Fantasy Baseball Weekend Preview: Where to find value in a weak group of streamers
Those who hope to find favorable hitting matchups this weekend are encouraged to focus on the Reds lineup and the Diamondbacks-Rockies series. On the pitching side, the series between the Tigers and Orioles could provide a few options among a weak group of streamers.
Here is the full rundown:
Matchups to target
D-backs at Rockies
I feel the need to preview any series at hitter-friendly Coors Field. The Arizona players who can be streamed in these contests include Ketel Marte (71% rostered), Josh Rojas (50%) and Lourdes Gurriel Jr. (33%).
In 15-team leagues, I would use Geraldo Perdomo (24%) and Pavin Smith (5%). Anyone who streams catchers can grab Gabriel Moreno (28%). Those who wish to deploy Rockies can target Ryan McMahon (68%) and Charlie Blackmon (46%).
Reds at A’s
A lackluster Cincinnati offense could thrive this weekend against an Oakland staff that has been by far the worst in baseball this year (7.97 ERA). With lefties starting two of the three games for the A’s, my top streaming candidates are right-handed hitters Spencer Steer (14% rostered) and Wil Myers (29%). I’ll also recommend TJ Friedl (15%) by virtue of his premium lineup spot.
Twins vs. Royals
A trio of mediocre Kansas City righties (Jordan Lyles, Brad Keller, Brady Singer) should combine to allow plenty of runs this weekend. It’s time to activate Jorge Polanco (65% rostered) in all leagues, while Trevor Larnach (7%) and Joey Gallo (42%) both have the potential to put a ball or two over the outfield wall.
Pirates at Nationals
Pittsburgh has been hitting better than expected this year (.770 OPS) and could keep things going against a Washington trio of Chad Kuhl, Patrick Corbin and Josiah Gray. I would use Andrew McCutchen (47% rostered) in most leagues, while Jack Suwinski (24%) could hit a homer, and Connor Joe (26%) might continue his recent hot streak. In deeper formats, Rodolfo Castro (13%) and Carlos Santana (6%) are solid options.
Matchups to avoid
White Sox vs. Rays
Chicago isn’t hitting well of late and is unlikely to turn things around against a stellar Rays pitching staff. Tampa Bay is set to start three righties in this series, which means that for the third series in a row, my recommendation is to sit Isaac Paredes (career .638 OPS vs. RHP) and Manuel Margot (career .657 OPS vs. RHP).
Astros vs. Phillies
Houston hitters could struggle against the dynamic duo of Aaron Nola and Zack Wheeler on Friday and Saturday before enjoying a more reasonable matchup vs. Bailey Falter on Sunday. Beyond Yordan Alvarez (who's dealing with an injury) and Kyle Tucker, I recommend looking for other options wherever possible. That being said, I know that Alex Bregman, Mauricio Dubon and Jeremy Peña will remain active in some leagues.
Phillies at Astros
Houston isn’t the only team who could struggle to score in the Astros vs. Phillies series, as Philadelphia faces a tough trio of Framber Valdez, Cristian Javier and Jose Urquidy. The Phillies have had many productive bats this year, but I’m taking a second look at using Nick Castellanos, Alec Bohm, Brandon Marsh and Bryson Stott in leagues where I have strong alternatives. If there is one saving grace for Saturday, it’s that Philly will face Javier, who leads the American League in steals allowed.
Royals at Twins
Few teams have been up to the task of facing the Twins' pitching staff this season, and the Royals (.618 OPS) do not have a quality lineup. Salvador Perez and Bobby Witt Jr. can remain active in all leagues, and with all three Minnesota projected starters throwing from the right side, I’ll keep Vinnie Pasquantino active, too. Every other K.C. hitter should be benched.
Brewers vs. Angels
Although Los Angeles is not rolling out a trio of effective starters this weekend, all three of its hurlers throw from the left side. The Brewers like to platoon their hitters, which means Jesse Winker, Rowdy Tellez and Brice Turang could begin the majority of the next three games on the bench. All three should be benched in every mixed league.
Mets vs. Braves
Atlanta should be able to hold New York in check over three games started by Max Fried, Spencer Strider and Charlie Morton. I’m still willing to start Francisco Liriano, Pete Alonso, Starling Marte and Brandon Nimmo, but every other Mets hitter belongs on the bench.
Padres vs. Giants
The Padres and Giants are the only teams who play just two games this weekend, making their players poor volume plays. San Francisco is in an especially dire position, as it's facing two quality righties in Joe Musgrove and Yu Darvish. I’m not excited about starting any Giants hitters, but left-handed hitters such as Michael Conforto and LaMonte Wade Jr. can be used in deep leagues.
In order, here are my favorite streamers from Friday to Sunday, with their start dates and Yahoo roster rates in parentheses.
Zach Eflin @ CWS (Friday, 64)
Johan Oviedo @ WSH (Sunday, 66)
Eduardo Rodriguez vs. BAL (Friday, 54)
Grayson Rodriguez @ DET (Friday, 70)
Alex Cobb @ SD (Sunday, 61)
Kyle Bradish @ DET (Sunday, 18)
Tylor Megill vs. ATL (Saturday, 35)
Reid Detmers @ MIL (Saturday, 60)
Garrett Whitlock vs. CLE (Saturday, 32)
Josiah Gray vs. PIT (Sunday, 9)
Yonny Chirinos vs. CWS (Saturday, 0)
Logan Allen @ BOS (Sunday, 20)
Jose Urquidy vs. PHI (Sunday, 60)
Colin Rea vs. LAA (Sunday, 4)
Nathan Eovaldi vs. NYY (Saturday, 55)
Martin Perez vs. NYY (Sunday, 59)
Bailey Falter @ HOU (Sunday, 9)
Matt Boyd vs. BAL (Saturday, 5)
Noah Syndergaard vs. STL (Sunday, 40)
Nick Pivetta vs. CLE (Friday, 11)