Fantasy Baseball Risers and Fallers April 15, 2015  |  Justin Edwards

Nelson Cruz may be stuck in his shirt.

Nelson Cruz may be stuck in his shirt.


Editor’s Note: Be sure to check out our DraftKings and FanDuel Cheat Sheets!

We’re gonna be keeping an eye on some year long Risers and Fallers in this here article. I’ll try and give you a little tidbit on what you should do with all this information but if you’d like some other questions answered please drop some words in the comments below or hit me up on twitter!


The ownership percentages are a median between Yahoo! and ESPN own%.





Adam Jones (99.5%) is making a bid to be the best power hitter in the league with this nasty 8-game stretch to start the season. The OPS stands at 1.398, ISO at .500 (!!), wOBA at .579 plus, he’s got more runs (9) and RBI (11) than games played in. Ew.


Billy Hamilton (99%) being picked way too early is starting to feel like the right decision, after all. Though his 28.1 K% is stupid high, he’s still managed to keep a .250/.344/.393 line which should be right where you’d like it if you own him. B Ham has double the amount of SBs as the guy in 3rd place (8-4) and is tied for the league lead in runs scored among lead-off guys. If you’re hurting in the speed category there’s no better time than the present to go trade for em.


Nelson Cruz (98.5%) gon’ Nelson Cruz. For the fourth day in a row Nelson dropped a baseball over the wall, running the long ball count to 5 on the year. A player’s stock doesn’t get a whole lot higher than this so if you feel you’ve got plenty of power on your team go and try to trade for whatever your heart desires.


Dustin Pedroia (98.5%) shot a laser over the Green Monster last night; his 3rd longball of the year. He’s nearly halfway to his 2014 HR total and hopefully this quick start will help his power stroke throughout the season. Dusty P. didn’t hit his 3rd homerun in 2013 until May 27th, his 3rd dinger in 2014 didn’t come until June 7th.


Mookie Betts (98.5%) is proving all that preseason hype was for a good reason. The Nationals touted rotation has come into Boston and Mookie has effectively farted in their coffee, racking up 6 RBI and 3 SB in the first two games of the series. He’s slugging .457 and even though it’s still early in the season a 30/30 season has to start somewhere…


Kris Bryant (96%) is coming. He’d better not be on your waiver wire.




Billy Butler (61.4%) keeps chugging along and now has a nine game hitting streak or, a hit in each game so far. As long as Billy is smack dab in the middle of this Athletics’ lineup and swinging the bat to the tune of .371/.421/.543 he needs to be in your DH/UTIL spot.


Shane Greene (59.8%) continues to impress as he made Pittsburgh mow the grass with the baseball, piling up a 60.9 GB% on his way to eight scoreless innings and a 2-0 record to begin the season. The rookie is pounding the strikezone, having walked only 1 of the 54 batters he’s faced and leaving the game with a mere 85 pitches (65 strikes) after allowing only 3 hits on Tuesday. If he’s hanging out on the waiver wire go grab him as a flier and hope Detroit’s defense continues it’s efficient ways.




Steven Souza (27%) is supposed to be a speed guy and he proved as much in the 7th inning last night with a bunt-stolen base-bad throw to second-sac fly combination that eventually won Tampa Bay the game, but the bigger story might be his power stroke. The first inning home run prompted a post game Daniel Norris to remark “If I missed my spot it was by a couple of inches and he hit it about 700 feet.” If you haven’t seen it I insist you open up a new tab and check it out. His 37.9 K% is still ungodly but he knocked 20 HRs out between AAA and the majors in 433 PA last season so he’s got 20/20 potential.


Adam Ottavino (23.6%) has been named the Colorado Rockies closer. Obviously Coors Field isn’t where you want your closer to be playing but he’s been there for 3+ years now and it hasn’t seemed to affect him too much; he has only allowed 6 combined HRs there in almost 80 innings over the last two years to go along with a 3.08 ERA across all ballparks. You can safely add him to bulk up your fake bullpen.


Miguel Gonzalez (6.9%) set a career high in strikeouts Tuesday, knocking down 10 Yanks and bringing his season total to 15 after two starts. His ERA sits at 1.42 but keep an eye on his control, he did give away 5 free passes in his first start. I’d go ahead and grab him in a deep league but otherwise wait back and see how he does in his next start against a potent Red Sox lineup.


Anthony DeScalfani (6.4%) spun a gem Tuesday night. He struck out five, walked two and allowed a goose egg in the run column. His first two starts for his new team have been great ones but his left on base % of 93.8 would seem unsustainable. Anthony’s next scheduled start will be Monday in Milwaukee. I’m definitely not plugging him into that matchup but if he can blank that offense I’ll be rushing to the waiver wire.


A.J. Pierzynski (2%) and his 49 year-old bleach blonde tips hit their 2nd homerun of the year. I mean, if you don’t want to leave the C spot empty and you know he’s starting I suppose it couldn’t hurt.


Yangervis Solarte (2%) is starting to sneak his way into the lineup, starting the last four games and compiling a .364/.417/.500 line through 24 plate appearances on the season. Jedd Gyorko will be given the start come Wednesday but it’s obvious that San Diego wants Yangervis’ bat in the lineup and they don’t mind benching people to get it. If the Padres want to slot him in at 1B every once in a while that will just give another him position’s eligibility and make him a little more valuable.






Stephen Strasburg (99.5%) is having a rough go of it after allowing 10 hits and 5 runs in 5 1/3 innings against Boston last night. For whatever reason his curveball isn’t fooling hitters much right now as 13 of his first 14 weren’t even offered at. His K/9 is still high at 8.44 but that’s easier to do when you’ve only lasted 5 1/3 innings in two straight outings as the Mets took him to the woodshed with 9 hits just one week ago.


Adrian Beltre (99.5%) is staying true to form by keeping his K% to a lowly 7.3 but the rest of his game isn’t looking too hot. After a five year low HR total last year he has come out of the gates slow this year, clearing the fences only once and batting .171 with taking a free pass. Father Time catches up to everybody and the days of top-tier third basemanism might be far in the rearview.


David Wright (97.5%) (surprise!) is heading to the DL after pulling his hammy on Tuesday. Hopefully you’ve got an open DL spot on your team, but either way you’re gonna want to keep him on the roster. Go look for some fresh blood on your WW.




Chris Carter (85.9%) added two more strikeouts to his collection but don’t worry he added a second hit to his season!1!1! Sorry, I might own him in a couple leagues or something. He has skyrocketed his slash line to the tune of .077/.043/.077 (yes, that’s a .077 slugging) and his K% is sitting at a girthy 35.7. Keep in mind that he is still one of only three players (Nelson Cruz, Giancarlo Stanton) to hit 37 or more home runs last year, though. I would keep him out of my lineup for the time being but I’m not looking to drop him this early, either.


Brandon Moss (84.6%) will take a seat on the bench Wednesday and it could certainly do him some good. Moss has mustered up 1 single, 1 double and 1 RBI through seven games, striking out 9 times in 24 PAs and earning himself a golden sombrero on Tuesday, striking out 4 times and lowering his batting average to .100.




Adam Eaton (56%) is another AL Central bat having a rough time eeking his average up to the Mendoza line. The White Sox center fielder hasn’t flashed any SB speed, getting caught stealing on his only attempt which is even more sad when you realize he’s only been on base 4 times this season. Adam’s never been one to take too many walks but his BB category sits at exactly zero so far this year.




Marlon Byrd (44.2%) has a total of 1 XBH and 3 RBIs through his first 30 ABs, slugging .200 with a .0383 ISO. Through Monday Byrd has swung at 48.4% of pitches outside the strike zone (11th worst in league) and his managed to miss on 21.8% of his swings (3rd worst in league). His 25 HRs from last year are intriguing but you might need to let him ride the pine until he makes some more contact.




CC Sabathia (28.3%) is indeed not going to return to pre-2013 form. I’m sorry if you were banking on that in any way. CC got knocked around the diamond by a Baltimore lineup that gets to him more often than not; the Yankees hurler is 0-5 with a 5.48 ERA against them in his last seven starts. If you are absolutely desperate for Ks I suppose you can keep him around but he could carry a 5.00+ ERA all season long and that will hurt your team much more than it will help it.


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