Fantasy Baseball: Top 10 sleeper hitters for Week 2 feature Enrique Hernandez, Scott Schebler
Looking for a hitter to round out your lineup? Scott White shares the best the waiver wire has to offer for Week 2.
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Heading into Week 2 (April 1-7), we still don't have much to go on.
That may be for the best. Being the hot hand can sometimes make a hitter a sleeper for the upcoming scoring period, but it's an immeasurable quality that often detracts from clearer ones like matchups and splits.
For now, we still have the luxury of taking a pure and sober look at the best hitters the waiver wire has to offer, sticking to those owned in less than 80 percent of CBS Sports leagues.
This first one just so happens to be a hot hand after homering twice on opening day. Fair to say the matchups and spits both work in his favor as well.
Now the Dodgers primary second baseman, Enrique Hernandez has certainly demonstrated his power potential and may continue to do so with three games against the Giants pitching staff and three at Coors Field. He has always been a lefty masher, too, contributing an OPS about 150 points higher against them, and has four on tap this week.
Brett Gardner has the luxury of batting leadoff, ahead of all the big bashers, with Aaron Hicks sidelined by a back injury, which should be the case for at least another week. And that week will come against Tigers and Orioles pitchers, including five righties.
Prospect Nick Senzel needs to get healthy before he's any threat to replace Scott Schebler in center field, and while Schebler has always hit lefties well, a full slate of righties should prevent manager David Bell from getting too cute. Those righties are some of the bottom feeders in the Brewers and Pirates rotations, too — and for a full seven games, which makes the Reds one of just five teams with so many.
Despite a quiet spring, Tyler White appears to have a firm grip on the Astros DH role. He has a tendency to run hot and cold, but matchups like Drew Smyly, Shelby Miller, Mike Minor, Frankie Montas, Aaron Brooks and Mike Fiers could be what wakes up the bat that produced an .888 OPS down the stretch last year.
Greg Bird's last best chance continues with some of the friendliest matchups a hitter could ask for. The Tigers pitching staff is awful. The Orioles pitching staff is worse. He'll get a little of both over six games, with only one of the projected starters being a left-hander. It's a produce-or-else scenario for the perennial tease.
Adam Frazier is expected to bat leadoff for the Pirates on a near-everyday basis, but the splits, as for many left-handed hitters, greatly favor righties, against whom he hit .291 with an .853 OPS last year. Nothing but righties on the schedule this week, including hittable types like Adam Wainwright, Tanner Roark, Anthony DeSclafani and Tyler Mahle.
The Diamondbacks are among my teams with the worst matchups this week, which would normally invalidate their hitters as sleepers. But the pitchers they're facing are more good than great, and more importantly, five of them throw left-handed. Marte, a switch-hitter, hit .321 with a .971 OPS against lefties last year.
Another favorable platoon case, Mitch Moreland of course has a tendency to sit against left-handers, so the fact the Red Sox are expected to face one in their seven games makes him at least a viable choice. That those righties include questionable options like Aaron Brooks, Mike Fiers, Marco Estrada, Zack Godley, Luke Weaver and Merrill Kelly pushes him into the "advisable" range.
The guy who gets to bat in front of Mike Trout should be a regular on this list whenever he has favorable matchups, and that's certainly the case for Kole Calhoun this week, who opens it against Felix Hernandez and closes it with four games against the Rangers' staff of misfits
Austin Barnes, like most catchers, isn't expected to play every day, so you wouldn't want to use him in a utility spot. But if you need a catcher, he appears to making a comeback from an injury-plagued 2018, following a strong spring with a three-hit (including a homer) opening day. He'll have three games at Coors Field this week.
Best hitter matchups for Week 2
1. Yankees DET3, @BAL3
2. Red Sox @OAK4, @ARI3
3. Dodgers SF3, @COL3
4. Reds MIL3, @PIT4
5. Indians CHW2, TOR4
Worst hitter matchups for Week 2
1. Nationals PHI2, @NYM3
2. Cardinals @PIT2, SD3
3. White Sox @CLE2, SEA3
4. Diamondbacks @SD3, BOS3
5. Athletics BOS4, @HOU3
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