Who’s on the rise in 2022? Yahoo Sports’ Scott Pianowski answers that question with three players who are scorching early.
SCOTT PIANOWSKI: Scott Pianowski, Yahoo Sports. I know we’re early in the baseball season, but fantasy values are moving up, they’re moving down. I’m going to talk about three players I’m more excited about today than I was before the season started.
Going to start with Gavin Lux. This is a hot prospect of the Dodgers a couple of years ago. Didn’t work out. But he’s in the starting lineup now. Remember, the Dodgers traded AJ Pollock right before the season, created a spot for Lux. He hasn’t struck out yet. Very encouraging there.
And this team is a little bit on the sneaky old side. There’s five starters in this lineup 29 years of age or older. So even though Lux is near the bottom of the lineup now, I don’t think he has to stay there. If somebody hits a slump, if somebody gets hurt, I could see him maybe batting first or second later in the season. I’m all about Gavin Lux, and he’s still available in about 2/3 of Yahoo leagues and will qualify at three different positions. So his value of him on the rise.
The Chicago Cubs, I can’t guarantee you they will compete for the NL Central Division title. But I can say that they’ve really made a great move getting Seiya Suzuki into their outfield. He looks like a superstar. He’s shown power. He’s shown patience. He almost never swings and misses. And he has the ability, I think, to steal anywhere between 7 and 10 bases.
And we whiffed on this guy in draft season. His final ADP of him in Yahoo was 151. If you were walking into a draft now, I think Suzuki is a top-50, top-60 player. And if he’s on your roster, I want you to treat him as such. The Cubs got this one right. I think they’ll be a competitive team this year. I don’t think they’ll ultimately make the playoffs, but Suzuki probably the betting favorite for NL Rookie of the Year.
One more guy I want you to keep an eye on, Tylor Megill. Now a lot of things haven’t gone right for the Mets. We don’t know when they’ll get Jacob deGrom back. They had to push Max Scherzer off the opening night start, although he’s back on the mound. And Megill has stepped in. 0 walks, 11 strikeouts in two starts. And for all the new stats we have, for all the great stuff that we– all the sabermetrics that’s going on, all the great websites, walks and strikeouts are still one of the best ways to analyze players, especially pitchers. They’re the water of fantasy stats.
When you see somebody striking out guys and not walking guys, that indicates command. That indicates the ability to miss bats. And also Megill, he’s missing bats because his miles per hour on his fastball is almost 2 miles per hour raised from the previous season. So I think Tylor Megill is a mixed league worthy arm all year. He’s still available in maybe a quarter of Yahoo leagues. Somebody you might want to roster if you still have that opportunity.
And, hey, you want to get in the game, it’s not too late. Get your gang together. Join a league at Yahoo Fantasy Baseball. We’d love to have you. Drafts are still available. Why not get in one today?