Fantasy baseball is heading towards the playoffs, and it’s a crucial time. Sometimes it’s better not to think twice when making a decision to drop or add a player. As the regular season nears an end, here are some offensive players to consider picking up for week 18:
Bo Bichette, SS, Toronto Blue Jays
Through his first four MLB games, Bo Bichette is batting .444/.500/.722. Though it’s only 20 plate appearances, it still shows the potential this young man has. He also grew up in some good company, as his father Dante Bichette had 274 big league homers as well as finishing second for NL MVP in 1995. Bo’s teammates Vlad Guerrero Jr. and Cavan Biggio also have fathers who played in the MLB and are now in the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Bichette has a lot of upside and is worth an addition as only about 27 percent of ESPN leagues own the 21-year-old.
Mike Yastrzemski, OF, San Francisco Giants
Speaking of current players with former MLB relatives, Mike Yastrzemski is the grandson of Hall of Famer Carl Yastrzemski. Mike had a shaky start to his career, but is batting .476 in his last five games as of August 1. The rookie has his OPS over .800 on the season with nine home runs thus far. Yastrzemski also has veterans all around him in San Francisco. Players like Evan Longoria, Brandon Crawford and Kevin Pillar provide some great MLB experience that Yastrzemski can take note of. He has an own percentage of under 10 in ESPN fantasy baseball leagues.
Austin Nola, C/1B, Seattle Mariners
Family ties keep coming on this list, as Phillies pitcher Aaron Nola has a brother on the Seattle Mariners. Austin Nola is a 29-year-old rookie who’s been waiting a long time for a shot in the bigs, and it’s paying off so far. Through his first 32 career games, he has a line of .356/.405/.630 with a 1.035 OPS. This is an incredible line, especially for a catcher who is usually known for defensive aspects of the game. However, Nola has played every infield position besides shortstop despite being listed at just catcher and first base. This will likely help him get more at-bats which is important in fantasy baseball. Nola was owned in less than five percent of ESPN leagues at the time of writing.
Niko Goodrum, 2B/1B/OF/SS, Detroit Tigers
Niko Goodrum has great fantasy value in that he can be played in four different positions. He’s had an up-and-down season, and it’s showed in his own percentage. The 27-year-old was up to 47 percent owned in Yahoo leagues at one point this season, but is currently at just over 11 in ESPN leagues. Goodrum had a productive July, slashing .284/.351/.477 for the month. He’ll have a good chance to continue this through the first full week of August as the Tigers will play the White Sox and Royals at home.
Adam Duvall, OF, Atlanta Braves
Adam Duvall played 94 games with Triple-A Gwinett this season. 51 of his 90 hits went for extra bases including 29 home runs. This impressed the Braves enough to call him up to the bigs. He’s since played six games and is slashing .480/.462/.1.120. The former Red already has five dingers, including a two-homer night against Washington on July 30. Duvall will finish week 18 with four games against the Marlins, giving him some good opportunities to continue his power surge. About 17 percent of ESPN leagues own the 30-year-old outfielder.
Teoscar Hernandez, OF, Toronto Blue Jays
Teoscar Hernandez has played well as of late. He is batting .302/.403/.755 in his last 15 games as of August 1. Hernadez almost doubled his home run count for the season as he’s now up to 15 long balls on the year. Sometimes it could be difficult filling an outfield at this point of the season, especially in leagues with three or more outfield spots. Teoscar Hernandez can help take a spot and potentially show some pop at the plate in the meantime. Under five percent of ESPN leagues own him.
Miguel Sano, 3B, Minnesota Twins
Miguel Sano is on this list quite often, and for multiple reasons. For one, he has some serious power which should almost always be worth a look in fantasy baseball. He’s had his ups and downs through the years, but he seems to be finding a groove in the bigs this season. Through 24 July games, Sano slashed .300/.411/.613. It’s likely that Sano won’t always be a .300 hitter, but his power can make up for that. The 26-year-old has an own percentage of about 33 in ESPN leagues.
Feature Image Courtesy of artesianews.com from AP Photo/Orlin Wagner.