Under-the-Radar Buy Low Candidate: Why Now Is The Time To Target Tyler Skaggs

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Injuries have long been an issue for Tyler Skaggs, who missed all of 2015 and made limited starts in both 2016 (19 total starts) and 2017 (20 total starts).  That’s going to help to limit the southpaw’s value, because people will wonder if he’s going to be able to make 25+ starts this season.  His numbers thus far are also a contributing factor, as a 3.98 ERA and 1.38 WHIP are hardly going to garner much attention.  That said, now may actually be the ideal time to be buying as things appear to be heading in the right direction.

First Skaggs is showing an improved strikeout rate, with a 9.30 K/9 over his first four starts (20.1 IP).  The key is a significant jump in his SwStr% (12.1% vs. a career mark of 8.8%), and whether or not he can maintain that is debatable.  While he’s been getting swings and misses with all of his pitches, his “best” Whiff% is 12.32% on his curveball.  That doesn’t scream of high strikeout upside, though he did post a 9.9 K/9 in the minor leagues (9.2 over 202.0 IP at Triple-A).  Even if he falls into the 8.25-8.50 range, it may be enough with the other skills. Read more

The Ditch List: Is It Time To Move On From These Three Struggling Hitters (Carlos Santana & More)

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

As the sample sizes start to grow the impulse to cut bait on a slow starter increases.  How long do we stand pat, or do we move on and grab the latest hot young prospect (or whoever you can find sitting on the waiver wire)?  Let’s take a look at three veteran hitters to try and determine if it’s time to “Ditch ‘Em” or if we should “Stick With ‘Em” for a little bit longer:

 

Carlos Santana – Cleveland Indians
The move to Philadelphia was supposed to spark his bat, but instead he’s hitting a miserable .151 with 2 HR and 10 RBI over his first 93 PA.  The problem appears to be that he’s trying to hit more home runs, with his fly ball rate ballooning to 52.5% (39.3% for his career) and his popup rate is sitting at 18.8% (13.7% for his career).  That’s obviously a red flag, but the other numbers all indicate a rebound is coming: Read more

Waiver Worthy: Five Starting Pitchers Off To Quick Starts Worth Considering (Velasquez, Ross & More)

by Will Overton

Knowing when to buy and sell pitchers in fantasy baseball can be a tricky road to navigate. Someone can string together a couple good starts and then next thing you know the wheels are falling off right after you pick him up.  Today we’re going to take a look at some pitchers who have gotten off to a hot start and discuss whether they are someone you should invest in off the waiver wire and what I view as their long term, season long value.

For the purpose of this article we are only looking at players owned in 50% of leagues or less and all stats used are prior to the start of Sunday’s games. Let’s dive in:

 

Steven Matz – New York Mets
This is one that has been polarizing so far this season as the once much hyped Steven Matz went undrafted in most leagues, but he’s gotten off to a decent start leaving fantasy owners unsure of what to do with him. Matz was phenomenal in 2016 as a rookie before getting hurt late in the season, causing him to miss half of 2017. When he returned he struggled to get back to his 2016 form, complicating matters further. Read more

10 Important Stories From 04/22/2018 Box Scores: Young Starters Worth Buying, What To Expect From DeJong & More

by Ray Kuhn

Almost. We almost made it through a full weekend without the weather taking a game, but rain in Atlanta left the Braves and Mets as spectators yesterday. All in all, we wrapped up an exciting weekend of baseball with some quality action on Sunday. Let’s take a look at some of the performances that stood out:

 

1) It’s Not All About the Batting Average
At first glance, Jose Ramirez owners aren’t going to be too excited about his start to the 2017 season. After all, Ramirez is hitting just .236 on the season. That though, can be expected to change as Ramirez’s BABIP so far this year is just .136. But while he isn’t sabotaging your batting average, Ramirez has at least come through in the power department. On Sunday, the third baseman made both of his hits count as he went deep each time. So far, Ramirez is up to seven home runs on the year, to go along with just 12 RBI’s and two stolen bases, but there is reason for optimism. All is not lost with Ramirez, as there are some other good signs as well. Through 18 games, he is striking out just 5% of the time and is also coupling that with a 15% walk rate. Buy low if you still can. Read more

Bullpen Notes: April 22, 2018: Have Bradley & Devenski Claimed Respective Roles, Could Kela Be Replaced & More

Are you following @Rotoprofessor on Twitter? If not you should be, as we Tweet out all the important bullpen notes every morning from the previous day’s games. Who is in jeopardy of losing their job? Who is worth the speculative add? Here are this morning tweets (Please note we won’t be posting these on the website every day, so make sure you follow @Rotoprofessor to ensure you don’t miss a thing):

Read more

Two-Start Pitchers 2018: April 23-29: Ranking The Options & Finding Those Worthy (Gausman, Porcello & More)

by Ray Kuhn

With most starting pitchers making it through the rotation for a fourth time at this point in the season we are beginning to get a baseline of what to expect. Yes the sample size is still small but we are finding a groove, and with any luck the weather will also improve. The same could be said for opposing lineups, and we now have a good idea of which teams to target. With all that in mind here is our options rank for this week:

Tier One:

  1. Gerrit Cole – Houston Astros – vs. LA Angels; vs. Oakland
  2. Carlos Carrasco – Cleveland Indians – at Baltimore; vs. Seattle

Tier Two:

  1. Robbie Ray – Arizona Diamondbacks – at Philadelphia; at Washington
  2. Jose Berrios – Minnesota Twins – at NY Yankees; vs. Cincinnati
  3. Rick Porcello – Boston Red Sox – at Toronto; vs. Tampa Bay
  4. Gio Gonzalez – Washington Nationals – at San Francisco; vs. Arizona

Read more