5 Things to Know for Week 22 (2019 Fantasy Baseball)

by Michael Waterloo | @MichaelWaterloo | Featured Writer
Aug 24, 2019

Ryan McMahon’s drastic home/road splits make him a solid grab this week.

No, you don’t need to refresh your browser. You are, in fact, in the right place. I’m filling in for Bobby this week on the five things that you need to know for Week 22.

We may even get into some prospect and dynasty talk since it’s late in the season.

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It’s Ryan McMahon (1B/2B/3B – COL) Week again.

Did you know that starting the week of July 22, the Rockies have alternated weeks of a full schedule at home and a full schedule on the road? It stays that way until the week that ends September 15. If you haven’t been using this to your advantage, it’s not too late. Monday starts another run at home for the Rockies, which means it’s time to grab Ryan McMahon and put him in your lineup. He’s widely available (57 percent ownership in Yahoo), and he has drastic home/road splits.

“It’s Coors Field, so of course he does,” you may be thinking.

But it’s next level with him:

  • McMahon at home: 55 games, .305/.371/.568, 13 home runs, 40 RBIs, 33 runs, 110 wRC+
  • McMahon on the road: 53 games, .230/.324/.354, four home runs, 25 RBIs, 23 runs, 80 wRC+

McMahon is eligible at three positions – 1B, 2B, and 3B – and while they are deep positions, there’s room to put him in your lineup while he’s at home. He is just one Rockies player to highlight, but it’s worth grabbing any Colorado player who is available during the stretch at home.

Carlos Correa (SS – HOU), the Giancarlo Stanton (LF/RF/DH) of shortstops.

It was another season of Carlos Correa going high in drafts, and another season of him failing to return value. Now, the comparison to Stanton isn’t totally fair, of course. Correa is about five years Stanton’s junior, and the injuries aren’t the same. But the lack of return of value based on draft capital is where the comparison fits.

We’ve heard for years that Correa is due to have an Alex Rodriguez-type season. We’ve definitely seen the flashes, too, with Correa having multiple 5.2 WAR seasons, and three 20-plus homer seasons. But we still haven’t had that MVP-type season that we have – fairly or unfairly – come to expect from Correa. 

In 2016, Correa played 153 games, but since then, he’s played 109, 110, and 72 games, respectively. He expects to return in three weeks, but it’s a back injury, which is terrifying for his long-term outlook as a 25-year-old. He’s been a locked-in top-eight shortstop in fantasy drafts, but is he a lock to go there next year?

Here are guys that I would put in front of him, and a few who I need to take the offseason to weigh my options:

That’s 11 guys that I have above Correa, and players like Jorge Polanco and Eduardo Escobar have to be considered, too.

Maybe he’ll return great value next year like we thought Corey Seager would this year. Or maybe, just maybe, he’ll never reach the potential that we hoped he would. 

It’s Impossible to Predict Closers

In the preseason, I rank closers because it’s required. In my weekly category analysis, I write about a closer who is owned in fewer than 50 percent of leagues, because it’s required. Besides that, I avoid talking or caring about closers at all.

Each and every year, they are unpredictable. I mean, are we really shocked that Edwin Diaz and Blake Treinen have been massive busts this year? Haven’t we learned not to draft the top closers from the season before expecting them to replicate the same success?

Here are the number of pitchers who have recorded saves in the past five seasons:

  • 2015: 145
  • 2016: 148
  • 2017: 162
  • 2018: 165
  • 2019: 163

We still have another month-plus of the season, and we are about to surpass last year’s numbers. I hate to tell you, folks, but this is only going to continue next year and the year after that. Stop making closers a priority and shift your league to saves plus holds.

Josh Bell (3B – SD) will Stabilize his Second-Half Numbers this Week.

How are you evaluating Josh Bell for next year? What about the rest of the season? His season-long numbers will look good to the casual fantasy baseball player during draft season, but we know how he’s essentially had two different seasons in one this year.

  • First Half: .302/.376/.648, 27 home runs, 84 RBIs, 69 runs, 49.4 Hard%, 154 wRC+
  • Second Half: .210/.329/.370, four home runs, 15 RBIs, 15 runs, 38.9 Hard%, 84 wRC+

So, why do I feel that Bell will stabilize his numbers this week? Well, I can’t say that I’m confident, because that’s not a word I’ll ever use when talking about Bell. But he does face the Rockies and Phillies on the road. The teams are 27th and 28th in baseball in team FIP, respectively. Not to mention the effect that Coors Field has on the game.

Start Bell this week, and if he flops again, it’s time to push the panic button officially.

The Next Big Things

If you’re in a dynasty league, you know about Wander Franco and Gavin Lux already. If you’re in a deeper league, you can probably ignore these next names, but if you’re that guy in your league who is the prospect hound, you should look to acquire the following guys before their hype gets out of hand.

Julio Rodriguez (OF – SEA): .314/.377/.523, 11 home runs, 59 RBIs, 52 runs, 67 strikeouts, 20 walks in 283 at-bats at Low- and High-A as an 18-year-old.

Marco Luciano (SS – SF): .302/.417/.564, 10 home runs, 42 RBIs, 52 runs, nine steals, 45 strikeouts, 32 walks in 179 at-bats at Rookie ball and Short-Season ball as a 17-year-old.

Noelvi Marte (SS – SEA): .297/.362/.484, eight home runs, 49 RBIs, 54 runs, 17 steals, 54 strikeouts, 29 walks in 256 at-bats at Rookie ball as a 17-year-old.

Jasseel De La Cruz (SP – ATL): 3.21 ERA, 1.14 WHIP, 116 strikeouts, .213 average against, 45 walks in 123.1 innings pitched across Low-A, High-A, and Double-A as a 22-year-old.

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Michael Waterloo is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Michael, check out his archive and follow him @MichaelWaterloo.

 

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