A new week of MLB betting and fantasy baseball is upon us, and we wanted to highlight a few players you should target if you’re looking to beef up your bullpen or round out your roster.
Week 15 is both unique and annoying, thanks to all MLB news circulating around the All-Star Break. There are no games until Friday, so there are no two-start pitchers to highlight this week.
Although most players will make only three starts this week, there is still work to be done behind the scenes to bolster lineups heading into Week 16.
FYI, check your league rules because most combine Week 15 and Week 16 into a single week to offset the short slate during All-Star Week.
Second-Half SP Sleepers
While we have a minute to take a deep breath and a few days off from fantasy, it’s essential that you don’t lose sight of first place in your league. If you feel like you are one player away from taking that next step, have a slumping mid-level guy, or a scrub you want to unload, consider picking up one of these potential second-half starts.
If you need to upgrade your rotation, I can think of no better guy owned in less than 30% of leagues than Michael Soroka to add to your roster.
Michael Soroka’s 2Ks in the 2nd. 🍁 pic.twitter.com/SmO5lpiHS7
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) July 5, 2023
His career has been derailed by arm and Achilles injuries after showing so much potential at the start of his career. Due to his injury issues, the righty from Alberta has only made seven starts since the start of the 2020 season.
Soroka is undervalued in the fantasy market after his first three terrible starts, leaving him with a 6.89 ERA in 15⅔ innings.
But Soroka had his best game on Wednesday since 2019 when he held the Cleveland Guardians scoreless over 4⅔ innings. He is still a risk of regressing, but the upside on this guy is high after a breakout 2019 season.
Kenta Maeda is another option if Soroka isn’t available. He pitched well in his first three starts since returning from a triceps injury, with 21 strikeouts in his last 17 innings of work. His ERA in that span is 0.63, and he will slot right back into a solid Twins’ rotation for the second half.
Undervalued Hitters Worth a Look
If you need help at the plate and not the mound, a couple of hitters are rostered in less than 30% of 12-team leagues.
The first name on my list is SS Ezequiel Tovar on the Colorado Rockies. The shortstop is easy to overlook after hitting an awful .213 with zero home runs in April, and many questioning his ability to hit MLB pitching.
But Tovar went against MLB odds and hit .266 in May and exploded with a .323 average in June. While hitting over .300 last month, Tovar also smacked five home runs, stole two bases, and hit five doubles. He walked just twice, but the batting average more than makes up for his lack of patience at the plate.
Tovar has gotten on base in four of his last seven games, with five RBIs in that span.
If you are in a deep league and struggling to find help in the middle of the infield, you could do much worse than Nick Gonzales from the Pittsburgh Pirates. With eligibility at 2B and SS, Gonzales provides stats and flexibility.
Good things come in threes!
— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) July 5, 2023
The rookie is hitting .278 with two home runs and an OPS of .810 in his first 16 games. The talented youngster also has four multi-hit games in his last eight starts.