Fantasy Baseball

2018 Fantasy Baseball Week 18 Hitting Planner: Philly Special

on

On Wednesday night the Red-Sox and Orioles decided to postpone their game midway through the second inning. The Red Sox were leading 5-0 at the time and now have to start over again.

Can I just say how unprofessional the league and crew in Baltimore are for even starting the game? Even the simplest check on the weather forecast would have shown that the rain was not going to stop for hours. Now the Red Sox have lost David Price‘s turn in the rotation in addition to J.D. Martinez and Andrew Benintendi losing home runs.

It really bugs me that the home team has control over whether or not the game will be played, as opposed to an impartial party at the league head office.


There’s nothing else I want to rant about this week so let’s get to the Hitting Planner!

2018 Fantasy Baseball Week 18 Hitting Planner

Get customized Fantasy Baseball advice for your team using MyPlaybook from FantasyPros.

Embed from Getty Images

Offense To Target – Philadelphia Phillies

The Phillies offense has been mediocre despite all the young talent on the team. They rank 20th in WAR, 19th in runs scored, and 24th in slugging percentage. Despite the shortened schedule, the Phillies should be in for a good week.

Before the juicy portion of their schedule, Philadelphia will need to get past two games in Boston. Fortunately, they’ll avoid Chris Sale and line up against David Price and Brian Johnson. Price has slowly been working his way back to form but has given up 15 runs in his last four starts. Johnson is new to the rotation and has not yet pitched past the fifth inning. It’s not an ideal matchup, but it shouldn’t scare owners into benching their Phillies.

Now on to the main event. Phillies bats should be the number one target for streamers late next week, as they’ll have a four-game series against the Marlins’ putrid pitching staff. No one on the Marlins’ pitching staff should scare owners away. As a team, they rank 28th in WAR, 25th in ERA, and 26th in K-BB%. None of their regular starters have an ERA under 4.oo and their WAR leader is Jose Urena with a mark of 1.4.

Notable Players

Maikel Franco has been good over the last 13 games, hitting five home runs and driving in 10 runs. He is only owned in 33% of ESPN leagues, so owners should take advantage before he inevitably goes on a 0-for-30 slump. Nick Williams is another good under-the-radar option, who should get more starts with Aaron Altherr demoted to Triple-A.

Jorge Alfaro has been better of late, collecting a hit in seven of his last eight games. Any owners who stream catchers should have Alfaro on their radar.

Embed from Getty Images

Offense To Avoid – Pittsburgh Pirates

The Pirates don’t have the worst offense, but it is incredibly difficult to recommend them in weekly leagues for Week 18. They will only pay five games this week, and their matchups are tough to navigate.

First, Pittsburgh will take on the division rival Cubs at home. The Cubs staff ranks eighth with a 3.74 ERA, but struggles with their advanced stats, ranking 28th in K-BB%. Two of the better Cubs pitchers, Jon Lester and Mike Montgomery, will be on the hill for the mini-series, making it difficult for the Pirates that struggle against left-handers.

After another day off, Pittsburgh will welcome the Cardinals for a three-game series. The Cardinals staff is much friendlier to advanced metrics, ranking 13th in WAR, while not lagging far behind in ERA (3.90). The Cardinals rotation is in flux right now, with new starter Austin Gomber taking the hill before Jack Flaherty.

Notable Players

Avoiding the Pirates this week will come down to volume and platoon splits. If the schedule doesn’t change, the Pirates will face left-handers in three of their fives games. Gregory Polanco, Josh Harrison, and Starling Marte are all batting below .250 against lefties and are tough sells in a short week. Corey Dickerson is hitting well against lefties (.310) but has not hit a home run against them all season.

Embed from Getty Images

Offense To Target – Chicago White Sox

Seems crazy, right? After months of telling you the White Sox are awful, I find myself recommending their offense for next week. This will not be a regular thing. As a whole, the Chicago offense is still one of the worst in the league. This week they will be sneaky plays thanks to a couple of good matchups.

Chicago will start their week at home against the Royals. Outside of a series at Coors, playing the Royals is a best-case scenario for any batter. The KC pitching staff has been horrendous, ranking dead last in ERA (5.33), K-rate (18.1%), and WAR (0.8). They are the only staff in the majors with an ERA above 5.00, and a total WAR below 0.8. They also rank 29th in HR/9. If there was ever a time to go all-in with the White Sox batters, it would be against Kansas City.

The White Sox’s second matchup will be harder, but not as hard as the stats make it seem. The Rays staff is performing very well, despite running a 3-to-4 man rotation for most of the year. However, with All-Star Blake Snell on the disabled list, the Rays staff is more vulnerable now than at any point in the season. Chris Archer has a 4.30 ERA and their next best starter, Nathan Eovaldi, was just traded to the Red Sox.

Notable Players

Jose Abreu has two multi-hit games this week and should continue the trend moving into Week 18. Tim Anderson and Yoan Moncada won’t quite be the OBP black holes that owners are used to, especially against the Royals. Matt Davidson has been awful after a hot start to the season, but he should produce if given regular at-bats this week.

Embed from Getty Images

Offense To Avoid – Cincinnati Reds

Owners better hope they get everything they need out of their Reds players early in the week because they will be in tough against the Nationals over the weekend.

Their early series will be against the Tigers, where they’ll line up against Matthew Boyd and Mike Fiers. Boyd has been Detroit’s most consistent pitcher but has stumbled a bit lately. Fiers has actually been very good recently, giving up just six earned runs in his last five starts. I’m not saying you should fade the Reds against him. I’m just saying he hasn’t been a complete dumpster Fier.

The next series against the Nats is where the Reds batters could struggle. Max Scherzer is an automatic sit for any batter not named Joey Votto. Gio Gonzalez has not been as good as he was earlier in the season, but he’s still a dangerous pitcher to go against. As a whole, the Washington staff is 10th in WAR and eighth in K-BB%.

Notable Players

Votto, Scooter Gennett, and Eugenio Suarez are probably going to stay in your lineup, but temper expectations at least against Scherzer and Gonzalez. It may be best to sit Jose Peraza, Billy Hamilton, and Adam Duvall in weekly leagues. The lineup will be weaker without Jesse Winker in the lineup as well.

Platoon Targets

Embed from Getty Images



Gerardo Parra, OF, Colorado Rockies

Parra is definitely a right-handed specialist, slashing .327/.380/.452 against right-handers versus his awful .185/.230/.235 line against left-handers. The Rockies will be facing at least five righties this week, making it a perfect opportunity to use Parra in weekly leagues. Owners don’t need to worry about the extended road trip, as Parra actually hits better on the road than he does at Coors. Figure that one out.


Check out the rest of our great 2018 Fantasy Baseball content.

>

About Jonathan Chan

Winning fantasy leagues since 2004. Losing them for much longer. Follow Jonathan on twitter @jchan_811 and he'll be ready for all your questions!

Recommended for you

1 Comment

  1. Pingback: Saturday, July 28, 2018 - Fantasy Baseball Links - FantasyRundown.com

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.