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Fantasy Baseball Lineup Notes: Batting Order, Platoons, and Playing Time Changes - Week 4

Ezequiel Tovar - Fantasy Baseball Rankings, Draft Sleepers, MLB Injury News

It's now Week 4 in the fantasy baseball season. Trends have developed and opportunities are opening up. The sooner you can get in front of these opportunities, the more likely you are to pull out a victory!

In this article, we'll go over some of the trends we're seeing with platoon hitters, notable playing time changes, and batting order notes. We'll focus on a couple players for each section and provide some added depth and insight to help you build your lineup.

If there are players that you'd like to see covered or discussed that fit any of the criteria below, feel free to hit me up! With six months of baseball ahead of us, there will be plenty of players to discuss. So, let's get at it!

Be sure to check all of our fantasy baseball lineup tools and weekly lineup resources:

 

Platoon Player Updates for Fantasy Baseball

Josh Rojas and Luis Urias - 3B, Seattle Mariners

One of the more successful platoon approaches is taking place in Seattle with both Josh Rojas and Luis Urias switching off at third base. Rojas handles the righties, Urias handles the lefties. Out of the two, the better fantasy option for you will be Rojas, who not only gets more opportunities due to facing righties, but he's also crushing them for a 175 wRC+.

That's not to discredit Urias's value either. Urias is hitting for a 127 wRC+ against lefties, but the traditional stats may look less appealing as he's only 3-for-20 on the season vs. lefties but all three hits are extra-base hits. Rojas may carry more value in full season formats while Urias's value may best be captured as a sleeper in DFS formats when facing a lefty.

Ryan O'Hearn - 1B, Baltimore Orioles

Not an unknown name amongst baseball fans but O'Hearn is certainly someone who is continuing to excel in a platoon role. The 30-year-old gets to face righties, which helps get him more consistent appearances and thus boost his fantasy value. And if he's on your roster, then you've been thrilled with his performance as he's hitting for a 201 wRC+ on the season with six RBI and 11 runs.

O'Hearn will continue to get consistent playing time against righties and isn't at risk of losing time to Ryan Mountcastle, though Mountcastle's start to 2024 has been equally as impressive. Grab O'Hearn if he's sitting on your waiver wire as there's certainly value with this lefty.

Other platoon names to keep an eye on:

Alex Kirilloff - 1B, Minnesota Twins
Randal Grichuk - OF, Arizona Diamondbacks

Playing Time Updates for Fantasy Baseball

Blake Perkins - OF, Milwaukee Brewers

With Christian Yelich dealing with back strains, the Brewers needed to fill a hole in their outfield. Perkins had been getting sporadic starts to begin 2024 but has found himself gaining the bulk of the time in center field for the Brewers as Sal Frelick has shifted from center field to left field to fill Yelich's void. On the season, Perkins has performed well, hitting for a 145 wRC+ in 41 PA.

Since he's taken over for Yelich, he's cooled off some, hitting for a .721 OPS in 20 PA. But he will continue to get the lion's share of playing time with Yelich recovering from back strains. The lefty may hold more value in DFS formats as a sleeper and should be targeted when facing righties.

Robbie Grossman - OF, Chicago White Sox

Grossman has taken on the additional playing time that the White Sox need to fill after Luis Robert Jr. went down with a Grade 2 hip flexor strain. To say it's been a success would not be an accurate statement. The switch hitter has posted a ridiculous BB% of 20%, yet he's only slashing .167/.333/.194 in 45 PA.

If you're curious about adding Grossman due to the added playing time, I'd advise you stand pat. White Sox fans aren't exactly stoked on Grossman getting playing time and searching "Robbie Grossman" on X will yield more results for White Sox fans wanting the club to call up Oscar Colas than actual Robbie Grossman highlights.

Other names to keep an eye on who are now receiving more playing time:

Michael Toglia - OF, Colorado Rockies
Bobby Dalbec - 3B, Boston Red Sox

Batting Order Changes for Fantasy Baseball

Riley Greene and Parker Meadows - OF, Detroit Tigers

The Tigers made a switch about a week ago to move Riley Greene up in the lineup as the new leadoff hitter. In a correlated move, this also dropped Parker Meadows from leadoff to fifth. The move was meant to get Greene more ABs while giving Meadows a break from the pressure of hitting leadoff. The Tigers hoped it would provide a spark to the lineup. However, both hitters have yielded pretty much the same results as before.

Greene was hitting for a solid .802 OPS before being put in the leadoff spot. Since being put into the leadoff spot, he's hitting for a slightly less productive .753 OPS. Meadows was hitting for a paltry .441 OPS out of the leadoff spot and since the switch, he's hit for a .419 OPS. The batting order change doesn't appear to have changed much for the Tigers, but from a fantasy perspective, you're likely to find more value with Riley Greene getting slightly more ABs.

Ezequiel Tovar - SS, Colorado Rockies

There's not much to get excited about with the Rockies these days. Trust me, I'm a Rockies fan. But one of the players in purple pinstripes that deserves your attention is Ezequiel Tovar. The 22-year-old went through some struggles last year in his rookie season and it appears he may have turned a corner in 2024. Colorado's recognized this and bumped him up in the order from seventh to consistently putting him either leadoff or in the two hole.

Tovar's certainly starting the season well, hitting for a 120 wRC+ after posting a 70 wRC+ in 2023. A .422 BABIP suggests he may be due for some negative regression soon. And though he's making less contact compared to 2023 (66.5% vs. 71.2%), he's got a much higher hard-hit rate (45.8% vs 35.7%). If you need a streaming option, Tovar may be someone you could target. His long-term fantasy value may still be in question, but the young Venezuelan has some current value if you're in need of a streamer.

Other players to keep an eye on for batting order changes:

Jung Hoo Lee - OF, San Francisco Giants
Jackson Merrill - OF, San Diego Padres



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