Ottoneu Cold Right Now: July 8, 2024

Cold Right Now (CRN) is a weekly Ottoneu feature focused on players being dropped or who should be dropped in Ottoneu leagues. In this feature we will break down players into three sections:

  1. Roster Cuts: Analysis of players who have been cut in a high percentage of leagues.
  2. Recent Injuries: A look at the implications of recent injuries (not all, just some high-profile ones).
  3. Cold Performers: Players with a low P/G or P/IP in recent weeks.

This article will typically run once per week and will help fantasy managers keep track of players that need to be given extra attention to improve rosters.

Roster Cuts

Tylor Megill, Add% Change (7 days): -13.5%

Before being optioned to AAA on June 30th, Megill had a stretch of five games with unbalanced ratios (11.35 K/9, 5.09 BB/9) that led to a 7.43 ERA and a 4.30 FIP. Neither of Megill’s fastballs, the cutter or the four-seamer, have had consistency. Here are the slash lines of opposing hitters for each provided by Statcast:

FF: .254/.398/.433

FC: .300/.364/.433

In early June, Megill was “Hot Right Now“, but a 0.0% HR/FB% raised red flags and that month, the mark jumped up to 13.0% compared to a league average of 11.2%. There is still a lot to like about Megill, particularly the quality of his stuff, yet without improved control of his fastballs he’ll continue to be a wild card for fantasy managers.

Triston McKenzie, Add% Change (7 days): -10.7%

For those holding McKenzie in hopes of a rebound, this may be the indicator needed to free the 26-year-old righty from fantasy rosters. McKenzie just hasn’t had anything like his 2022 season. The stats that have gone the opposite way since include his swinging strike rate, fastball velocity, overall K%, B%, and all of his Stuff+ metrics. Jeff Zimmerman’s mid-April mining the news got straight to the point about McKenzie’s elbow injury. While there has been no news of the Guardians’ hurler struggling with health, it’s impossible not to wonder.

Blaze Alexander, Add% Change (7 days): -10.4%

Sent back to AAA after accumulating 175 plate appearances, Alexander will need to work on improving his batted-ball quality. The 25-year-old showed promise in his first major league stint, with his above-average zone contact and ability to hit the fastball. But while Statcast shows positive run values on both the four-seamer and the cutter (wFA: 6.7, wFC: 1.8), Alexander struggled to hit most secondaries, particularly the slider (-6.9). He’ll also need to improve against right-handed pitching:

vsL: .297/.373/.446

vsR: .226/.286/.286

It seems like a solid foundation to build on and holding Alexander might be the right move for now depending on how much of a salary you’re giving him.

Injuries

Enoli Paredes, Add% Change (7 days): -10.3%

Yes, Paredes’ sinker/slider combination got his team out of jams with a groundball rate above league average. But, he left runners on base 89.5% of the time! Looming over a tiny 1.08 ERA before the righty landed on the IL with forearm tendinitis was a 4.20 xERA powered by a 4.32 BB/9. If you had Paredes during the first half of the season, you might find it hard to let go, but he is unlikely to sustain such success.

Cold Performers

Cold performers are marked by measuring low P/G or P/IP in the last 14 days.

 Ezequiel Tovar, -1.1 P/G

No hits or walks in his last 26 plate appearances have shut the young shortstop down in the last few weeks. His K% has crept up to 28.4% on the year and the difference between his BA (.266) and xBA (.229) is telling. Walking only 3.4% of the time in 2024 has hurt his ability to steal bases and he only has four so far on the season.

Anthony Volpe, -0.5 P/G

There is an intricate dance happening between Volpe’s batting average and his K%:

Volpe Rolling K%/AVG 2024

He started the year with more of a bat-to-ball approach that led to a high average and a high OBP. Unfortunately, Volpe is struggling with that new identity and pressing once again. This time, his OBP and SLG are declining in unison.

Cade Povich, -1.8 P/IP

Povich got shelled in Oakland and if you had him in your lineup your ratios are feeling a little sore. Povich simply did not have his fastball and at 24-years-old, fantasy managers should expect starts like this from the rookie.

Gerrit Cole, -0.6 P/IP

In his first few starts Cole’s changeup and slider have been hit well while his knuckle curve held a stellar 42.9% Whiff%. It seems he’s still getting a feel for his four-seamer and relying more on his cutter than in years past, but he collected 14 combined strikeouts in his last two starts. In his most recent start, he gave up a home run, but he also had some batted-ball bad luck as his BABIP was .545. He lines up against the Orioles next.





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