From today until the end of the Major League Baseball season, Saturday is for looking at the various streaks and trends across the MLB, as well as those fantasy baseball players with rising or falling stock. Who should be your priority waiver wire pickups? Who deserves some of your precious FAAB? Are there any potential fantasy baseball buy-low trade candidates? As always, we’ll start by talking about some fantasy baseball risers and fallers, highlighted by Zach McKinstry of the Detroit Tigers and Jake McCarthy of the Arizona Diamondbacks. Prospects Royce Lewis, Ben Joyce, Elly De La Cruz, and Jordan Walker have been gaining steam, while Christopher Morel and Jorge Mateo have been trending in the wrong direction. Let’s take a look at some of the notable hit streaks and current trends across Major League Baseball, as well as fantasy baseball risers and fallers.

1Luis Arraez.3741Luis Arraez.4291Aaron Judge.663
2Freddie Freeman.3392Juan Soto.4192J.D. Martinez.627
3Bo Bichette.3353Freddie Freeman.4123Yordan Alvarez.585
4Ronald Acuna Jr..3234Yandy Diaz.4104Yandy Diaz.580
5Elias Diaz.318T5R. Arozarena/L. Wade Jr..4075Freddie Freeman.575
xBAxwOBAHard Hit%
1Freddie Freeman.3441Aaron Judge.4741Aaron Judge62.8%
2Ronald Acuna Jr..3412Ronald Acuna Jr..4482Matt Chapman60.8%
3Bo Bichette.3383Freddie Freeman.4353Joey Gallo59.2%
4Luis Arraez.3284Sean Murphy.4284Juan Soto58.4%
5Yandy Diaz.3145Yordan Alvarez.4255Vladimir Guerrero Jr.. Jr.56.7%
Hit Streaks
21Marcus Semien912028316513.308/.343/.516
16J.D Martinez671323822320.343/.361/.776
13Eloy Jimenez52102031458.385/.431/.615
12Gleyber Torres5210173417.327/.352/.500
9Alex Bregman354141924.400/.432/.543
8Connor Wong29892418.310/.333/.690
7Wander Franco268120653.462/.531/.538
7Andrew Vaughn264112832.423/.484/.808

Fantasy Baseball Risers

Royce Lewis, Minnesota Twins

After returning from a major knee injury, Lewis has looked good in a handful of games with the Twins. Through 17 plate appearances, he’s slashed .235/.235/.647 with two home runs, three runs scored, and six RBI. The average is a bit low, and he’s yet to take a walk, but we are seeing the flashes that make the 23-year-old one of the more intriguing prospects in all of fantasy baseball. I would temper expectations on what he’ll do on the base paths, given that the Twins want to establish some sort of consistency health-wise, but in time, he’ll be contributing there, too. The sky is the limit for this kid.

Zach McKinstry, Detroit Tigers

McKinstry has been quite the pleasant surprise for the Tigers and fantasy baseball managers this season. Through 48 games, he’s hitting .279 with a .390 OBP, thanks to a 14.5 percent walk rate, not to mention four home runs, 24 runs scored, and ten stolen bases. Of players with at least 150 plate appearances this season, he’s one of 22 with at least ten stolen bases, one of 16 with at least four home runs and ten stolen bases, and he’s one of just eight to have at least ten stolen bases and a .275 average. His xBA currently sits at .298, and a .333 BABIP isn’t a major outlier by any means. Compared to past years, his batted ball metrics have improved, and his plate discipline metrics have trended in the right direction. There’s a lot to like here.

Jake McCarthy, Arizona Diamondbacks

Maybe the demotion for McCarthy was good for him. After bursting on the fantasy scene in 2022 with eight home runs, 23 stolen bases, and a .283 average in 99 games last season, he came out of the gate ice cold this season, to the tune of a .143/.229/.238 line and a 29 wRC+. Since returning, he’s slashed .320/.370/.360 with six stolen bases in eight games. After a horrible start to the year, things have been picking up for him a bit, and we all know how valuable his legs are in fantasy.

Honorable Mention: Spencer Steer, Ben Lively, Willi Castro, Bryan De La Cruz

Fantasy Baseball Fallers

Christopher Morel, Chicago Cubs

I hope you were able to sell high on Morel. What he was doing was never going to be sustainable. He didn’t start the year with the Cubs because of the issues with his plate discipline over the course of the 2022 season, and everyone was quick to overlook that those marks were worse this year because the production was there.

Morel was hitting home runs left and right, but the underlying metrics were showing that it was fool’s gold, and he was the most obvious sell high in fantasy baseball. Despite whiffing more, making less contact, leaving the zone more, and striking out more, his wOBA was rising… That doesn’t happen. He’s mired in a 1-for-21 slump, in which he has a -47 wRC+ and 39.1 percent strikeout rate.

Jorge Mateo, Baltimore Orioles

Mateo is a streaky guy at the dish. We all know that. After hitting .145 in June last year, he hit .250 and .277 in July and August respectively before ending the year hitting .196 over his final 92 at-bats. This year has been no different, as he opened the year hitting .347 over his first 23 games, just to hit .128 with a 28.3 percent strikeout rate in May. The tide might be turning a bit, as he’s hit safely in five of his last six games, and his plate discipline metrics are better than last year, namely his contract rate, swinging strike rate, and O-Swing rate. When Mateo is firing on all cylinders, he’s dynamic for fantasy purposes, but when he isn’t running and racking up stolen bases, he can be a tough start.

Honorable Mention: Grayson Rodriguez, Rowdy Tellez, Jameson Taillon, Thairo Estrada, Jose Altuve

Statistical Credits:


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