Welcome to the 2023 Fantasy Baseball Week 21 Stock Up-Stock Down article!
Throughout most of the season, I have tried to give decent angles on whether or not what a player is doing is real or not. Now that we are in the back half of August, the peripherals quite frankly don't matter that much. It's time to put up or shut up, and get those points/stats however you can.
There is not a lot of top-tier analysis below, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't run go add or drop the players listed. There just isn't enough season left to play the "what's real" game. These guys are hot right now, and the why shouldn't matter. Overthinking is how you miss out on the August superstars, so don't do it.
Now, without further ado, let's bungee jump into the 2023 Fantasy Baseball Week 21 Stock Up/Stock Down list!
2023 Fantasy Baseball Week 21 Stock Up-Stock Down
Become an All-Access Member to get access to the Most Accurate Fantasy Baseball Rankings, Draft Tools and more.
If you are already a member, sign in.
Jeff McNeil, 2B/OF, New York Mets
Jeff McNeil has been largely underwhelming this season. The former batting champ is currently slashing .268/.337/.356 with a 99 WRC+ on the season. As we've discussed before, when a guy like McNeil goes cold in the contact department, there isn't a lot in their profile to save them.
Make that a 7-game hitting streak for Jeff McNeil! pic.twitter.com/zS1202qvYC
— SNY (@SNYtv) August 22, 2023
However, since the calendar flipped to August, McNeil has been on fire. So far in August, he is slashing .337/.375/.472 and a 137 WRC+. This may not be legit, and McNeil may just be hot instead of full-on positively regressing, but does it matter? There's less than a month of baseball left, and the time for deep analysis has passed. Roster the hot bats like McNeil and ride them to victory.
Charlie Blackmon, OF, Colorado Rockies
It's been a few years since we saw any version of peak Charlie Blackmon. The 37-year-old Castaway stunt double used to be a legitimate five-category contributor but has been on the back nine of his career since the pandemic.
Charlie Blackmon has hit safely in each of his first six games since being reinstated from the injured list on Aug. 14, going 9-for-20 (.450) with two triples, two home runs, five RBI, four walks and one strikeout.https://t.co/lkmjzAtA6W
— Rockies Club Information (@RockiesClubInfo) August 22, 2023
Blackmon returned from injury in August, and since then is slashing .417/.533/.875 with a 251 WRC+. Now, if this was a month ago, I'd be telling you how it is a good sign but unlikely to last. Very few guys hit .400 for a multi-month chunk of the season. But it's August and the season is almost over, and Blackmon could absolutely maintain this pace at least until your league's playoffs start. If you are pushing to make the dance, Blackmon is one of the best guys you can find on the wire for the home stretch. Go pick him up.
Kerry Carpenter, OF, Detroit Tigers
Kerry Carpenter has been a bit of a surprise this year for Detroit. The 25-year-old is slashing .288/.354/.541 on the season with 19 home runs, and a 145 WRC+ over just 311 At-Bats.
Since June 28th
Spencer Torkelson: 196 PA | 14 HR | 34 RBI | .273/.357/.593 | 158 wRC+ | 1.6 fWAR
Kerry Carpenter: 174 PA | 13 HR | 34 RBI | .297/.362/.582 | 158 wRC+ | 1.5 fWAR
158 wRC+ is tied for 17th in MLB in that time frame. pic.twitter.com/nBnDVBloiM
— Motor City Metrics (@mcmbaseballpod) August 22, 2023
While that line is certainly going to turn heads in the offseason, it is what Carpenter is doing in August that has gotten him on this list. So far, he is slashing .374/.444/.764 with eight home runs. Good enough for a 228 WRC+. Carpenter is currently under 70% rostered and is showing more signs of life than recently injured stars like Mike Trout or Aaron Judge. Don't drop those guys for Carpenter, but he can certainly help pick up their slack until they get right down the stretch. Don't overthink it this time of year, add the guys who are producing today.
Wander Franco, SS, Tampa Bay Rays
I avoided Wander Franco last week because it was the biggest story in baseball and it seemed kind of silly to say his stock dipped after such egregious allegations came out.
However, Franco has now been put on full administrative leave and is almost certainly done for the regular season. If you were holding out hope, it's time to kill that hope. If you're in a keeper league and out of contention, then holding him through the offseason may not be a bad baseball move, but it's going to feel really icky. And it should.
Carlos Estevez, RP, Los Angeles Angels
Carlos Estevez has been great through most of the season. He has converted 26 of 28 save opportunities for the year, and was a top closer in the first half.
Carlos Estevez has a 14.14 ERA (7 games) in the month of August and that could have been much worse if not for that Triple Play in the 9th.
Post All-Star Break he has a 7.80 ERA.
This is after posting a sparkling 1.80 ERA pre-All Star Break with 21 saves.
— AngelsWin.com (@AngelsWin) August 19, 2023
Unfortunately, Estevez has simply stopped getting opportunities in the past month. Not through much fault of his own, as his usage is largely dependent on team success. He was getting around 15 appearances a month over the course of the year, but now that the Angels are really trying, and really failing, that number has dropped. He has 9 appearances in the past 30 days and only 3 saves out of those appearances.
While he may have been a great find early, closers are notoriously fickle, and it may just be that time of year for Estevez. Either way, there is not enough time left for you to hope the Angels provide him with opportunities. Time to cut bait and add the current hot hand in your league.
Thanks for reading the 2023 Fantasy Baseball Week 21 Stock Up-Stock Down. Be sure to check out more Fantasy Baseball content from the F6P team!