One trend I’ve noticed is some owners are starting to pack it in or succumbing to the grind. There is no reason to roster Montas with his suspension but he’s still on five rosters. Since more players are available on the waiver wire, teams down in the rankings can quickly make up ground.
The following players were dropped in more than 10 or more of the 38 NFBC Main Event leagues.
- Leonys Martin (24): A .620 OPS. Anyone with an OPS under .650 is suspect for demotion.
- Kevin Cron (20): This demotion was a little weird since Cron was hitting good (.822 OPS). Maybe it points to the return of Jake Lamb off of the IL.
- Erick Fedde (12): 4.9 K/9 + 4.2 BB/9 = demotion
- Mike Foltynewicz (11): He’s got to work through several issues which have ballooned his ERA to 6.37.
- Diego Castillo (20): I don’t expect these shares to stay on the wire for long as some Save starved owners will take a chance on him.
- Rich Hill (16): A forearm injury has him out around a month.
- Alex Reyes (13): Removed from his AAA start with pectoral discomfort.
- Brandon Nimmo (12): Out for a month with neck discomfort.
- Frankie Montas (33): PED suspension.
- Dominic Smith (19): While he’s hitting great (.937 OPS), he’s only started in one of the last seven games. I feel he’s going to get traded.
- Cal Quantrill (18): Demoted to the bullpen for now.
- Jimmy Nelson (16): Moved to the bullpen after struggling as a starter with a 9.75 ERA.
- Brett Anderson (14): He rewarded his two-start owners with a 7.20 ERA, 1.6 WHIP, and 2 K’s in 10 IP.
- Joe Biagini (13): Might possibly be Toronto’s closer while Ken Giles is on the DL (or once Giles gets traded).
- Josh Naylor (13): Has started in just two of the Padres last seven games.
- J.D. Davis (12): Somehow the struggling Mets feel they have to play Todd Frazier instead of Davis. While Davis has started three straight, it has just been six of the last eleven.
- Myles Straw (12): Started just three of the Astros last 12 games.
- Austin Hedges (11); Better catchers are on the waiver wire (.593 OPS). Additionally, Francisco Mejia has returned and has started four of the last five games. Hedges may regain the top spot since Mejia has never been able to hit MLB pitcher (career .576 OPS).
- Mitch Keller (11): A 10.50 ERA has him back in the minors. While the final results have been horrible, he’s showing some skills with his 96-mph fastball.
- Freddy Peralta (10): Throwing just a fastball means he’ll get hit around (1.9 HR/9, .349 BABIP, and a 5.68 ERA) and ends up in the bullpen where he has a 2.70 ERA.
- Danny Jansen (10): He has been historically bad (.168/.253/.237).
- Evan Longoria (10): He’s been bad (.229/.309/.390) and is barely replacement level.
- Jesus Aguilar (10): Aguilar has produced worse than Longoria (.625 OPS vs .698) in a better home park.
- Yusei Kikuchi (10): Owners can’t handle the 5.11 ERA with matching ERA estimators. The problem with Kikuchi is that his struggles are not from just one problem. He’s not a flyball or groundball pitcher. He only has a 6.6 K/9. He gets hit around (1.9 K/9 and .306 BABIP). And uses a crappy curve (4% SwStr%) over 20% of the time. It’s not one fix which will turn around his season but a complete makeover.
Jeff, one of the authors of the fantasy baseball guide,The Process, writes for RotoGraphs, The Hardball Times, Rotowire, Baseball America, and BaseballHQ. He has been nominated for two SABR Analytics Research Award for Contemporary Analysis and won it in 2013 in tandem with Bill Petti. He has won three FSWA Awards including on for his MASH series. In his first two seasons in Tout Wars, he's won the H2H league and mixed auction league. Follow him on Twitter @jeffwzimmerman.