Getting Max Power

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·7 min read
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AVG

Nick Senzel, OF, Reds -- available in 95 percent of Yahoo league

Senzel is starting to come around at the plate after a slow start. He went 7-for-20 this week with a home run and a double. With a 16 percent strikeout rate, 92 percent zone contact rate, and 24 percent line-drive rate, his BABIP of .231 is bound for some regression. And his Statcast profile supports a turnaround with a .280 expected batting average. The Reds host the Brewers for three games this week before the Pirates go to Cincinnati for a four-game series. It's a great time to take advantage of some good matchups. The Pirates own the second-worst ERA in baseball at 5.09. Senzel is widely available and worth a start this week in deeper mixed leagues.

HR

Max Kepler, OF, Twins -- available in 71 percent of Yahoo leagues

Kepler has been on an absolute tear over the last week. The 29-year-old outfielder has gone 9-for-23 with four homers and two doubles since April 24. On the season, he's slashing .258/.372/.515 with five homers and a steal across 78 plate appearances. He's shown incredible plate discipline with a 13.3 percent walk rate and just a 15.7 percent strikeout rate. Kepler has been able to tap into some of the power he showed in 2019 by raising his pull rate to 48.1 percent. Five of his six barreled balls have come from the pull side with an average exit velocity of 105.2 miles per hour. It's an excellent time to add Kepler if available with a seven-game week ahead for the Twins.

RBI

Anthony Santander, OF, Orioles -- available in 82 percent of Yahoo leagues

Santander added to his RBI total with three runs driven in Sunday against the Red Sox. Nine of his 11 RBI have come in this last week alone. The 27-year-old outfielder is hitting .243/.407/.400 with three homers in the early going. He has some good matchups ahead with a four-game series against the Twins followed by a three-game set against the Royals. Joe Ryan may be the only pitcher on the slate that can shut down a lineup. Meanwhile, the Royals pitching staff has allowed the sixth-worst ERA through Sunday. So hitting second or third in the Baltimore lineup could lead to more run production in the seven-game week.

SB

Andres Gimenez, SS, Guardians -- available in 92 percent of Yahoo leagues

The Guardians are finally giving Gimenez everyday playing time after he started in a platoon at second base. The 23-year-old has started the last three games at shortstop over Amed Rosario. Gimenez has earned it with an excellent .353/.358/.588 slash line with two homers and a steal across 53 plate appearances. I wouldn't be too concerned about the lack of stolen bases through three weeks. Gimenez went 19-for-23 on the base baths last season between Triple-A and the majors. With his track record and 95th percentile sprint speed, the additional playing time should give Gimenez plenty of opportunities to run going forward.

R

Tyler Naquin, OF, Reds -- available in 96 percent of Yahoo leagues

We're going back to the Reds for run-scoring this week as we exploit that four-game series against the Pirates to end the week. Tyler Naquin has hit leadoff with Jonathan India sidelined with hamstring tightness. Now that India is on the 10-day injured list, Naquin should continue to hit leadoff for the time being. The 31-year-old outfielder is hitting .226/.273/.403 with two homers across 66 plate appearances. With Pittsburgh going into hitter-friendly Great American Ball Park, Naquin could see some regression towards his .479 expected slugging percentage. Fantasy managers looking for an outfielder in deep mixed leagues should give Naquin a look this week.

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W

Drew Rasmussen, SP, Rays -- available in 74 percent of Yahoo leagues

Rasmussen is coming off an excellent start against the Mariners, shutting them out over six innings with just two hits and one walk allowed. He generated 19 whiffs on 84 pitches to strike out a career-high nine batters. It was the first time in his career that he went six innings deep in a start. Rasmussen has a 3.50 ERA, 1.00 WHIP, and an 18/4 K/BB ratio over 18 innings across his four starts. He gets a two-start week starting with a juicy matchup against the Athletics in Oakland, followed by a rematch against the Mariners in Seattle.

ERA

Tyler Anderson, SP, Dodgers -- available in 78 percent of Yahoo leagues

Looking for a starter that won't hurt your ratios in deeper leagues? Tyler Anderson could be that this week. The 32-year-old left-hander carries a 2.55 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, and 15 strikeouts over 17 2/3 innings into a start against the Cubs in Chicago this week. Anderson is coming off a win against the Tigers, going five innings of one-run ball. The Dodgers have put him in a position to succeed by limiting his length in games. He pitched five innings just once but could go deeper into games with Andrew Heaney on the injured list and rosters cutting down to 26 players on Monday. Anderson has allowed more than one run just once over his four starts, giving up two against the Padres on April 23.

WHIP

Ryan Helsley, RP, Cardinals -- available in 92 percent of Yahoo leagues

Few relievers have been able to lock things down as well as Helsley through the first month of the season. The 27-year-old right-hander tossed two perfect innings against the Diamondbacks on Sunday for the save. Helsley has yet to allow a run. More impressively, he has not walked a batter and has allowed just one hit to produce a 0.12 WHIP. Reaching back for triple-digits on the fastball, he's induced a 27 percent swinging-strike rate to strike out 16 batters over his 8 1/3 innings. Helsley could be a solid middle reliever to roster for ratios, strikeouts, and an occasional save.

K

Bruce Zimmermann, SP, Orioles -- available in 87 percent of Yahoo leagues

Perhaps aided by the new park dimensions, the success of the Orioles' pitching staff has been a surprise in the early going. Zimmermann has been impressive, in particular, with just two runs allowed over 19 1/3 innings. Those two runs came in a six-inning start against the Angels on April 22. Regression is bound to come, but his 2.48 FIP and 2.82 xFIP generally support what the 27-year-old left-hander has done. Zimmermann has found more success by going away from the fastball and leaning more on his changeup. The increased usage of the changeup has led to a rise in his strikeout rate to 26.3 percent after posting a 19.6 percent mark last seaosn. He gets a two-start week at home this week, starting with the Twins on Tuesday, followed by the Royals at the end of the week.

SV

Dylan Floro, RP, Marlins -- available in 76 percent of Yahoo leagues

The Marlins could be getting Floro back from the injured list this week. The 31-year-old right-hander has been out since the start of the season with a shoulder injury. He's currently pitching in Triple-A in a rehab stint and went back-to-back outings for the first time over the weekend. Floro ended the season as the closer for the Marlins, saving 15 games with a 2.81 ERA over 64 innings. Anthony Bender has operated as the closer in his absence. He hasn't done much to secure the job once Floro returns with a 4.32 ERA. Fantasy managers in need of saves could ahead of the rush and stash Floro before he's activated.