A new closer report is available. It can be found here.
Keibert Ruiz, C, WAS (CBS: 18% rostered): One of the two prizes in the deadline deal with the Dodgers, the other being Josiah Gray, is expected to get the call on Monday. Keibert Ruiz has enjoyed a monster year down on the farm with 21 homers, 59 RBI, a .310 BA, and .377 OBP in only 284 at-bats. It’s going to be a lot of fun for Nat’s fans watching Josiah Gray tossing to Keibert Ruiz for years to come.
Brad Miller, 1B/2B/3B/OF, PHI (CBS: 8% rostered): Rhys Hoskins season has come to an end courtesy of a torn lower abdomen and the Phillies will look to Brad Miller to man first base in his absence. He’s no Rhys Hoskins but with 13 homers in only 252 at-bat this season should adequately fill the gap in the strong Phillies lineup in September.
Yoshitomo Tsutsugo, 1B/3B/OF, PIT (CBS: 2% rostered): Yeah, he has been a disappointment over the past two years, but lately he’s found some life with the Pirates. Tsutsugo has gone deep four times in limited at-bats since being picked up by the Pirates. A strong finish and he could be playing ball in North America next year instead of returning to Japan.
Ian Happ, 2B/OF, CHC (CBS: 33% rostered): It hasn’t been a great year for the 27-year-old Happ, but a pair of homers this week brings him to `16 on the season. If you can handle the BA hit, there could be some relatively cheap power waiting.
Edmundo Sosa, 2B/SS/3B, STL (CBS: 1% rostered): The ongoing back problems currently suffered by Paul DeJong have created a temporary opportunity for Sosa and so far, so good. The multiple position eligibility combined with the great wheels (two triples Saturday against the Pirates) makes Sosa a solid acquisition in deeper leagues.
Emmanuel Rivera, 3B, KCR (CBS: 1% rostered): The absence of Adaberto Mondesi has created an opportunity in the Royals infield and so far Nicky Lopez is getting it done. Will Emmanuel Rivera be the next to enjoy success?
Rafael Ortega, OF, CHC (CBS: 39% rostered): He’s finding his way into the dismantled Cubs lineup and principally hitting out of the lead off slot. Steady at-bats gives him the opportunity to flash both power and speed, and in 192 at-bats this year has done exactly that, hitting eight homers and an equal number of stolen bases. This makes for an intriguing option in deeper Leagues as he should see regular playing time down the stretch.
Connor Joe, OF, COL (CBS: 28% rostered): We mentioned Joe a couple of weeks back and he hasn’t disappointed. He continues to pound the ball and pile up the countables, hi-lited by a grand slam Wednesday against the Cubbies. It’s time for Fantasy owners to be buying that extra cup of Joe!
Leody Taveras, OF TEX (CBS: 8% rostered): The Rangers called up Taveras at the beginning of the week and to say he’s struggling might be an understatement. He’s currently 0-for-16 with 8 strikeouts but does have one theft. Why mention him? He had a decent year at Round Rock and there’s hope we’ll see better days down the stretch and potentially a repeat of the seven thefts we saw last September.
Edward Cabrera, SP, MIA (CBS: 38% rostered): One of the last highly touted rookies to likely get the call this year, Cabrera made his debut this week and kept the Nationals off the board for six innings before stumbling and allowing a pair of homers in the seventh. ECab is looking at a two-start week against the Mets and Phillies and is a must own and roster. If you saved some of that precious FAAB, now is the time to part with it.
Glenn Otto, SP, TEX (CBS: 4% rostered): The Rangers turned to recently acquired Glenn Otto this week and he didn’t disappoint, tossing five innings of two-hit shutout ball with no walks and seven strikeouts against the Astros. Acquired from the Yankees in the Joey Gallo deadline deal, Otto has enjoyed a great year down on the farm. In 95 2/3 innings split between Double and Triple-A he posted a 3.20 ERA, 1.01 WHIP, and an off-the-charts 134 strikeouts in 95 2/3 innings. If the MLB debut didn’t get your attention, those Minor League numbers should. In the event that you don’t have the remaining FAAB to jump into the ECab sweepstakes, Glenn Otto could prove to be a great consolation prize.
Kyle Freeland, SP, COL (CBS: 31% rostered): Since the break, Freeland has started eight games and recorded six quality starts. In the other two outings he went five innings. In his past three starts he has allowed a total of five earned runs over 19 innings and recorded 23 strikeouts. Pitching in Colorado takes him off the radar but right now it shouldn’t.
Carlos Estevez, RP, COL (CBS: 2% rostered): It was an amazing story and quite the run by Daniel Bard, but that run has now come to fruition. The Rockies have turned over the ninth-inning reigns to Carlos Estevez and on Saturday he recorded his first save since May 24. There should be more to come in September.
Andrew Kittredge, RP, TBR (CBS: 28% rostered): He only has four saves and a handful of holds, but don’t ignore the rest of the program. Kittredge is currently sporting a 1.32 ERA, .90 WHIP, and 67 strikeouts in 61 1/3 IP. Those numbers count!
Paul Sewald, RP, SEA (CBS: 41% rostered): It’s still a bullpen-by-committee in Seattle, but there is no doubt that Sewald is at the head of that committee. The stuff is absolutely filthy as the 72 strikeouts in 44 1/3 IP will attest. Toss in the eight wins, seven saves and great peripherals and Sewald becomes a must-own in all formats.
Adam Ottavino, RP, BOS (CBS: 18% rostered): Matt Barnes struggles have finally prompted the Red Sox to make a move and they are hoping that Adam Ottavino proves to be the answer. With saves on both Friday and Saturday there is no doubt as to who currently owns the ninth inning in Beantown.
Garrett Whitlock, RP, BOS (CBS: 18% rostered): Now that Adam Ottavino has moved into the closer role, guess who next-in-line in Boston for saves? Yes, rookie Garrett Whitlock, and for good cause. In 63 IP he has one save, 13 holds, an ERA of 1.57 and a 1.07 WHIP. Toss in the 71 strikeouts and there’s a good reason he has now moved into the setup role in Boston.
Sergio Romo, RP, OAK (CBS: 2% rostered): The A’s have determined that it’s time to give incumbent closer Lou Trivino a break. Jake Diekman and Andrew Chafin will also be included in the mix for saves, but as it currently stands, Sergio Romo should get the bulk of the save opportunities until the potential return of incumbent Trivino.
Frank Schwindel, 1B, CHC (CBS: 23% rostered): Schwindel has gone 23-for-65 with four homers and 15 RBI since being acquired at the trade deadline from the A’s. That should guarantee a steady diet of at-bats over the balance of 2021 and an opportunity for Fantasy teams to pad those countables.
Nicky Lopez, 2B/SS, KCR (CBS: 14% rostered): Lopez has been tearing up the base paths lately with seven of his 17 stolen bases coming in the past week. There won’t be any red lights flashed in Kansas City down the stretch.
Nick Solak, 2B/OF, TEX (CBS: 23% rostered): The hot start was followed by a huge slump and eventual demotion, but he’s back and ready to prove that the stellar April was no fluke. Solak has nothing left to prove at Triple-A, going 30-for-85 with a .409 OBP during his recent demotion, and hopefully proves that point over the next five weeks.
Kevin Smith, SS, TOR (CBS: 4% rostered): The potential demonstrated in 2018 never materialized until this season when he bounced back rather nicely with 19 homers, 16 thefts and a solid .369 OBP at Triple-A Buffalo. He could struggle to find at-bats in a rather crowded Jay’s lineup so is best left for AL-only formats at this time.
Brandon Marsh, OF, LAA (CBS: 21% rostered): The fact that Marsh has gone 9-for-26 in his past seven games is a pretty good indicator that he’s starting to settle as an everyday player. A solid finish to the 2021 season will hold him in good stead for 2022.
Tyler Naquin, OF, CIN (CBS: 51% rostered): Naquin is on a tear, going 11-for-22 with a pair of home runs in his past six games. He led off today with his third home run of the week. Go get him!
Lane Thomas, OF, WAS (CBS: 1% rostered): Since getting called up on August 15, Thomas has gone 6-for-11 with four runs scored and on Saturday found himself batting in the leadoff slot. The Cards do have a history of traded players finding success outside of Busch Stadium. Will Thomas be the next?
Miles Mikolas, SP, STL (CBS: 23% rostered): A Miles Mikolas sighting has finally occurred. He tossed five solid innings against the Pirates this week allowing two runs (both unearned) and striking out five. He’s got the Pirates again next week. Let’s hope that the shoulder and forearm problems that have plagued him this season are clearly in the rear-view mirror.
Chris Archer, SP, TBR (CBS: 18% rostered): The 32-year-old righty missed all last season after undergoing thoracic outlet surgery and has been on the IL this season dealing with a forearm strain. He is finally looking at a return to the mound this afternoon against the White Sox. That should give us a good opportunity to see how he looks before having to spend some of that remaining FAAB tonight. Bid accordingly.
Bailey Ober, SP, MIN (CBS: 12% rostered): In his past six starts Ober has settled in rather nicely and hasn’t allowed more than three earned runs in any of those outings. For those looking at a high-risk streaming option, Ober has the Red Sox and Brewers on the agenda in a two-start week.
Nestor Cortes, SP, NYY (CBS: 25% rostered): In his past two starts against the White Sox and Twins, Cortes has gone six and seven innings respectively allowing only a total of three earned runs. Toss in the 14 strikeouts and those two starts carry even more weight. That should get him another start this week against the A’s in Oakland, one in which having him on your active roster would be the wise option.
J.A. Happ, SP, STL (CBS: 31% rostered): Happ has looked very good in his past three starts holding the Pirates (twice) and Royals to a total of three earned runs over 17 2/3 innings. He’s facing the Pirates again this coming week, making for a fine streaming option in both roto and H2H formats.
Rowan Wick, RP, CHC (CBS: 4% rostered): There might not be many games to save, but with Wick already posting four scoreless appearances since returning from the IL on August 10, he could find himself working his way into the mix for saves in relatively short order.
Drew Steckenrider, RP, SEA (CBS: 7% rostered): It’s a true bullpen-by-committee in Seattle, and with Diego Castillo on the sidelines dealing with a shoulder issue, it leaves Steckenrider and Paul Sewald (34% rostered) fighting for saves. Both will get their fair share of opportunities over the balance of the season.
Alex Jackson, C, MIA (CBS: 1% rostered): Incumbent Jorge Alfaro has been playing more games recently in the outfield, creating opportunities for Jackson. The BA will always be a challenge, but there is no doubt that he can hit the ball a long way when he does connect.
Connor Joe, OF, COL (CBS: 8% rostered): With four homers and ten RBI since the beginning of August, Connor is proving to be no average Joe!
Bobby Dalbec, 1B, BOS (CBS: 27% rostered): Dalbec is heating up…no…he’s on fire. In his past seven games, he has gone 9-for-15 with three homers and 12 RBI. Go get him while the getting’s good.
Jake Meyers, OF, HOU (CBS: 3% rostered): Since getting the call at the end of July, Meyers has seen sporadic at-bats, but after yesterday’s two-homer five RBI effort that workload could be on the rise. In AL-only and 20-team formats he’s worthy of our attention.
Corey Dickerson, OF, TOR (CBS: 25% rostered): The Jays can breathe a sigh of relief as the ankle injury suffered by George Springer yesterday looked a lot worse than it in fact was. Springer will still likely miss a few games heading into next week and in deeper Leagues, Corey Dickerson will more than likely be the beneficiary.
Bradley Zimmer, OF, CLE (CBS: 5% rostered): “Zimm” is now up to eight stolen bases on the year. He is working his way into everyday at-bats and those stolen base numbers should have our attention.
Reynaldo Lopez, SP, CWS (CBS: 5% rostered): Carlos Rodon is dealing with a shoulder issue forcing Lopez back into the rotation. He’s pitching well, sporting a 1.59 ERA and .71 WHIP in 18 innings, and looks to have a two-start week against Oakland and Tampa Bay on the schedule.
Mitch White, SP, LAD (CBS: 6% rostered): Another Dodgers starter, Julio Urias, finds his way to the IL and the Dodgers are forced into calling on their depth once again. With David Price already in the rotation it appears as if Mitch White will get the next phone call and a potential two-start week with the Pirates and Mets shouldn’t be ignored.
Tyler Gilbert, RP, ARZ (CBS: 1% rostered): Tyler Gilbert is the reason we love the game of baseball. An unhearalded rookie tossing a no-hitter in his debut is nothing short of amazing and had only been accomplished three times in the history of the game until yesterday. My heartfelt congratulations to Tyler Gilbert! Now we move forward to reality check time. Gilbert throws a 90-mph heater and is pitching in a pitcher’s park. He appears to have the Phillies next on the schedule. Remember, when placing your FAAB bids tonight, that we’re paying for what he has the potential to do for our teams in the future, not what he did Saturday night against the Padres.
Huascar Ynoa, SP, ATL (CBS: 66% rostered): Ynoa is on the verge of a return from the broken hand that has kept him sidelined since mid-May. What better way to return to the Braves rotation than a two-start week against the Marlins and Orioles.
Alex Colome, RP, MIN (CBS: 39% rostered): We mentioned Alex Colome last week as the likely candidate to be earning saves in the Twin Cities and with three in the past week has now confirmed that fact. He’ll be a bit pricier this week, but if you’re looking for saves should be part of your FAAB spending tonight.
Joe Barlow, RP, TEX (CBS: 5% rostered): Spencer Patton got his shot and failed so the Rangers are looking to the 25-year-old Barlow to pick up the slack in the ninth inning. In 15 appearances this year with the Rangers, totaling 13 2/3 innings, he has struck out a total of 18 and allowed only one earned run. He picked up his first save Friday night against the A’s. Set the bar high on Barlow!
Corey Knebel, RP, LAD (CBS: 7% rostered): It didn’t take long for the Dodgers to put Knebel into a high-leverage situation. A total of three games to be exact and he rewarded them with a save, his third of the season. Kenley Jensen hasn’t found the fountain of youth so there should be a fair number of save opportunities for Knebel as we move into the last six weeks of the season.
Zack Littell, RP, SFG (CBS: 1% rostered): Remember when Jake McGee was the lock-down closer for the Giants? Well, he has been struggling of late and Littell with two saves and one win in his past four appearances is helping to pick up the slack. Littell wouldn’t be the first pitcher, and more than likely not the last, that the Giants have turned into a success story in 2021.
Brandon Belt, 1B, SFG (CBS: 24% rostered): It’s time to revisit the Belt for HOF discussion. He returned from his most recent IL stint on Thursday and in three games since returning has hit three balls out of the park. This leaves him six homers shy of the never attained 20-homer mark with 51 games left on the schedule. I’m betting he finally gets there.
Kyle Farmer, 1B/2B/SS/3B, CIN (CBS: 43% rostered): I’ve been trying to forget about Kyle Farmer every week, but every week he does something that is far from forgettable. The hits just keep on coming. Can I explain it? No, but I’ve given up trying. Just add him to your Fantasy squad and hope the hit parade keeps on a keeping on.
Josh Rojas, 2B/SS/OF, ARZ (CBS: 47% rostered): Josh Rojas return from a dislocated pinkie looks to be just around the corner. He has been one of the few bright lights in a dismal year in Arizona and should return to the top-of-the-order and provide opportunities to boost your runs scored numbers this week.
Hoy Jun Park, SS/OF, PIT (CBS: 2% rostered): I mentioned back in Week #15 that I thought the Yankees might give Park a shot and was wrong. Instead, they moved him to the Pirates who have given him an opportunity and he’s holding his own. Since the trade he has gone 8-for-21, batting mainly at the top-of-the order. In deeper and NL-only formats, he’s worthy of our attention.
Carter Kieboom, 3B, WAS (CBS: 19% rostered): We mentioned Carter Kieboom last week with cautious optimism and so far, so good. In his first full week in the Nationals lineup he went 8-for-23 with two homers and six RBI. Based on the hot start the interest level and related FAAB spending should be a bit higher this weekend.
Odubel Herrera, OF, PHI (CBS: 12% owned): It has been a good week for Odubel Herrera as he has slugged two homers and driven in five runs. He should be hitting at the top-of-the-order down the stretch, and with Jean Segura, Bryce Harper, J.T. Realmuto, and Rhys Hoskins hitting behind him, score a ton of runs.
Lewis Brinson, OF, MIA (CBS: 2% rostered): I swore it wouldn’t happen, but here we are. Yes, I’m recommending Lewis Brinson this week. Why? He has gone 8-for-21 with a homer and seven RBI in his past six games and last night he did the unthinkable and took a walk. He has had a good week, something the rest of the Marlin offense hasn’t.
Edward Olivares, OF, KCR (CBS: 10% rostered): Three homers in the span of four games should propel him into everyday at-bats moving forward. Ryan O’Hearn should not be a stumbling block to opportunities for the young Kansas City outfielder. Let’s hope that the Royals agree!
Daniel Lynch, SP, KCR (CBS: 19% rostered): The horrid start to Lynch’s career has been replaced by cautious optimism as he has now reeled off a string of three solid starts, against the Tigers, Jays, and White Sox. It’s time to give him another look in deeper Leagues.
Tanner Houck, SP, BOS (CBS: 42% rostered): The question would be is their room in the Boston rotation for the 25-year-old Houck once Chris Sale returns? I believe there is, but only time will tell if Boston feels the same way. A small bid right now is a far better option than waiting to find out and parting with a big chunk of that remaining FAAB.
Luis Gil, SP, NYY (CBS: 23% rostered): Round One went surprising well. Gil tossed six shutout innings Tuesday against the Orioles. Round Two is Sunday, again against a mediocre offense in the Mariners. The stuff is good, but the big bugaboo has always been the free passes. This year he allowed 36 walks in 60 innings between Double and Triple-A. He is definitely worthy of our attention, but you might want to leave him on the bench next week when he’ll be facing off against the vaunted White Sox offense at Guaranteed Rate Field.
Vladimir Gutierrez, SP, CIN (CBS: 30% rostered): Gutierrez has enjoyed an inconsistent first year in Cincinnati with plenty of both highs and lows. It’s not unexpected. What should have our attention are two things. One, he has reeled off a string of three good starts. Secondly, the Reds have a total of 20 of their remaining 51 games against the Cubs, Marlins, and Pirates. It doesn’t get much better than that, does it?
Marco Gonzales, SP, SEA (CBS: 45% rostered): It hasn’t been a great season for Gonzales, but in his last three starts he has allowed a total of three earned-runs, including tossing 6 2/3 shutout innings in the Bronx Zoo in his last outing. He has the rather inept Ranger’s offense at T-Mobile Park up next. It’s time to find a home for him on your active roster for that next start.
Ross Stripling, SP, TOR (CBS: 40% rostered): A rough patch saw many deserting the one-time Dodger, but lately Stripling has bounced back rather nicely, hi-lited by six shutout innings against the Indians in his last outing. It’s time to jump back on the bandwagon!
Griffin Jax, SP, MIN (CBS: 3% rostered): Jax looked to be seriously overmatched, getting slapped around in his first five appearances to the tune of 17 earned runs in 17 2/3 IP. Then came the sixth appearance where he allowed only one-earned over four innings against a very good White Sox offense. He followed that up with back-to-back solid outings against the Cards and Astros. In AL-only Leagues that should be enough to garner our attention.
Jonathan Loaisiga, RP, NYY (CBS: 26% rostered): Aroldis Chapman has found his way to the 10-day IL with left elbow inflammation. The good news is that an MRI confirmed there is no structural damage. Until Chapman returns, Loaisiga and his 2.48 ERA and strikeout-per-inning potential will move into the closer role and should excel.
Alex Colome, RP, MIN (CBS: 22% rostered): The Twins brought in Alex Colome this year to help stabilize their bullpen and like so many other things in Minnesota this year it simply didn’t work out. Taylor Rogers moved into the closer role and is now hurt and may not pitch again this season. Hansel Robles was traded to the Mets at the deadline. That would leave Rocco Baldelli with Alex Colome once again closing out games and with two in the past week should prove to be the preferred option in Minnesota for the balance of 2021.
Manuel Rodriguez, RP, CHC (CBS: 2% rostered): I sure didn’t see Rodriguez moving into a position of prominence this early but kudos to the Cubs for giving the kid and the future a good look down the stretch. He earned his first save this week against the Rockies and then got lit up in his next outing courtesy of the White Sox. For those playing in Dynasty Leagues, get him stashed away now as the Cubs will be looking at the kid and hoping for success not only this year but moving forward into 2022.
Dylan Floro, RP, MIA (CBS: 19% rostered): All the cash was on Anthony Bender to assume the closer role when Yimi Garcia was moved at the trade deadline. Everyone forgot about Dylan Floro except the Marlins. With two saves in the past week, it’s time we remembered.