Lost password?

Don't have an account?
Gain Access Now


Receive free daily analysis


Already have an account? Log In


Forgot Password


Expert Advice
Articles & Tools
Import Your Leagues
Daily Stats & Leaders
All Pitcher Matchups
Compare Any Players
Player Comparisons
Rookies & Call-Ups
24x7 News and Alerts

Late-Round Strikeout Sleepers for 2020

The strikeout is on the rise. Even more so than home runs, nothing has taken off in this age of baseball quite like the strikeout. It used to be that no one this century reached 300 Ks in a season. Now, five players have in the past five seasons alone, including two in 2019.

Averaging a strikeout per inning used to be a great number to reach for relievers and an unparalleled one for starters. Now, it's hardly usable for the former and quite within reach for the latter.

With this being the case, fantasy teams need a ton of strikeouts to compete in the category, but it isn't always worth paying up for the big names. There are some late-round sleepers and fliers who can be found who should provide nice strikeout numbers without breaking the bank.

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


Giovanny Gallegos - Cardinals (ADP 208)

Gallegos may not close all year for St. Louis. With the depth available in that bullpen and the potential return of Jordan Hicks, it would actually be a surprise if Gallegos did close for the entire season. Nevertheless, Gallegos is a big-time strikeout pitcher in whatever role he settles.

Last season, he struck out a third of all batters he faced, along with an otherworldly 5.8 K/BB rate. Both figures put him among the top 16 in all of baseball of anyone who threw at least 70 innings. His K/BB rate was the seventh-best among relievers. This performance came out of nowhere, but even in his 20 appearances with the Yankees in 2017-18, when he couldn't find a foothold in the bullpen, he still averaged more than a strikeout per inning.

Along with the Ks, Gallegos offers supreme rate stats and the potential for many saves. He compares favorably to the likes of Emilio Pagan and Seth Lugo but is in line to be his team's closer from day one.

Josh Hader and Liam Hendriks seem like no-brainers as top 30 pitchers. But why pay for Hendriks when a perfect facsimile will be available 100 spots later in Gallegos? It all makes for Gallegos being one of the best values among any relief pitcher this season, and especially so for those owners hunting strikeouts late in the draft.


Anthony DeSclafani - Reds (ADP 254)

Entering his sixth major league season, the Cincinnati hurler has never quite put it all together, which is why we find him at his current ADP. As he flies under the radar even of those scouring for post-hype sleepers, this ADP works to our advantage.

DeSclafani has become a high-floor producer in terms of rate stats and wins. He should give owners 7-10 wins (maybe more if the Reds become contenders), an ERA around 4.00, and 1.20 WHIP; nothing to write home about. But he also offers strikeouts, and in that department, he keeps getting better.

DeSclafani missed all of 2017 with a UCL sprain. In the other four seasons -- outside of his rookie showing with Miami -- his K% went from 19.2 to 20.7 to 22.3 before culminating last year at 24.0. DeSclafani was one of just 26 qualified starters to reach that threshold in '19, just edging out Zack Wheeler.

DeSclafani needs to pitch deeper into games to become a quality fantasy asset, but his strikeout numbers keep him in the discussion, even from outside the top 250. DeSclafani's batted ball profile aligns closely with Jose Berrios and Zack Greinke. His production reminds me of a lower volume Wheeler. Are these other guys really worth taking 125 spots or more before DeSclafani just because they offer more volume?


Red Sox relievers

Matt Barnes is not the Red Sox closer. Darwinzon Hernandez is someone most people have never heard of. Neither player is likely to be drafted in standard leagues and they are both being taken outside the top 500 players. And yet, if your league gobbles up all closers and potential closers with required RP slots, there are worse places to turn than Barnes and Hernandez.

Barnes is obviously the superior option as he has the track record and the trust of the team. As a pair, though, this duo struck out 167 batters in 94.2 innings in 2019. They both limit home runs and performed better than their outcomes according to FIP versus ERA. If they can each cut down on walks allowed, this could be a fearsome twosome ahead of Brandon Workman in the late innings. (Workman is currently being drafted among the top 60 pitchers, and rightly so considering his own elite K numbers and hold on the closer job.)

Interestingly, the closest comps in terms of batted-ball profile to Hernandez are indeed Barnes and Workman (along with fellow AL East bullpen maestro Aroldis Chapman). Baseball Savant struggled to find any great comp for Hernandez though, considering he allowed zero barrels the entire season. It will be fascinating to see what he can do in year two.



From Gerrit Cole and Justin Verlander at the top to players outside the top 200, strikeouts will be plentiful this season. Every fantasy owner will find oodles of strikeouts on their roster almost by default. The best owners, though, will be able to seek out K production very late in drafts, allowing them to spend early picks elsewhere to round out a better roster overall.

More Fantasy Baseball Analysis


Expert Advice
Articles & Tools
Import Your Leagues
Daily Stats & Leaders
All Pitcher Matchups
Compare Any Players
Player Comparisons
Rookies & Call-Ups
24x7 News and Alerts


Jeff Dowtin Jr.3 hours ago

Gets A Two-Way Deal From Philly
Byron Buxton4 hours ago

Goes Deep Twice
Ty France5 hours ago

Placed On Waivers
Jayden Reed6 hours ago

Placed On Non-Football Injury List
Yordan Alvarez6 hours ago

Hits For The Cycle
Junior Caminero6 hours ago

Continues Crushing Baseballs
Cam Akers6 hours ago

Signing With The Texans
Hayden Birdsong6 hours ago

Impressive On Sunday
Julio Rodríguez6 hours ago

Julio Rodriguez Pulled From Sunday's Game
Lamar Jackson6 hours ago

Illness Described As "Pretty Bad"
Ozzie Albies6 hours ago

To Miss Eight Weeks
Brandin Podziemski8 hours ago

Warriors Not Looking To Move Brandin Podziemski
Sam Hauser8 hours ago

Agrees To Extension With Boston
Michael King9 hours ago

Dazzles On Sunday
Bill Algeo10 hours ago

Suffers Second-Straight Knockout Loss
MMA10 hours ago

Doo Ho Choi Gets First Win Since 2016 At UFC Vegas 94
Cody Durden10 hours ago

Gets Knocked Out At UFC Vegas 94
Bruno Silva11 hours ago

Gets Comeback Win At UFC Vegas 94
MMA11 hours ago

Seung Woo Choi Gets Finished At UFC Vegas 94
Steve Garcia11 hours ago

Gets Another KO Win At UFC Vegas 94
Jose Miranda12 hours ago

Not Ready Yet
Anthony Rizzo12 hours ago

Making Slow Progress
Lamar Jackson12 hours ago

Dealing With Illness
Joe Musgrove12 hours ago

Tosses Bullpen Session
12 hours ago

Jacob Wilson Placed On Injured List
Royce Lewis13 hours ago

On Track For Rehab Assignment Next Week
NASCAR13 hours ago

Watch For Bubba Wallace To Perform Well At Indianapolis
Giancarlo Stanton13 hours ago

Decision Coming On Giancarlo Stanton By End Of Next Week
Daniel Suarez13 hours ago

Is Daniel Suarez Worth Rostering At Indianapolis
Kodai Senga13 hours ago

Feels Good After Final Rehab Start
Zack Wheeler13 hours ago

Phillies Have Zack Wheeler Lined Up To Go On Tuesday
Ranger Suárez13 hours ago

Ranger Suarez To Start On Monday
Reese Olson14 hours ago

Lands On 15-Day Injured List
Kyle Larson14 hours ago

Expect Kyle Larson To Compete For The Win At Indianapolis
Ryan Pepiot14 hours ago

Rays Place Ryan Pepiot On 15-Day Injured List
Erik Jones14 hours ago

Is A Great Fantasy Pick For Indianapolis
Corbin Carroll14 hours ago

Out Against A Lefty
Justin Haley14 hours ago

Is One Of The Top Indianapolis Value Plays Of The Week
Christian Yelich14 hours ago

Sitting Out On Sunday
Zane Smith14 hours ago

What To Do With Zane Smith In DFS This Weekend?
Ty Gibbs15 hours ago

Should Fantasy Players Roster Ty Gibbs At Indianapolis?
Chase Elliott15 hours ago

Should Fantasy Players Roster Chase Elliott At Indianapolis?
Brad Keselowski15 hours ago

Is Brad Keselowski A Core Play In DFS At Indianapolis?
DJ Steward15 hours ago

Signs Two-Way Deal With Bulls
Carlton Carrington15 hours ago

Notches Double-Double
Noah Gragson15 hours ago

Will Start 21st In Sunday's Brickyard 400
Christopher Bell16 hours ago

Qualifies 18th For The Brickyard 400
Jaylon Tyson16 hours ago

Nearly Perfect From The Floor
Jordan Hawkins16 hours ago

Exits Early On Saturday
Austin Cindric16 hours ago

Despite His Struggles, Austin Cindric Is A Value Play In DFS This Weekend
Denny Hamlin16 hours ago

One of the Favorites to Win the Brickyard 400
Tyler Reddick16 hours ago

a Core DFS Pick at Indianapolis
Ryan Blaney16 hours ago

Should Contend in the Brickyard 400
Joey Logano17 hours ago

Has Good Upside at Indianapolis
William Byron17 hours ago

What Should You Do With William Byron This Weekend At Indianapolis?
Alex Bowman17 hours ago

a Top 10 Contender at Indianapolis
Chris Buescher17 hours ago

With Five Regular Season Races Remaining, Chris Buescher Needs A Big Performance At Indianapolis Motor Speedway
NASCAR17 hours ago

Is A.J. Allmendinger A Value Play In DFS At Indianapolis?
Martin Truex Jr17 hours ago

Must Serve Pass-Through Penalty to Start Brickyard 400
Evan Mobley1 day ago

Cavs Agree To Contract Extension
Miami Dolphins1 day ago

Shaquil Barrett Announces His Retirement
Rashid Shaheed1 day ago

Saints Agree To Contract Extension
CeeDee Lamb1 day ago

Contract A Priority For Dallas
Russell Westbrook1 day ago

Waived By Utah
Javonte Williams2 days ago

Competing For Roster Spot?
Jonathon Brooks2 days ago

Placed On Active/NFI List
Kenyan Drake2 days ago

Announces His Retirement
Joe Mixon2 days ago

Expects Heavy Workload In Houston
Juwan Johnson2 days ago

Saints Put Juwan Johnson On PUP List
J.J. McCarthy2 days ago

Signs Four-Year Rookie Deal
Ziaire Williams3 days ago

Heading To Brooklyn
Kris Dunn3 days ago

Moved To Clippers, Signs New Contract
Kevin Durant3 days ago

Expected To Return To Team USA Practice
Clint Capela3 days ago

Knicks "Checked In" On Clint Capela
Virna Jandiroba3 days ago

Looks To Extend Her Win Streak
Amanda Lemos3 days ago

Looks To Win Back-To-Back Fights
Brad Tavares3 days ago

Set For Co-Main Event
JunYong Park3 days ago

A Favorite At UFC Vegas 94
Kaynan Kruschewsky3 days ago

Searching For First UFC Win At UFC Vegas 94
Kurt Holobaugh3 days ago

Looks To Get Back In The Win Column
Russell Westbrook3 days ago

Traded To Utah, Likely Heading To Denver
Chris Olave3 days ago

Placed On Non-Football Injury List
New Orleans Saints3 days ago

Ryan Ramczyk Won't Play In 2024
Nick Chubb3 days ago

Likely To Be Placed On PUP List
Mike Williams3 days ago

Placed On PUP List
Bill Algeo3 days ago

Looks To Return To Win Column At UFC Vegas 94
MMA3 days ago

Doo Ho Choi Ends Layoff At UFC Vegas 94
Bruno Silva3 days ago

Looks To Extend Win Streak At UFC Vegas 94
Cody Durden3 days ago

A Slight Favorite At UFC Vegas 94
MMA3 days ago

Seung Woo Choi An Underdog At UFC Vegas 94
Steve Garcia3 days ago

Looks To Extend Knockout Streak At UFC Vegas 94
Miami Dolphins3 days ago

Bradley Chubb, Jalean Phillips Land On PUP List
Tristan Da Silva4 days ago

Stays Hot From Deep Versus Grizzlies
Scotty Pippen Jr.4 days ago

Totals 25 Points, Nine Assists Wednesday
Taylor Hendricks4 days ago

Notches 23 Points With Near-Perfect Shooting
David Roddy4 days ago

Pushes Suns Past Thunder
Keon Ellis4 days ago

Bounces Back With 29 Points Versus Knicks
Bronny James4 days ago

Helps Lakers To Victory With 12-Point Effort
Josh Richardson4 days ago

Hopes To Be Ready For Training Camp
Houston Texans4 days ago

Laremy Tunsil Fully Healthy After Arthroscopic Surgery
Xavier Worthy4 days ago

Won't Start Training Camp On PUP List
Deshaun Watson4 days ago

Hasn't Had Setbacks With His Shoulder
Nicolai Hojgaard5 days ago

Continues Playing Well Before The Open Championship
Russell Henley5 days ago

Eyeing Strong Performance At The Open Championship
PGA5 days ago

Sungjae Im Playing Some Of His Best Golf In Lead-Up To The Open Championship
Dustin Johnson5 days ago

Lacking Major Championship Form In 2024
Jordan Spieth5 days ago

Struggling Ahead Of The Open Championship
Max Homa5 days ago

Slipping In Form Heading To Royal Troon
Dean Burmester5 days ago

May Be A Risk Worth Taking
Justin Rose5 days ago

Making His 22nd Career Open Championship Appearance
Robert MacIntyre5 days ago

Robert Macintyre Hoping To Take Momentum From Historic Win To Royal Troon
Sahith Theegala5 days ago

An Interesting But Risky Option At Royal Troon
Matt Fitzpatrick5 days ago

Looking For Consistent Ball-Striking At Open Championship
Wyndham Clark5 days ago

Rolling Into Royal Troon After Intriguing Run Of Form
Keegan Bradley5 days ago

Looks To End Cut Streak At 2024 Open Championship
Brian Harman5 days ago

Looks To Defend The Claret Jug
Corey Conners5 days ago

Brings Strong Form To Royal Troon Debut
Cameron Young5 days ago

Readies For Third Open Championship
Tony Finau5 days ago

Returns To Royal Troon
Justin Thomas5 days ago

Returns To The Site Of His First Open
Brooks Koepka5 days ago

Debuts At Royal Troon
Bryson DeChambeau6 days ago

Bryson Dechambeau Looking To Finish Off Historic Major Run At Royal Troon
Ludvig Aberg6 days ago

Debuts At The Open Championship