Fantasy Baseball News

Latest Player Updates

Brian MacPherson of the Providence Journal believes that Christian Vazquez has a chance to unseat Sandy Leon as the Red Sox' starting catcher this spring. While Leon had a breakout season offensively in 2016 and is the leader coming into camp, he grades out poorly in pitch framing, costing his 4.7 runs in 2016. Vazquez meanwhile, is a highly-regarded defender and was credited with seven defensive runs saved from pitch framing last season, the 17th best mark in all of baseball. (Source: Providence Journal)

Fantasy Impact: This will be one of the more interesting battles in spring training for the Red Sox. Right now Leon should have the inside track but don't be surprised if Vazquez can get his hitting form back that he could move into the main role. There is the scenario that they both share the job. That would make both Leon and Vazquez hard to own in fantasy.


Pablo Sandoval has resumed switch-hitting. He struggled mightily from the right side in 2015 and eventually abandoned hitting right-handed altogether before giving it another go this offseason. Sandoval worked tirelessly with Miguel Cabrera to repair his swing and has looked comfortable hitting from the right side at spring training. (Source: Peter Gammon on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Sandoval who missed just about all of the 2016 season with shoulder surgery is looking to bounce back. He has come into spring training much lighter having lost 40 pounds. He seems focused to have a big season and could be a sleeper pick in upcoming fantasy drafts.

Category: Injury Updates


The Reds have come to terms on a minor league contract with the veteran outfielder. Raburn will report to the Reds major league spring training facility with a chance to earn a spot on the big league roster. (Source: Ken Rosenthal on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Raburn had a very disappointing 2016 with Colorado. He will look to revive his career with the Reds. His most likely role would be as a platoon option in left or right field, along with Scott Schebler and Desmond Jennings. There is no real fantasy upside here.

Category: Transactions


The door is open for the Reds #3 prospect - OF Jesse Winker - to earn a big league roster spot this spring, according to manager Bryan Price. (Source: Cincinnati Enquirer)

Fantasy Impact: Winker has been among the top outfield prospects in the game for the last few years. While his defense is suspect, and there are legitimate doubts about his ability to hit for power, Winker is one of the purest hitting prospects in the game. He is considered a huge part of the Reds future, so when he earns his spot, expect him to be given every opportunity to succeed.

Category: Rumors


Joey Votto to bat third

Fri, Feb 17th 11:37am EST
By Michael Bertels

CIN

Reds manager Bryan Price expects Joey Votto to be batting third regularly this season - with Billy Hamilton leading off, and Adam Duvall cleaning up. (Source: C. Trent Rosecrans on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Given Votto's elite ability to get on base, many would prefer to see him batting second in the order, but Price intends to keep him in his usual spot in the three hole.

Category: Rumors


Adrian Beltre is expected to miss one-to-two weeks with a strained left calf. (Source: sportsday.dallasnews.com)

Fantasy Impact: Because of the injury Beltre is expected to miss the first week of the World Baseball Classic. If the team moves on, he could be added to the roster for the second round. Based on Beltre's 2016 numbers it seems like the 37-year-old won't be slowing down anytime soon. FanGraphs has Beltre projected to hit .294 with 23 home runs, 92 RBI, and 80 runs. In 2016 Beltre hit .300 with 32 home runs, 104 RBI, and 89 runs. I would be hesitant to draft Beltre because of his age, but I always have. I would list Adrian as an early mid-round 3B after the top tier third basemen are gone.

Category: Injury Updates


St. Louis Cardinals prospect Alex Reyes had Tommy John surgery Thursday and it was deemed a success by Dr. Paletta. The expected recovery time is 14 months. (Source: Jon Heyman on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Reyes had major hype coming into the 2016-2017 season and his injury was a big blow to all MLB fans and fantasy baseball players. In dynasty leagues Reyes is still someone to draft, with a possible price reduction. In re-draft leagues Reyes can be left off your draft board until next season. Last season Reyes went 4-1 with a 1.57 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, and a 10.17 K/9.

Category: Injury Updates


2B Aaron Hill has signed a minor-league deal to play for the San Fransisco Giants. (Source: Ken Rosenthal on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Hill played in 125 games in 2016 hitting .262 with 10 home runs and 38 RBI between the Brewers and Red sox. Hill was a phenomenal power source during his prime but at this point in his career he can be ignored for fantasy purposes.

Category: Transactions


Zack Cozart's knee at 100%

Thu, Feb 16th 12:43pm EST
By Michael Bertels

CIN

Zack Cozart says his knee is back at 100%, and he will not be wearing the bulky knee brace he wore through most of the 2016 season. (Source: C. Trent Rosecrans on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Cozart had a strong first half in 2016, with a .799 OPS prior to the All-Star break. Pretty good for a glove-first shortstop. If he can stay healthy and attain similar first half success, the Reds should be able to return a decent package for him before the trade deadline as they continue their rebuild.

Category: Injury Updates


The Tamp Bay Rays and RHP Tommy Hunter have a deal worked out pending his physical. (Source: Robert Murray on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: The 30-year-old Hunter is looking to stay in the majors as a dependable bullpen arm. Fantasy wise, Hunter can be left on the wavier wire. If your league does account for holds, he might be a nice sleeper pick. Hunter ended 2016 with a 2-2 record, 3.18 ERA, and a 1.26 WHIP in 34 innings pitched.

Category: Transactions


RHP Mat Latos and the Toronto Blue Jays have agreed to a deal. (Source: Ben Nicholson-Smith on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: This deal seems to be one that creates depth for the Blue Jays. For this reason Latos will be limited in fantasy upside all season baring an injury. In 2016 Latos had a 4.89 ERA, and a 1.49 WHIP to go along with a 7-3 record while pitching for the White sox and the Nationals. Latos should be left on the waiver wire to start the season.

Category: Transactions


Michael Pineda said yesterday that he is looking to pitch 200 innings and strikeout 200 batters in 2017. Pineda made 32 starts, 175 2/3 innings, and struck out 207 batters in 2016. He finished 6-12 with a 4.82 ERA and 1.34 WHIP last season. (Source: Erik Boland on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Had Pineda reached his goal of 200 innings in 2016, he would have finished fifth in baseball with 235 strikeouts, as he led the American League with 10.6 strikeouts per nine. Fantasy owners have to learn to take the good and the bad with Pineda, as he allowed 27 home runs in 2016, and hope that his ERA (4.37 in 2015 and 4.82 in 2016) starts to look like his FIP (3.34 in 2015 and 3.79 in 2016). As it is now, Pineda is a bit under a league-average pitcher with huge strikeout potential and a considerable boom or bust candidate leading into 2017.

Category: Rumors


Masahiro Tanaka, who was named Opening Day starter for the Yankees by Joe Girardi, says that he is looking to pitch 220-230 innings this season. Tanaka threw 199 2/3 innings in 2016, making a career-high 31 starts. He finished 2016 with a 14-4 record and 3.07 ERA. (Source: Erik Boland on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: After bursting on to the scene with a 13-5 record and 2.77 ERA in 2014, Tanaka took a bit of a step back in 2015 with a 3.51 ERA and 13-5 record before putting up a 2016 season where he finished 7th in the AL Cy Young. The most attractive thing about Tanaka is his limiting of baserunners, 1.04 career WHIP, which takes the sting out of the fact that he has allowed 47 home runs over the last two seasons. He is a fringe SP1, but remember that he has had his issues with home runs and has seen his K/9 and K:BB drop each of his three seasons in the MLB.

Category: Rumors


Red Sox manager John Farrell said that Hanley Ramirez will be the designated hitter "against every right-handed pitcher," Brian MacPherson of the Providence Journal reports. (Source: Brian MacPherson on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: It is assumed that Ramirez will be playing first base when lefties are facing the Red Sox. The move to DH helps to keep the veteran healthy as Ramirez has been known to dinged up throughout the year. This should help to increase his value.


Sean Rodriguez underwent rotator cuff surgery yesterday and will likely be out for the entire 2017 MLB season. (Source: Ken Rosenthal on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: In 2016, with the Pirates, Rodriguez hit .270 with 18 home runs and 56 RBI in only 140 games. 2017 was going to be Sean's first opportunity at regular at-bats. With Rodriguez out, the Braves traded for long time Reds 2B Brandon Phillips. It's a tough loss for the Braves but fantasy wise Sean can be ignored for this season.

Category: Injury Updates


Eduardo Rodriguez (knee) will throw a bullpen session Wednesday, Brian MacPherson of the Providence Journal reports. Rodriguez had tweaked his knee playing in winter ball. (Source: Providence Journal)

Fantasy Impact: Rodriguez is battling veterans Steven Wright and Drew Pomeranz for the final two spots in the Red Sox rotation. The young lefty will need a strong spring to pass the two veterans and also show he is back healthy from his knee injury.

Category: Injury Updates


Orioles ace Chris Tillman will not be on the opening day roster. Tillman received a platelet-rich plasma injection in his shoulder in December and is a few weeks behind schedule. (Source: Roch Kubatko on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Tillman finished the year 16-6 with a 3.37 ERA and a 1.28 WHIP. Tillman has never had good peripherals and is a SP4 at best. We wish Tillman the best but fantasy wise it isn't much of a hit. Expect him back within the first few weeks of the regular season.

Category: Injury Updates


Brock Holt and non-roster invitee Josh Rutledge will compete with Pablo Sandoval for the starting third base job, Brian MacPherson of the Providence Journal reports. (Source: Providence Journal)

Fantasy Impact: Holt will get every opportunity to win the third base job for the Red Sox. But expect Sandoval to have the inside track. If Sandoval is truly in shape then he should be able to take hold of the position. Holt is best when he is playing in a utility role and can play any position on the field except catcher. Holt is not worth drafting in fantasy but is a player to stream during the season when he gets on a hot streak.


Blake Swihart has minor league options left, a situation that could work against him as his main competitors at catcher, Sandy Leon, and Christian Vazquez, are out of options, Jason Mastrodonato of the Boston Herald reports. (Source: Boston Herald)

Fantasy Impact: Swihart had moved to left field from catcher in 2016 but ended his season ended prematurely with an ankle injury in June. It would make sense for the Red Sox to have Swihart spend some time in the minors to get used to catching again. He won't have any value in redraft fantasy leagues but is worth a look in Dynasty leagues.

Category: Injury Updates


The Reds have claimed Nefi Ogando off waivers from the Pirates. (Source: Zach Buchanan on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: In a corresponding move, Homer Bailey was moved to the 60-day DL to free up space for Ogando on the Reds' 40-man roster. Ogando posted a 2.30 ERA in just 15.2 IP for the Marlins in 2016. He will compete for a spot in the middle of the Reds' bullpen.

Category: Transactions