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Well-Known Fantasy Baseball Players - Drop, Hold, or Sell Low? (Week 16)

Christopher Morel - Fantasy Baseball Rankings, Draft Sleepers, MLB Injury News

Week 16 is one of the stranger weeks of the fantasy baseball season because it usually runs for 14 days. This year, that week will run from July 8 to July 21. With the All-Star break also just a couple of days away, now is the perfect time to evaluate where certain players are heading into the middle of July. 

We are at the point of the season where it might be time to cut certain players based on their recent play. We only have a handful of weeks left in the fantasy regular season, so it's time to make the necessary moves to get your team to the playoffs.

In this article, I will analyze five well-known fantasy baseball players and determine if we should drop, hold, or sell low on those players. Let's dive in and find out who we are evaluating in Week 16. 

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

 

Jared Jones - SP, Pittsburgh Pirates

Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher Jared Jones was unstoppable on the mound in his first couple of starts to begin his major league career in 2024. He had a 2.68 ERA and 56 strikeouts across his first eight outings. However, since his start on May 10, Jones hasn't quite seen the same results. 

Over his last eight outings, the right-hander has a 4.50 ERA and 42 strikeouts. During that span, Jones has also given up three runs or more in five of those starts while walking at least two batters in seven of his last eight contests. In his first eight starts, though, the Pirates pitcher walked fewer than two batters five times. So, the 22-year-old is definitely struggling a bit on the mound as of late. 

To make matters worse, Jones also just landed on the 15-day injured list after being diagnosed with a Grade 2 lat strain. That injury is expected to sideline the rookie for multiple weeks, which is not great news for his fantasy value. However, fantasy managers should still be holding onto him in all formats given his upside and potential when he does return from the IL. 

While Jones has struggled a bit over the past two months, he is still worth a spot on your roster. With the right-hander currently on the IL, fantasy managers can easily place him in one of their IL slots for the time being. That seems like the best move right now because it appears his lat strain is not season-ending. 

 

Ezequiel Tovar - SS, Colorado Rockies

Colorado Rockies shortstop Ezequiel Tovar started the 2024 campaign on a nice streak at the plate. Through June 15, Tovar had a .294 average, 11 home runs, 22 doubles, two triples, and 34 RBI in 69 games. Since then, though, the 22-year-old has struggled mightily on offense.

Tovar is hitting just .158 (12-for-76) with a home run, two doubles, and three RBI over his last 19 games. This cold stretch has dropped his batting average by 28 points from .294 to .266. Just this past week, the 22-year-old shortstop also went 0-for-24 at the plate at the most hitter-friendly ballpark at Coors Field. So, things are certainly not trending in the right direction for the former top-25 prospect.

However, fantasy managers shouldn't give up on Tovar just yet. He showed a ton of great things in the first two months of the season, and it would be foolish to drop him amid a rough stretch. A slump was always going to happen for the young shortstop in his second full major league season. As a result, hold him for a few more weeks and see if he can break out of this slump until Week 17 begins. 

 

Gleyber Torres - 2B, New York Yankees

It is shocking to see New York Yankees second baseman Gleyber Torres still rostered in 71% of Yahoo! leagues. He has struggled for a large part of the season and currently owns a .223 average with eight HRs, 14 doubles, 33 RBI, and four stolen bases this season. On top of that, Torres is currently dealing with a groin injury that has kept him out for the past two contests. 

As a result, it might be time to cut your losses with Torres and drop him before the All-Star break. His numbers across the board are not great in 2024, and there isn't much optimism that he can pick it up, either. His expected batting average (.216), expected slugging (.351), average exit velocity (88.3 mph), and hard-hit rate (35.6%) all rank in the bottom half of the league. 

It has surely been a rough year for Torres at the plate in his seventh major league season. He isn't hitting the ball hard, his strikeout rate (22.8%) is the highest since his rookie campaign, and his barrel rate (6.7%) is also not helping his case in 2024. So, save yourself the headache and drop him in Week 16. There are likely better players to pick up on waivers right now. 

 

Anthony Volpe - SS, New York Yankees

New York Yankees shortstop Anthony Volpe is another player struggling big-time at the plate right now. After hitting .286 with six HRs, 10 doubles, six triples, 12 stolen bases, and 25 RBI through the first 64 games, Volpe has cooled off significantly. Since June 8, the 23-year-old is hitting a poor .175 (21-for-120) with zero home runs, six doubles, one triple, three stolen bases, and seven RBI over the last 27 games. 

Amid his slump, the Yankees have also dropped him out of the leadoff spot. On July 4, he hit sixth in the order for the first time since April 9. Then, New York hit him seventh on July 5, and fifth on both July 6 and July 7. Nonetheless, it's not time to give up on Volpe just yet in fantasy. 

Of course, the young shortstop has looked lost at the plate recently. But it's a long season, and every player will go through a rough stretch at some point during the year. With the All-Star break looming, this is a great time for Volpe to reset and get back to how he was hitting in the first two months. That's why fantasy managers should still be holding the 23-year-old in fantasy. He posted solid numbers in April and May, and he's too talented not to eventually turn it around

 

Christopher Morel - 3B/DH, Chicago Cubs

Many fantasy managers were hoping a breakout campaign was in store for Chicago Cubs third baseman Christopher Morel. However, that hasn't necessarily been the case in 2024. Through July 8, Morel currently has a .199 average with 15 HRs, six doubles, and 46 RBI across 89 games. 

It has surely been a weird year for Morel because his metrics don't necessarily line up with his season numbers. His expected slugging (.467), barrel rate (11.7%), hard-hit rate (45.2 mph), and walk rate (11.2%) all rank in the top half of the league. However, the 25-year-old has a batting average under .200 and has just six hits over his last 37 at-bats with one double and one RBI. 

Given Morel's current numbers, it wouldn't be a surprise to see most managers already dropping him in some leagues. The Cubs third baseman shouldn't be dropped, though, in most cases. Instead, see what you can get for him by trading him away. The only thing working for the 25-year-old in fantasy is his potential home run numbers, so if you're fine with letting that category go, it might be worth getting rid of him. 



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