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Hot Hitter Rundown

Rotoworld

The cliché that the standard fantasy baseball season is a marathon and not a sprint is certainly true, but keeping an eye on the hottest players in the game is still extremely important when making start/bench decisions, making pickups and getting fair value in trades.  It has become even more important recently with the popularity of daily games such as FanDuel growing.

It should be noted that short-term production in MLB involves a limited sample size, and should be analyzed and scrutinized for its level of significance, or lack thereof, very closely.  With these factors in mind, the following is a rundown of the hottest hitters over the last seven days according to Rotoworld’s Player Rater.


Mention of players on these lists is a statement of fact that they are playing well for fantasy owners recently, but not necessarily a long-term endorsement of ownership in fantasy leagues, unless otherwise noted.

Player Rater numbers cover games for the week of 8/25 - 8/31.

Catcher

Week RankSeason RankPlayerTmPosHRRBISBAVGRVAL
1 1 Buster Posey SF C 3.17 4.24 -0.44 2.17 2.47 11.62
2 19 Wilson Ramos WAS C 3.17 1.12 -0.44 -0.33 0.64 4.15
3 16 Chris Iannetta ANA C 1.93 1.12 -0.44 0.61 0.64 3.85
4 14 Jason Castro HOU C 1.93 1.64 -0.44 -0.33 0.64 3.43
5 27 Rene Rivera SD C 0.68 0.60 -0.44 1.45 0.64 2.92
6 NR Andrew Susac SF C 0.68 1.64 -0.44 0.97 0.02 2.87
7 7 Dioner Navarro TOR C -0.56 0.07 1.00 1.09 0.02 1.63
8 NR Tomas Telis TEX C -0.56 1.12 -0.44 0.02 0.64 0.77
9 30 Caleb Joseph BAL C -0.56 0.60 -0.44 1.45 -0.59 0.46
10 3 Yan Gomes CLE C -0.56 -0.45 -0.44 1.68 0.02 0.26

With consecutive weeks as the top performer at the position, Buster Posey has worked himself back into the top spot at the catcher position overall.  He hit .423-3-10 with six runs scored last week and .336-6-17 for the month of August … Wilson Ramos has had yet another disappointing season for fantasy owners due to injuries, but he increased his home run total by 50 percent with a big week.  He hit .217-3-4 last week, giving him nine long balls for the season … Chris Iannetta has been far more useful in real baseball than fantasy, now carrying a .380 on-base percentage for the season.  His fantasy owners still haven’t been hurt, but he still only has seven homers after launching two last week … Andrew Susac didn’t get a great deal of hype in prospect circles behind Posey, but he’s hit well since arriving in San Fran and can really handle himself behind the plate.  Last week he hit .417-1-5 in 12 at-bats for the Giants.  It will be interesting to see if the Giants trade him, or entertain the thought of moving Posey off catcher this offseason … Yan Gomes continues to do his thing behind the plate for the Indians, going 7-for-14 last week and moving into third overall among all fantasy catchers.

First Base

Week RankSeason RankPlayerTmPosHRRBISBAVGRVAL
1 17 Chris Davis BAL 1B 3.17 3.20 -0.44 -0.33 3.69 9.29
2 1 Jose Abreu CWS 1B -0.56 1.64 1.00 3.36 0.64 6.07
3 16 Steve Pearce BAL 1B 1.93 0.07 1.00 0.50 1.86 5.35
4 13 Ryan Howard PHI 1B 0.68 2.16 -0.44 0.86 1.25 4.51
5 25 Ike Davis PIT 1B 1.93 1.64 -0.44 0.14 0.02 3.29
6 4 Albert Pujols ANA 1B 0.68 1.64 -0.44 0.75 0.64 3.26
7 7 Adrian Gonzalez LA 1B 0.68 0.07 -0.44 1.21 1.25 2.78
8 14 Carlos Santana CLE 1B 0.68 1.64 -0.44 -0.09 0.02 1.82
9 8 Edwin Encarnacion TOR 1B 0.68 1.12 -0.44 -0.69 0.02 0.70
10 34 Lyle Overbay MLW 1B -0.56 -0.45 -0.44 0.84 0.64 0.03

Finally, Chris Davis has arrived.  He’s shown on the list in consecutive weeks for the O’s, hitting .211-3-8 with eight runs scored last week.  Davis’ season has still been sorely disappointing given his price before the year, but he now stands at 24 homers and 68 RBI in 118 games … Jose Abreu oddly makes the list without hitting a home run.  He went 13-for-24 for the week, and even added his second steal of the year.  For all the criticism of his lack of on-base ability earlier in the year, Abreu’s OBP is up to .381 and he’s hitting .380 with a .460 OBP since the break … Steven Pearce has missed the last few days with an abdominal injury, but he was hot before the issue arose.  He hit .313-2-2 with five runs and one steal last week, finishing August hitting .271-5-6 for the month … Ike Davis could have trouble earning an everyday job this offseason with his season totals this year, but he hit a pair of homers last week and has finally reached double-digit home runs … Listed under DH in the Player Rater, Victor Martinez and Chris Carter round out the list.  V-Mart hit .308-2-4 with six runs scored last week, and has surprisingly continued to be Detroit’s best batter this season.  Carter hit three homers last week, giving him 33 for the season and 20 since the beginning of July.  He’s on pace to fall just short of 40 homers for the season.

Second Base

Week RankSeason RankPlayerTmPosHRRBISBAVGRVAL
1 3 Ian Kinsler DET 2B 0.68 2.68 1.00 -0.20 2.47 6.63
2 10 Dustin Pedroia BOS 2B 1.93 2.16 1.00 0.14 1.25 6.47
3 1 Jose Altuve HOU 2B -0.56 0.07 2.44 1.82 1.86 5.63
4 22 Rougned Odor TEX 2B 1.93 3.20 -0.44 -0.21 0.64 5.12
5 5 Brian Dozier MIN 2B -0.56 0.60 -0.44 1.82 2.47 3.88
6 NR Logan Watkins CHC 2B 0.68 -0.45 1.00 1.08 1.25 3.56
7 14 Kolten Wong STL 2B 0.68 0.07 1.00 0.74 0.64 3.13
8 19 Gordon Beckham ANA 2B 0.68 1.64 -0.44 0.37 0.64 2.89
9 33 Donovan Solano FLA 2B 0.68 0.07 -0.44 1.57 0.64 2.53
10 NR Javier Baez CHC 2B -0.56 1.12 2.44 -1.63 0.02 1.39

Ian Kinsler tops the second base list for the second straight week, hitting .233-1-7 with six runs and two steals.  He’s well on pace to set a career high in RBI and also reach 100 runs scored in his first season with Detroit … It’s been a disappointing year for Dustin Pedroia owners, as he’s fought through nagging injuries.  That included late last week, when he suffered a concussion that could keep him out all week.  Before the injury, he hit .263-2-6 with a steal for the week … Rougned Odor has had a quiet rookie season for the Rangers, but he hit a pair of homers and knocked in eight RBI last week.  He’s hit just .248-7-35 for the season, but it’s easy to forget that he turned 20 in March … Logan Watkins isn’t touted to have the future of teammate Javier Baez, but he out-earned his teammate by going 5-for-11 with one homer as a part-time player.  Baez had a rough week, but made the list as a result of two steals and four RBI … Kolten Wong reached double-digit homers last week by hitting .318-1-2 and added one steal.  Up to 14th overall at the position and hitting a respectable .260 since the break, Wong looks like a fine option heading into next season.

Third Base

Week RankSeason RankPlayerTmPosHRRBISBAVGRVAL
1 20 Luis Valbuena CHC 3B 3.17 1.12 1.00 0.75 1.86 7.89
2 3 Josh Donaldson OAK 3B 0.68 1.12 1.00 2.88 0.64 6.32
3 7 Pablo Sandoval SF 3B 0.68 1.12 -0.44 1.22 3.08 5.66
4 2 Anthony Rendon WAS 3B 1.93 1.12 -0.44 0.98 1.86 5.44
5 1 Todd Frazier CIN 3B 0.68 0.60 2.44 0.03 0.64 4.38
6 12 Trevor Plouffe MIN 3B 1.93 1.12 -0.44 0.38 0.64 3.62
7 6 Evan Longoria TB 3B 0.68 1.12 -0.44 0.75 0.64 2.74
8 11 Lonnie Chisenhall CLE 3B 0.68 0.60 -0.44 1.32 0.02 2.19
9 14 Martin Prado NYY 3B 0.68 -0.45 -0.44 0.99 1.25 2.03
10 NR Jimmy Paredes BAL 3B 0.68 0.60 -0.44 1.08 0.02 1.95

For all the youth in Cubs Land, Luis Valbuena has performed quite well recently.  He’s made the third base list for the second straight week, this time leading the position by hitting .308-3-4 with one steal.  He’s now at 16 homers for the season, growing on last year’s improvement … Some of this season’s hottest streaks have come from Lonnie Chisenhall, and he’s on an eight-game hitting streak following Monday’s game.  He hit .462-1-3 for the Indians last week … Jimmy Paredes has become quite a journeyman over his short career, and regular playing time over the last few days allowed him to hit .385-1-3 for the Orioles.  He’s been more of a speedster in the minors and has hit only .240 in 388 at-bats for his major league career, so it seems unlikely he will be able to help many fantasy owners down the stretch.

Shortstop

Week RankSeason RankPlayerTmPosHRRBISBAVGRVAL
1 3 Jimmy Rollins PHI SS 0.68 0.07 2.44 1.69 1.86 6.74
2 13 J.J. Hardy BAL SS 1.93 2.68 -0.44 0.39 1.25 5.80
3 1 Alexei Ramirez CWS SS 0.68 1.12 1.00 0.27 2.47 5.54
4 8 Alcides Escobar KC SS -0.56 -0.45 3.87 0.87 1.25 4.98
5 6 Erick Aybar ANA SS -0.56 0.60 -0.44 2.88 1.86 4.34
6 37 Jose Ramirez CLE SS -0.56 0.07 2.44 0.39 1.86 4.20
7 40 Wilmer Flores NYM SS 0.68 0.07 1.00 0.74 0.64 3.13
8 25 Zack Cozart CIN SS -0.56 0.07 2.44 0.38 0.64 2.96
9 2 Ian Desmond WAS SS 0.68 0.07 1.00 0.86 0.02 2.64
10 10 Jhonny Peralta STL SS -0.56 1.12 -0.44 1.69 0.64 2.44

Finishing in the top three for the second consecutive week, veteran Jimmy Rollins is making a nice late charge for fantasy owners.  He hit .409-1-2 with five runs and two steals last week, putting him ever closer to 20/20 status for the season … J.J. Hardy’s power continues to come along, with two more homers and seven RBI last week.  He still has only nine home runs for the season, but fantasy owners are satisfied with his August in which he hit .322-5-18 … Jose Ramirez has made the shortstop list again as a result of swiping two bases last week.  He now has five steals for the season in 42 games, and has 16 runs in 42 games heading toward his 22nd birthday later this month.  He remains a short-term AL-only play … Wilmer Flores has been sharing time at shortstop with Ruben Tejada, and hit .333-1-2 with one steal last week.  While he hasn’t hit like it yet, Flores’ minor league track record is far more impressive than Tejada’s with a .903 OPS in his career at Triple-A Las Vegas … Zack Cozart has been a constant disappointment, sitting on the waiver wire even in some NL-only leagues at this point.  Hitting .294 with two steals last week allowed him to help the few fantasy owners that are utilizing him.

Outfield

Week RankSeason RankPlayerTmPosHRRBISBAVGRVAL
1 5 Jacoby Ellsbury NYY OF 4.41 3.72 2.44 3.00 2.47 16.05
2 27 Matt Holliday STL OF 4.41 5.81 -0.44 1.58 1.86 13.22
3 7 Jose Bautista TOR OF 5.66 2.16 -0.44 0.27 2.47 10.11
4 9 Billy Hamilton CIN OF -0.56 0.07 6.75 0.74 1.25 8.25
5 41 Adam Eaton CWS OF -0.56 -0.45 2.44 2.41 4.31 8.15
6 NR Jorge Soler CHC OF 3.17 2.68 -0.44 2.04 0.64 8.09
7 1 Mike Trout ANA OF 1.93 2.16 1.00 0.99 1.86 7.93
8 21 Alex Gordon KC OF 3.17 2.16 -0.44 0.15 2.47 7.51
9 10 Hunter Pence SF OF -0.56 2.16 -0.44 3.24 3.08 7.48
10 89 Jordan Schafer MIN OF -0.56 1.64 3.87 1.69 0.64 7.28
11 52 Angel Pagan SF OF -0.56 0.07 2.44 1.70 3.08 6.73
12 NR Mookie Betts BOS OF 1.93 2.16 1.00 0.27 1.25 6.60
13 44 Dustin Ackley SEA OF 1.93 2.16 -0.44 0.86 1.25 5.76
14 79 Gregor Blanco SF OF 1.93 2.16 1.00 0.03 0.64 5.74
15 50 Brock Holt BOS OF -0.56 -0.97 3.87 0.27 3.08 5.70
16 75 Ender Inciarte ARZ OF -0.56 0.60 3.87 1.09 0.02 5.03
17 106 Chris Heisey CIN OF 3.17 1.12 -0.44 0.49 0.64 4.97
18 20 Josh Harrison PIT OF 1.93 0.60 -0.44 1.93 0.64 4.65
19 NR Ezequiel Carrera DET OF -0.56 -0.45 3.87 1.08 0.64 4.59
20 69 Juan Lagares NYM OF 0.68 1.12 2.44 0.27 0.02 4.52

Jacoby Ellsbury’s huge week helped vault himself from the 13th to fifth most valuable outfielder for the year.  He hit .522-4-9 with six runs and two steals for the Yankees, putting him in a position to produce his best fantasy season since he went 30/30 in 2011 … Matt Holliday has had a big second half, with an .890 OPS and 10 homers.  Much of his production came last week, as he hit .370-4-13 with five runs scored.  Holliday added three more RBI on Monday, so he’s well on his way to appearing on the list next week … Adam Eaton has also had a strong second half when he’s been on the field, and he hit .429 with two steals and nine runs scored last week.  His 14 steals to this point have been somewhat disappointing, but his .313 batting average has made the lack of steals somewhat easier to swallow … Jorge Soler’s epic first week is another bright sign for the Cubs’ future, as the Cuban went 8-for-15 with three homers and seven RBI in his first four games.  He went 2-for-4 with two doubles on Monday.  It goes without saying that he’s a must-add down the stretch … Jordan Schafer makes the list again, going 9-for-22 with three steals last week.  He’s been red hot since joining Minnesota, hitting .333 with 11 steals in 24 games … Used as an outfielder this season by Boston, Mookie Betts is a natural second baseman and could be used in that role in September if Dustin Pedroia’s concussion leaves him out for a significant period.  Betts hit .273-2-6 with one steal while playing regularly last week … Ender Inciarte profiles best as a bench player, but he’s hit well enough recently to garner regular playing time.  He hit .368 with three steals last week, and has been getting some work in the leadoff spot … Speedster Ezequiel Carrera has seen a couple starts over the last week, allowing him to swipe three bases.  He has 23 steals in 158 games for his career, and could be cheap speed for very desperate AL-only owners in September.

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