The Fantasy Baseball Stock Watch is buzzing right now as the month of May brings massive opportunities to buy low on several players and sell high on others. Hot starts have been cooling off and while we are still waiting for many players to heat up to levels we were expecting with our pre-season fantasy baseball projections, we should look at it as an additional opportunity to find value in trades rather than a time to lament over struggling superstars.


The interesting thing to consider, as you look for players with rising stock value on your fantasy baseball waiver wire, is the vast number of players returning from injuries. Even just a casual glance at the latest MLB Injury Report, you will see a number of veterans coming back. This helps considerably with the way rookies are performing right now but it doesn’t fully solve the problem. That’s why it’s imperative to start working the fantasy trade phones.

Let’s see who rising and falling this week and play a little 3 Up, 3 Down.

Fantasy Baseball Stock Watch: Risers

Jose Caballero, 2B Tampa Bay Rays

Speaking with Jim Bowden about Caballero, the general feeling among some executives is that he is not a well-liked individual. That is why he’s already on his third team and has not even two years of big-league experience. But maybe something has clicked with the Rays and he is falling in line for reality GMs. Fantasy GMs, on the other hand, are loving what he’s doing. 

He’s not a power guy, so we aren’t worried about home runs or RBI. We love the 14 stolen bases and we are thankful for the .265 average. Regression to the mean says, the walk-rate and OBP should increase and his 25-percent walk rate over the past week (six games) helps prove that to an extent. But the speed burst is our focus and five steals in six games is what we want and need right now. Continue to ride this wave and consider, if you have strong steals elsewhere, a sell-high opportunity.

Kyle Manzardo, 1B Cleveland Guardians

We just said up above that rookies are struggling mightily this year and Manzardo’s 0-for-3 with three strikeouts in his debut doesn’t buck the trend. But with this recent call-up and the way some fantasy owners still salivate at the thought of a shiny, new toy, Manzardo’s stock value is on the rise. If he can hit well right out of the gate, he becomes a strong asset.

They key here is how he fits with your team. If he’s available on the waiver wire, he should be added. If you can afford to wait and see what he does over a two-week span, then do that. But keep the intent to sell in the back of your mind. Don’t be afraid to field offers if he gets hot. We like him as a prospect, but it seems doubtful to think he’s going to be a consistent 30-40- home run bat. At least not right now. If you can get something helpful to your team, that might be your best bet.  

John Means, SP Baltimore Orioles

Means is one of those aforementioned veterans coming of the injured list and someone you should be monitoring very closely. If he is on your waiver wire, he is an immediate add. If someone has been holding him on their IL, you may want to make an offer should you need starting pitching. He’s got the talent to be a difference-maker, especially on this Orioles team.

The veteran southpaw returned from elbow surgery this past weekend and dominated the Reds with seven scoreless frames. He allowed just three hits, walked no one and struck out eight, all on just 85 pitches. Even better was that this happened at Great American Smallpark. He’s got a tough match-up against Arizona his next time out, but it’s smooth sailing afterwards with the Mariners and White Sox on the horizon.


Fantasy Baseball Stock Watch: Fallers

Edouard Julien, 2B Minnesota Twins

What more do you have to say about a guy who has just two RBI over the past week? Julien is batting .056 over his last six games and struck out 52.2-percent of the time in that span. We knew he wasn’t going to be a strong batting average guy, but the numbers right now are bad with few signs of getting better.

If you believe that his .263 BABIP will improve and he can cut back on the strikeouts, then it doesn’t hurt to throw a lowball offer at his owner. But not showing any sort of improvement in his plate discipline from year to year is a huge bummer. It might be time to cut bait in the shallower leagues for now. 

Wyatt Langford, OF Texas Rangers

And here we have a prime example of top rookies struggling in their first year. Not only is Langford batting just .224 on the season, he’s got just one homer and a total of just five extra-base hits. But to make matters worse, he just landed on the IL with a hamstring injury. 

But we’re not putting him in the Fallers section because he’s on the injured list. We’re doing it because there is no guarantee he gets brought back up to the majors after his rehab outing. I like his hit-tool and make-up, so I’m not selling or cutting bait just yet, but I’m bracing myself for an extended stay at Triple-A Sugar Land.

Spencer Turnbull, SP/RP Philadelphia Phillies

Sad to put a guy with a 1.67 ERA and 0.84 WHIP on the Fallers list, but with word that the Phillies are moving him into the bullpen in an effort to preserve his arm, we may just have to jump ship. Turnbull hasn’t thrown more than 60 innings since 2019 and with the Phillies expected to make a push to the playoffs, they’re going to baby him.

The good thing is that Taijuan Walker struggles to stay healthy and Cristopher Sanchez has hit a few bumps in the road, so Turnbull could work his way back into the rotation. Maybe it comes with a few spot-starts while we wait to see how things shake out. But if you have limited bench space, it’s time to cut him and find a starter who will earn his keep every five games.