Welcome to the 2021 Fantasy Baseball Week 22 Hitting Planner!
We have entered the home stretch as the calendar has officially turned to September. The regular season is winding down, and with it, comes the end of our Fantasy Baseball seasons.
Of course, we are all at the top of the standings and are looking for that last push to win our leagues. That last push comes from starting the right players and maybe even making the tough call to sit someone with a tough pitching matchup.
It could also come from a smart waiver pickup. A guy can get hot and carry a Fantasy Baseball lineup for weeks. Why not carry one to the promised land?
There are a few teams to target this week while some need to be avoided. Time to jump right into the 2021 Fantasy Baseball Week 22 Hitting Planner.
2021 FANTASY BASEBALL WEEK 22 HITTING PLANNER
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2021 FANTASY BASEBALL WEEK 22 HITTING PLANNER SCHEDULE
Offenses to Target
Team wRC+: 102
The Cincinnati Reds have come on strong as of late, overtaking the Padres for the second Wild Card spot. This is in part thanks to their offense led by guys like Joey Votto, Nick Castellanos, and Jonathan India.
They will be on the road for six games this week, but I still love their schedule. They take on the Iowa Chicago Cubs for three games in Wrigley and then travel to St Louis for a weekend series with the Cardinals.
The Cubs' 4.68 team ERA currently rank 23rd in baseball and the Cardinals are 14th with a 4.10 ERA. Look for the Reds to push for another strong offensive week.
Nick Castellanos continues to hit bombs as the world crumbles around him.
Jonathan India may have already won the NL Rookie of the Year barring a disastrous September. He is also winning some Fantasy Baseball leagues, and I think another big week is in store. Since August 1st, India is hitting .246/.312/.509 with seven home runs, twenty-four runs, seventeen RBIs, two stolen bases, a .348 wOBA, and a 115 wRC+.
Tyler Naquin is back to his old self from earlier this year. The last month has been great, hitting .376/.448/.718 with six home runs, nineteen runs, thirteen RBIs, one stolen base, a .485 wOBA, and a 204 wRC+.
Team wRC+: 101
The Minnesota Twins have arguably been the most disappointing team this season, however, the offense is not to blame. They have had some solid offensive production this season!
This next week, they take on two division foes in the Cleveland Indians and the Kansas City Royals.
They will travel to Cleveland for a four-game series with the Indians who have a 4.34 team ERA, good for 17th in baseball. They will then take on the Royals and their 4.68 ERA that ranks 22nd.
Jorge Polanco has been great all season for the Twins, hitting .272/.331/.487 with twenty-four home runs, seventy-nine runs, seventy-eight RBIs, ten stolen bases, a .348 wOBA, and a 121 wRC+. Over the last two weeks, he is slashing .300/.343/.517 with three home runs, ten runs, sixteen RBIs, a .361 wOBA, and a 130 wRC+. He has been a great source of production in all categories for the entire season.
Max Kepler can be a frustrating player at times for Fantasy Baseball, but when he is hot, he can carry Fantasy Baseball teams. He might be beginning to heat up. Since August 15th, he is slashing .250/.411/.477 with one home run, seven runs, two RBIs, a .381 wOBA, and a 144 wRC+. He has not provided a ton of counting stats over those two weeks, but he is certainly playing well, and I think he is just getting started. Hopefully, that translates to more runs and RBIs as well.
Josh Donaldson is unfortunately taking all the RBIs from guys like Kepler. He has a 172 wRC+ since August 15th, which includes a .311/.382/.623 line with five home runs, eight runs, and fourteen RBIs.
Teams to Avoid
Boston Red Sox
Team wRC+: 106
The Boston Red Sox have been an interesting team to keep an eye on since the All-Star Break. They are still in the playoffs as of this moment but have a tough road ahead of them.
This week will be tough, as they start with one of the best teams in baseball, the Tampa Bay Rays for three games. The Rays bring in a 3.67 team ERA, ranking 6th. Afterward, they will take on the AL Central leaders, the Chicago White Sox who are 7th in team ERA with a 3.74.
I do think the Red Sox has the tools to still play well offensively, but I would be wary of a few of their guys going into this week.
Bobby Dalbec won the AL Rookie of the Month award for good reason in August. He hit .339/.431/.774 with seven home runs, twelve runs, twenty-one RBIs, a .491 wOBA, and a 214 wRC+. I hope I am wrong, but there could be some tough pitching matchups this week, and the Rays especially do a good job of finding weaknesses and exploiting them. This could be one of those tough decisions a Fantasy Baseball manager has to make this week.
I love Jarren Duran long-term. Do not start Jarren Duran this week if he plays. Over the last few weeks, he is hitting .214/.267/.250 zero home runs, six runs, two RBIs, one stolen base, a .234 wOBA, and a 41 wRC+. With the end of the season, we may be running low on FAAB or need to make a last-minute waiver claim, I would rather look elsewhere than Durran this week.
Overall, this offense is still good as a whole. We just need to be careful with their upcoming matchups this week and understand there could be some tough decisions facing some Red Sox players. One bad week could be what does our season in.
Los Angeles Angels
Team wRC+: 99
I do worry about this team this week though. After a one-off game with the lowly Texas Rangers and their 25th ranked team ERA (4.70), the Angels take on both the San Diego Padres and Houston Astros. Yikes.
The Padres have a 3.77 team ERA, good for tenth in baseball, and have actually been better of late. Mainly due to Blake Snell remembering that he was Blake Snell. The Astros have been better with a 3.66 team ERA, ranking fifth in baseball.
David Fletcher has been unplayable over the last month, even by his standards. He is never going to contribute a ton to Fantasy Baseball lineups, but he can usually be used to help anchor the batting average and on-base categories for our teams. Since August 1st, he is hitting .240/.280/.288 zero home runs, eleven runs, five RBIs, eight stolen bases, a .253 wOBA, and a 58 wRC+. That is not good. I know the steals are appealing, but I would advise looking elsewhere.
I know the catcher position is sometimes just anyone with a pulse, but Max Stassi is tough to trust right now. Since August 16th, he is hitting .211/.268/.395 with one home run, eight runs, four RBIs, a .286 wOBA, and an 81 wRC+. Catcher is thin, but there might be better options for the home stretch.
We will look back at Justin Upton one day and realize he had a better career than most of us realized. There have been times where he has carried both lineups and Fantasy Baseball teams for weeks by himself. That is not the case at this moment. Since August 1st, he has been unplayable. His .119/.209/.220 two home runs, five runs, seven RBIs, .198 wOBA, and a 21 wRC+ should not see Fantasy lineups. I know there are deeper leagues or maybe AL-only formats where Fantasy Baseball managers may be desperate. Upton does not need to see lineups this week, go elsewhere.
2021 FANTASY BASEBALL WEEK 22 HITTING PLANNER SLEEPER/WAIVER WIRE PICKUP
Connor Joe, 1B/OF, Colorado Rockies
Playing in Coors Field half of the time is pretty appealing in itself. Add in that Joe has been really good lately and it becomes even more attractive.
His .287/.378/.472 line with eight home runs, twenty-three runs, thirty-five RBIs, with a .367 wOBA, and 116 wRC+ across sixty-two games may not jump off the page. However, since he rejoined the Rockies on July 20th, Joe has been on another level. He is hitting .308/.394/.567 with all eight of his home runs coming in that time frame. We can also add in eighteen runs, twenty-eight RBIs, a .404 wOBA, and a 140 wRC+ and I am ready to pick him up myself.
The Rockies have also been hitting him leadoff pretty regularly. That means more plate appearances for him to rake up stats for our Fantasy Baseball teams. Add in that the Rockies did not sell much at the deadline for whatever reason, and we can have confidence guys like Trevor Story, Charlie Blackmon, and CJ Cron can bring him around to score. Joe might win a few Fantasy Baseball leagues.
Oh, did I mention his home ballpark was Coors Field? If there is a need on the waiver wire, take a look at Joe.
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