Trace Thompson – 5%
After starting the season with the San Diego Padres organization and spending time with Detroit Tigers Triple-A affiliate, Thompson is enjoying a fruitful stretch with the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Defining immediate impact, the player has been linked with four home runs in his first 97 games for the Dodgers this season. He also has base poached and hit .291 by .371 on base in 97 board appearances.
Since his 2022 debut in Los Angeles on June 21, Thompson has had a higher average than Julio Rodriguez and more than Josh Bell and Xander Bogarts during that time. He corresponds favorably, in terms of statistics, with a number of other fictional performers during the same period.
Admittedly, it’s not the largest of Thompson’s sample size and should be taken with a grain of salt given Thompson’s 35.1% strike rate and .438 BABIP, but it’s hard to ignore defensive player production, especially when it happens in such a quality lineup. The Dodgers are one of only two teams to have scored at least 500 points as of start of play on Sunday. The New York Yankees are the only team to score more runs than Dave Roberts this season.
On top of that, with Max Muncy suffering a bit on the board and falling further into the line-up – he’s reached above sixth in the line-up only once since July 10 – Thompson could, in theory, start to see more board appearances in the lineup at Los Angelis. The player finished second for the team on Thursday in Colorado and finished sixth in two of the team’s last four games.
In most lineups, a player reaching sixth place isn’t exactly ideal for fantasy managers. But in L.A.’s strong attack, that’s definitely a positive.
Thompson’s production may be a little on the unsustainable side, but the strength seems legitimate. Furthermore, it is difficult to find players on so few rosters of fantasy leagues who produce at such a rate in such a productive lineup. Thompson is a priority addition to the waiver wire at the moment.
Emilio Pagan – 15%
Pagán, like Thompson’s strike rate and BABIP, comes with some numbers that could be better.
He achieved a 4.89 ERA and 4.58 FIP in 35 rounds of action and entered play Sunday in the eighth and fourth percentiles in the league at hard-hit average and barrel rate respectively.
But, there is a lot of fantasy potential to be had, especially for fantasy managers who have built their rosters for low weekly ERA and WHIP. This is mostly due to the fact that Pagan is one of only thirty top scorers to have been saved in the league with at least nine saves.
Despite Jhoan Duran’s breakout season, the twins have somewhat maintained a diversified approach to the rescue this season.
This varied approach keeps Pagán firmly anchored in the ninth-stroke mix and is on the radar for fantasy managers needing a rescue.
And that’s all without mentioning the fact that Minnesota currently scores the MLS Central with a record 53-48. They don’t escape their division in the same way as the Yankees or Astros, but adding a better ninth-inning option to a team that often leads the division is a must for fantasy managers in the deep leagues, even with some of his struggles.
Plus, Pagán will likely help you with your total weekly terminations as well. He hit 52 hitters in 35 rounds of action, thanks in part to the new finger-split show that became the best showing for a lost veteran hitter. Finally, the Savior ranks 96th in strike rate and 86 percent in whiff rate.
Brad Keeler – 12%
If you are looking for a high strike rate and shooter profit in a wire waiver filter, the Keeler is probably not the wire waiver option for you.
This is partly due to his gameplay, motivating the players on the ground at a high rate, but also due to the team he made Keeler for. Kansas City was firmly entrenched in the basement of the Central American League, and the rookie had just five wins compared to 11 losses in 19 starts.
However, despite it all, there are some fictional aspects to Keeler’s position in terms of his candidacy for the royal family. The imaginative aspects that make it a worthwhile pickup going forward.
And with the league’s eighth-most ballpark average among eligible rookies, Keeler has attacked the area more with his pass and change this season. It also reduced the amount of barrels and the overall hard connection against it.
The ability to reduce barrels and hard contact while bouncing players to the ground at a high rate is clearly useful in reducing damage to the Killer, but it’s especially useful given the division he plays in and some of the teams he regularly fights back against.
The Central American League hosts three other teams, the Tigers, White Sox and Guardians, who make perfect showdowns for Keeler.
All three are not only in the bottom third of the league in terms of runs scored but also in barrel average. The trio is also among the first third of the league in the average globe. Furthermore, Cleveland has the lowest team barrel average in the league at 5.1%, while Detroit’s 6.2% is not too far behind.
It also doesn’t hurt that Keller’s projected home number on four out of five Central Major League football fields has fewer than 11 actual home games given up.
Graham Ashcraft – 9%
Graham Ashcraft doesn’t have the same fantasy-friendly environment as Keller, despite promoting in a division with a similar number of teams struggling to score points in the Chicago Cubs and Pittsburgh Pirates. This is mostly due to Ashcraft’s home park, Great American Ball Park, which has been linked to the top Park Factor for the number of kicks scored in the league with Coors Field per Statcast.
It’s certainly not ideal for promising young starters like Ashcraft, Hunter Greene and Nick Lodolo, but the former sixth-round pick is doing well, though. In fact, he actually did a lot better at home, with a 3.46 ERA and 3.77 FIP at 41.2 runs in Cincinnati.
Overall, the 24-year-old has a 4.64 ERA and 4.06 FIP in 12 starts in 66 runs for the Reds. He hit 46 hitters compared to giving up 17 walks and seven home runs.
Crucially, for a shooter making half his start on a launch pad in a home garden, Ashcraft is adept at limiting damage using a pitch arsenal that prominently features a cutter (50.7% utilization rate) and a piercer (19.3% utilization rate). He gave up only 12 barrels of 227 ball milled, which is a good 5.3% barrel rating.
There is also the fact that the right-handed person may start to miss more bats on a more regular basis. Averaged 6.27 strikes in all nine innings of the season, Ashcraft has hit at least six in three of his last six starts and has 14 strikes in his last 11.2 innings.
There are also those enviable matches against the Cubs and Pirates for the rest of the season. Chicago could, speculatively, trade its two most effective hitters in Wilson Contreras and Ian Hap. Meanwhile, Pittsburgh has scored the fewest rounds in the National League and has only surpassed Oakland and Detroit in the season.
He’s not necessarily someone that fantasy managers can count against against challenging formations, but in the right encounters below the sprawl, Ashcraft can be an effective rotation option.
Image modified by Justin Redler (Tweet embed on Twitter)