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Fantasy Baseball Buy High/Sell Low: Jarred Kelenic, Pablo Lopez, Alek Manoah (2023)

Fantasy Baseball Buy High/Sell Low: Jarred Kelenic, Pablo Lopez, Alek Manoah (2023)

We have made it through another week of the season, and we have some early results to overreact to possibly., The early results give us a set of players to Buy High or Sell Low based on their weekly performances. Based on their recent performances and a full-season outlook, I will break down some players to buy or sell in the coming weeks. Some are just hot streaks, and some are worth buying into, so we are here to help make the right decisions for your fantasy teams. Let’s look at a handful of players you should buy high or sell low after Week 3.


Fantasy Baseball Players to Buy High & Sell Low

Buy High

Jarred Kelenic (OF – SEA) 

Kelenic’s breakout 2023 season continued in full force last week. He hit safely in all six games, with four home runs and a stolen base. He walked 13.6% of the time while striking out 22.7%; a nice improvement from previous seasons. In addition, Kelenic put up a .737 ISO and 1.756 OPS, aided by a 35.7% barrel rate and 64.3% hard-hit rate.

Kelenic will not stay this hot all season, but a great production season appears to be in store for the former top prospect. The Mariners play him in every game, even against LHP, so playing time is not a concern. A 20/15 season seems like a sure thing, and there is an upside for even more. I am buying into Kelenic for the rest of the season, and you should too.

Jorge Mateo (SS – BAL)

Mateo finished this past week as the second-ranked fantasy hitter in all of baseball. Yes, that is not a typo. He’s ranked second in large part due to his outstanding performance this past week. Mateo hit safely in five of seven games with three doubles and a home run. In addition, he scored six runs while driving in seven and, most importantly, stole three bases.

Mateo is hitting .372 on the season with three home runs and eight stolen bases. Most roster Mateo for his speed, but the fact he’s helping in the power and run-producing departments is tremendous. I do not expect the batting average to stay this great, it won’t be close, but the other ROTO categories could be filled weekly by Mateo. I am in for the rest of the season.

Kyle Tucker (OF – HOU)

Tucker was my 3rd ranked player on my draft board entering the season, and he has definitely lived up to the hype. Buying high on Tucker may be difficult, but I would try very hard if you could. He is hitting .302 on the season with four home runs and four stolen bases. This past week, Tucker hit .389 with a home run and two stolen bases. The most impressive thing Tucker did this past week was walking 26.9% of the time without a single strikeout. Tucker is in for a 30/30 season, so get in on the fun where you can.

Pablo Lopez (SP – MIN) 

The Pablo Lopez resurgence in Minnesota continued in full force with two excellent starts this past week. Lopez pitched four runs over 13.2 innings versus the White Sox and Yankees while striking out 17. He put up a remarkable 27.8% K-BB with a 43.7% O-swing and 14.9% SwStr.

The pitch mix and velocity changes have already been well-documented this season, and the stats aren’t lying. He now has a 1.73 ERA with a 2.87 xFIP to go with a 27.6% K-BB. The Twins are even buying into the improved Lopez, as they just gave him a four-year extension. I believe in Lopez, too, so trade for him wherever you can, as great pitching is tough to come by this season.

Hunter Brown (SP – HOU)

After a rough season debut, Brown has looked much more like the top prospect many thought he was entering the season. Last week, Brown threw his second straight great start, throwing seven innings with zero earned runs versus the Rangers. Brown struck out five with a 32.1% O-swing. Brown is an outstanding young arm that should have many more good starts than bad. If his fantasy managers are concerned with him, add him to his AL ROY campaign.

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Sell Low

Trevor Larnach (OF – MIN) 

After an excellent start to the season, Larnach stood up to remind fantasy managers what they were rostering. Larnach had just three hits this past week for a .130 batting average. He had a .043 ISO and .366 OPS with a minuscule 0 wRC+. A significant reason for Larnach’s struggles last week was horrible plate skills, leading to a 46.2% strikeout rate. If someone in your league still believes in the first-week production from Larnach, you should trade him immediately.

Edward Olivares (OF – KC) 

Many were excited that Olivares would start the season with the Royals and see regular playing time. Unfortunately, that regular playing time has not resulted in fantasy goodness, and this past week was his worst yet. Olivares hit .190 with two runs scored and an RBI. He walked only 4.5% of the time with a 31.8% strikeout rate. His plate discipline was atrocious, with a 44.2% O-swing and 13.5% SwStr. I do not feel great about this start of the season for Olivares, and I would trade him for someone who still believes Olivares will break out this season.

Eduardo Escobar (3B – NYM)

Escobar hit .125 last week with three runs scored and three RBI. He was putting the ball in play plenty as he only struck out 10% of the time, but that did not matter. He had a 0% barrel rate with a 46.7% ground ball rate. Escobar has been horrible, and his time with the Mets may be numbered, as Brett Baty was just called up from Triple-A and was starting at 3B on Monday night. Trade or cut Escobar, I do not care. Just make sure he is not on your roster any longer.

Alek Manoah (SP – TOR)

I may catch a lot of hate for this one, but I would be trading Manoah for your best offer. He was on my do not draft list as he was an accumulator that pitched to way too much contact. So far this season, we see a lot of the same. Manoah’s velocity is down, which is not helping either. This past week he made two starts, facing the Rays and the Tigers, where he allowed ten runs over nine innings with nine walks and eight strikeouts. The struggles have been real for Manoah, but there will be someone in your league that still thinks he’s an ace. Find them and make a deal.

Steven Matz (SP – STL)

It has been a rough start through three starts this season for Matz. Last week he made two starts where he pitched a combined 11.1 innings versus the Pirates and Rockies (in Coors Field). Matz allowed eight runs while walking seven and striking out four. He did not allow an impressive barrel but was allowing 47.7% hard-hit, which will never end well. Matz is a streaming pitcher at best, so make sure that’s all he is for your fantasy team.

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