Adley Rutschman Fantasy Arrival, Martin Perez Defies Odds
It was another exciting week in baseball. Let’s take a trip around the league and catch up on what you need to know for your fantasy baseball team.
Adley Rutschman, the No. 1 prospect in baseball, was called-up on Saturday, and he immediately made an impression, hitting a triple and drawing a walk in his debut for the Orioles. Those of you who have bees waiting, your patience has paid off. Rutschman was hitting .301 with three homers and a .942 in the minors before getting the call. The best part? He’s a catcher.
Nolan Gorman, who was leading the minors with 15 home runs, got the call for the Cardinals this week. He singled in his first career at-bat, finished the weekend batting .500 across his first ten at-bats, and struck out only once.
The Cards saw a less spectacular debut from pitcher Matthew Liberatore who is best left on the waiver wire for the time being, unless you are in a very deep league.
Speaking of the Cardinals, Albert Pujols joined Babe Ruth, becoming the second hitter in MLB history to have at least 600 home runs and a pitching appearance. It was fun, but let’s say Albert should stick to hitting.
In the meantime, keep your eye on Harrison Bader, who has 11 stolen bases this season and is tied for the second-most with Jorge Mateo. That’s right—not Whit Merrifield, not Adalberto Mondesi. Your stolen base leaders are Julio Rodriguez, Jorge Mateo and Bader. Two of those three players are less than 50% rostered in fantasy leagues.
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Jumping over to the Bronx, Aroldis Chapman has been playing with a hurt Achilles, which may explain his last five consecutive shaky outings. The Yankees are also now without Chad Green, who is out for the season needing UCL surgery. But the winningest team in baseball has the perfect person to take over the job: Clay Holmes. Holmes has now logged four saves on the season and pitched 21 straight scoreless innings. Holmes is available in 35% of leagues and should be rostered everywhere.
Remember last week when I said to be patient with Trevor Story? Well, it seems Story is a big fan of SI Fantasy. He promptly hit a home run that night and followed up with three home runs 48 hours later. He has hit six homers in his last seven games. He now has 29 RBI on the season, tied for ninth. He hit his first home run of the year on May 11th! Patience, patience, patience—it is a strategy!
If you lost Max Scherzer this week, there are some pitchers you can grab from your waiver wire. Click here to read how I detailed the Scherzer injury and some replacements. You may find these other pitchers on the wire: Hunter Green, Cristian Javier, Yusei Kikuchi and Nick Pivetta—who also recently shut out the Houston Astros.
Martin Perez continues to defy the odds. He’s limiting hard contact and inducing the ground ball. He doesn’t strike men out at a high rate, but his ERA is now 1.64. Friday night, he pitched a complete-game shutout vs. the Astros.
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