishing with an easy 20/30 season and valuable counting stats, Julio is going to be threatening the first round in 2023.
- Eloy Jimenez – If it wasn’t for injuries, we would be talking about Eloy much more than we already are. He is only 25 and his full season rates are impressive as an easy 30 homer and 100 RBI bat. He is just now getting healthy (we hope) and should be able to help owners the rest of the way. You might still be able to grab him for a discount from a risk-averse owner.
- Nick Castellanos – After a crazy good 2021 fantasy season, Castellanos came out the gate strong in 2022. However, month over month we have seen declines in his performance with June being the biggest struggle to date. He is a better player than this, and the underlying metrics have not dropped as significantly as the surface stats. However, we cannot keep him in the top 50 without the results.
- Bryce Harper – Harper goes tumbling down the rankings with a fractured thumb. Layering on top of a small UCL tear that has had him in the DH position for most of the season, he is likely out until late August or even early September. While his MVP level production is enough to keep him in the Top 100 with the hope that he returns early, having to recover from a hand and elbow injury does not bode well for a quick start upon his return.
- Xander Bogaerts – Xander has struggled in the power and speed departments this year driving down his overall value. In June, he had a single home run and a single stolen base which is actually hurting owners that can get better results on the waiver wire. While a solid .326 average helps, we do have a rising strikeout rate and a BABIP over .400. There is still value here, but do not let the name value distract you from the sub-optimal stats that he has delivered this year.
- Isaac Paredes – Over the last eight games, Paredes has six home runs with a .429 average. We cannot expect that type of production from a guy that had two home runs in nearly 60 games over the past two seasons. At the same time, he is the kind of wavier pickup to ride while he is hot. I do not expect him to jump into the Top 100 in the coming weeks, but crazier things have happened.
- Nick Senzel – Former top prospect Senzel, has run out a BABIP fueled last week or so hitting over .450. While nice, what has me interested is the fact that he has also stolen three bases over the same time. This is a guy that flashed 20 steal speed early in his career that likely can be found on the waiver wire for free.