Fantasy Baseball News

  • Cubs Notes: Madrigal, Wesneski, Leiter Jr.

    Cubs infielder Nick Madrigal has only played second base in his big league career thus far, but he’s not likely to see a lot of time there this year. The club’s major investment this offseason was signing shortstop Dansby Swanson, thus pushing Nico Hoerner over to second base. That nudged Madrigal into a competition for…

    Mar 16 · MLB Trade Rumors Cubs Mark Leiter Nick Madrigal Hayden Wesneski closers
  • Zack Britton Throwing For Teams Again

    Free-agent lefty Zack Britton is hosting yet another workout for teams seeking bullpen help, as first reported by Mike Puma of the New York Post (via Twitter). The Mets will be in attendance, he adds. They’ll be joined by around seven other clubs, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic adds. It’s at least the third time…

    Mar 16 · MLB Trade Rumors Zack Britton closers
  • Seiya Suzuki Resumes Baseball Activities

    Chicago Cubs manager David Ross said on Thursday that right fielder Seiya Suzuki (oblique) has resumed playing light catch and non-contact swings. He will likely stay on that type of program for the rest of this week in spring training. The 28-year-old suffered a moderate left oblique strain late in February and is slated to open the 2023 regular season on the injured list, but he could be ready to make his season debut before the end of April, barring any setbacks. The Japanese outfielder was slowed by injuries in his first MLB season last year as well, but he could improve in Year 2 at the plate if he shows more plate discipline. Suzuki won't be very expensive in fantasy drafts because of his injury, and he could be a nice value pick late in drafts.

    Mar 16 · Source via Cubs Seiya Suzuki
  • Garrett Whitlock Sharp In Spring Debut

    Boston Red Sox right-hander Garrett Whitlock (hip) looked good in his Grapefruit League debut on Wednesday against the Tampa Bay Rays, tossing two hitless and scoreless innings while walking one and striking out three. The 26-year-old is making the transition to a full-time starting role this year for Boston, but he has been behind the other pitchers in camp after having hip surgery in the offseason. He will not be ready to take his first turn through the rotation to begin the year, but he should be ready by the middle of April. Fantasy managers shouldn't expect Whitlock to be as dominant as he was in relief, but he should stick in the rotation all year long as long as he stays healthy.

    Mar 16 · Source via Red Sox Garrett Whitlock
  • Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Has Double In Return To Lineup

    Toronto Blue Jays first baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (knee) went 1-for-3 with a double and a run scored in his return to the Grapefruit League lineup on Wednesday against the Pittsburgh Pirates in the team's 7-1 win. Guerrero missed around two weeks in camp due to some minor knee soreness, but he returned on Wednesday and should be just fine for Opening Day in a few weeks. The 24-year-old slugger will continue to fine tune his skills at the plate in Grapefruit League contests over the next several weeks. He's currently hitting .308 (4-for-13) with a double, two home runs, six RBI and three runs scored in six spring games. Guerrero is RotoBaller's top-ranked fantasy first baseman.

    Mar 16 · Source via Blue Jays Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
  • Andres Munoz Pitching In B Game Thursday

    Seattle Mariners relief pitcher Andres Munoz (foot) is scheduled to make his Cactus League debut on Friday, but he will first face the San Diego Padres in a B game on Thursday. Munoz has yet to pitch in a spring game after having surgery last October on his foot, but barring a setback once he gets into games, he should be ready to go in a high-leverage role in Seattle's bullpen on Opening Day later this month. Paul Sewald is set to enter the 2023 regular season as the M's primary close, but it wouldn't be a surprise if Munoz eventually took over the role. The 24-year-old Mexican had a 2.49 ERA (2.04 FIP), 0.89 WHIP, four saves and 96 strikeouts in 65 relief innings for Seattle in his second year with the team in 2022.

    Mar 16 · Source via Mariners Andres Munoz closers
  • Yu Darvish May Not Make Opening Day Start

    San Diego Padres starting pitcher Yu Darvish's two-inning relief outing for Team Japan in the World Baseball Classic on Wednesday night may throw off his schedule to open the 2023 regular season, according to manager Bob Melvin. Depending on when Darvish pitches next, it could move him off the Opening Day start, or it might see him make his first start less than fully built up innings-wise. The 36-year-old right-hander has only thrown five innings in the WBC for Japan, so the Padres are worried that he won't be fully built up to begin the regular season. This shouldn't really change Darvish's fantasy value, but it could mean that he'll have less of a chance to go deep into his starts early in the season for DFS purposes.

    Mar 16 · Source via Padres Yu Darvish
  • Edwin Diaz Having Surgery On Knee, To Miss Eight Months

    New York Mets closer Edwin Diaz (knee) will undergo surgery on Thursday to fix a right patellar tendon injury, according to general manager Billy Eppler. Diaz will miss at least eight months most likely. It means that the 28-year-old All-Star closer will miss the entire 2023 season after getting injured while celebrating Team Puerto Rico's World Baseball Classic victory over the Dominican Republic on Wednesday night. It's a huge blow for the Mets and their bullpen, as Diaz is the most dominant high-leverage reliever in the game. Fantasy managers should obviously avoid him in drafts this spring. David Robertson, who has well over 100 career saves, and Brooks Raley are the mostly likely closing candidates for the Mets now that Diaz will most likely miss all of this year.

    Mar 16 · Source via Mets Edwin Diaz closers
  • Sergio Romo Signs Non-Roster Deal With Giants For Likely Final Appearance

    Veteran reliever Sergio Romo has signed with the Giants on a minor league deal with a non-roster invite to Spring Training, according to Andrew Baggarly of The Athletic. According to Baggarly, the plan is for Romo to pitch in the team’s Bay Bridge exhibition against the A’s at Oracle Park towards the end of Spring…

    Mar 16 · MLB Trade Rumors Giants Sergio Romo
  • Nathan Eovaldi Likely To Be On Pitch Count Early On

    Texas Rangers starting pitcher Nathan Eovaldi (side) is likely to be on a pitch count early in the 2023 regular season, according to manager Bruce Bochy. Eovaldi is recovering from left-side tightness in spring training and will likely be limited to 75-80 pitches to open the regular season as the Rangers take a conservative approach with him. It makes sense, given that the 33-year-old right-hander was limited to only 20 starts with the Boston Red Sox in 2022 due to various injuries. His injuries caused his velocity and strikeout rate to drop, and he also had issues giving up the long ball in Beantown. Durability concerns are the biggest factor in Eovaldi's fantasy profile as he gets set to embark on his first season in Texas.

    Mar 16 · Source via Rangers Nathan Eovaldi
  • Hayden Wesneski Expected To Win Final Rotation Spot

    Chicago Cubs right-hander Hayden Wesneski is considered the favorite to win the team's fifth rotation spot to open the regular season. Manager David Ross calls the "it factor" for what Wesneski has. Chicago acquired him from the New York Yankees in 2022 for Scott Effross. The 25-year-old stands at 6-foot-3, 215 pounds and could be an X-factor in a rotation that also includes Marcus Stroman, Jameson Taillon, Drew Smyly and Justin Steele. Wesneski is beating out Adrian Sampson by not allowing a run so far in Cactus League play over 8 2/3 innings, striking out 11 and walking two. He looked great in his MLB debut for the Cubs last year (2.18 ERA, 33 K's in 33 innings) and could be worth a look as a late-round flier in deep mixed leagues.

    Mar 16 · Source via Cubs Hayden Wesneski
  • David Robertson, Brooks Raley Could Be In Mix For Saves

    With New York Mets closer Edwin Diaz (knee) potentially suffering a season-ending right knee injury in the World Baseball Classic on Wednesday night, relievers David Robertson and Brooks Raley will likely become the team's primary options in save situations. Raley returned from the WBC with a hamstring injury, but the Mets expect him to be ready for Opening Day or shortly thereafter. New York could also choose to sign another left-hander such as Zack Britton after scouting him in February. Robertson saved 20 games for the Cubs and Phillies last year and has 157 career saves over 14 big-league seasons, so he seems like the logical favorite for the majority of save chances if Diaz is out for a significant period of time.

    Mar 16 · Source via Mets David Robertson Brooks Raley closers
  • Jacob deGrom Likely To Be On Pitch Count Early On

    Texas Rangers manager Bruce Bochy said that starting pitcher Jacob deGrom (side) is likely to be on a pitch count to start the 2023 regular season. Nathan Eovaldi, who is also working his way through left side tightness in spring training, will probably be limited to around 75-80 pitches to begin the year as well. It puts a damper on their fantasy upside to begin the season, but both right-handers appear to be coming along well after initially reporting their injuries in camp. deGrom recently threw two innings in a minor-league game, and the good news is that the 34-year-old won't have to start the year on the injured list. deGrom is a risk/reward fantasy ace that has seen his fair share of injuries with the New York Mets in recent years.

    Mar 16 · Source via Rangers Jacob deGrom
  • Sergio Romo Signs Minor-League Deal With Giants

    The San Francisco Giants agreed to a minor-league deal with free-agent relief pitcher Sergio Romo on Thursday that will include an invite to major-league spring training. If all goes according to plan, the Giants will work with Romo to build up his arm strength to appear in a couple exhibition games before calling it a career. The 40-year-old right-hander said he hasn't done anything since last September. Romo will return to the team that he won three World Series championships with, spending the first nine seasons of his career with the Giants. In his 15-year career, Romo had a 3.21 ERA (3.33 FIP), 1.05 WHIP, 137 saves and a 27 percent strikeout rate in 722 2/3 innings pitched in the regular season.

    Mar 16 · Source via Giants Sergio Romo
  • Kyle Wright To Make Spring Debut Next Week

    Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Kyle Wright (shoulder) threw two innings on the back fields at camp on Wednesday and will make the first of two Grapefruit League starts next week and then make his final tune-up against minor-leaguers after the Braves leave camp. He's currently lined up to make his 2023 debut against the St. Louis Cardinals on the road between April 3-5. Wright required a cortisone injection back in January for a shoulder injury and has been brought along slowly in spring training, but he appears to be on track to go early in the year, barring a setback within the next couple of weeks. The 27-year-old right-hander broke out last year for Atlanta and fantasy managers, and even if he does see some regression in 2023, he should be a solid fantasy starter.

    Mar 16 · Source via Braves Kyle Wright
  • Mets Fear The Worst With Edwin Diaz

    New York Mets closer Edwin Diaz (knee) will have an MRI exam on his injured right knee on Thursday morning, but initial indications are that Diaz's injury is "bad," in the words of one source. People briefed on the situation fear that Diaz could be lost for a significant period, perhaps for the entire 2023 season after he injured his knee celebrating Team Puerto Rico's win over the Dominican Republic in the World Baseball Classic on Wednesday night. If you are drafting on Thursday, it would probably be best to avoid selecting Diaz. It would be a huge blow to lose one of, if not the best, closer in baseball for the entire season. With Diaz hurt, David Robertson and Brooks Raley figure to be the primary closing options for the Mets this year.

    Mar 16 · Source via Mets Edwin Diaz closers
  • Cade Cavalli Needs Tommy John Surgery

    Washington Nationals starting pitcher Cade Cavalli (elbow) has a Grade 3 sprain of his ulnar collateral ligament and will require Tommy John surgery, according to general manager Mike Rizzo. It will keep Cavalli out for all of the 2023 season, and he might not be ready for the start of next season either. The 24-year-old right-hander was expected to open the year at the back end of the starting rotation, so it's another tough break for the young prospect. Cavalli suffered a shoulder injury in his MLB debut in 2022 and didn't pitch again for the Nats the rest of the year. Obviously, fantasy managers in single-year leagues can cross him off their draft cheat sheets in 2023. With Cavalli out, Chad Kuhl has the best shot to land a spot in the rotation in his place.

    Mar 16 · Source via Nationals Cade Cavalli prospects
  • Mark Melancon Likely To Miss Start Of Season

    Arizona Diamondbacks relief pitcher Mark Melancon (shoulder) is dealing with a shoulder injury and appears likely to miss the start of the 2023 regular season. The extent of Melancon's injury is unclear, according to general manager Mike Hazen. Although we don't know exactly what is wrong with the 37-year-old pitcher, fantasy managers shouldn't expect him to be part of Arizona's closer committee right away. Instead, names like Kevin Ginkel, Andrew Chafin, Miguel Castro and Scott McGough will battle for save opportunities in a bullpen that fantasy managers should probably try to avoid at all costs. The 37-year-old Melancon opened last year as Arizona's closer but eventually lost the job due to poor performance. Leave him to the waiver wire to begin the season.

    Mar 16 · Source via Diamondbacks Mark Melancon closers
  • Astros Notes: Gurriel, McCullers, Bullpen

    As Yuli Gurriel’s free agency lingered into the late stages of the offseason, many Astros fans wondered whether there might be potential for a reunion between the two parties. Houston GM Dana Brown candidly acknowledged last month that while the organization loved Gurriel as both a person and a player, it would be difficult to…

    Mar 16 · MLB Trade Rumors Astros Marlins Jose Abreu Hunter Brown Austin Davis Matt Gage Yuli Gurriel Lance McCullers Jr. Parker Mushinski Blake Taylor closers
  • Edwin Diaz Injured While Celebrating Puerto Rico's WBC Win

    Team Puerto Rico toppled the Dominican Republic by a 5-2 tally to advance to the quarterfinals. After New York Mets closerEdwin Diaz (leg) closed out the game, his right knee blew out during the celebration, and he exhibited extreme discomfort. Diaz was helped off the field by his teammates without putting any pressure on his right leg. The 28-year-old will undergo further testing to determine the severity of the damage, but the scene itself wasn't too promising. Puerto Rico will have to manage without their star closer for the remainder of the tournament, and it appears that the injury will shut him down for quite some time. The Mets will need to reweigh their closing options if the injury is season-ending. Adam Ottavino, David Robertson, and Brooks Raley are candidates to be the Mets' primary closer while Diaz is sidelined.

    Mar 15 · Source via Mets Edwin Diaz closers
  • The Brewers' Keston Hiura Dilemma

    Not long ago, the future looked bright for Keston Hiura and the Brewers. The former No. 9 overall draft pick (2017) had been a universally lauded top-25 prospect in the sport due to a high-probability hit tool that overshadowed concerns about his glovework. He breezed through the minors, torching opponents in Rookie ball, Class-A, High-A,…

    Mar 15 · MLB Trade Rumors Brewers Keston Hiura
  • Marcus Semien Having Solid Spring

    Texas Rangers second baseman Marcus Semien is hitting .300/.344/.400 so far in spring training. Though the power hasn't shown up yet -- Semien has zero home runs -- it's nice to see him collecting base hits after a slow start to the season in 2022. Semien is currently 9-for-30 with seven runs scored, though he has no RBI or stolen bases. Those will come, however, after Semien drove in 83 runs and stole 25 bases last year. Though he won't be a boon to your average and he's not a great play in on-base-percentage leagues, he's a top-30 pick. He currently has an ADP of 27.3 and a RotoBaller ranking of 28, so plan to have to grab him early in your drafts.

    Mar 15 · Source via Rangers Marcus Semien
  • Zack Wheeler Having Tough Spring

    Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Zack Wheeler started his spring off in great fashion but has had two rough outings since. In his first outing of the spring, Wheeler hurled two perfect innings, striking out two. He threw 15 strikes over 19 pitches. His next start was a disastrous one, however, as he gave up seven runs in 1 1/3 innings. On Friday, he gave up three runs in three innings, and his ERA now sits at 14.21 this spring. After three seasons with an ERA under 3.00 while being ranked in one of the top tiers of starting pitchers, there's nothing to worry about with Wheeler at the moment.

    Mar 15 · Source via Phillies Zack Wheeler
  • Jake Odorizzi To Begin Season On Injured List

    Rangers manager Bruce Bochy informed reporters this afternoon that right-hander Jake Odorizzi will start the season on the injured list (link via Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News). General manager Chris Young had indicated last week that was a possibility, as Odorizzi has been delayed in camp by arm fatigue. Acquired from the Braves at…

    Mar 15 · MLB Trade Rumors Rangers Jake Odorizzi
  • Pete Alonso Hitless In WBC Play

    New York Mets first baseman Pete Alonso goes into Wednesday night 0-for-5 in the World Baseball Classic for Team USA. Alonso has started one game as the designated hitter for the US, going 0-for-4 against Mexico. He had a pinch-hit appearance against Canada on Monday and came up without a hit again. The Polar Bear will get the start Wednesday vs. Colombia and will hit fifth in the lineup. Alonso is coming off a season where he hit 40 homers and drove in a league-leading 130 runs while batting .271, so nothing should be taken from this small sample size. Alonso is currently going 18.3 in drafts and should be one of the earliest first basemen off the board in drafts.

    Mar 15 · Source via Mets Pete Alonso
  • Julio Urias Having Uneven Spring So Far

    Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Julio Urias had a couple of good outings in spring training before setting out for the World Baseball Classic. Urias pitched to a 1.35 ERA over 6 2/3 innings with a 0.75 WHIP and five strikeouts for the Dodgers. His first start for Team Mexico wasn't as sharp, however. Though he fanned six over five innings, he also gave up three runs, including a two-run home run. Urias threw 43 of his 62 pitches for strikes against Team Colombia, so his command looks ready for the season. He is tentatively scheduled to start for Mexico in the quarterfinals. A borderline ace for fantasy purposes, Urias looks to be rounding into shape after coming off a season that saw him pitch to a 2.16 ERA and a WHIP of 0.96 over 31 starts.

    Mar 15 · Source via Dodgers Julio Urias
  • Phillies Dealing With Injuries To Pitching And Catching Depth

    The Phillies announced a batch of injuries to reporters, including Matt Gelb of The Athletic (Twitter links). Left-hander Cristopher Sánchez and right-hander Nick Nelson have both been shut down, due to triceps soreness and a moderate hamstring injury, respectively. Catcher Garrett Stubbs is headed for an MRI on his sore right knee while fellow backstop…

    Mar 15 · MLB Trade Rumors Phillies Bailey Falter Aramis Garcia John Hicks Rafael Marchan James McArthur Nick Nelson Aaron Nola Andrew Painter Michael Plassmeyer J.T. Realmuto Cristopher Sanchez Garrett Stubbs Ranger Suarez Taijuan Walker Zack Wheeler prospects
  • Justin Wilson "Progressing Nicely"

    Milwaukee Brewers relieverJustin Wilson(elbow) is making healthy strides in his recovery from Tommy John surgery. He recently began a flat-ground throwing program and aims to return after the All-Star break. Wilson signed with the Brewers over the offseason on a one-year, $10 million deal. It was a puzzling move, considering that Wilson will only be available for the second half. The 35-year-old was diagnosed with elbow soreness last April but was then transferred to the 60-day IL since the injury appeared to be more of a concern. He pitched just five games for the Cincinnati Reds and posted a 2.45 ERA along with seven strikeouts. The Brewers are hoping that Wilson continues to progress well in hopes of reinstating him by midseason.

    Mar 15 · Source via Brewers Justin Wilson
  • Aaron Ashby Hoping To Return In Mid-May

    Milwaukee Brewers left-hander Aaron Ashby (shoulder) is taking it slow after suffering a left shoulder injury that required a platelet-rich plasma injection, and he is hoping to make his season debut in mid-May. "It's a shoulder impingement, labral tear. That sounds really bad but everyone has these; it's just kind of how it affects you," Ashby said. The 24-year-old southpaw was able to play catch on flat ground on Wednesday in camp at a distance of around 75 feet. He went 2-10 last year with a 4.44 ERA, but he struck out 126 hitters in 107 1/3 innings and has plenty of long-term strikeout upside for fantasy managers. Ashby is stash-worthy in NL-only leagues, but you can probably leave him to the waiver wire in mixed leagues to begin the 2023 season.

    Mar 15 · Source via Brewers Aaron Ashby
  • Nick Nelson Shut Down With Hamstring Injury

    Philadelphia Phillies relieverNick Nelson(hamstring) was diagnosed with a moderate left hamstring strain, which forced the Phils to shut him down. There is no timetable for Nelson's return, but he will likely miss the start of the season.Cristopher Sanchezwas also shut down after coming across bicep soreness. The Phillies lost four relievers over the offseason and are already short on bullpen staff with these two setbacks. They addedGregory Soto,Matt Strahm, andCraig Kimbrel to counter the bullpen losses. Nelson molded a 4.85 ERA last season across 47 appearances. The 27-year-old struck out 69 batters, along with a 22.5% strikeout rate. He needs to slim down his walk rate, which accumulated to 11.8%. Nelson is off the fantasy radar in most league formats in 2023.

    Mar 15 · Source via Phillies Nick Nelson
  • Garrett Mitchell's Return Pushed Back

    Milwaukee Brewers outfielder Garrett Mitchell (hamstring) reported tightness in his right hamstring during the March 9 Cactus League game against the San Francisco Giants, and the Brewers thought he might return to spring action during the weekend of March 18-19. However, now they are aiming for Mitchell to return around March 21. Manager Craig Counsell still thinks there will be enough time for Mitchell to get the at-bats he needs to feel ready for Opening Day. The 24-year-old will be given every chance to secure the team's regular center field job in 2023 after he hit .311 with two homers and eight stolen bases in 28 games in his major-league debut last year.

    Mar 15 · Source via Brewers Garrett Mitchell
  • Matt Manning Could Benefit From Time In Triple-A

    Even before this spring, Detroit Tigers right-hander Matt Manning's velocity had been wildly inconsistent. He was throwing in the upper-90s in the spring of 2020, but his fastball averaged 93.2 mph last year. Manning's slider can be really good when it's on, but his slider and changeup are almost never in sync on the same day. The former first-rounder was promoted in 2021 despite having an 8.07 ERA at Triple-A, so he could benefit from more time on the farm to open the 2023 season. Meanwhile, Joey Wentz was terrific for the Tigers down the stretch, dominated in the Arizona Fall League and has looked like a more complete pitcher than Manning in camp.

    Mar 15 · Source via Tigers Matt Manning
  • Hernan Perez Agrees With Twins

    Free-agent infielder/outfielder Hernan Perez reached an agreement with the Minnesota Twins on Wednesday, according to sources. The deal is a minor-league pact. Perez will join the Twins in spring training once he's done playing for Team Venezuela in the World Baseball Classic. The 31-year-old utility man last saw action in the major leagues with the Washington Nationals in 2021, going 1-for-19 with two walks and 10 strikeouts in only 10 games. He played in only three games for the Chicago Cubs in the shortened 2020 campaign. Perez's last meaningful season in the bigs was in 2019 with the Milwaukee Brewers. He'll serve as organizational depth for the Twins if he sticks around in 2023.

    Mar 15 · Source via Twins Hernan Perez
  • Tony Gonsolin Resumes Throwing Wednesday

    Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Tony Gonsolin (ankle) is throwing out to 120 feet in spring training and is able to put some weight on his sprained left ankle, according to manager Dave Roberts. However, there is still no update on Gonsolin's timetable for a return to games. The 28-year-old isn't expected to be ready to take his first turn in the regular season rotation, but barring a setback with his ankle, he shouldn't miss too many starts early on for the Dodgers or fantasy managers. Gonsolin had a career year in 2022 but dealt with an injury down the stretch and wasn't as effective to close things out. He will once again be a key member of LA's rotation, but fantasy managers would be wise to expect some regression.

    Mar 15 · Source via Dodgers Tony Gonsolin
  • Dodgers Not Concerned About Freddie Freeman

    Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said he has "no concern at all" that first baseman Freddie Freeman (hamstring), who suffered a right hamstring injury while playing for Team Canada in the World Baseball Classic on Tuesday, won't be ready for Opening Day. "We expect him to be in a game sooner rather than later," Roberts said. It's great news, but Freeman is done with the 2023 WBC for Canada and will now focus on getting back into a Cactus League game for LA. The 33-year-old's hamstring injury is considered mild, but the Dodgers will take a cautious approach with Opening Day still several weeks away. Freeman is RotoBaller's second-ranked fantasy first baseman heading into his second year with the Blue.

    Mar 15 · Source via Dodgers Freddie Freeman
  • Cole Hamels Hoping To Return Midseason

    After dealing with various injuries over the past few seasons, San Diego Padres left-handerCole Hamels(shoulder) hopes to make a comeback. Most notably, Hamels underwent shoulder surgery and recently repaired a torn meniscus and pinched nerve in his foot. He has been completely plagued by injuries but has turned some heads in spring training. Hamels threw a handful of bullpen sessions, and the Padres are already impressed by his body language and the quality of each session. He hopes to return by midseason and could be an under-the-radar bullpen option if injuries deplete San Diego's pitching depth. The 38-year-old last pitched an entire season with the Chicago Cubs, where he posted a 3.81 ERA with 143 strikeouts across 27 starts.

    Mar 15 · Source via Padres Cole Hamels
  • Thairo Estrada Having Lackluster Spring

    San Francisco Giants infielder Thairo Estrada isn't enjoying the success this spring he had during the season in 2022. Estrada is hitting .222/.300/.611. The .611 slugging percentage is a nice yet unsustainable number, as all four of his hits this spring have gone for extra bases. He has one home run with three RBI, two doubles and a triple. The utility man has been playing second and short for the Giants this spring, hitting near the top of the lineup. He'll most likely stick to second base unless he's giving shortstop Brandon Crawford a breather, and he could hit second to begin the year. He was surprisingly helpful to fantasy squads last season, hitting 14 home runs, scoring 71 runs and driving in 62 over 140 games. Estrada may be hard-pressed to top those numbers, and his 193.3 ADP reflects that.

    Mar 15 · Source via Giants Thairo Estrada
  • Rays Acquire Victor Castaneda As PTBNL From Javy Guerra Trade

    The Rays have acquired right-hander Victor Castaneda from the Brewers as the player to be named later from the November trade that sent fellow righty Javy Guerra to the Brewers, per Curt Hogg of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Castaneda, 24, was an international amateur signed by the Brewers out of Mexico in 2017. He’s worked…

    Mar 15 · MLB Trade Rumors Rays Javy Guerra
  • Twins, Hernan Perez Agree To Minor League Deal

    The Twins are in agreement with veteran utility player Hernán Pérez on a minor league contract, reports Daniel Álvarez-Montes of El ExtraBase (Twitter link). The GSI client will join the organization after the World Baseball Classic wraps up, as he’s currently representing Venezuela at that event. Pérez, 32 later this month, has played parts of ten…

    Mar 15 · MLB Trade Rumors Twins Hernan Perez
  • Royals Place Ángel Zerpa On 60-Day IL With Shoulder Injury

    The Royals announced that left-hander Ángel Zerpa has been placed on the 60-day injured list due to left shoulder tendinopathy. No corresponding move was announced so the club’s 40-man roster count is down to 39. Zerpa, 23, was added to the club’s roster in November of 2020 to protect him from being selected in the…

    Mar 15 · MLB Trade Rumors Royals Angel Zerpa
  • Marlins Select Garrett Hampson

    The Marlins announced to reporters, including Jordan McPherson of the Miami Herald, that they have selected infielder/outfielder Garrett Hampson to the roster. In a corresponding move, right-hander Anthony Bender was placed on the 60-day injured list. Hampson had an opt-out in his deal, per Craig Mish of the Miami Herald. Hampson, 28, spent his entire…

    Mar 15 · MLB Trade Rumors Marlins Garrett Hampson
  • Alex Lange Likely The Tigers' Closer

    Detroit Tigers relief pitcher Alex Lange got roughed up in his Grapefruit League outing on Tuesday against the Boston Red Sox, but he has looked really sharp at other points this spring. His curveball is one of the best swing-and-miss pitches in baseball and he has everything you want in a closer's demeanor. Trey Wingenter and potentially Trevor Rosenthal could be other candidates to close out games for Detroit, but Lange is likely to open the year as the team's primary closer. Manager A.J. Hinch is unlikely to name Lange his closer anytime soon, but for fantasy purposes, Lange is the one to target in Detroit's bullpen in 2023.

    Mar 15 · Source via Tigers Alex Lange closers
  • Rays Add Trevor Kelley To 40-Man Roster

    The Tampa Bay Rays selected right-hander Trevor Kelley to their 40-man roster on Wednesday and placed right-hander Andrew Kittredge (elbow) on the 60-day injured list in a corresponding move. Kittredge is recovering from Tommy John surgery and will miss at least the first half of the season. Kelley could still begin the 2023 regular season in the minor leagues, so he'll need to impress over final few weeks of spring training in order to make the Opening Day roster. The 30-year-old made 18 relief appearances (23 2/3 innings) for the Milwaukee Brewers in 2022 and had a rough 6.08 ERA (6.41 FIP), 1.44 WHIP and 23 strikeouts out of the bullpen.

    Mar 15 · Source via Rays Trevor Kelley
  • Sam Coonrod Diagnosed With High-Grade Lat Strain

    The Mets announced to reporters, including Tim Healey of Newsday, that reliever Sam Coonrod has a high-grade strain of his right lat. The club has yet to provide a timeline but even mild lat strains usually lead to weeks-long absences. For Coonrod, 30, it’s a concerning and frustrating development as its two years in a…

    Mar 15 · MLB Trade Rumors Mets Sam Coonrod closers
  • Kyle Finnegan Expected To Open The Year As The Closer

    Washington Nationals relief pitcher Kyle Finnegan is expected to be the team's primary closer entering the 2023 campaign with both Sean Doolittle and Tanner Rainey not expected to be ready for Opening Day. Finnegan's 11 saves were second on the team to Rainey's 12 last year. The 31-year-old finished the season with a 3.51 ERA, 1.14 WHIP, 70 strikeouts and 22 walks in 66 2/3 innings over 66 relief appearances. "Back end of the bullpen, which you know is up for hot-hand-type situations," Finnegan said of his role this season. "I was told I'll get some chances back there, but we also have so many good guys that we can play matchups a little bit and bring guys in in different situations. So I think kind of building off last year, we've got a lot of guys that are feeling confident and having success. Having too many guys is always a good thing."

    Mar 15 · Source via Nationals Kyle Finnegan closers
  • Freddie Freeman Out Of WBC Lineup Wednesday

    Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman Freddie Freeman (hamstring) is officially out of Team Canada's lineup in the World Baseball Classic against Team Mexico on Wednesday, as expected. "He's out of this tournament for now. The Dodgers decided that. He's over in camp right now getting looked at by the doctors and training staff," Canada manager Ernie Whitt said. Freeman left the game early on Tuesday due to hamstring tightness, and the Dodgers understandably aren't going to take any chances with their All-Star first baseman. At this point, it's likely that the 33-year-old left-handed slugger will not play again in the WBC this year. Fantasy managers will just be hoping he'll be ready for Opening Day, which remains to be seen.

    Mar 15 · Source via Dodgers Freddie Freeman
  • Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Could Rejoin Team Dominican Republic

    Toronto Blue Jays first baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (knee) said he's open to rejoining Team Dominican Republic for the World Baseball Classic now that he's past his knee injury. Guerrero said a decision will be made after a conversation with Toronto's manager and general manager. The 23-year-old returned to the Grapefruit League lineup on Wednesday after taking some time off in camp due to knee inflammation, but he's back in action now. It remains to be seen if the Blue Jays will give him the green light to play in the WBC. The most important thing is keeping Guerrero healthy for Opening Day in several weeks at the end of March. He'll be the top first baseman off the board in most fantasy drafts.

    Mar 15 · Source via Blue Jays Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
  • Max Scherzer To Start On Opening Day Against Miami

    The New York Mets are planning to start right-hander Max Scherzer on Opening Day against the Miami Marlins on March 30 and Justin Verlander in the home opener on April 6. Scherzer is more injury-prone than ever before in his career and will turn 39 this July, but when healthy, he's still one of the most dominant pitchers in baseball. The three-time Cy Young winner and eight-time All-Star went 11-5 with a career-best 2.29 ERA (2.62 FIP), 0.91 WHIP and 30.6 percent strikeout rate in 145 1/3 innings over 23 starts in his first year in Queens in 2022. Scherzer should be drafted as a fantasy ace yet again and will be a must-start every time he toes the rubber as long as he's healthy.

    Mar 15 · Source via Mets Max Scherzer
  • Carlos Rodon Could Miss Only A Few Starts

    New York Yankees left-hander Carlos Rodon's (forearm) rehab for a forearm muscle strain is going well, and his next step will be medical clearance to resume throwing from a shutdown that began on March 9 and is supposed to last up to 10 days. He will begin the season on the injured list but may end up missing only two or three starts if there is no more forearm discomfort once he resumes throwing. "I'm optimistic about the injury itself and the long-term prognosis of it," manager Aaron Boone said. It makes it a little easier to swallow drafting Rodon this spring, although he's not out of the woods yet. The 30-year-old southpaw was great in his only season with the Giants in 2022 with a 2.88 ERA, 1.03 WHIP and career-high 237 strikeouts in 31 innings, and he was signed to a big free-agent deal to bolster the top of New York's rotation alongside Gerrit Cole.

    Mar 15 · Source via Yankees Carlos Rodon
  • Jose Trevino Dealing With Wrist Injury

    New York Yankees catcher Jose Trevino (wrist) is dealing with a right wrist sprain. "I just feel some inflammation there, but I feel good. I feel pretty confident where I'm at right now," Trevino said. He expects to resume swinging a bat again in a couple of days and said he's "very confident" he'll be ready for Opening Day. Trevino has been held out of spring training action since March 9, but he doesn't seem worried about his availability for Opening Day. There's a chance we could see him back in spring games by next week. The 30-year-old was a first-time All-Star in his first year in the Bronx in 2022 and hit .248 with a career-high 11 home runs, 43 RBI and 39 runs scored in 115 games. Fantasy managers shouldn't expect huge things from Trevino, but he'll have plenty of value as the team's starter with some pop in his bat.

    Mar 15 · Source via Yankees Jose Trevino
  • Rays Select Trevor Kelley, Place Andrew Kittredge On 60-Day IL

    The Rays announced Wednesday that they’ve selected the contract of right-hander Trevor Kelley, who signed a minor league deal over the winter and has been in camp as a non-roster invitee. A spot on the 40-man roster has been opened by placing fellow right-hander Andrew Kittredge on the 60-day injured list. Tampa Bay originally made…

    Mar 15 · MLB Trade Rumors Rays Shane Baz Trevor Kelley Andrew Kittredge closers
  • Shane Bieber Solid Looks Ready For Season

    Cleveland Guardians starting pitcher Shane Bieber has been his usual phenomenal self this spring, and that trend continued Tuesday. Bieber threw 4 2/3 innings, giving up two runs while striking out five. His spring ERA now sits at 1.86. The Opening Day starter allowed four hits without a walk. His main blemish was a two-run home run to Angels right fielder Jared Walsh in the first inning. The home run came with two outs in the inning, so Bieber followed up with four scoreless innings, something he had been doing all spring. Before Tuesday, Bieber had pitched five scoreless innings in his two spring starts. RotoBaller's 43rd overall ranked player, Bieber is on pace for another season as a fantasy ace.

    Mar 15 · Source via Guardians Shane Bieber
  • Marco Luciano Optioned To Minor League Camp

    San Francisco Giants shortstop prospect Marco Luciano has been reassigned to minor league camp. A stress fracture in his back prevented the talented shortstop from participating in the Cactus League, but he is now healthy. The 21-year-old out of the Dominican Republic was added to the 40-man roster this offseason and is universally a Top-20 prospect. This past season, Luciano hit .269 with 11 homers and 36 RBI in 65 games between Rookie Ball and High-A. Despite starting the season in the minor leagues, Luciano's potential should help Giants fans get over the Carlos Correa offseason situation when he makes it to the show, likely in 2024. For now, Luciano is a must roster in dynasty formats, but managers in redraft leagues can avoid him for now.

    Mar 15 · Source via Giants Marco Luciano prospects
  • Simeon Woods Richardson Optioned To Triple-A

    The Minnesota Twins have optioned starting pitcher prospect Simeon Woods Richardson to Triple-A. Woods-Richardson, 22, was the big get from the Toronto Blue Jays for starting pitcher Jose Berrios a few seasons ago and made his big-league debut in one start for the Twins last season. Originally praised for his high velocity, Woods-Richardson has lost some ticks on the radar gun, but that has improved his command. Overall, Woods-Richardson is a name to monitor in both dynasty and redraft leagues for his potential, but can be ignored for now with him losing out on an Opening Day roster spot.

    Mar 15 · Source via Twins Simeon Woods Richardson prospects
  • Dylan Cease's Velocity On The Rise

    Chicago White Sox starting pitcher Dylan Cease topped out at 95 mph in his last Cactus League appearance, but he was sitting at 95-97 mph in his first inning of work on Tuesday against the Oakland Athletics. His slider hasn't been very sharp, though, which led to him giving up two runs in his first inning of work. The 27-year-old right-hander has now allowed 11 hits and 13 runs (12 earned) while walking eight and striking out six in three Cactus League starts. He was much better last year with a 2.20 ERA over 184 innings, so fantasy managers should take his spring results with a grain of salt. With better command, Cease could once again be one of the best pitchers in baseball in 2023.

    Mar 15 · Source via White Sox Dylan Cease
  • Dodgers Reassign Diego Cartaya

    Los Angeles Dodgers top prospect Diego Cartaya has been reassigned by the organization. Cartaya, 21, is the prize of a loaded Dodgers farm system, but struggled in limited action this spring with just one hit over 11 at-bats. Despite being added to the 40-man roster this offseason, it's no shock that Cartaya will start the season on the farm with All-Star catcher Will Smith behind the dish at the big-league level. Cartaya hit .254 with 22 homers and 72 RBI this past season between Single-A and High-A. Despite being one of the top prospects in the game, he is only a name for dynasty managers to consider at the moment.

    Mar 15 · Source via Dodgers Diego Cartaya prospects
  • Bobby Miller Reassigned By Dodgers

    Los Angeles Dodgers top pitching prospect Bobby Miller has been reassigned to minor league camp. Miller, 23, was in camp with the Dodgers, but didn't make an appearance in the Cactus League. The right-hander has shown high velocities with both a four seam and two seam fastball and also mixes it up with a plus slider and changeup. This past season between Double-A and Triple-A, Miller went 7-7 with a 4.25 ERA and 145 strikeouts in 112 1/3 innings. With starting pitchers Noah Syndergaard and Tony Gonsolin both being injury prone, it wouldn't be a surprise at all if Miller makes his debut in 2023. Dynasty managers should already be rostering the right-hander and he makes for an exciting option in redraft leagues when he makes it to the show.

    Mar 15 · Source via Dodgers Bobby Miller prospects
  • Graham Ashcraft Listed As Friday's Starter

    Cincinnati Reds right-hander Graham Ashcraft (calf) is listed as the team's starter for Friday's Cactus League contest against the Cleveland Guardians. Ashcraft had to be removed early from his last spring start due to cramps in his calf, but he looks to be good to go to get back on the bump later this week in a night game in Arizona. The hard-throwing 25-year-old may be better served as a reliever, but the rebuilding Reds will use him in their rotation after he went 5-6 with a 4.89 ERA (4.21 FIP), 1.42 WHIP and 15.3 percent strikeout rate in 19 starts in 2022 in his rookie season. Ashcraft needs to improve his secondary pitches before he's to be considered as anything more than an NL-only asset.

    Mar 15 · Source via Reds Graham Ashcraft
  • Kris Bryant Set To Play Wednesday

    Colorado Rockies outfielder Kris Bryant (back) is serving as the designated hitter and is batting third in Wednesday's Cactus League lineup against the Los Angeles Dodgers and left-hander Clayton Kershaw. Bryant dealt with back stiffness the last couple of days, but he's back in there on Wednesday. The 31-year-old veteran also missed considerable time in 2022 in his first year with the Rockies due to a back injury, so it's understandable that the Rockies aren't taking any chances with him in spring training. The four-time All-Star played in just 42 games last year, but he hit .306 with five home runs and 14 RBI in 181 plate appearances. Bryant will come cheap in drafts this year because of last year's injuries and his drop in power, so he could be a nice late-round value pick if he stays on the field in 2023.

    Mar 15 · Source via Rockies Kris Bryant
  • Andy Pages Reassigned To Minor League Camp

    Los Angeles Dodgers outfield prospect Andy Pages has been reassigned to minor league camp. The 22-year-old struggled this spring with just four hits in 17 at-bats with three RBI. Despite the demotion, the Cuban product has a bright future ahead of him as a power hitter with a strong eye at the plate. This past season, Pages hit .236 with 26 longballs and 80 RBI in 132 games. Pages should open the season in Triple-A, but a strong showing there would only add to his impressive minor league career. As with many of the Dodgers prospects in a loaded farm system, there just isn't enough space or playing time on the big-league roster. Dynasty managers should consider giving Pages a look, but managers in redraft leagues can avoid for now, while keeping his name on file in the event he is dealt or the Dodgers suffer injuries at the big-league level and give the power-hitter a promotion.

    Mar 15 · Source via Dodgers Andy Pages prospects
  • Justin Turner To Take Batting Practice Friday

    Boston Red Sox third baseman/designated hitter Justin Turner (face) is scheduled to take batting practice on Friday. Turner is ahead of schedule while needing 16 stitches after taking a pitch to the face in spring action early last week, and he could be cleared to return to Grapefruit League games if all goes well with his hitting session on Friday. The 38-year-old should open the 2023 regular season as Boston's primary designated hitter while also filling in at first and third base. Turner is no longer in his prime, but he still has excellent plate discipline and can provide modest counting stats for fantasy managers in a corner infield or DH spot in deep mixed leagues.

    Mar 15 · Source via Red Sox Justin Turner
  • Michael Busch Reassigned To Triple-A

    Los Angeles Dodgers second base prospect Michael Busch has been optioned to Triple-A Oklahoma City. Busch, 25, hit .261 with one home run and three this spring. Busch has been one of the Dodgers top prospects over the past few seasons, but there hasn't been a spot for him at the big-league level. In 2022, Busch hit a healthy .274 with 32 home runs and 108 RBI between Double-A and Triple-A. Busch continues to perform well on the farm, but fellow prospect infielder Miguel Vargas has leaped him for a big-league roster spot. If Vargas or veteran infielder Max Muncy struggle out of the gates, Busch may be in line for a promotion. For now, he remains a hold in dynasty leagues and can be ignored in redraft leagues.

    Mar 15 · Source via Dodgers Michael Busch prospects
  • Christian Walker Returns To Cactus League Lineup

    Arizona Diamondbacks first baseman Christian Walker (hip) is back in the team's Cactus League lineup against the San Francisco Giants and right-hander Sean Hjelle on Wednesday. Walker is starting at first base and is hitting cleanup. The 31-year-old was removed from Monday's game as a precaution after being hit by a pitch on his left hip, but it was obviously nothing serious. With Walker back in there after missing just one game, he should be just fine for Opening Day at the end of March. He hit a career-high 36 home runs and contributed 94 RBI for fantasy managers in 2022. Walker isn't the sexiest fantasy name, but he's a fine target at first base once the big names come off the board.

    Mar 15 · Source via Diamondbacks Christian Walker
  • Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Back In The Lineup Wednesday

    Toronto Blue Jays first baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (knee) is back in the Grapefruit League lineup on Wednesday against the Pittsburgh Pirates and right-hander JT Brubaker. Guerrero is playing first base and batting third in the lineup. It will be his first game action since being removed early on March 3 due to some minor knee inflammation. The Blue Jays have taken it slow with their star first baseman, but it's looking like Vladdy will be ready for Opening Day later this month, as long as he doesn't suffer a setback in the next couple of weeks. In one of the best lineups in baseball and in one of the more hitter-friendly home ballparks, Guerrero is RotoBaller's top-ranked fantasy first baseman.

    Mar 15 · Source via Blue Jays Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
  • Corey Kluber Named Opening Day Starter

    Boston Red Sox manager Alex Cora said that right-hander Corey Kluber will be the team's Opening Day starter against the Baltimore Orioles on March 30. Cora said that he informed Kluber of the decision back in January. With left-hander Chris Sale (wrist) recovering from injuries that cut his season short once again in 2022, the BoSox will go with the 36-year-old Kluber to kick things off this year. Kluber has bounced around the league in recent seasons and isn't the same pitcher that made three straight All-Star appearances from 2016-18 with the Cleveland Guardians. The two-time Cy Young winner is now an injury risk for fantasy managers and had a below-average strikeout rate in 2022.

    Mar 15 · Source via Red Sox Corey Kluber
  • Pirates Reassign Endy Rodriguez

    Despite a strong showing in Spring Training, the Pittsburgh Pirates have optioned catcher prospect Endy Rodriguez to Triple-A. It's a bit of a surprise to see the 22-year-old sent down with his main competition coming from veteran defensive specialist Austin Hedges. Rodriguez hit .412 this spring with one RBI and hit .323 with 25 homers and 95 RBI between High-A and Triple-A this past season. The versatile catcher has also seen time in the outfield and second base. With a very patience eye at the plate and low strikeout rate, Rodriguez has the makings of a future big leaguer, sooner than later. Dynasty managers would be wise to hold Rodriguez and managers in redraft leagues should keep an eye on his status once the season starts with his ability to hit the ball at one of the harder positions to fulfill.

    Mar 15 · Source via Pirates Austin Hedges Endy Rodriguez prospects
  • Cade Cavalli Going For MRI On Elbow

    Washington Nationals manager Dave Martinez said that starting pitcher Cade Cavalli (elbow) "felt something behind his throwing elbow" in his Grapefruit League start on Tuesday and is scheduled to have an MRI exam on Wednesday. Cavalli injured his right shoulder in his MLB debut last year and missed the rest of the season, so hopefully this new injury isn't as serious. The 24-year-old right-hander was in the running to open the 2023 regular season in the Nationals' starting rotation, but this injury is likely to put him on the injured list to kick things off. Cavalli has big stuff on the mound but will need to show better command and control of his pitches before he becomes attractive in all mixed leagues.

    Mar 15 · Source via Nationals Cade Cavalli prospects
  • Elly De La Cruz Reassigned To Triple-A

    Cincinnati Reds shortstop prospect Elly De La Cruz has been reassigned to Triple-A Louisville. De La Cruz is the Reds top prospect, but had a rough spring hitting .200 with one home run and five RBI in 20 at-bats. Despite his rough spring, De La Cruz is one of the more exciting shortstops in the minor leagues and hit .304 with 28 homers, 86 RBI and 47 stolen bases this past season between High-A and Double-A. The 21-year-old shows impressive power out the shortstop position, but needs to work on his defense. Despite the reassignment, it wouldn't be surprising to see the youngster up in the big leagues this season with his main competition being defensive specialist Kevin Newman. De La Cruz should already be rostered in dynasty leagues and he makes for an intriguing stash in redraft leagues.

    Mar 15 · Source via Reds Elly De La Cruz prospects
  • Christian Encarnacion-Strand Reassigned

    The Cincinnati Reds have assigned corner infielder Christian Encarnacion-Strand to minor league camp. Encarnacion-Strand was lights out this spring with a .557 batting average and led the Cactus league with four homers and 13 RBI. The catcher turned corner infielder was one of the returns in the Tyler Mahle deal made at last year, but has only played 48 games above High-A. The 23-year-old can still make an impact for the rebuilding Reds, but will work on his defense and getting some more seasoning on the farm. This past season, he hit .304 with 32 homers and 114 RBI between High-A and Double-A. With a strong power profile and showing he should be taken seriously this spring, managers in all formats should take notice for his arrival at some point in 2023.

    Mar 15 · Source via Reds Christian Encarnacion-Strand
  • Latest On Nationals' Rotation

    The Nationals are holding their breath after top prospect Cade Cavalli exited yesterday’s spring start with an elbow issue. He’s undergoing an MRI today, and while there’s no update on his status as of yet, manager Dave Martinez indicated to the Nationals beat this morning that non-roster invitee Chad Kuhl could get the first look…

    Mar 15 · MLB Trade Rumors Nationals Cory Abbott Joan Adon Cade Cavalli Patrick Corbin Paolo Espino MacKenzie Gore Josiah Gray Jake Irvin Chad Kuhl Wily Peralta Stephen Strasburg Trevor Williams closers
  • Bobby Dalbec Starts At Shortstop Tuesday

    Boston Red Sox corner infielder Bobby Dalbec started at shortstop in Tuesday's Grapefruit game against the Tigers. Manager Alex Cora said of the 27-year-old. "I think he's a plus defender. The more we can expose him at short, second if we have a chance, we'll do that." Dalbec struggled in 2022, slashing just .215/.283/.369 with 12 home runs and 39 RBI in 353 plate appearances. He is off to a hot start this spring, but he currently is on the outside looking in for a starting role in the infield. His power potential is still there, and if he can provide defensive value at a number of positions, he may be able to work his way into the lineup. Until then, fantasy managers will have to pass on Dalbec.

    Mar 15 · Source via Red Sox Bobby Dalbec
  • Jarred Kelenic Playing With Confidence This Spring

    Seattle Mariners outfielder Jarred Kelenic has brought an increased focus to spring so far, and it has shown. The 23-year-old, while still playing with high intensity, has produced a stellar .448/.484/1.000 slash line with four home runs, nine RBI and three stolen bases in 31 plate appearances. Fantasy managers are well-acquainted with Kelenic, as the former top prospect has had a highly disappointing career to this point. However, he is still young and possesses intriguing power and speed. If he can corral his strikeouts and finally bring his spring production into the regular season, he could be a fantasy steal. His current average draft position is 287.

    Mar 15 · Source via Mariners Jarred Kelenic
  • Isiah Kiner-Falefa To Play Center Field Over Weekend

    New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone said Tuesday that he plans to start utilityman Isiah Kiner-Falefa in center field this upcoming weekend. The 27-year-old made 131 starts at shortstop and four at third base last season while slashing .261/.314/.327 with four home runs, 48 RBI, and 22 stolen bases. IKF entered this spring competing with prospects Oswald Peraza and Anthony Volpe for the starting role at shortstop. The Yankees are currently dealing with a number of injuries and Falefa has shown the ability to play a number of positions over the course of his career. While multi-position eligibility is a plus, IKF really only contributes steals and average to fantasy managers, and even that contribution could be limited depending on his playing time.

    Mar 15 · Source via Yankees Isiah Kiner-Falefa
  • Bryce Elder Optioned To Triple-A Gwinnett Tuesday

    The Atlanta Braves optioned starting pitcher Bryce Elder to Triple-A Gwinnett on Tuesday, per the team's Twitter account. The 23-year-old had a solid showing in 2022, going 2-4 with a 3.17 ERA, 1.24 WHIP, and 20.7% strikeout rate in 10 appearances, nine of which were starts. It remains to be seen who will start the season as the Braves' fifth starter, as teammate Ian Anderson was also optioned on Tuesday. Elder may get a chance to join the team this season, but he can remain in the back of fantasy managers' minds for now.

    Mar 15 · Source via Braves Bryce Elder
  • Ian Anderson Optioned To Triple-A Gwinnett Tuesday

    The Atlanta Braves optioned starting pitcher Ian Anderson to Triple-A Gwinnett on Tuesday, per the team's Twitter account. The 24-year-old had a strong 2021 season but struggled last season with a 5.00 ERA, 1.51 WHIP, and 19.7% strikeout rate in 22 starts. It remains to be seen who will start the season as the Braves' fifth starter and it is possible that Anderson will get a chance to pitch with the team at some point during the season, but he will not get the first chance. This severely limits his fantasy value to start the season.

    Mar 15 · Source via Braves Ian Anderson
  • Jose Quintana To Undergo Bone-Graft Surgery

    New York Mets general manager Billy Eppler said Tuesday that starting pitcher Jose Quintana (rib) has a benign lesion on his rib, per's Anthony DiComo. He was seen by a tumor specialist, and while the results of a biopsy came back benign, Quintana is going to undergo bone graft surgery. The Mets are now expecting to not have him back until at least July. The 34-year-old signed a two-year, $26 million deal with the Mets this offseason. Tylor Megill and David Peterson appear to be the top two candidates to replace the veteran in the Mets' rotation to start the season.

    Mar 15 · Source via Mets Jose Quintana
  • Freddie Freeman Day-To-Day With Hamstring Injury

    Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman Freddie Freeman (hamstring) exited Tuesday's World Baseball Classic 5-0 win over Team Columbia with a slight hamstring issue. Freeman was removed from the game in the bottom of the fourth inning after gingerly running to first base on a pop-fly out in the third. The specific hamstring was not specified. Team Canada manager Ernie Whitt said after the game that Freeman's removal was precautionary and that he is not expected to play Wednesday against Team Mexico. Freeman has been swinging a hot bat this spring and is a top fantasy option, so it is fortunate that this sounds like a minor issue. Fantasy managers should be on the lookout for updates in the coming days.

    Mar 15 · Source via Dodgers Freddie Freeman
  • Ronald Guzmán Diagnosed With Pronator Strain

    Ronald Guzmán of the Giants recently underwent an MRI after experiencing some forearm discomfort. The team provided an update to reporters today, with Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle among those to relay the information. Guzmán has a left pronator strain but will not require surgery. Slusser later got an update from Guzmán himself,…

    Mar 14 · MLB Trade Rumors Giants Ronald Guzman
  • Yankees Notes: Kiner-Falefa, Volpe, Trevino

    Yankees infielder Isiah Kiner-Falefa has been at the center of plenty of speculation this spring. That’s both revolved around whether he’d hold onto the starting shortstop job with youngsters Oswald Peraza and Anthony Volpe on the horizon and whether he could be traded to an infield-needy team like the Dodgers or Rockies. Now, Kiner-Falefa’s role for the…

    Mar 14 · MLB Trade Rumors Yankees Harrison Bader Oswaldo Cabrera Kyle Higashioka Aaron Judge Isiah Kiner-Falefa DJ LeMahieu Oswald Peraza Jose Trevino Anthony Volpe prospects
  • Details On Keibert Ruiz's Contract Extension

    Last week, the Nationals agreed to an eight-year extension with catcher Keibert Ruiz that guaranteed $50MM.  Jon Heyman of the New York Post reported the specifics of the deal this evening. The 24-year-old will receive a $3MM signing bonus, with salary breakdowns as follows: $1MM in 2023 $6MM in 2024 $5MM annually between 2025-27 $7MM in 2028 $9MM…

    Mar 14 · MLB Trade Rumors Nationals Keibert Ruiz
  • Angels Release Jose Godoy

    The Angels have released catcher Jose Godoy, per the team. Godoy, 28, was signed to a minor league deal by the Angels earlier this offseason after being outrighted by the Pirates in October. To this point in his career, Godoy has struggled during his limited time in the majors, as he has slashed just .123/.194/.140…

    Mar 14 · MLB Trade Rumors Angels Jose Godoy
  • Braves Option Ian Anderson, Bryce Elder

    The Braves announced today that right-handers Ian Anderson and Bryce Elder have been optioned to Triple-A Gwinnett. The club now has 50 players in camp. The club is going into the season with four of its five rotation spots spoken for, with Max Fried, Spencer Strider, Kyle Wright and Charlie Morton firmly cemented. The only…

    Mar 14 · MLB Trade Rumors Braves Ian Anderson Bryce Elder
  • George Kirby Adding Splitter To Repertoire

    Seattle Mariners pitcherGeorge Kirbyhas added a splitter to his diverse repertoire this spring as he prepares to build on an excellent rookie season in 2022. Kirby has made a pair of Cactus-League starts this spring but has yielded three earned runs on five hits and a pair of walks across his 3 1/3-inning sample. The right-hander blew past expectations in his age-24 rookie season, tossing a 3.39 ERA alongside a pristine 20.5% K-BB% across 25 starts with the Mariners. Kirby began the season with five starts of 1.82 ERA ball alongside a whopping 34.4% K% at the Double-A level in 2022 and proceeded to become an integral part of the Mariners' rotation. Kirby said the new splitter will have an 8-10 mph drop in velocity from his four-seam fastball as he now sports seven different offerings heading into his sophomore campaign.

    Mar 14 · Source via Mariners George Kirby
  • Cade Cavalli To Undergo MRI On Throwing Elbow

    Nationals right-hander Cade Cavalli departed today’s game after a visit from the trainer, appearing to shake his throwing arm in discomfort. After the game, manager Dave Martinez told reporters that Cavalli felt “something behind his throwing elbow” and will get an MRI tomorrow, as relayed by Andrew Golden of The Washington Post. Cavalli, 24, was…

    Mar 14 · MLB Trade Rumors Nationals Cade Cavalli
  • MJ Melendez Enjoying Productive Spring

    Kansas City Royals catcher/outfielderMJ Melendezis having himself an excellent spring as he looks to build on a solid rookie showing in 2022. The 24-year-old is hitting .375 with one home run, one stolen base, and a hefty 1.296 OPS across 16 Cactus League at-bats to this point in the spring. Melendez appeared in 129 games with the Royals last season, hitting .217 with an impressive 18 HR, two SB, and a .706 OPS across 534 trips to the plate. The 2017 second-round pick also produced an excellent 12.4% BB% that enabled a 99 wRC+ that came in just 1% below the league average. The versatile youngster will see time at catcher behindSalvador Perezwhile also getting reps in the corner outfield spots in 2023. A strong history of power production in the minors and the aforementioned versatility with the glove make Melendez a solid fantasy asset heading toward the 2023 campaign.

    Mar 14 · Source via Royals MJ Melendez Salvador Perez
  • Adolis Garcia Raking In Cactus League Action

    Texas Rangers outfielderAdolis Garciais enjoying a big spring to this point as he looks to build on a productive 2022 campaign. The 30-year-old has clubbed two home runs while hitting .261 alongside a 1.187 OPS across 25 at-bats this spring. He's added five runs and six RBI to his ledger as he prepares himself for everyday reps in right field for the Rangers this season. Garcia burst onto the scene with 31 HR with 16 stolen bases as a 28-year-old rookie in 2021 and followed that up with 27 HR and 25 SB across 156 games a season ago. Garcia sports an elevated strikeout rate, but his power and speed combination makes him an attractive fantasy asset once again, as a 30/30 season is certainly within reach in the 2023 campaign.

    Mar 14 · Source via Rangers Adolis Garcia
  • Esteury Ruiz Battling For Outfield Spot With A's

    Oakland A's outfielderEsteury Ruizis in a battle for an outfield spot this spring as he looks to show off his elite speed with the big club in 2023. Ruiz is hitting a decent .241 with a solid .738 OPS alongside a homer, 10 RBI, and three stolen bases across 29 Cactus League at-bats to this point. WithRamon Laureanoset as the everyday right fielder in Oakland, Ruiz is aiming for reps in both left and center field, with the former looking like his best option, withJJ Bledaybeing optioned to Triple-A. Ruiz made his MLB debut in 2022, hitting just .171 with one SB across a small 36 plate-appearance sample between the Padres and Brewers before being acquired by the A's in December. The speedster swiped a whopping 85 bases in the minors between Double-A and Triple-A a season ago, and his speed will certainly earn him a solid look in the rebuilding A's outfield in 2023.

    Mar 14 · Source via Athletics JJ Bleday Ramon Laureano Esteury Ruiz
  • Paul Blackburn, Manny Piña Questionable For Opening Day

    Athletics manager Mark Kotsay provided reporters with some injury updates on a few players today, with Matt Kawahara of the San Francisco Chronicle relaying the information. Right-hander Paul Blackburn and catcher Manny Piña have each been slowed down by injuries recently and it’s now unclear if either player will be available to the A’s when…

    Mar 14 · MLB Trade Rumors Athletics Paul Blackburn Manny Pina
  • Felix Bautista Strikes Out Two In Spring Debut

    Baltimore Orioles closer Felix Bautista (knee, shoulder) made his Grapefruit League debut on Tuesday against the Pittsburgh Pirates and looked good, striking out two in his one innings of work. He didn't walk a batter or allow a hit. The 27-year-old right-hander also hit 99 mph on the radar gun, so it appears his arm is fully healthy after being brought along slowly in camp due to knee and shoulder issues. There is plenty of time for Bautista to be ready to go on Opening Day, and he's fully expected to be Baltimore's primary closer again in 2023. Bautista has been dominant in his short time with the O's and has plenty of fantasy appeal for an improving Orioles team.

    Mar 14 · Source via Orioles Felix Bautista closers
  • Bo Bichette Goes Off On Monday

    Toronto Blue Jays shortstop Bo Bichette flexed his muscles at the plate in Monday's 16-3 romp over the Boston Red Sox in Grapefruit League play. Bichette went 2-for-4 with two home runs, four RBI and two runs scored in the contest, and he's now hitting .393 (11-for-28) with three walks and five strikeouts on the spring. The 25-year-old plans to be more aggressive on the basepaths in 2023, and couple with his offensive abilities at a premium position, he remains extremely attractive to fantasy managers heading into his fifth MLB season. He led the league with 189 hits in 2022 and slashed .290/.333/.469 with an .802 OPS, 24 home runs, 93 RBI, 91 runs scored and 13 stolen bases in 697 plate appearances and 159 games for Toronto.

    Mar 14 · Source via Blue Jays Bo Bichette
  • Anthony Rizzo Returns To Grapefruit League Lineup

    New York Yankees first baseman Anthony Rizzo (back) is back in the team's Grapefruit League lineup on Tuesday against the Toronto Blue Jays and right-hander Drew Hutchison. Rizzo is starting at first base and is batting third in the lineup. The 33-year-old left-handed slugger was scratched from Sunday's spring game due to a cranky back, but both Rizzo and the team continue to say that it's nothing to worry about. He also dealt with back issues that required a trip to the injured list last September, and Rizzo admitted that it's something he'll have to continue to monitor throughout the year. Rizzo is a fine target for power at Yankee Stadium and his batting average should improve with the outlaw on shifts, but his back issues are a concern.

    Mar 14 · Source via Yankees Anthony Rizzo
  • Paul Goldschmidt Hitting Over .400 This Spring

    St. Louis Cardinals first baseman Paul Goldschmidt is now playing for Team USA in the World Baseball Classic, but before he left, he was hitting .417 (5-for-12) with a double, a home run, one RBI, one run scored and a stolen base in five Grapefruit League contests. The 35-year-old slugger is a top-five fantasy first baseman heading into spring drafts. The seven-time All-Star was named the National League MVP last year after slashing .317/.404/.578 with a league-high .981 OPS, 35 home runs, 115 RBI, 106 runs scored and seven stolen bases in 651 plate appearances and 151 games played. Goldschmidt is still an excellent option at the position for fantasy managers, but we should expect some regression in 2023.

    Mar 14 · Source via Cardinals Paul Goldschmidt
  • Tigers Claim Freddy Pacheco, Place Tarik Skubal On 60-Day IL

    The Tigers announced that they have claimed right-hander Freddy Pacheco off waivers from the Cardinals. To make room for him on their roster, left-hander Tarik Skubal has been placed on the 60-day injured list. Pacheco, 25 next month, is a relief pitcher who was added to the Cards’ roster in November of 2021 to protect…

    Mar 14 · MLB Trade Rumors Tigers Freddy Pacheco Tarik Skubal prospects
  • Matt Olson Crushing The Baseball This Spring

    Atlanta Braves first baseman Matt Olson has been scorching-hot in Grapefruit League games this spring as he heads into his second full season with the team. In 22 plate appearances over eight games to this point, Olson has gone 10-for-21 (.476) with two doubles, three home runs, eight RBI and six runs scored for Atlanta. The 28-year-old left-handed slugger hit .240/.325/.477 with an .802 OPS, 34 home runs, 103 RBI and 86 runs scored in 699 plate appearances and 162 games in 2022. Olson is an excellent source of power and run production, but his batting average can't be relied on. With that said, Olson could produce a better average in 2023 and beyond now that defenders cannot shift against him. RotoBaller has him ranked as the No. 5 fantasy first baseman.

    Mar 14 · Source via Braves Matt Olson
  • Mets Return Rule 5 Pick Zach Greene To Yankees

    Right-hander Zach Greene, whom the Mets selected in the 2022 Rule 5 Draft, has cleared waivers and will be returned to the Yankees organization, reports Anthony DiComo of (via Twitter). The Yankees are not required to add him to the 40-man roster. Greene, 26, was the Yankees’ eighth-round pick back in 2019. As a…

    Mar 14 · MLB Trade Rumors Mets Yankees Zach Greene closers
  • Tigers Claim Freddy Pacheco Off Waivers From Cardinals

    The Detroit Tigers claimed right-handed reliever Freddy Pacheco off waivers from the St. Louis Cardinals on Tuesday and optioned him to Triple-A Toledo. To make room on the 40-man roster, left-hander Tarik Skubal (elbow) was placed on the 60-day injured list. Pacheco has been dealing with elbow tightness this spring, which caused the Cardinals to outright him. The 24-year-old Venezuelan looked good in 50 combined relief appearances between Double-A Springfield and Triple-A Memphis in 2022, posting a 3.05 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, 12 saves and 84 strikeouts in 62 innings pitched. He'll need to work his way back to full health, but he could eventually become an option for the Tigers' bullpen this year.

    Mar 14 · Source via Cardinals Tigers Freddy Pacheco Tarik Skubal
  • Cade Cavalli Injured Tuesday

    Washington Nationals starting pitcher Cade Cavalli (arm) was removed from his Cactus League start on Tuesday against the New York Mets after appearing to be in discomfort while shaking his right arm after throwing a pitch. It's unclear what the exact nature of the injury is, so fantasy managers will want to check back for an update. Depending on what his injury is, there's a good chance that the 24-year-old right-hander will no longer be in the running for an Opening Day rotation spot. Cavalli suffered a significant shoulder injury in his first big-league start last August, so another arm injury is concerning. He has big stuff on the mound, but his control and command have been behind.

    Mar 14 · Source via Nationals Cade Cavalli prospects
  • Michael Fulmer, Brad Boxberger Viewed As Primary Closers

    The Chicago Cubs view relievers Michael Fulmer and Brad Boxberger as their primary closing options in 2023 for the ninth inning. Boxberger has 82 career saves and a long track record of durability and reliability. Fulmer won the American League Rookie of the Year in 2016 and was an All-Star in 2017 as a starter, but he moved to a full-time relief role after having Tommy John surgery in 2019. He saved 14 games for the Tigers in 2021 and had a 2.97 ERA in almost 70 innings. The Cubs also could use the likes of Brandon Hughes, Rowan Wick and Adbert Alzolay in closing situations, which makes Chicago's closing situation more of a committee approach. But if you're speculating on saves in deeper leagues, Fulmer and Boxberger could be decent options.

    Mar 14 · Source via Cubs Brad Boxberger Michael Fulmer closers
  • Logan Webb Named Opening Day Starter

    San Francisco Giants right-hander Logan Webb will start the team's Opening Day contest against the New York Yankees on the road. Right-hander Alex Cobb will pitch the second game, while manager Gabe Kapler said the rest of the rotation is still being sorted out. Nobody should be surprised by Webb getting the Opening Day nod after he had a career-best 2.90 ERA (3.03 FIP), 1.16 WHIP and 20.7 percent strikeout rate in 192 1/3 innings over 32 starts in his fourth year with the team. The 26-year-old should be considered a top-30 fantasy starter in upcoming drafts. Webb finds success not by overpowering hitters, but by using pinpoint location and movement on his pitches. It helps that he resides in a very pitcher-friendly home park.

    Mar 14 · Source via Giants Logan Webb
  • Brandon Woodruff Has Been Sharp In Cactus League

    Unsurprisingly, Milwaukee Brewers starting pitcher Brandon Woodruff has been sharp so far this spring, allowing only two hits and an unearned run while walking none and striking out six in five Cactus League innings over two starts so far. The 30-year-old struck out four batters over three innings in his last start last Friday. He's expected to make his first start of the 2023 season in the second game on April 1 against the Chicago Cubs. It's clear that the right-hander is a fantasy ace, and managers should consider him a top-10 fantasy starter. The two-time All-Star has a 2.79 ERA (3.01 FIP), 1.01 WHIP and 401 strikeouts in 332 2/3 innings over 57 starts the last two years for the Brew Crew.

    Mar 14 · Source via Brewers Brandon Woodruff
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