Fantasy Stock Watch – Week 13

It always amazes me how much information I can access about a player when I start researching for this weekly post. Having more information is typically never a bad thing in my opinion, especially when baseball is involved. However, one bit of news this week tested my theory and proved to me that there are cases where some information may not need to be accessed. Thanks Archie Bradley.

Anyway, on to this week’s stock watch. I have highlighted a few players with low ownership rates that could be useful to your fantasy teams, and a couple who are scuffling lately.

As always, if you have a player you would like profiled or have a question about, feel free to post in the comment section or reach out to me on Twitter @hedenson18 with that or any other questions.

Stock Up

Enrique Hernandez

Regular playing time seems to agree with Hernandez, especially in regards to his power. Owner of five home runs over the past two weeks (including two during the Dodgers record-breaking slugfest on Sunday) Hernandez has been a man possessed, slashing .348/.400/.783 in the past week alone.

Oddly, despite this recent power streak and solid home run numbers overall (13 home runs in only 212 PA’s) Hernandez has only generated a 26.3% Hard% over the past two weeks (29% Hard% overall). Despite this, his ability to keep the ball off the ground (33.3% GB%) and pull the ball (52.6% Pull%) a high percentage of the time lately lends support to his power potential moving forward.

Overall there is a lot to like about Hernandez. He limits strikeouts (21.7%) walks at a solid rate (9.9%) and his SwStr% has dipped by just over 2% on the season (9.1% Swstr%). His 26% ownership rate is pretty low for his current production levels and he is an interesting player to watch for the rest of the season.

Gerardo Parra

Parra has 17 RBI’s over the past two weeks to go with a .361/.375/.639 slash line. His BABIP during this time has been slightly higher than his usual levels (.379) though he is generating a solid amount of both soft and medium contact (9.7% Soft%, 48.4% Med%) to go along with his 19.4% LD%.

While his current run of production will dip a bit as the season continues, Parra’s slash line on the season (.303/.340/.424) is very similar to what he put up last year (.309/.341/.452) and as most of his other metrics have remained stable he is likely to continue putting up solid numbers for the rest of the way.

The Rockies do sit Parra sometimes against lefties, so that impacts his value a bit. While Parra will never be someone who hits 20-25 HR for your team, but he is fairly available (42% ownership rate) and can provide solid to even above average production at times if you need a fill-in bat for your lineup.

Nathan Eovaldi

Eovaldi held the Nationals scoreless over 6IP in his last start, fanning nine and walking two in a solid outing. This is the third outing in a row where Eovaldi has tossed at least six frames, and while his past two have been less successful than his most recent effort, he is becoming an interesting arm to consider moving forward.

Over the past two weeks Eovaldi’s strikeout rates have slowly risen (25% K% recently compared to 22.4% overall) and he has seen his Swstr% jump almost 2% as well. While not predictive of future success, it is also interesting to note that all of his offerings currently have positive pitch values except for his curveball, which he only throws 2.5% of the time.

Walks have not been a problem for him (3.7% BB%) and it looks like he has been a bit unlucky on the home run front as he is currently posting a 20.5% HR/FB rate. Advanced metrics (4.08 EA, 4.85 FIP, 3.71 xFIP, 3.58 SIERA) are generally positive on his performance thus far, making his current ownership rate (33%) seem a bit low for me.

Stock Down

Gio Gonzalez

Gonzalez was hammered his last time on the mound, tossing one of the worst outings of his career. In only 1IP, Gonzalez was lit up for 6 ER, walking 5 batters along the way. This terrible outing was just a continuation of the struggles Gio has had over the past 3 weeks, a time that has seen him give up 17 ER in only 14.1 IP.

In these four starts he has walked eleven batters and seen his strikeouts almost disappear, sitting down only ten of the batters he has faced. He has been bitten by the long ball a good bit too, posting a bloated 28.6% HR/FB rate over his last three starts.

Apart from this rough stretch, Gonzalez has been pretty solid this season, posting a 3.68 ERA (3.92 FIP, 4.02 xFIP, 4.28 SIERA) and basically recreating what he did last season, even posting his highest Swstr% since 2015 (9.6%). Unless he is hiding an injury or some other reason I don’t know about, I see this recent stretch as him returning to the mean after a lights-out start to his season that saw him overachieve a bit (2.27 ERA before June 9th).

George Springer

Springer has been in a bit of a rut lately, slashing a meager .100/.224/.180 with one home run over the past two weeks. During this stretch his IFFB% has jumped to 17.6% and his LD% has tanked to 4.9%, both helping him generate a measly .100 BABIP.

While not disappointing, Springer’s 2018 hasn’t been quite to the level expected after his strong season last year. None of his underlying stats look worrisome apart from a lower than usual LD% (15.4%), and his expected performance levels from Statcast paint a more optimistic image than his current levels of production (.265 XBA, .369 XOBA, .518 XSLG).

Hunter Denson

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Fantasy baseball enthusiast, Boston Red Sox fan and general lover of baseball living in the Pacific Northwest. More likely to remember Mel Ott's career HR number than my pin number. Married to an amazing woman who supports and encourages my baseball mania.