J.D. Martinez: Since returning from injury, he has five homers over 21 at-bats. His OPS is an absurd 1.824. It’s a small sample, but it’s clear he’s back to full health. The Tigers had been hitting him No. 6 in their lineup for some reason, but that has been rightfully changed to No. 3. For those patient owners, they now have a top hitter moving forward.
Bradley Zimmer: He’s struck out in six of his first 10 at-bats, but Zimmer is a legit prospect who’s also slugged .600 over that span. It’s not often regarded as such, but Cleveland’s park is one of the best in baseball for hitters. Zimmer had a 150 wRC+ in Triple-A this season, and ZIPS projects 24 homers/steals over 79 games the rest of the way. He’s owned in just 22 percent of Yahoo leagues.
Zack Cozart: Scott Pianowski has covered this and man, Cozart is going nuts this year, with a .352/.433/.602 line right now. That’s an OPS more than 100 points higher than Alex Rodriguez’s career mark. Cozart has been the sixth most valuable fantasy shortstop this year, and he’s still available in more than 40 percent of leagues.
Zack Godley: He has a 1.93 ERA and a 0.96 WHIP with 19 strikeouts over 18.2 innings. There have been too many walks, but Godley’s 15.2 SwStr% would rank top-five in all of baseball among starters if he qualified (that would give the Diamondbacks three in the top-eight in that category). Godley has shown potential and is available in 45 percent of leagues.
Erasmo Ramirez: He has a 23:5 K:BB ratio with a 0.90 WHIP and is now getting the opportunity to start for the Rays. Few pitchers with theses stats are so readily available. Ramirez is owned in just six percent of Yahoo leagues, and while the AL East isn’t an ideal environment, Tropicana Field is one of the best pitcher’s parks in all of baseball.
Kyle Schwarber: There was a strong argument he should be the No. 1 fantasy catcher in Yahoo leagues entering the season, and while no backstops have stood out, Schwarber hasn’t exactly lived up to expectations while hitting leadoff for the team that won the World Series last year. He has a .182 batting average and a 77 wRC+ that ranks as the 35th worst in baseball (his defense hasn’t been as bad as expected, to be fair).
Jonathan Villar: After combining for 81 steals/homers last year, I felt like Villar’s ADP was low. But I’ve been wrong. He currently sports a .603 OPS and is now batting sixth. Maybe those calling for massive regression were smarter than me. Although to be fair he’s on pace to finish with 19 homers and 30 steals even with the lack of hitting.
Edwin Diaz: He recently walked four of the five batters he faced and has been demoted from Seattle’s closing job. I called him a buy-low candidate here, but it’s hard not to consider his value on the decline right now. His BB% was 6.9 last year, and it’s been 13.2 so far in 2017.
Curtis Granderson: He’s batting .163/.230/.311 over 135 at-bats this year. As a result, he’s been dropped to batting eighth after hitting leadoff on opening day. Batting one spot ahead of the pitcher for a National League offense that’s middling isn’t ideal.
Chase Headley: Over the first 48 at-bats of the season, he owned a .396/.500/.646 line with as many walks as strikeouts. Since then he’s had a .479 OPS, a span in which he’s gone homerless over 89 at-bats. He’s committed the same amount of errors (seven) over this stretch as he’s had extra-base hits.