2017 Fantasy Baseball Week 11 Rookie Report: The Verdict is in

by Dennis Sosic

There is a NEW King of New York. His name is Aaron Judge.

Aaron Judge is a giant. He is 6'7" 282 lbs. with all of the power in the world. The giant is very successful. He is slashing .344/.450/.718 with 21 homers. Yet he is humble.

Judge is the most exciting player in baseball. The Yankees even carved out a section of 18 seats starting 15 rows back from Judge’s place in right field at Yankee Stadium, and named it “The Judge’s Chambers."

Judge is leading the Yankees' youth movement to first place in the AL East and is making baseball fun again in New York. He has become the most popular player in baseball as he appears set to become the first fan-elected rookie voted to start an All-Star Game.

The Verdict is in: Aaron Judge is the best rookie in baseball and favorite to win the AL MVP.

Let's take a look at the verdicts on the remaining rookies and prospects in the Week 11 Rookie Report.

2017 Fantasy Baseball Week 11 Rookie Report

In "The Show"

PlayerPositionTeam
Ozzie Albies2B/SSAtlanta Braves
Albert Almora, Jr.OFChicago Cubs
Andrew BenintendiOFBoston Red Sox
Josh Bell1BPittsburgh Pirates
Cody Bellinger1B/OFLos Angeles Dodgers
Jose BerriosSP Minnesota Twins
Ty BlachSPSan Francisco Giants
Jorge BonifacioOFKansas City Royals
Parker BridwellSPLos Angeles Angels
Byron BuxtonOFMinnesota Twins
Matt Chapman3BOakland A's
Matt Davidson3B/DHChicago White Sox
Paul DeJong2BSt. Louis Cardinals
Rafael Devers3BBoston Red Sox
Jacob FariaSPTampa Bay Rays
Derek FisherOF Houston Astros
Clint FrazierOF New York Yankees
Kyle FreelandSPColorado Rockies
Ben GamelOFSeattle Mariners
Mitch HanigerOFSeattle Mariners
Ian Happ2B/OFChicago Cubs
Austin HedgesCSan Diego Padres
Jeff HoffmanSPColorado Rockies
Aaron JudgeOFNew York Yankees
Dinelson LametSPSan Diego Padres
Manuel MargotOFSan Diego Padres
Trey ManciniOFBaltimore Orioles
German MarquezSPColorado Rockies
Ketel MarteSSArizona Diamondbacks
Yoan Moncada2B/3BChicago White Sox
Jordan MontgomerySPNew York Yankees
Sean NewcombSPAtlanta Braves
Hunter RenfroeOFSan Diego Padres
Amed RosarioSSNew York Mets
Antonio SenzatelaSPColorado Rockies
Lucas SimsSPAtlanta Braves
Dansby SwansonSSAtlanta Braves
Nick WilliamsOFPhiladelphia Phillies
Bradley ZimmerOFCleveland Indians

Lewis Brinson, OF, Milwaukee Brewers

Lewis Brinson, the Brewers' number one prospect, was promoted to the big leagues by the Brewers after placing Jonathan Villar on the disabled list due to lower-back strain. He could be here for the long haul as Ryan Braun is still working his way back from a calf injury and Keon Broxton is slumping after being inconsistent mostly this season.

Brinson started in left field and batted leadoff in his major league debut. He drew two walks and stole a base. The outfielder was hitting .312/.397/.503 with six homers, 25 RBI and seven stolen bases so far this season with Triple-A Colorado Springs. He owns a 1.040 OPS over 37 career Triple-A games.

The biggest question mark concerning his abilities is his strikeout rate, and with 45 of them this year through 45 games, it will be something to look at during his time with the big-league club.

Lewis Brinson will be the Brewers center fielder of the future. He will supply homers and steals with a decent average.  He is a definite add in all fantasy formats.

 Jacob Faria, SP, Tampa Bay Rays

Tampa Bay Rays called up Jacob Faria when they placed Matt Andriese on the disabled list. Andriese is now ruled out until August. Faria will likely get the opportunity to occupy a full-time role in the Rays' rotation as long as his production continues.

Faria threw 6.1 innings of one-run ball in his major league debut and he boasts a 6- 1 record with a 3.07 ERA, 1.125 WHIP, and 84/22 K/BB ratio in 58.2 innings this season at Triple-A. The right-hander was leading the International League with his 84 strikeouts in 58.2 innings prior to his call-up.

Jacob Faria should be rostered in all leagues and started in AL-Only leagues but only streamed in mixed leagues until he is proven.

Sean Newcomb, SP, Atlanta Braves

The highly touted left-hander is filling the rotation spot vacated by Bartolo Colon, who was placed on the disabled list with a strained oblique.

Newcomb posted a 2.97 ERA and a 1.35 WHIP with 74 strikeouts in 57.2 innings with Triple-A Gwinnett. Unfortunately, he did struggle with control in the Minors with a career 4.8 BB/9 rate. He struck out five-or-more batters in all 11 starts.

The southpaw tossed just 96 pitches (70 strikes) in a stellar Major League debut after being called up from Triple-A Gwinnett to start Game 1 of Saturday's doubleheader. He gave up four hits and one unearned run and struck out seven in 6.1 innings.

Sean Newcomb is a high-risk, high-reward prospect and should be added in all NL-Only leagues. He is worth a look as a streamer in deeper mixed leagues.

On The Brink

PlayerPositionTeam
Ronald AcunaOFAtlanta Braves
Willie AdamesSSTampa Bay Rays
Chance AdamsSPNew York Yankees
Franklin BarretoSSOakland A's
Tyler BeedeSPSan Francisco Giants
Lewis BrinsonOFMilwaukee Brewers
Walker BuehlerRPLos Angeles Dodgers
Willie Calhoun2B/OFTexas Rangers
Lucas GiolitoSPChicago White Sox
Ronald Guzman1BTexas Rangers
Brent HoneywellSPTampa Bay Rays
Scott Kingery2BPhiladelphia Phillies
Austin MeadowsOFPittsburgh Pirates
Alex VerdugoOF Los Angeles Dodgers

Derek Fisher, OF, Houston Astros

Derek Fisher continues to flash 20/20 potential and be a five-tool corner outfielder at the major league level. His minor statistics are somewhat similar of current Astros' outfielder George Springer. He is hitting for power and stealing bases regularly. In his last two full seasons, he’s hit 43 home runs in 252 games played, good for a home run every 5.86 games.

Unfortunately, Fisher is also striking out on average more than once per game. He fanned 154 times last season in the 129 games he spent at Double-A and Triple-A. Thankfully, he did draw 83 walks to help create a little more balance.

With the Astros running away with the AL West, they will likely be in no rush to get Fisher up. One of the few holes offensively is in the outfield, where Astros left fielders have hit for a combined .199/.276/.338 line using mostly Norichika Aoki. Fisher could be the midseason piece to push them away even further away from their competition.

I would not be surprised if Fisher is a potential trade piece to secure another starting pitcher. If he is dealt, fantasy owners should look to pick him up in various fantasy leagues. Whenever and wherever he arrives, Fisher looks poised to make a fantasy impact.

Amed Rosario, SS, New York Mets

Amed Rosario is one of the top ten prospects in baseball and is hitting .339/.381/.498 with six homers and 11 steals in 61 games. He has already surpassed his career high in home runs while hitting for an even higher batting average than last season. He has shown himself to be big-league ready and that can be a .300 hitter, hit double-digit homers and steal 20 bases per season as a middle-infielder.

With the Mets suffering through a losing season, Neil Walker will likely be on the trading block. In addition, Asdrubal Cabrera and Jose Reyes are not playing well and with the team going nowhere fast, there is no reason to continue to play those guys.

Rosario is a middle-infielder who can be a three-category contributor in fantasy leagues. He will not win you a fantasy title but he can be an upgrade at your middle-infield slot in NL-Only and deep mixed leagues.

Three Up

Aaron Judge, OF, New York Yankees

I could list Aaron Judge in this UP section weekly.  Judge is producing a legendary rookie season. He definitely needs to be recognized.

Aaron Judge is now batting .344/.450/.718 with 21 homers, 47 RBIs, and 54 runs. He also has an astounding 1.168 OPS and has even stolen five bases.

Is there anything that this rookie can not do?

He is producing Triple Crown-type numbers while also maintaining a 26 percent strikeout rate, 25 percent is the league average.  Last season, he had a 44.2 percent strikeout rate over 95 plate appearances.

Aaron Judge is well on his way to a 40-homer season and is a front-runner for the AL MVP. While some regression will take place, Aaron Judge is the real deal and will continue to terrorize opposing pitchers.

Kyle Freeland, SP, Colorado Rockies

The rookie southpaw holds a 7-3 record with a 3.34 ERA and 1.34 WHIP in 70 innings pitched so far this season. He has not allowed more than three runs in any of his last three outings. In fact, he has had eight quality starts in his last nine outings.

Freeland has a lofty 57.5 ground-ball rate which lends itself to believe that park factors don't appear to impact him much.  The concerns with Freeland is that his lack of strikeouts at 5.6 K/9 and his walk rate of 3.96 BB/9 makes his fantasy value fairly limited. Of course, the most obvious factor concerning his upside is the Coors Field factor. His home ERA is 76 points higher than his road mark.

Kyle Freeland is best utilized as a streaming option in points leagues in his road starts only.

Mitch Haniger, OF, Seattle Mariners

Welcome back Mitch Haniger!

Haniger was activated from the disabled list and made his return yesterday. He has missed six weeks due to a strained oblique. While his recovery came along slower than expected, he returned to the Mariners' lineup as their everyday right fielder and No. 2 hitter.

His presence in the two-hole also helps solidify a potent top half of the Mariners' lineup that includes the trio of Robinson Cano, Nelson Cruz and Kyle Seager. He was rolling into what looked like a breakout season over his first 21 games.  He was hitting .342/.447/.608 with four homers, 16 RBIs and two stolen bases.

It might take Haniger some time to shake the rust off, but once completed, he is a viable fantasy contributor.  If he is somehow available in your league due to an impatient owner, I suggest you pick him up and start him as one of your outfielders immediately. Mitch Haniger is a must-start in all fantasy formats.

Three Down

 Tyler Glasnow, SP, Pittsburgh Pirates

With Jameson Tallion (cancer) returning (awesome news-remarkable comeback) from the disabled list, the Pirates have decided that they have seen enough of Tyler Glasnow. Just a day after allowing six earned runs on 10 hits over four innings of work against Miami on Friday, he finds himself packing to Triple-A Indianapolis.

One of the more heralded pitching prospects heading into the season, Glasnow struggled with his command throughout his 12 starts this season. He has given out two or more free passes in 10 of his 11 starts and averaged a miserable 5.19 BB/9. There have been few signs of progress this season, while posting a 2-6 record with a 7.45 ERA and 1.91 WHIP in his 12 starts. He recorded only three quality starts. In addition, he was unable to pitch more than five innings in nine of his 12 outings.

The big right-hander has strikeout potential (career 8.9 K/), but he has been unable to put it all together. Hopefully, this latest minor league stint will allow him to work out his control issues and come back to the big leagues with more positive results.

Glasnow is safe to drop in all fantasy formats except for dynasty/keeper leagues. In those formats, owners need to hope that he gets his issues straightened out quickly.

Koda Glover, RP, Washington Nationals

After Koda Glover blew his second save of the week, the Nationals placed Koda Glover on the 10-day disabled list with lower back stiffness on Sunday.

Glover reportedly hid a back issue from his manager and teammates. He then reported that he had experienced back stiffness but had tried to pitch through it. He hurt his back in the shower prior to that game but didn't tell anyone until after blowing a save that afternoon.

Glover had converted each of his eight save chances since taking over ninth-inning duties on May 8. He didn't allow a run in the entire month of May.

After the two atrocious blown saves, he now sports a sluggish 5.12 ERA over 19.1 innings. I think the Koda Glover experiment is over, it is time for the Nationals to invest in a real closer.

This entire incident does not bode well for Glover's job security. He will have some type of bullpen role when he does back from the injury.  I would be fairly hesitant to believe that it would be as the closer.  This situation is definitely something to monitor. My recommendation is to stay clear of this bullpen until the Nationals make a trade for a real closer.

Dinelson Lamet, SP, San Diego Padres

It looks like the league has caught up to Dinelson Lamet.

The rookie right-hander had allowed only three runs over his first 10 major league innings. He has allowed 14 earned runs over his last eight frames.

Lamet had a 2-0 record with a 2.70 ERA, 1.10 WHIP and 16:3 K:BB in 10 innings after his first two big-league starts. His current stats show how much he has struggled in his last two starts. Overall, he is now 2-2 with a 8.50 ERA, 1.56 WHIP and a 25/9 K:BB in 18 innings.

Left-handed batters are teeing off on Lamet. They are hitting .333 with five home runs and a whopping 11.32 ERA.

Dinelson Lamet has potential and should be rostered and streamed in NL-Only leagues. He is a risky play in deeper mixed leagues but still worth the hold.


Check out the rest of our 2017 Fantasy Baseball content from our great team of writers.

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