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Monday was another bad day for injuries around baseball, with Byron Buxton's unbelievable run of bad luck continuing as he was forced to exit the game after being hit by a pitch. That was the most noteworthy injury of the day -- and we don't know how serious Buxton's latest injury is, yet -- because Buxton just returned over the weekend from a lengthy absence with a hip injury. However, his was just one of several we're going to be dealing with as injuries continue to be arguably the dominant factor now in Fantasy Baseball. 

Adalberto Mondesi, who like Buxton, just came back from an IL stint, was placed back on the IL Monday with an oblique strain suffered Sunday. Aaron Civale (finger), Jonathan Villar (calf), Brett Anderson (knee) all also left Monday's games with injuries, and while those latter two aren't as significant, that's still more players missing in a season defined by who hasn't been playing as much as by who has. 

One potential side effect of Mondesi's injury that Fantasy players would certainly be interested in is that it creates an opportunity for the Royals to call up top prospect Bobby Witt. There's not necessarily any sign they will right now, but the timing is fortuitous -- the 21-year-old has multiple hits in five straight games at Double-A and is now hitting .280/.352/.561. 

Witt seemed like he might be pushing for an opening day job during the spring, and while he has still played just 75 games as a professional, his time could be coming soon -- I always say, once a player hits Double-A, they could always be a hot streak or an injury away. Witt has 11 homers and 11 steals in 38 games and could be a Fantasy difference maker. He's arguably the top prospect to stash in the minors now that Wander Franco is set to make his MLB debut Tuesday, and if you have the roster spot to play with, Witt is worth it. 

  • We talk Jake Odorizzi, some struggling starting pitchers plus Tony Kemp, Jacob deGrom and Adalberto Mondesi on the Fantasy Baseball Today in 5 podcast. You can follow us to get the latest episodes on Apple, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts.
Possible waiver wire pickups
HOU Houston • #17 • Age: 31
Rest of Season Projections
H2H PTS
172.5
ROTO RNK
266th
ROSTERED
60%
Injuries have made things very tough on Odorizzi since his stellar 2019 season, but he showed some of that form in his start against the Orioles on Monday. Odorizzi struck out nine over five no-hit innings while walking just one, and his velocity was at a season-high point in this one. Odorizzi hasn't been at his best this season, but he does have a 2.82 ERA with 24 strikeouts in 22.1 innings over five starts since coming back from the IL at the end of May. At his best, that's not far from what you can expect from Odorizzi. If you've got a need at SP, he's worth a flier.
OAK Oakland • #5 • Age: 29
Rest of Season Projections
H2H PTS
126.5
ROTO RNK
438th
ROSTERED
11%
Kemp got a rare opportunity to bat leadoff for the A's on Monday, and he did what he's been doing for the last couple of months. Kemp went 2 for 4 with a walk and a run scored in this one, and he entered play Monday hitting .296/.395/.520 with as many walks as strikeouts (18 of each). He has started 15 of 18 games for the Athletics in the month of June, and, though his start Monday in the leadoff spot was due to injuries, he's been at the top of the lineup a few times recently. Kemp has always had a knack for getting on base, and while his track record suggests he won't be able to keep this up, he's getting the opportunity and making the most of it right now, and is worth an add if you need OF or MI help.
NYM N.Y. Mets • #2 • Age: 26
Rest of Season Projections
H2H PTS
183
ROTO RNK
245th
ROSTERED
62%
There was a lot of hype around Smith coming into the season, and it's not an overstatement to say he was one of the most disappointing players of the first two months of the season, hitting just .237/.303/.337 through his first 54 games. However, he homered on June 14 and has hit .333 with six RBI in his past eight games, a good sign for someone we know has a ton of potential. As disappointing as this season has been for Smith, his underlying numbers are much better -- his .345 expected wOBA dwarfs his .299 actual wOBA, even if neither is close to what he managed in 2020. Maybe it's just a little hot streak, but Smith is starting to show what he's capable of, and if you need OF help, he can make a big impact if he keeps this up.