Each week, the NERDS will bring you three players who are trending up, and three who aren’t looking so good. A player’s presence in any of these lists will never be injury-related.
Luke Voit, 1B, New York Yankees
The Yankees are the hottest team in baseball, with ten wins in a row. That’s why they have two hitters on the ‘trending up’ list: one of them is first baseman/designated hitter Luke Voit. The slugger was crowned as the AL Player of the Week on Monday, and is hitting .476/.542/.905 with two homers and 11 RBI in his last seven games.
Voit has had to endure lots of injury issues in 2021: his season started late due to knee surgery, and once he was healthy enough to play a handful of games, he injured his oblique. He is now fully healthy, and the Yankees, and fantasy owners who were patient enough to hold on to him or those who scooped him from the wire, are reaping the benefits.
Anthony Rizzo is now in town, but the Yankees will find at-bats for him as long as he is hitting.
Advice: Start with confidence
Giancarlo Stanton, OF/DH, New York Yankees
Stanton is the other Yankee on the ‘trending up’ section of our weekly review. He’s been mashing lately, to the tune of a .400/.500/.950 line, three homers, and eight RBI in his last seven games. He had a home run on a low and away slider against a very good pitcher on Monday, Huascar Ynoa, and is locked in right now.
The problem with Stanton are injuries, but as long as he is healthy, he is worth a place in your starting lineup, especially now that he has outfield eligibility in most leagues. The Yankees’ lineup will make sure he scores and drives in a lot of runs, and the home runs will always be there.
Paul Sewald, RP, Seattle Mariners
We can include a closer here every once in a while, huh? Diego Castillo is supposed to be the ninth-inning man in Seattle, but he is currently injured, so Paul Sewald is no inheriting the role for the time being.
Sewald has been extremely (and surprisingly) dominant this season, with a 2.51 ERA and a 0.91 WHIP, not to mention his 71 strikeouts! In his last five games, he has allowed only three hits and a walk, striking out seven foes.
Now that he is getting saves on top of those beautiful ratios and Ks, his arrow is pointing up.
Advice: Run to your wire to see if he is there
Jarred Kelenic, OF, Seattle Mariners
Jarred Kelenic has been hyped as an uber-prospect for years. He was deemed ready to help the Seattle Mariners for months. However, he has failed to produce in just about every opportunity he has had to this point.
That doesn’t mean he should be ruled out as a dynasty league asset. Yet, his redraft league prospects are not overly optimistic. He is slashing .043/.185/.043 in his last seven games, and .137/.237/.275 in his last 15.
If you own him in dynasty, hold on to him. Don’t even sell low. But it’s OK to move on if you are in a redraft format and need the roster spot. Just know that he could get hot any day now.
Advice: Hold in dynasty, cut in shallow redraft formats
Logan Gilbert, SP, Seattle Mariners
After having a very good 3.51 ERA in his first 10 starts in The Show, Logan Gilbert appears to have hit a wall. In his last seven outings with the Mariners, he has a ghastly 7.56 ERA and a mediocre 1.47 WHIP, severely affecting both rotisserie and head-to-head managers.
His full-season ERA now stands at an ugly 5.16. However, don’t lose faith in him: unless there is a report of an injury, don’t cut ties with him because he is too talented not to turn things around in the stretch run. You may want to bench him for a start or two, though, until he gets back on track.
Advice: Bench, do not drop
Jesus Luzardo, SP, Miami Marlins
To be fair, Jesus Luzardo has been trending down for a while, since he was a member of the Oakland A’s. He was traded to the Miami Marlins at the deadline, but it has been more of the same with his new club.
Luzardo has allowed 19 earned runs in 17.2 innings with Miami, which is… not ideal. He also has a 16/17 BB/K ratio, which is also not the recipe for success. He looks like a drop in redraft formats, only because he is running out of time to implement any delivery, release, or pitch mix changes successfully.
However, if you are in a dynasty format, putting in a buy low offer for him seems like the logical move. The Marlins are very good at developing young pitchers, and Luzardo has all the tools. With a full offseason to work, he could really thrive in 2022.
Advice: Drop in redraft formats, buy low in dynasty