Week 20 of the Fantasy Baseball season is here. For many this is the last week before the playoffs begin and of course the last week to get into the playoffs if your roster is on the bubble. We have much to discuss this week so let's get after it!
Week 20 Interleague Matchups
Cleveland Indians at Chicago Cubs (1 game, Monday)
Detroit Tigers at Cincinnati Reds (1 game, Monday)
Milwaukee Brewers at Indians (2 games, Tuesday-Wednesday)
Boston Red Sox at New York Mets (3 games, Friday-Sunday)
New York Yankees at Atlanta Braves (3 games, Friday-Sunday)
Oakland Athletics at Arizona Diamondbacks (3 games, Friday-Sunday)
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Week 20 Bullpen Report
The following are the closers at the time of this publication. Please check daily for any changes.
Jean Machi is still closing games for the Boston Red Sox. Over the past 2 weeks Machi has fanned 5, walked 3 and given up 1 bomb with 1 hold and an ERA of 2.84 with a 1.11 WHIP over 6.3 innings pitched. Machi is currently available in over 80 percent of all Major Fantasy Baseball leagues.
Bruce Rondon is still closing games for the Detroit Tigers. Over the past 2 weeks Rondon has 10 strikeouts with 2 walks, 5 saves, 1 blown save, a perfect ERA, 0.75 WHIP and zero bombs over 6.7 innings pitched. Rondon is currently available in 80 percent of all Major Fantasy Baseball leagues.
Edward Mujica is still closing games for the Oakland Athletics. Over the past 2 weeks Mujica is 0-1 with 1 save, 1 blown save with zero strikeouts, zero walks and 3 bombs for an 11.81 ERA and 2.25 WHIP. Mujica is available in over 90 percent of all Major Fantasy Baseball leagues.
Carson Smith is still closing games for the Seattle Mariners. Over the past 2 weeks Smith has 3 saves, 1 blown save and 1 hold with 10 strikeouts, 4 walks and zero bombs to go along with a 2.45 ERA and 1.23 WHIP over 7.3 innings pitched. Smith is currently available in over 55 percent of all Major Fantasy Baseball leagues.
Week 20 Two Start Pitchers
The following are the scheduled probable starting pitchers at the time of this publication. Please check daily for any changes.
James Shields (Tue-Sun), Dallas Keuchel (Mon-Sun), Corey Kluber (Mon-Sun), Jon Lester (Mon-Sat), Jake Arrieta (Tue-Sun), Jacob deGrom (Mon-Sat), Lance Lynn (Mon-Sat), Julio Teheran (Mon-Sun), Jeff Samardzija (Mon-Sat), Stephen Strasburg (Tue-Sun), Jose Quintana (Tue-Sun), Jered Weaver (Tue-Sun), Noah Syndergaard (Tue-Sun), Alex Wood (Tue-Sun), Ubaldo Jimenez (Mon-Sat), Alfredo Simon (Tue-Sun), J.A. Happ (Mon-Sat), Miguel Gonzalez (Tue-Sun), Nathan Karns (Tue-Sun), Nathan Eovaldi (Mon-Sun), Wily Peralta (Tue-Sun), Joe Kelly (Mon-Sun), Mark Buehrle (Tue-Sun), Jaime Garcia (Tue-Sun), Danny Duffy (Tue-Sun), Jorge De La Rosa (Mon-Sun), Hisashi Iwakuma (Mon-Sat), Tom Koehler (Mon-Sat), Jeremy Guthrie (Mon-Sat), Matt Cain (Tue-Sun), Derek Holland (Tue-Sun), Ervin Santana (Tue-Sun), Brad Hand (Tue-Sun), Jerad Eickhoff (Tue-Sun), Robbie Ray (Mon-Sat), John Lamb (Tue-Sun), Felix Doubront (Mon-Sun), Adam Morgan (Mon-Sat), Patrick Corbin (Tue-Sun), Charlie Morton (Tue-Sun), Keyvius Sampson (Mon-Sat) and Mike Montgomery (Tue-Sun).
Week 20 Starting Pitching Options
The following are the scheduled starting pitchers at the time of this publication. Please check daily for any changes. Each pitcher suggested below is available in at least 50 percent of all Major Fantasy Baseball leagues.
Joe Kelly and the Boston Red Sox host the Chicago White Sox in a Monday evening contest. Over his past 4 starts Kelly is 4-0 with a solid 3.22 ERA with 22 strikeouts, 8 walks and 2 bombs over 22.1 innings pitched. Solid 22 percent strikeout rate with an below average 1.48 and BABIP of .359 with a solid 3.52 FIP and 3.89 xFIP. Since the break the White Sox have slashed a .273/.331/.443/.774 line with a 21 percent strikeout rate, .171 ISO, .328 BABIP, .334 wOBA and wRC+ of 112. This one starts with the strikeouts and hopefully everything falls into place for Kelly on Monday.
Nate Eovaldi and the New York Yankees have a Monday night home game against the Houston Astros. Over his past 4 starts Eovaldi is 3-0 with a 4.07 ERA with 20 strikeouts, 10 walks and 2 bombs over 24.1 innings pitched. Solid 8 strikeouts per nine innings pitched and solid .284 BABIP with a below average 1.36 WHIP to go along with a 3.77 FIP and 3.94 xFIP. Since the break the Astros are slashing a .245/.309/.423/.732 line with a 21 percent strikeout rate, .178 ISO, .280 BABIP, .318 wOBA and wRC+ of 102. This is another matchup where thinking strikeouts is the right way to approach this.
Jesse Chavez and the Oakland Athletics are in Seattle for a Tuesday night game with the Mariners. Over his past 4 starts Chavez is 2-2 with a 4.74 ERA on 20 strikeouts, 8 walks and 5 bombs over 24.2 innings pitched. Solid 7.3 strikeouts per nine innings and average 1.21 WHIP and good .261 BABIP to go along with a 5.10 FIP and a much more manageable 3.92 xFIP. The Mariners since the break are slashing a .261/.320/..451/.771 line with a 22 percent strikeout rate, .190 ISO, .305 BABIP with a wOBA of .332 and wRC+ of 116. Strikeouts should be on the menu here and maybe a win as Chavez has gone more than 6 innings in each of his last 3 starts.
Charlie Morton and the Pittsburgh Pirates have a Tuesday night game in Miami against the Marlins. Over his past 4 starts Morton is 2-0 with a 2.52 ERA with 30 strikeouts, 6 walks and 2 bombs over 25 innings pitched. Awesome 11 strikeouts per nine innings and solid 1.16 WHIP with a below average .328 BABIP to go along with an outstanding 2.84 FIP and even better 2.71 xFIP. The marlins since the break are slashing a .260/.320/.373/.693 line with a 17 percent strikeout rate, .113 ISO, .303 BABIP with a wOBA of .303 and wRC+ of 89. This is just about as good as it gets as far as streaming is concerned on Tuesday.
Mike Fiers and the Houston Astros are in New York for a Wednesday afternoon game against the Yankees. Over his past 3 starts Fiers has a 1-0 record with 25 strikeouts, 9 walks and 2 bombs over 26 innings pitched. Great 8.65 strikeouts per nine innings and super 1.00 WHIP with an outstanding .224 BABIP to go along with a solid 3.23 FIP and 3.61 xFIP. The Yankees since the break are slashing a .253/.323/.435/.757 line with a 20 percent strikeout rate, .181 ISO, .287 BABIP with a wOBA of .329 and wRC+ of 108. Think strikeouts here and hope everything else falls into place like it did against the Dodgers this past Friday night.
Chris Bassitt and the Oakland Athletics are in Seattle for a Wednesday afternoon contest with the Mariners. Over his past 4 starts Bassitt is 1-1 with a 1.59 ERA on 26 strikeouts, 7 walks and 2 bombs over 28.1 innings pitched. Excellent 8.26 strikeouts per nine innings and strong 0.92 WHIP and .243 BABIP with a solid 3.26 FIP and 3.30 BABIP. The Mariners since the break are slashing a .261/.320/..451/.771 line with a 22 percent strikeout rate, .190 ISO, .305 BABIP with a wOBA of .332 and wRC+ of 116. This could be a good streaming opportunity with solid numbers straight across the board on Wednesday.
Anthony DeSclafani and the Cincinnati Reds play host the visiting Los Angeles Dodgers for a Thursday afternoon contest. Over his past 4 starts DeSclafani is 2-1 with a 2.52 ERA on 21 strikeouts, 6 walks and 3 bombs over 25 innings pitched. Strong 7.56 strikeouts per nine innings, average 1.28 WHIP and below average BABIP of .333 with a good 3.84 FIP and even better 3.65 xFIP. Since the break the Dodgers have slashed a .260/.330/..409/.740 line with a 21 percent strikeout rate, .149 ISO, .307 BABIP with a .324 wOBA and wRC+ of 108. Think strikeouts and ERA and maybe everything else will fall into place on Thursday.
Dan Haren and the Chicago Cubs are in San Francisco for a Thursday afternoon contest with the Giants. Over his last 4 starts (three with the Cubs) Haren has a 1-2 record with 17 strikeouts, 5 walks and 7 bombs over 21 innings pitched. Solid 7.29 strikeouts per nine innings, average 1.33 WHIP and very good .254 BABIP with a high 6.54 FIP and much lower 4.34 xFIP. He'll face a Giants team that since the break has slashed a .267/.325/.423/.738 line with a 18 percent strikeout rate, .156 ISO, .307 BABIP with a wOBA of .323 and wRC+ of 111. Keep in mind the Giants Hunter Pence is on the DL and look for decent numbers in strikeouts and let the rest take care of itself.
Week 20 Waiver Wire Options
Each player suggested below is available in at least 50 percent of all Major Fantasy Baseball leagues.
Travis d'Arnaud C New York Mets: Over the past 7 days d'Arnaud has slashed a .150/.292/.350/.642 with 1 bomb, 1 RBI with 3 runs scored and 3 hits. Lousy 25 percent strikeout rate and great .174 ISO and lousy .200 BABIP. Decent .305 wOBA with a wRC+ of 96. If you can handle the hit to your batting average categories d'Arnaud is available in over 55 percent of all Major Fantasy Baseball leagues.
Danny Valencia 1B 3B Oakland Athletics: Over the past 7 days Valencia has slashed a .179/.179/.286/.465 line with 1 bomb, 3 RBI, 2 runs and 5 hits. Manageable 21 percent strikeout rate with good .191 ISO and terrible .182 BABIP. Awful .262 wOBA and below average wRC+ of 66. If you can handle the low moments the home runs and RBI this guy can put together is well worth it. Valencia generally bats cleanup in the Athletics order.
Delino DeShields 2B OF Texas Rangers: Over the past 7 days DeShields has slashed a .200/.355/.320/.675 line with 1 bomb, 3 RBI, 4 runs, 5 hits and 3 stolen bases. Decent 16 percent strikeout rate and low .120 ISO and low .211 BABIP. Decent wOBA of .314 and about average wRC+ of 94. DeShields does a bit of everything for the Rangers and generally bats leadoff in the Rangers lineup.
Lonnie Chisenhall 3B OF Cleveland Indians: Over the past 7 days Chisenhall has slashed a .500/.579/.813/1.392 with 1 bomb, 5 RBI, 4 runs, 8 hits and 1 stolen base. Below average 26 percent strikeout rate, great .250 ISO and terrific .615 BABIP. Great .519 wOBA and awesome 244 wRC+. Chisenhall generally bats either 5th or 7th in the Indians lineup and right now he's hot as a firecracker and could be a good pickup this week.
Odubel Herrera SS OF Philadelphia Phillies: Over the past 7 games Herrera has slashed a .385/.467/..500/.997 line with zero bombs, 1 RBI, 4 runs, 3 stolen bases and 10 hits. Decent 20 percent strikeout rate and low .115 ISO and super .500 BABIP. Great wOBA of .423 and 173 wRC+. Herrera generally bats 2nd or 3rd in the Phillies lineup and is a good source for scoring in all of the categories except for home runs.
Jackie Bradley Jr. OF Boston Red Sox: Over the past 7 days Bradley has slashed a .458/.519/1.125/1.644 line with 3 bombs, 12 RBI, 8 runs and 11 hits. High 25 percent strikeout rate and terrific .571 ISO and .529 BABIP. Super .608 wOBA and 300 wRC+. Bradley generally bats 7th or 8th in the Red Sox order and while these numbers will regress there's no reason why Bradley couldn't help you this week.
Enrique Hernandez 2B SS OF Los Angeles Dodgers: Over the past 7 days Hernandez has slashed a .393/.414/.536/.950 with 1 bomb, 3 RBI, 2 runs and 11 hits. Hernandez whiffs about 25 percent of the time with an average .143 ISO and very good .500 BABIP. Above average wOBA of .412 and wRC+ of 169. Hernandez generally bats either 2nd or 8th in the Dodgers lineup and as long as he's playing every day could be a good pickup this week.
Yasmany Tomas 3B OF Arizona Diamondbacks: Over the past 7 days Tomas has slashed a .208/.208/.333/.541 line with 1 bomb, 2 RBI, 2 runs and 5 hits. Solid 16 percent strikeout rate and good .233 ISO with an average .304 BABIP. Very good .367 wOBA and solid 131 wRC+. Tomas generally bats cleanup or 5th and could be a good source of bombs and RBI this week.
Good luck this week Fantasy Baseball owner!