Hitter Streamers (Week 3): Head-to-Head Leagues

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Welcome back, RotoBallers! The streamers are off to a good start thus far, and the week three options are looking even better.

As a reminder, in this piece we're looking for weekly streamers, which means players who are less than 50% owned in Yahoo! leagues and who have a good chance to play a full complement of games in the week.  If someone strikes me as unlikely to do so in a given week, I may make an exception, but otherwise the advantage in number of at-bats or innings pitched dictates my choices.

With that said, let’s dive right in.

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Bats to Stream and Start in Week 3

Corey Dickerson (OF, TB) - 37% owned

Tampa faces six righties, although one is knuckleballer Steven Wright (and knucklers can often be easier for same-handed hitters). Nevertheless, Dickerson has massive splits. In his career, he has hit .289 with an .888 OPS vs righties, and .247 with a .654 OPS vs lefties. He also has homered every 18.7 at bats versus righties, as opposed to once every 50 at bats versus lefties. He does not face great pitchers this week, so you can expect a potential for homers, good run production, and an acceptable average, making him this week’s top streamer.

Kevin Kiermaier (OF, TB) - 30% owned

While Kiermaier’s splits aren’t as extreme as Dickerson’s, they’re still noticeable.  Versus righties he has batted .263 with a homer every 34.4 at bats and a .763 OPS; versus lefties he has hit .240 with a homer every 62.4 at bats and a .654 OPS. Even though he doesn’t have Dickerson’s power, he makes up for it in speed. He stole 39 bases the last two years and has two in the first 10 games this year. He has the ability to help you in every category, especially stolen bases.

Ender Inciarte (OF, ATL) - 42% owned

If you’re looking for steals and average, Inciarte may be your best option this week. He's on a surprising power surge, jacking three HR in a seven at-bat span. That's not really his game, but Inciarte has hit .278, .303, and .291 the last three years, while stealing 19, 21, and 16 bases despite never playing in more than 132 games. In 1,090 career at bats vs righties, he has hit .296 with 15 homers and 46 steals. In 411 at bats versus lefties, he has hit .270 with no homers and 11 steals; as you can see, his average, homer rate, and steals per at bat are all higher versus righties. Facing either six or seven righties this week, he is a great play.

Shin-Soo Choo (OF, TEX) - 12% owned

Choo’s numbers on the year aren’t year good, and that can largely be attributed to an astoundingly low 8.3% hard hit rate and an absurdly high 60.9% groundball rate (as of Friday afternoon). But that is a small sample. Last year, he had a 43.2% hard hit rate, well above his 33.9% career average. His line drive percentage, fly ball percentage, and walk and strikeout rates were all very close to his career averages. To me, it appears that we have largely the same player who just has not gotten going yet this year. But this week he faces favorable pitching matchups, has four games at home, and gets to face six righties; in his career, he has a .296 average, a homer every 24.9 at bats and a .867 OPS against righties, as opposed to a .240 average, homer every 51 at bats, and a .697 OPS versus lefties. Buy low on him and watch him get on track this week.

Nick Markakis (OF, ATL) - 12% owned

The past couple years, Markakis has started to show a severe split when hitting righties versus lefties. Last year, he hit .280 with 12 homers against righties and .243 with one homer against lefties. The year before, it was .306 with three homers against righties, and .273 with no homers against lefties. This week he faces either six or seven righties. While the pitching matchups aren’t great aside from handedness, it still looks like he will have a good week. I wouldn’t expect too much power or any steals, but he should give you good average with decent run production, and if you’re lucky, a homer.

David Peralta (OF, ARI) 39% owned

Peralta is in a great lineup. He has the potential for double digit homers and steals over the course of a year. And boy oh boy does he have some massive splits; He is a career .307 hitter with a homer every 27.5 at bats versus righties, but only a .219 hitter with a homer every 101 at bats versus lefties. Because he faces five righties, you’re likely only to get five games of production from him, but the quality could make up for the lack of quantity.

Jason Castro (C, MIN) - 25% owned

If you need a catcher, Castro is the play this week. We have talked about splits a lot, and we have to do so one last time with Castro. Against righties, he is a career .247 hitter with a homer every 27.7 at bats. Versus lefties, he is a .193 hitter with a homer every 64.3 at bats. He faces six righties this week (although they are tough starters). Nevertheless, he is my top catcher this week; he is apparently seeing the ball well so far, with a ridiculous 32.1% walk rate and only a 7.1% strikeout rate (as opposed to his career rates of 9.8% walks and 27.2% strikeouts).

 

Also worth monitoring

Steven Souza (OF, TB)

Domingo Santana (OF, MIL)

Byron Buxton (OF, MIN)

Travis Shaw (1B/3B, MIL)

Rajai Davis (OF, OAK)

Marcus Semien (SS, OAK)

 

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