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Fantasy Baseball Stock Report: Josh Jung, Shane Bieber, Trea Turner (2023)

Fantasy Baseball Stock Report: Josh Jung, Shane Bieber, Trea Turner (2023)

Each and every week during the fantasy baseball season, we’ll be doing a stock report, looking at the players who are improving their value on a week-to-week basis.

If there are players you want me to dive into, feel free to tag me on Twitter @MichaelWaterloo.

Now, without any further ado, let’s get to it.

CTAs

Fantasy Baseball Stock Report

Stock Up

Josh Jung (3B – TEX)

Jung was overlooked coming into the season after he received a lot of hype prior to the 2022 season. An injury and lack of production at the end of the season played a part, but prospect fatigue did, too.

Now, Jung is producing at a high level, but it still seems like he’s being slightly underappreciated. I think it’s due to the insanely high floor he offers – which was always going to be his calling card.

Among third basemen this season, Jung is tied for fourth in home runs (13), first in runs (47), fourth in RBIs (40), and fourth in batting average (.284). So, what’s holding him back? Well, he has just one steal on the season, and the K% (25.7) is higher than you’d like, and the BB% (6.6) is lower than you’d like, but the power is playing more than we anticipated at this point in his career.

I don’t know if there are more than seven or eight third basemen that I’d take over Jung moving forward.

Stock Down

Shane Bieber (SP – CLE)

If the Guardians move Bieber, they are hoping to get a haul back like you’d see for an ace. There are only two problems with this: 1. Bieber isn’t an ace anymore and 2. Every team has access to FanGraphs and Baseball Savant.

Bieber has always relied on pinpoint control and deception to get his Ks. But we saw the K% drop to a fine 25% last year, but it’s down to 17.6% this season. What’s more, Bieber, who has always allowed a lot of hard contact, is allowing the highest average exit velocity of his career this year, and he’s throwing his cutter and fastball 59.3 percent of the time.

The fastball is living in the middle of the zone, carrying just a 7.5 Whiff%, while the cutter, has an expected slash line against of .318/.528 with an .409 xWOBA.

The future isn’t looking bright for the Biebs.

Stock Up

Trea Turner (SS – PHI)

It was all bad just a week ago, or however that song goes. But for Turner, it’s been a lot better since the calendar turned to June. He has a slash line of .313/.377/.500 with a 139 wRC+ and has cut his K% below 20% and upped his walk rate to 9.4% for the month.

What’s more, what you care about, is that Turner has four stolen bases in the month, matching his March/April total.The numbers are looking closer and closer to his career-long numbers, and if you were able to buy low on the stud shortstop, congrats. His price is only going to keep going up.

It really is always sunny in Philadelphia.

Stock Down

Teoscar Hernandez (OF – SEA)

But when there’s sun somewhere, there are storms elsewhere. Trust me, I watched Joe DeNardo growing up.

I expected Hernandez to continue to produce at the high level he has the last few years after moving from Toronto to Seattle. But so far, it hasn’t happened. Instead, he’s tied for the lead in baseball with 88 strikeouts, and he has the fewest walks (13) out of anyone in baseball who has struck out at least 70 times.

How’s that for skewing some numbers to make a point, eh?

Hernandez’s Chase% is at a career-high, and he seems to be actively trying to hit home runs, as his FB% is up and his Under% is the highest it’s been since 2019. He hasn’t actively sunk you, as you can live with a .249 average and 11 home runs, but he certainly is trending in the wrong direction with the diminished plate discipline.

Stock Up

James Paxton (SP – BOS)

I’ve been hesitant to really care what Paxton is doing. It’s not that I don’t care about him. I’m rooting for him after all of the setbacks that he’s had. I just can’t buy into it from a fantasy perspective given his injury setbacks. But so far, so good for the Big Maple.

Paxton has gone at least five innings in five of his six starts, and the one he didn’t was the only start where he allowed more than two earned runs. The velo is up on the fastball from 2021, and it’s inducing more whiffs. Aside from the health, the other hesitation I have is that he’s throwing the fastball 56.6 percent of the time, and I’m always a little hesitant when a pitcher is so one-pitch oriented, and I’d like to see an increase of cutters and curves from him.

We need pitching, so I’m willing to use him when I can and just hope – for the person – that he doesn’t suffer another injury.

Stock Down

James Outman (OF – LAD)

Over the last calendar month, only nine players with at least 60 plate appearances have a lower wRC+ and wOBA than Outman does. He started off extremely strong but has cooled off since. His last home run came on May 17, and he has just two long balls since April 22. The average has dipped significantly, too, and his K% is now up to 35.9 percent on the season – behind only Patrick Wisdom of the Chicago Cubs.

I was never really in on him to begin with, but now, I’m especially out, man.


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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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