It’s been a minute since we’ve looked at some of the MLB stats leaders. As the calendar has officially flipped to September, there is no better time than the present.
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There have been some pretty massive numerical accolades in 2023, part in credit to the stars of the game doing their thing, and the additional rule changes for this year have surely played their part as well (stolen bases are up like crazy).
Let’s look at some of the more interesting feats being achieved across the landscape by categorical leaders:
- Matt Olson (ATL) – 114 (NL)
- Adolis Garcia (TEX) – 100 (AL)
- Spencer Strider (ATL) – 245 (NL)
- Kevin Gausman (TOR) – 207 (AL)
Interestingly, from a glance at these stats, it looks like the NL severely overpowers the AL. Every single one of these overall leaders is from the National League, including Atlanta Braves players leading in five of these seven categories.
Only the Rangers have a player at the top from the AL in more than one category, and Ronald Acuna Jr. and Spencer Strider have a serious chance at winning the NL Cy Young and NL MVP, respectively, this season. The Braves could be bound for some magical October baseball once again.
Now, to the depth chart review portion of the article.
Fantasy Baseball Depth Chart Review
If you have followed me before the 2023 MLB season commenced, you will possibly recall me touting Cedanne Rafaela as a likely prospect to make his debut with the Red Sox. That time has arrived, and the 22-year-old has looked the part from the jump.
Rafaela debuted for the Sox on Aug. 28, as he pinch-hit in the eighth inning and promptly collected his first Major League hit. Since then, he has gone 5-for-13 (.384), including his first-career multi-game hit against the Rays on Tuesday night. He also batted leadoff for the team for the first time.
A prolific player in the Minor Leagues, Rafaela possesses a rare power and speed combination. He is sure to be a fantasy baseball darling for many years. He should consistently bat near the top of the Boston order for the remainder of this year and beyond as a player that could be considered close to five-tool in many regards. So far, Rafaela has not disappointed, even with the small sample size.
On the opposite side of the Red Sox-Yankees rivalry spectrum is 20-year-old Jasson Dominguez, who also made his debut last week and has been quite impressive. The top prospect in the Yankees’ organization has made his name known loud and clear since being called up on Sept. 1, as he has already homered in two of his first three games played. The rookie is already batting third and playing centerfield for the most prestigious baseball organization in history, just three short games into his career.
Yankees fans should be extremely excited about the future, given the young talent they have within the organization. Dominguez and rookie SS Anthony Volpe could and should form a potent duo for years to come. Dominguez will get a bunch of run here to conclude the campaign, and he will benefit from it in 2024.
Rookie Brett Baty is back with the Mets’ club after a pretty terrible professional stretch of baseball earlier in the season. The 23-year-old had gone 0-for-18 across six August games before the Mets’ decided to send him down to Triple-A.
However, he is back now and will likely remain with New York for the rest of the season. Baty has gone 2-for-8 since returning to the Mets’ lineup, and he will be looking to improve on his overall .217/.288/.328 line and seven homers across the last month of the campaign. He is still a player that had one of the best-hitting prospect profiles coming through the Minors and organization, and he should improve at the plate as he garners more experience. The final games of his rookie season should be telling as to what we can expect from Baty as his career progresses into year two.