As we are now getting back in the swing of baseball fully and getting stats from the past two weeks it’ll be easier to identify hot hitters. This week it seems there are a few outfielders that have been hot as of late and I will also highlight someone as a speculative add for redraft leagues and more shallow leagues out there.
Mike Tauchman- OF NYY
Mike has been one of the hottest hitters for the Yankees and he is owned in less than 5 percent of leagues on both ESPN and Yahoo. He is hitting over .500AVG over the past two weeks with 2 home runs and eight RBI’s. The injury bug has been hanging out with the Yankees all season and it has allowed guys like Tauchman among others who would normally not see anywhere close to full playing time and he has taken full advantage of it. Brett Gardner just hit the IL on Thursday, and Stanton remains out for the foreseeable future. Hopefully Tauchman can continue to hit when given opportunities and he can add some depth for your fantasy squad. Right now I would add him as a bench spot in 5 OF leagues. I would not be starting him on a regular basis just yet.
Manuel Margot- OF SD
I feel like Margot has been a name in fantasy circles for years. He was supposed to be the next great base stealer and fantasy owners were clamoring to grab him. Though once he reached the majors, the most steals Margot got was 17. As of right now Margot is at 15 stolen bases, so he could easily reach a new career high. Over the past two weeks Margot has stolen 4 bases while hitting .250 AVG. If you need some steals on your team and have room to add Margot I would do it and ride the hot streak. I don’t think we will see the full potential of him with the speed and high average, but he may be starting to figure out how to contribute on the major league level and more importantly for your fantasy teams.
Phillip Ervin- OF CIN
Ervin had himself quite the past two weeks hitting over .500AVG with one home run, but contributing in runs and RBI’s. The Reds outfield is pretty loaded, though if they trade away one or two outfielders, then it could help create some more consistent at bats for Ervin among others. Ervin is intriguing due to being a top prospect once upon a time and is now doing well. Out of the three outfielders he would be the last on my list of adds, but keep an eye on his production and playing time in the future especially with the trade deadline upon us.
I Told You So
This is a new section I am trying out where we look back at players that I’ve already covered and still doing very well whether they surpass the 50% ownership or production.
Kestin Hiura, Tyler O’Neill, Oscar Mercado, Bryan Reynolds
In Yahoo Hiura has surpassed the 50% mark, but ESPN still has him below. If you are in a league on ESPN and Hiura is not owned in your league then you need to make room for him right now. The guy will continue to rake the rest of the season and ESPN had him as the top rated hitter over the past two weeks. The same can be said for Bryan Reynolds, he has been nothing expect solid for months now. If you need an OF 4 then Reynolds is your guy. He is owned in less than 25% on ESPN and 30% on Yahoo. I featured him a few weeks ago, then our very own Kyle Amore wrote an article on him last week. Go read both and we will tag team convince you to add Reynolds. Mercado is the long term player to own here. He has the potential to be a top 30 OF next season if he keeps it up. That’s not a guarantee, but at this point I would not consider it crazy to give him that type of ranking. Then there’s Tyler O’Neill, who was written about just last week and continues his tear of hitting around .300 with 4 home runs over the past two weeks. I could see the Cardnials trading O’Neill, Trading another OF to give O’Neill some more playing time, or doing absolutely nothing with the situation. He will be one guy I keep my eye on with the deadline.
This third section is dedicated to Kyle Tucker (OF HOU). I won’t do a deep dive on his skills as I did that in a Prospect Preview article earlier this season (go check it out). The reason I bring him back up is that he is tearing the cover off the ball in AAA and has started to learn how to play 1B. To be honest, I thought that Alvarez would be playing 1B and Tucker in the OF, but as long as we get both in an already deep Astro lineup, then I would love to give Tucker duel eligibility. If you can afford to hold a bench spot for him, then I would add Tucker and just wait. I don’t think they can keep him down much longer even though there is no clear playing path. One big positive for Tucker to come up quickly, is that they’ve now gotten rid of A.J. Reed and Tyler White. Yuli Gurriel is still there and doing pretty well, but mostly everyone would rather Tucker over Yuli.