Who is Being Dropped & Why (Week 12)

It’s a unique player list this week. For the hitters, almost all of them are hurt or in a part-time role. As for the starters (and several relievers), they were highly drafted disappointments who should have been dropped weeks again if their rostering cost wasn’t so high. All the moves made sense. I might have to drop the weekly drop total down one or two notches next time to focus on some tougher cuts.

For this weekly feature, I use the NFBC Main Event because of the number of identical leagues. Additionally, the managers stay engaged longer on the whole since each spent $1700 per team. I tried to find that sweet spot between the obvious and bizarre drops and will focus on players dropped in seven to ten leagues. Previously the number was six to nine, but I adjusted with the Main Event adding four leagues since I did the report.


Rowdy Tellez (10): With Hernandez off the IL and Springer about to come off it any day, Tellez’s playing time is about to dry up.

Edward Olivares (10): I bet he’s getting pretty familiar with I-29 by now. Maybe, he’s even on first-name basis with Sinclair’s cashiers at Exit 110.

Nick Gordon (10): Not playing enough (started in four of the last 10 games) to accumulate any counting stats.

Garrett Cooper (10): He’s on the IL (back) and hasn’t exactly been hitting (.720 OPS, 0 HR). Replaceable bat.

Brian Anderson (10): Moved to the 60-day IL and is just not productive enough to use a bench spot for him.

Wilson Ramos (9): Released by the Tigers.

Starlin Castro (9): I know that Castro has been playing almost every day, but I didn’t know how little he was hitting (.610 OPS, 2 HR, 0 SB). Replacement level bat.

Jose Trevino (9): A non-hitting (.522 OPS) catcher should not be rostered.

Joshua Fuentes (8): He’s only started in five of the last 10 games. He’s only has a .670 OPS. Now, he has a week on the road. Reasonable drop.

Nick Ahmed (8): Career-high strikeout rate (25% K%) has about destroyed any fantasy value he had left. I wonder if Rojas will start stealing time from him at some point.

Seth Brown (8): The lefty only starts against right-handed pitchers. While Oakland has seven games this, three of those are against lefties. Four games are not going to cut it for an average, at best, talent.

Danny Santana (8): The playing time has dried up (started three of last 10) since he’s only hitting .125/.210/.268 on the season.

Elias Díaz (8): The Rockies are on the road this week, so there is no need to roster a backup catcher with a .478 OPS.

DJ Stewart (8): With Hays off the IL, Stewart (.214/.324/.383) has only started five of the last 10 games.

Clint Frazier (7): He’s only started in four of the last 10 games. It doesn’t help that he’s hitting .193/.313/.331.

Isaac Paredes (7): He’s back in the majors but has only hit .160/.276/.360 in 29 PA. He wasn’t exactly destroying AAA pitching with a .636 OPS and 1 HR.

Albert Pujols (7): He continues to play in only half the games while hitting the occasional home run (11 this season). At one point in his career, his walk rate was over 16%. It’s now under 4%.

Kyle Lewis (7): Another knee injury has him on the IL again.

Jurickson Profar (7): Not hitting (.214/.317/.272) and playing part-time (started five of 10 games).


J.A. Happ (10): Happ (6.12 ERA, 1.44 WHIP) made the list last week and some more owners, including myself, held on for another week. If Seattle can light him up (5 ER in 4 IP), the is no hope for a turnaround.

Carlos Martinez (10): I don’t blame managers one bit for moving on. His production has been on par with Luis Castillo and Brad Keller.

Matthew Boyd (9): On the IL with a triceps injury and the Tigers plan on not bringing him back right away.

Joey Lucchesi (8): He was making some positive strides in June (1.20 ERA, 1.00 WHIP), but is now on IL (elbow).

Vince Velasquez (7): After a productive May (2.96 ERA, 1.13 WHIP), he’s back to his old ways in June (5.54 ERA, 1.54 WHIP). He should only be streamed against the weakest of opponents.

Merrill Kelly 켈리 (7): He might be a streaming option on most teams, but he’s on the Diamondbacks who give him no help. His ERA estimators are in the low-4.00s but a 64% LOB% has his ERA up to 5.40. I would not be surprised if he puts together three to four great starts and his roster rate jumps.


Josh Sborz (10): With Ian Kennedy off the IL, Sborz is no longer the perceived closer.

Cole Sulser (10): While still pitching decent (2.59 ERA, 1.11 WHIP, 13.3 K/9), he’s not pitching in high-leverage roles. One problem is that Baltimore doesn’t have many, if any, high-leverage opportunities.

Jackson Kowar (10): He’s struggled so far this season (18.00 ERA) and is now in the bullpen. Re-evaluate in a couple of weeks to see if he’s improved.

Scott Barlow (9): It looks like Greg Holland is the Royals closer for now with Barlow next in line. I expect this closer carousel to continue going around and around with four to five guys getting Saves for the Royals.

Rafael Dolis (8): A closer with a 5.14 ERA continues to have blowups. No way. With Merryweather on his way back, there is absolutely no reason to roster Dolis.

Jesús Luzardo (8): I understand the prospect hype, but he hasn’t been good since 2019 and is currently a mop-up reliever. He’s worthless in the fantasy game with a 6.87 ERA and 1.63 WHIP.

Spencer Howard (8): A 7.0 BB/9. No pitcher can positively contribute with that high of a walk rate. It has destroyed his ERA (5.59) and WHIP (1.50). There have been no signs of major improvements with a 6.7 BB/9 in June.

David Price (7): For now, he’s an overpriced middle reliever with dozens of better waiver wire options.

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.

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As the season continues, it really does look like the Dodgers and Price are content to just let him throw a few innings and not stretch out to become a starter this year. It really can be hard to let go of those 5th starter dreams, though…