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Evaluating Rookie Performances - Week 4


Happy Jo Adell week everyone!

It may not have been the most thrilling way for Adell to begin his big league career, with a whimper of a single followed by a quad injury two days later, but there’s still plenty to discuss with the Angels’ new slugger and some fellow rookies who made headlines this week.

In the weekly article, I take a look around the majors at rookie performances and their potential impacts for the 2020 fantasy baseball season. Without any further ado, here are six recently called-up rookies worth knowing about…

Editor's Note: Love the strategy of season-long fantasy sports? Live for the short term gratification of DFS? Try Weekly Fantasy Sports on OwnersBox - a new weekly DFS platform. Sign up today for a FREE $50 Deposit Match. Offer expires Thursday night! Sign Up Now!

 

Jo Adell (OF, LAA)

The top prospect in the Los Angeles Angels organization, and one of the top prospects in all of baseball, Adell made his major league debut against the Seattle Mariners on Tuesday. He went 1-for-4 in the game, earning his first big league hit on a slow groundball single. He followed the game up with another 1-for-4 effort the following day, but struck out three times in the game. He hit seventh in the order in both games.

Unfortunately, Adell was sidelined for his third game while dealing with quad tightness, but manager Joe Maddon suggested it was just a minor injury and that the star prospect should be considered day-to-day.

Adell struck out a total of four times over eight at-bats in his first two games, which isn’t ideal, but it shouldn’t be too concerning. He had a strikeout rate around 30% the past two years in the minor leagues, certainly not an alarming rate for a power hitter like Adell.

Expect Adell to play every day once he recovers from his quad injury. The Angels didn’t bring him up to sit on their bench. He should be owned in all fantasy leagues, given his potential to be an extremely effective power hitter right off the bat. He also has a strong track record of getting on base consistently and could give fantasy owners a boost in batting average as he hit .289 and .290, respectively, in his last two seasons in the minors.

 

Luis Patino (SP/RP, SD)

20-year-old San Diego Padres pitcher Luis Patino made his MLB debut on Wednesday, coming on in relief to pitch the sixth and seventh innings of a game against the Los Angeles Dodgers. He got off to a rocky start to his debut. After recording a fly ball out, he gave up a pair of singles, followed by a three-run home run off the bat of Joc Pederson. Luckily, Patino settled down after that, striking out Enrique Hernandez to end the sixth, then pitching a perfect seventh inning that included a strikeout of Max Muncy.

The shortened season could help incentivize the Padres to give Patino a chance in the team’s rotation, but there’s been no indication that’s the plan thus far. The team has been slowly working up the youngster’s innings over the past few years. He threw 56 innings in 2017, followed by 83 1/3 in 2018 and 94 2/3 in 2019.

Patino has had an exceptional run in the minor leagues, posting a 2.57 ERA and 1.13 WHIP with 11.7 K/9 over 20 games (19 starts) in High-A and Double-A last year. While he can be left on waivers in redraft leagues for now, make sure to keep an eye on him as he could be a very valuable contributor in ratios for rotisserie and head-to-head categories leagues if he earns some spot-starts.

 

Daulton Varsho (C, ARI)

Arizona Diamondbacks catcher Daulton Varsho is one of the more interesting recent call-ups for fantasy purposes for a number of reasons.

First off, his positional versatility. While he’s primarily a catcher, he has the ability to play a variety of positions and in his first two big league starts, he played centerfield and leftfield. Right now, the Diamondbacks are pretty set in the outfield with Starling Marte, Kole Calhoun and David Peralta as their primary starters, but if there’s an injury there, Varsho could be very interesting in fantasy as a player who gets outfield starts with catcher eligibility.

Second off, his statistical versatility. Varsho has filled the stat sheet throughout his minor league career. Last year, over 108 games at Double-AA, he tallied 18 home runs, 25 doubles and 21 stolen bases while slashing .301/.378/.520. He also showed great plate discipline with 63 strikeouts compared with 42 walks last year.

Through his first six big league plate appearances, Varsho went 0-for-5 with two strikeouts and a walk. He is certainly worth taking a flyer on in deep dynasty leagues, but in all other leagues, he can be left on waivers for now. Just make sure to keep an eye on him.

 

Anderson Tejeda (2B, TEX)

Texas Rangers second baseman Anderson Tejeda certainly had a flashy debut on Thursday against the Oakland Athletics. Tejeda was responsible for three of the team’s four runs in the game, going 2-for-4 with a home run, three RBI and a stolen base.

The 22-year-old Tejeda has shown some clear power potential in the minors. He hit 19 home runs over 121 games at High-A in 2018. He’s also regularly been active on the base paths, with 30 stolen bases over his past three minor league seasons.

The team has been without Rougned Odor (oblique) since Saturday, August 2. As of this writing, Odor has remained day-to-day and hasn’t been placed on the Injured List. Assuming Odor does indeed return soon, there likely won’t be much of an opportunity for playing time for Tejeda. He can be left on waivers in all leagues at this point.

 

David Peterson (SP, NYM)

Through two major league starts, New York Mets starting pitcher David Peterson certainly has looked ready for the show. He made his MLB debut July 28 against the Red Sox and went 5 2/3 innings, allowing seven hits, two walks and two earned runs while striking out three. He followed that outing up with a quality start against the Braves on August 2, going six innings and allowing five hits, one walk and three earned runs while striking out eight.

Peterson spent the entirety of the 2019 season at Double-AA, going 3-6 over 24 starts with a 4.19 ERA and 1.35 WHIP, averaging 9.5 K/9. There’s certainly a lot of reason for optimism for Peterson’s future, however, his time in the rotation might be short-lived, for now. Marcus Stroman (calf) is nearing a return from the Injured List and Peterson certainly looks like the most likely candidate to lose his rotation spot. Behind ace Jacob deGrom, the team’s rotation is rounded out by veterans Steven Matz, Michael Wacha and Rick Porcello.

You can hold onto Peterson for short-term help while Stroman works his way back, but he shouldn’t be a primary factor in your long-term season plans for now.

 

Joey Gerber (RP, SEA)

Anyone in deep leagues looking for some sneaky ratio help, keep an eye on Seattle Mariners relief pitcher Joey Gerber. The 23-year-old was called up this past Tuesday and made his MLB debut that same day, pitching a clean sixth inning against the Los Angeles Angels.

Gerber showed elite strikeout abilities in the minors. In 2019, over 48 2/3 innings at High-A and Double-A, Gerber struck out 69 batters, good for 12.8 K/9, while posting a 2.59 ERA and 1.17 WHIP. The previous year, split with Low-A and Single-A, he struck out a whopping 43 batters in just 25 2/3 innings, good for 15.1 K/9.

The Mariners’ bullpen has been extremely shaky to say the least so far this year. Closer Taylor Williams boasts a 7.20 ERA through five appearances and primary setup man Dan Altavilla hasn’t been much better with a 5.40 ERA through five innings of work.

If Gerber can find his way to meaningful innings and carry his minor league strikeout magic up to the majors, he could be a very valuable asset in a number of fantasy formats. Keep an eye on him and see if anything develops.



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RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 20th, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


Bubba and Bat Flip 54: 2 Early Mocks APD Player Debates - Benched with Bubba (Episode 316)

Bubba (@bdentrek) is joined by Bat Flip Crazy (@BatFlipCrazy) to take a deeper look at the 2 Early Mocks ADP. They go over some of the positions and look at players with similar ADPs and debate. Going around the diamond discussing some players people are high on and some they are down on with a... Read More


Daily MLB Injury Roundup for October 18th, 2020

RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 18th, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


Daily MLB Injury Roundup for October 17th, 2020

RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 17th, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


2021 Early Mock ADP Values & Reaches: WPC+ Videocast

Pierre Camus and Nicklaus Gaut prepare for the 2021 fantasy baseball season with a look at early mock draft results from the RotoBaller Expert mock. Like and subscribe to the RotoBaller channel on Youtube to get all our latest podcasts and catch us on iTunes and BlogTalkRadio as well! Be sure to also tune into RotoBaller... Read More


Statcast Season Review: 2020 Barrel Leaders (Hitters)

The 2020 MLB season will always be one for the record books, even if everything that took place will have multiple asterisks attached to it. Evaluating Statcast numbers is a nice way to find hot and cold hitters, as well as underachievers and overachievers. Now that the regular season is over, let's reflect on the... Read More


Daily MLB Injury Roundup for October 16th, 2020

RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 16th, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


Daily MLB Injury Roundup for October 15th, 2020

RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 15th, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


Daily MLB Injury Roundup for October 14th, 2020

RotoBaller has assembled a list of daily MLB injury updates to help you prepare both your seasonal and daily fantasy baseball (DFS) lineups, every day of the MLB season. Below is our updated list of injured MLB players for October 14th, 2020. Only players on teams that are scheduled to play today will appear below... Read More


Bubba and Bat Flip 53: 2 Early Mocks APD Trends & More - Benched with Bubba (Episode 315)

Bubba (@bdentrek) is joined by Bat Flip Crazy (@BatFlipCrazy) to take a deeper look at the 2 Early Mocks ADP. They dig into trends, some interesting risers/fallers, and much more. They also go over some listener questions at the end to keep the Fantasy Baseball information coming even in the offseason. Be sure to subscribe... Read More