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10 Fantasy Baseball Risers & Fallers: Week 2 (2024)

10 Fantasy Baseball Risers & Fallers: Week 2 (2024)

We have made it to the second week of the MLB season. There were some awe-inspiring performances. As usual, there were some great and rough performances to dig into. This weekly column will help highlight hot and cold players/risers and fallers for fantasy purposes.

Some players are already rostered in many places so trades may be in order. Other players may be widely available, making a potential waiver wire claim in the cards. I will highlight some known and lesser-known players this week. So let’s see some of the risers and fallers for fantasy baseball Week 2.

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Fantasy Baseball Risers and Fallers: Week 2

Risers

Lourdes Gurriel Jr. (OF – ARI)

It was a great start to the season for Lourdes Gurriel, who racked up eight in the first four games, including two doubles and three home runs. Gurriel drove in 10 runs and tossed in a stolen base. Gurriel and the Diamondbacks faced the Rockies, which should have helped everyone’s fantasy stats, but Gurriel still got it done. He barreled the ball 28.6% of the time over the four games, with a hard-hit rate of over 71%. Gurriel can’t be this good all year but he showcased the skills that made him a tremendous late-round value in drafts. He’s in store for a big 2024.

Oswaldo Cabrera (2B, 3B, SS, OF – NYY) 

With DJ LeMahieu out, there were questions about who would benefit most from playing time at third base. Oswaldo Cabrera got the first crack at it and does not appear likely to give it up anytime soon. In the opening weekend of the season, Cabrera picked up seven hits, including a double and two home runs. He drove in six runs with a 10% barrel rate and a 50% hard-hit rate. There will be some regression as Cabrera struck out nearly 36% of the time, but the start is excellent, and regular at-bats should be in store for Cabrera while LeMahieu is out.

Michael Conforto (OF – SF) 

A healthy Michael Conforto is a fantasy producer. So far, he is healthy to start the season. Over the four games to open the season in San Diego, Conforto collected six hits, including two doubles and two home runs. He was locked in with a 40% barrel rate and a 50% hard-hit rate. Conforto should be locked into regular playing time and be rostered in 12-team and deeper leagues while healthy.

J.D. Davis (3B – OAK) 

J.D. Davis has shown strong offensive abilities throughout his career. However, health and consistent playing time have hindered full-time production. When Davis was let go by the Giants and then picked up by the A’s, Davis became much more fantasy-relevant as Oakland’s primary third baseman. Davis already showcased that relevancy over the opening weekend as he hit safely in all four games with two home runs. Run production may struggle due to his team context but he should produce plenty as a deeper league third baseman or corner infielder.

Will Benson (OF – CIN) 

With TJ Friedl starting the season on the injured list (IL), Jake Fraley and Will Benson were the expected playing time beneficiaries. Benson is the bigger winner — starting and hitting second versus RHP and batting ninth versus LHP. This while Fraley sat. Benson hit safely in all three games to open the season with three doubles and a home run. Benson had a 25% barrel rate and a 100% hard-hit rate, which is wild. Benson did strike out nearly 31% of the time, which is not ideal, but hitting second in the Reds’ lineup should lead to plenty of fantasy production.

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Fallers

Harold Ramirez (OF – TB) 

Harold Ramirez started the season as the Rays’ primary DH and struggled tremendously. He collected one hit over the four games to start the season for a .059 average. He did not collect a barrel and had a measly hard-hit rate of 28.6%. The Rays have many options on their team, so Ramirez’s continued struggles could lead to decreased playing time.

Anthony Rendon (3B – LAA) 

Besides the offseason discourse around Anthony Rendon making so many not like him, the start to his season won’t help him either. He started in three of four games for the Angels, leading off in all three. He did not collect a hit. Rendon struck out 27.5% of the time with a 25% hard-hit rate. Rendon looked horrible at the plate, and hopefully, he’ll find himself on the bench in favor of Luis Rengifo sooner than later.

Jeff McNeil (2B, OF – NYM) 

Jeff McNeil has not been a fantasy juggernaut for a few seasons. The start of the season could have been better, too. He hit fourth for two games and sixth in the other but only picked up one hit. He did not strike out, which is a plus, but zero barrels and a 27.3% hard-hit rate are neither great. McNeil should not be hitting in the middle of the batting order and should not be on your fantasy team.

Victor Scott II (OF – STL)

The fantasy world was over the moon when Victor Scott was promoted to take Lars Nootbaar‘s spot on the Cardinals’ roster. Scott collected two hits over his first four games, including a double. He did steal a base, his biggest fantasy asset, but he needs to do much more for fantasy managers. If Scott does not start producing quickly, he could be demoted when Nootbaar returns in a week or so.

Michael Busch (3B – CHC)

Michael Busch made the Cubs’ Opening-Day roster and played first base to open the season. He collected one hit over the three games to start the season. He struck out 33.3% of the time but did walk 25%, with a 20% barrel rate and a 60% hard-hit rate. Busch will need to produce quickly or the Cubs could replace him with the numerous other options they have on their roster.

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