Don't have an account?
Join the Best Live Fantasy Chat Community!

Lost password? [X]

Receive free daily analysis:

NFL    NBA    MLB

Already have an account? Log in here.

[X]

Forgot Password


[X]

Fantasy Baseball Rookie Risers/Fallers (Week 9)


Well, the Major League season is already 34% of the way done. Some owners think that they are on their way to victory while others are patiently waiting for things to turn around. Still, while all the victory laps are being taken, the smart owner is looking forward to the rest of the year and finding what value can still be had. While the season always seems to move quickly, the dog days of summer are still upon us.

Now that we are rolling along, so too are the call-ups. This week, the Rotoballer team keeps tabs on all the new names and faces, with insight into their fantasy value to help any team. For owners looking for a cheap spark, look no further.

For redraft, dynasty, or general fantasy players knowing the new prospects is key to begin to plan out FAAB bids and waiver claims. Target or avoid these players to helps teams keep their competitive windows open.

Editor's Note: Get any full-season MLB Premium Pass for 50% off, with exclusive access to our season-long articles, 15 in-season lineup tools and over 200 days of expert DFS research/tools. Sign Up Now!

 

Rookie Debuts - Stock Up

These players helped their fantasy value with solid debut weeks for their respective team. If not on owners's radars, these players need to be.

 

Will Smith (C, LAD)

Perhaps the safest of the catching prospects on fantasy radars right now, Smith is getting the call sooner than expected. With Austin Barnes looking to be out for a bit, and Russell Martin not able to play more than three times a week, Smith has entered an active role from the start. On depth charts he is even listed as the starter, so the role is set for now. With two hits in his first seven plate appearances, Smith is off the mark. No power so far, but owners will take singles in the first week and run with it.

The hit tool has always been the question with sub-.240 batting line in the minors. Smith does flash good power, allowing him to stick at the position without elite defense. Expect 20 or more homers over a full year once he acclimates. That alone will make Smith playable at catcher over the next few weeks. Moving forward there has been talk around moving him to third or second while keeping a rotation at catcher. This means he could be playing a bit more, and the key will be the batting line. If he can hit .240, then Smith will be worth the add.

 

Devin Smeltzer (SP/RP, MIN)

A fifth-round pick back in 2016, Smeltzer had been a slow mover but has taken off since moving to the Twins organization. Currently set in the rotation, long term, owners should expect him to move to the bullpen. Still, in his first game, against the Brewers, Smeltzer threw six scoreless innings. Along the way, he struck out seven and walked no batters. An ideal start to a career, and with good opposition, this bodes well moving forward.

There will be questions on how long he sticks around with the Twins, but as Michael Pineda is set to miss some time, Smeltzer has earned at least one more start. Besides, when Cleveland offers a lefty-heavy approach, the handedness will benefit fantasy owners against the only other threat in the division. For now, buy into the 302 KS over 303 innings in the minors, and hope that the 1.09 WHIP from Triple-A continues. Stock is up with the hot start, and with another, this will be the next fantasy prospect to target in mixed leagues.

 

Rookie Debuts - Stock Neutral

These players neither helped nor hurt their fantasy value in the first week of play.

 

Zach Plesac (SP, CLE)

As Cleveland cycles through pitchers attempting to fill-in for Corey Kluber, the rookie reports will look much the same. Most of the Triple-A pitching for Cleveland will be effective on the mound but lack the stuff to put hitters away with regularity. This has been the case with Jefry Rodriguez, and now, Zac Plesac. Add in that the Cleveland offense is still slumping, and the margins for wins are quite small. This means that owners should expect five inning outings, with two runs and 2 Ks on average.

In terms of Plesac more specifically, the debut start versus Boston could not have gone much better. He allowed one run over 5.1 innings and struck out two. Ignore the lone run as well, as the bullpen gave up a runner on a cheap hit. What also makes Plesac unique is the sudden change in form. Until he made it to Double-A, Plesac was fairly padrestrain on the mound. Since, he has looked like an ace, with a sub-one WHIP, and 1.47 ERA. For now, enjoy the first start, and expect him to make a second. Plesac has a chance to break-out, but the track record might put a lid on anything more than an SP3/4 ceiling in fantasy.

 

Garrett Stubbs (C, HOU)

With Max Stassi hitting the Injured List due to some knee discomfort, Stubbs is up to fill the gap. While a clear second to Robinson Chirinos in Houston, Stubbs will get two or three games a week due to natural rotation. With two hits in his first chances, Stubbs has looked comfortable but is getting better grades on his glove. With the overall profile to stick as a reserve catcher, Stubbs will be a low impact stock, but one with some stability.

To date, at Triple-A, he was slashing .250/.370/.440 with four homers and five steals. The speed might be the selling point, with eight or more over full seasons in the minors. If he can add four or five in a part-time role, with the batting floor, Stubbs will be playable in two-catcher leagues. The stock is up with the call and team context, meaning owners should try to add him in leagues with an extra catcher slot.

 

Rookie Debuts - Stock Down

These players hurt their fantasy value during their first week of play.

 

Mitch Keller (SP, PIT)

While long thought of as Pittsburgh’s top pitching prospect, Keller’s stock is down from a year or two ago. Quickly demoted after allowing six runs in four innings in his debut, Keller is clearly in the Pirates plans, so a name to keep an eye on. Keller has always been a bit low on my lists due concerns around his command. This has resulted in three BB/9 lines during his time in the minors. Add in a 1.5 WHIP, and Keller has not pitched like an elite prospect to date.

The other downside is that PNC is playing like a hitters park to date, with 1.098 run factor. While not the detriment of a Coors Field, PNC has been safe for pitchers until the last few seasons. This means that the landing will be a bit rocky if the homer numbers keep up with Keller. For now, the stock is down for impact this year, and owners should be looking to sell while there is some hype left.

More MLB Prospects Analysis




More Recent Articles

 

Wide Receiver Matchups To Target In Week 14

In Week 13, Davante Adams and Tyreek Hill were the high-end options that had great matchups. Adams had a huge two-touchdown game while Hill only came up with 55 scoreless yards, falling victim to game flow as the Chiefs led from start to finish, scoring a defensive touchdown in the process. Several of the wide receivers... Read More


Fantasy Football Starts and Sits: Matchups Analysis for Week 14

Welcome to our Week 14 matchup analysis and start/sit column for fantasy football. We'll be covering every single contest from the Sunday slate in one convenient location, helping you make the best decisions for your fantasy lineups. Be sure to check back regularly because this article will be updated as news comes in regarding injuries and other... Read More


Monday Night Fantasy Football Starts/Sits - Week 14

Finally, we had a good fantasy matchup last week. And now, as punishment, we get this. The Eagles against the Giants is a good rivalry game. But for fantasy? Not so much. Even key players Saquon Barkley and Carson Wentz have been severely disappointing in 2019. The game is not going to be something to... Read More


Playoffs Panic Room? Outlooks for Slumping WRs and RBs

As your fantasy football playoffs open, some of your projected starters have not performed up to expectations in recent weeks. But knowing their track records of production in the past and/or earlier this year, it may be hard to sit them. You want reassurance on some of these suddenly lackluster players before the postseason begins.... Read More


Fantasy Football Playoff RB Handcuffs: Add Them Now!

The fantasy football postseason has begun, so it’s time to re-evaluate your depth, especially at running back. With only three weeks left on most fantasy scoreboards and each matchup possibly being your last, there is no more time for stashing players for potential contributions later. You also cannot waste roster space on guys who will... Read More


Key Starters and Tough Calls - Lineup Spotlights for Week 14

Welcome to Week 14, RotoBallers! Below you will find some of my spotlight plays and tough lineup decisions for the upcoming week of the fantasy football playoffs. These player selections are based on my Premium Weekly Lineup Rankings, available as part of the RotoBaller's NFL Premium Pass. Enter promo code KING at checkout for a... Read More


Red Zone Usage Risers and Fallers - Week 14

We are at a crucial point in the season. Either your league is in playoff season, or it's just about to begin. Now is the week to get your team in shape before that final push! On a personal note, some of the fallers may have caused me some fantasy pain this season, see if... Read More


QB vs Pass Rush Matchups To Watch - Week 14

Week 14 is here, and the fantasy playoffs are rolling. Some people are on byes for the week which can help if you've got key players in bad matchups, but others are scrapping to keep their season alive. Real teams start at quarterback, and they're pretty important for fantasy as well. Quarterbacks have changed the... Read More


Inside the Tent - Week 14 NFL Injury Insight

At RotoBaller, we can't stress enough the importance of keeping up with injuries and playing your best lineup week after week. Players are going to get injured, that's an unavoidable fact. What's avoidable though is making the wrong roster decisions based on the injuries surrounding your fantasy squad. If you want to dominate your leagues... Read More


Fantasy Football News and Injuries - Running Updates

Below is a quick-hit list of running notes on relevant injuries and player news, including pre-game reports and live in-game updates. Stay tuned for updates all throughout the week and on Sunday morning game day:   Week 14 Le'Veon Bell (illness) has officially been ruled out for this week. Evan Engram and Daniel Jones have been... Read More


Week 14 Fantasy Football Staff Rankings

Below you will find all of RotoBaller's fantasy football weekly rankings, tiers, player news and stats for the 2019 NFL season. Our Ranking Wizard displays our staff's rankings for various league formats, all in one easy place. Here's what you'll find: Weekly PPR Rankings Weekly Half-PPR Rankings Weekly Standard Rankings Dynasty League Rankings     Fantasy... Read More


Fantasy Football IDP Rankings for Week 14 (Top 100)

The fantasy playoffs are here for most of us, so every position matters that much more. IDP spots often become an afterthought or a set-it-and-forget-it situation but it could be that linebacker who has a monster game or that key interception that makes the difference between winning or going home. Look to our streamer suggestions... Read More


Week 14-16 Playoff Defense (DEF) Streamers and Starts - 2019 Fantasy Tiers, Rankings

The playoffs are here, and that means we're going to do things a little differently. I want to take a look at the playoffs as a whole (and in this case we are considering Weeks 14-16) and determine which DSTs you can ride all the way through and which ones you should stream this week.... Read More


Star Players Who Might Miss the Fantasy Playoffs

As we head into the playoff weeks of fantasy football, you'll hear many experts preach (correctly) the need to stash high-upside handcuffs or backups at quarterback or tight end. You'll inevitably hear about looking ahead three weeks for favorable playoff schedules and thinking less about what the player has done up until now or whether... Read More


Week 14 Busts? Players To Consider Avoiding

It's finally here... The fantasy playoffs for most leagues. Hopefully you have a chance to win a fantasy championship in the next few weeks. If you're lucky, you have a first-round bye and won't have to worry about anything this week except for picking out a Christmas tree and setting up all your holiday decorations.... Read More