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Fantasy Baseball Today: Beat the waiver wire with Oscar, Shohei Ohtani sets a new career high and more

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It’s Thursday morning and I’m still thinking about Wednesday’s baseball game. We’ve seen two of the most outstanding individual performances by any player in a career, so let’s start with the big name brand – Shohei Otani. He won’t win if the Angles don’t turn things around, but my understanding is that Otani should be MVP every season. These last two games are a perfect example of why. One night, after setting a career high with eight RBIs in one game, Otani took the mound and hit a career-high 13 strikeouts. It’s not often—never—that you see a baseball player hit 21 combined RBIs and strikeouts in two games.

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Joining Otani was Austin Hayes hit the cycle for the first time in his career. Hayes hit the cycle in the sixth inning and got his 10th homer of the season. He has quietly become one of the most inconspicuous writers in the Roto and H2H formats. Hayes is batting .287 with 10 homers, 37 runs and 40 RBI for the season.

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We’ll dive into all of Wednesday’s action, but first make sure you’re all up to date with everything from the Fantasy Baseball Today team at Scott White has parsed a lot of leads to hide them on your lists before they are called in his latest lead report. You can find it here. Chris Towers took a deep dive into Martin Perez’s wormhole. Is it for real? Chris still having doubts? It was a philosophical view of the situation from 30,000 feet, which I think will appeal to everyone who is part of Perez. You can find it here.

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And of course, as always, you can keep an eye on the latest Fantasy Baseball Today as they come out. Apple as well as Spotify.


At this point you don’t start Lucas Giolito in your weekly leagues, and if you bench him again this week, you will come out ahead. Giolito failed again on Wednesday, racking up seven earned runs, 11 hits and three walks in five innings. He struck out only three batters and allowed a whopping 14 hard hits. In Giolito’s last five starts, he has a 9.64 ERA with 11 walks and nine homers allowed! Giolito claims he’s just leaving too many fields inside, and Tony La Russa says that Giolito is completely healthy, but that’s not likely to change anytime soon. For me, Giolito is not a target to buy low – I’d rather keep the player who contributed and avoid him altogether.

How were the substitutions made?

If you drafted Giolito with a premium asset and the pitcher you found to replace him in your lineups started on Wednesday night, you probably started one of those pitchers, so let’s do a quick check.

Michael Wacha quietly turned into another quality start on Wednesday – this time limiting the Tigers to just two runs in six innings. He walked two, struck out seven and allowed five hits through six strong. Vacha is now on a career resurgence with a 2.34 ERA but also at an 85% rate. His lineup is 74%, but despite his recent success, I’m not sure I’ll keep him in my lineup against the Blue Jays next week.

John Gray this is who my boss RJ White chose to work with instead of Giolito, and I’m sure he’s happy with the payoff from that decision. Gray threw out 5 2/3 innings on Wednesday and allowed just two earned runs, four hits and one walk. He also struck out five batters. Gray settled nicely for a nearly two-month stretch as he threw 45 strikeouts in 42 2/3 innings with a 3.41 ERA. He is 67% on the list and gets two starting weeks on the road against the Royals and the Mets. He can stay in the squad.

Ross Stripling He’s always had a talent that goes back to his days with the Dodgers and is having a really solid season. Stripling threw six five-hit innings on Wednesday night and allowed only one walk and one earned run. He also struck out five batters. His ERA is now down to 2.84. Stripling will play the Red Sox and Race next week.

Remaining fast forwards

  • Charlie Morton put together another strong game with nine strikeouts through seven innings with two runs, where he allowed just three hits and no walks.
  • Carlos Rodon beat Morton with seven throws and 10 strikeouts
  • Pablo Lopez had his first quality start since May 30 and showed serious signs of life with seven innings of one unearned ball. His ERA dropped to 2.64.
  • Jordan Alvarez tore apart two more homers, bringing his season total to 21.
  • George Kirby through six scoreless on Wednesday and now has a 3.14 ERA.
  • Nolan Arenado hit home run number 14 and RBI number 48 on Wednesday.
  • Oscar Gonzalez hit a homer with two runs and now has two homers and 13 RBIs in just 96 at-bats. You’ll want to bypass the denial wire by scooping up Oscar now. He makes up 24% of the players in the CBS leagues and will play eight games next week.

News and roster notes

Every night, the Fantasy Baseball Today team dives into everything that’s going on around MLB, from top players to injuries, trades and more. The podcast is a must-listen for any diehard, if I say so myself. Tune in to the podcast to hear the FBT team detail the news and notes below.

  • Fernando Tatis Jr. reported that he had been swinging the bat at about 40% intensity in recent days. He is left with no exact timeline to rock out completely.
  • Max Scherzer struck out six over 3.1 innings with two runs early in rehab on Tuesday. He’s considering starting Sunday against the Marlins.
  • Louis Robert was sent off on Wednesday due to leg pain, although he is expected to be in the lineup on Thursday.
  • George Springer underwent visualization of the left elbow and is considered everyday.
  • Salvador Perez exacerbated a left thumb sprain and is awaiting MRI results.
  • Carlos Carrasco planned to undergo an MRI after leaving the start on Wednesday with tightness in the lower back.
  • Edward Cabrera missed the start of rehab on Wednesday for personal reasons.
  • Eddie Rosario On Thursday, his vision will be reassessed and he hopes to be close to the start of rehab.
  • Jarren Duran will not play in the series in Toronto starting Monday because he is unvaccinated.
  • Glenn Otto returned to Rangers and will likely be activated for Sunday’s COVID-19 game against national teams.
  • Reid Detmers Triple-A was chosen.
  • Prospects moved in line: Oneil Cruz led and Riley Green second.


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