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The following players are widely available in Yahoo formats and may be worth grabbing, depending on your fantasy baseball league’s depth.
Alec Bohm, 3B, Philadelphia Phillies (44%)
Bohm was dropped in many leagues after he opened the year in a platoon following a disappointing sophomore campaign, but he’s since become the Phillies’ everyday third baseman with Bryson Stott sent to the minors. Bohm has admittedly regressed some after an extremely hot start to the season, but he’s a former highly regarded prospect who batted .338 (138 wRC+) as a rookie. Bohm hits the ball on the ground too frequently to provide a ton of power, but he has nearly as many walks as strikeouts and sports a .345 expected batting average that’s in the top 1% of the league. Put differently, major league hitters are batting a historically low .232 collectively across the league this season, so someone with a strong BA is extra valuable in fantasy right now.
Taylor Ward, Los Angeles Angels (20%)
Ward’s roster percentage is going to shoot up after his two-homer game Monday, but he was well worth adding even before his big night at the plate. He’s been an everyday player immediately since coming off the IL, including having a prime spot in LA’s lineup. Over his first nine games, Ward has three homers and three SB attempts with an 8:10 K:BB ratio. All three of Ward’s homers have come off righties, and his expected wOBA is in the 99th percentile. Ward is obviously going to come back to earth, but he’s a former first-round pick with an underrated minor league track record who is just now entering his prime and finally getting his first real opportunity as a regular. He’s worth adding even in shallow leagues.
Prospects to Stash
Grayson Rodriguez, SP, Baltimore Orioles (18%)
Arguably the best pitching prospect in baseball, Rodriguez hasn’t disappointed during his first three starts this year in Triple-A, recording 23 strikeouts over 14.1 innings with a 1.23 ERA and a 0.49 WHIP. Pitching in Baltimore and in the AL East is hardly ideal, and the Orioles have little incentive to rush him up, but Rodriguez looks capable of having an immediate fantasy impact as soon as he gets the chance.
Max Meyer, SP, Miami Marlins (11%)
Meyer is another top pitching prospect who is off to a terrific start in Triple-A, posting a 1.83 ERA and a 0.71 WHIP with 27 Ks over 19.2 innings. The No. 3 pick in the 2020 draft, Meyer has an advantage over Rodriguez calling Marlins Park home and playing for a Miami organization that’s historically been aggressive calling up young pitching.
Nolan Gorman, 3B, St. Louis Cardinals (18%)
Gorman is up to eight homers over 15 games (1.108 OPS) and could be forcing his way into St. Louis’ lineup soon. With Corey Dickerson having a 43 wRC+, the Cardinals’ DH is wide open. It’s worth noting Gorman’s power explosion has come with a 32.3 K% and a 6.5 BB%, but he’s one of the league’s better hitting prospects whose timetable has moved up.
Jorge López, RP, Baltimore Orioles (56%)
López is above the usual 50% threshold to be considered here, so this is a last call on the emerging closer. He has three saves over the last week and should be rostered in all serious fantasy leagues at this point, assuming saves is a category. With a newfound fastball that’s averaging 98.0 mph this season thanks to a move to the bullpen (it was 95.2 last year as a starter), López’s early success doesn’t appear to be a fluke (his 1.57 expected ERA is lower than his 2.00 ERA). Baltimore is unlikely to provide a ton of save opportunities, but López has quickly gone from being undrafted in every NFBC Main Event to being one of the rare relievers locked in a closer’s role these days.
Dany Jiménez, RP, Oakland Athletics (37%)
Lou Trivino could come off the COVID IL at any moment, but Jiménez has racked up three saves and a win over the last 10 days and could be taking over as Oakland’s closer. Jiménez has yet to allow a run this season and ranks top-10 among relievers in CSW, while Trivino has a 6.36 xERA and barely ranks inside the top-300 relievers in CSW during the small sample to open 2022.
Andrés Muñoz, RP, Seattle Mariners (12%)
Muñoz is part of a crowded Seattle bullpen that should also get back Paul Sewald soon, but he’s worth grabbing for those desperately searching for closers. Muñoz picked up Seattle’s last save, although Drew Steckenrider was given the team’s latest opportunity (blowing it). It’s been a small sample, but Muñoz has been dominant enough to warrant notice, posting a silly 50.0 K%, so he appears capable of running away with the job if given the chance. The Mariners have MLB’s best offense (127 wRC+) early on, so plenty of save opportunities could be in the future as well.