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Week 23 Quick Grades (2021 Fantasy Baseball)

by Mike Maher | @mikeMaher | Featured Writer
Sep 5, 2021
Whit Merrifield

Greetings, friends, and welcome to Week 23 of the Fantasy Baseball Quick Grades series. If you follow any fantasy writers or analysts who cover both baseball and football, say something nice to them this week. They’re tired. August/September is a crazy time for those writers every year. It’s the best but also the worst because of the combined workload of football starting up and fantasy baseball playoffs. If you’re still reading fantasy baseball content in September, you are doing something right with your teams. Hopefully, these Quick Grades have helped you throughout the year. I’ll be with you until the final week. Let’s do this.

I went over how the grades for this series are calculated in Week 1, and I’ll link to that breakdown every week rather than filling this space with a lengthy explanation every time. If you’re interested in knowing my process or just want to talk baseball, feel free to reach out on Twitter @mikeMaher. I reply to Tweets, and my DMs are open. Here’s a link to the Week 1 piece with the full Quick Grades breakdown:

Week 1 Quick Grades (2021 Fantasy Baseball)

Now, let’s get to the Week 23 grades and notes.

Week 23 Hitter Grades

Note: This table is multiple pages (see the button on the top right) and is sortable and searchable, so feel free to look around!

Team Streams

  • The Orioles and Blue Jays both play EIGHT games this week
  • The Indians/GuardiansRockies, Royals, Dodgers, Twins, Mets, Yankees, Phillies, and Nationals all play seven games.
  • The Reds play six games but have the best Matchups grade. Tyler Naquin received a grade of 86.90 and is available in more than 40% of leagues.

Fades of the Week

  • The Diamondbacks and Padres both only play five games this week.
  • The BrewersCardinals, and Marlins have the lowest (worst) Matchups grades.

Notes

  • Last week, we talked about Frank Schwindel and his 90.28 grade. He hit five home runs and drove in nine runs. Unfortunately, Schwindel only received a grade of 76.95 for the upcoming week. But fear not. We have a replacement for you. Brandon Belt received a grade of 86.98 and is available in more than 70% of leagues. Grab Belt for this week.

Week 23 Pitcher Grades

Below, you'll see a grid of probable starters, their matchups, and their grades. The grade is on a scale of 0-100, and here's what those numbers mean.

These grades assume you are in 10 leagues of varying size and format, with a good mix of shallow, deeper, scoring, and roster/lineup sizes. The score for all of these players corresponds to how many leagues I would start a pitcher in if I had him in every league. So, a pitcher with a score of 100 means I would start him in all 10 leagues. A pitcher with a score of 50 means I would start him in five leagues. Zero, zero leagues. Got it? Great.

Note: The starters below are grouped alphabetically by team and schedule, and the table is multiple pages to keep the length manageable (you can click to see the second page on the top right).

Notes

  • Carlos Hernandez has been quietly solid for an extended period of time. He posted a 2.08 ERA over 30 1/3 innings in August and has a 2.94 ERA through 49 innings in the second half. I'm not rushing out to start him in all of my leagues, but he has my attention in leagues where I need pitching (and in deeper leagues, you pretty much always need pitching).
  • The Marlins were tough to grade this week. I like Edward Cabrera as a prospect and as a two-start pitcher, but I am concerned about having too much exposure with a young pitcher who is likely to go through some growing pains. Jesus Luzardo has been much better over his last two starts, but I'm still not starting him anywhere at this point in the season (when some leagues are in the playoffs and others are close). Trevor Rogers is back, but he missed a month and wasn't exactly sharp in his first start back.
  • The Pirates were not difficult to grade and have not been difficult to grade for pretty much the entire season. There is no reason to have any exposure to any of those starters.
  • Man, has Aaron Nola frustrating this season. I still gave him an 80 for this week because it's a two-start week and, if we're being honest, I am still starting him everywhere and hoping for the best.

That's it for this week. Again, if you have any questions, feedback, or requests, hit me up on Twitter!

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Mike Maher is an editor and featured writer at FantasyPros and BettingPros. For more from Mike, check out his archive, follow him on Twitter @MikeMaherand visit his Philadelphia Eagles blogThe Birds Blitz.

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