I mentioned thisof Waiver Wire, but it would have been easy to gloss over since it had yet to yield any fruit
But wait, isn't this the guy who was batting .143 (6 for 42) before being sidelined by a biceps strain? Isn't it the one who was performing so poorly on a Triple-A rehab assignment, going 0 for 18 with 12 strikeouts, that the Padres had to rescue him from it?
It is, but what did they do with him after that? According to MLB.com, they had him take 25 simulated at-bats -- about six games' worth -- in front of the coaching staff Monday to help him undo some of the bad habits he developed while playing through the injury.
Apparently, it worked, because he homered twice in his second game back Wednesday.
I may not need to remind you of Voit's credentials given how loudly I promoted them during draft season, but for the sake of completion, I will. He led the majors in home runs in 2020. He hit .271 with a .901 OPS in parts of four seasons with the Yankees, homering at a better pace than Matt Olson during that stretch. He was nothing short of must-start during the times he was healthy.
The Yankees, though, pulled the plug on him, and apparently, Fantasy Baseballers did, too, because he's rostered in just 56 percent of CBS Sports leagues. Given the short supply of offense, and particularly power, around the league, you'll want to do something about that.
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MIL Milwaukee • #12 • Age: 30
Another two home runs Wednesday gives Hunter Renfroe six in his past 11 games and eight overall, so he doesn't appear to be one of those players suffering too much from the deadened ball. He's coming off a career year in which he homered 31 times to make him the 19th best outfielder in 5x5 scoring. If he remains as prolific in a year when home runs are down, he'll separate himself even more from the pack.
David Bednar RP
PIT Pittsburgh • #51 • Age: 27
It's looking like the closing tandem of David Bednar and the vastly inferior Chris Stratton is no more. Bednar has recorded each of the Pirates' past four saves including one of the two-inning variety Wednesday. Stratton entered in the seventh inning of that game and struggled to make it through, his ERA bloating to 6.17. Each of Bednar's past four appearances has been to finish out a game while each of Stratton's past four has not, so it's looking like as much of a done deal as these things can be in 2022. And as closers go, Bednar stacks up well, as you can see from the numbers.
Alek Thomas CF
ARI Arizona • #92 • Age: 22
While it's been only four games, Alek Thomas has so far acclimated himself well to the majors, connecting for his first home run Wednesday. And what a blast it was, traveling 414 feet to the opposite field. It's especially notable because power was the most questionable aspect of Thomas' skill set coming up through the minors. If he can put that kind of a charge in the ball at a time when so many are dying at the warning track, there may be hope for him yet. In all, he's 5 for 13 with two doubles to go along with that home run.
Tommy Pham LF
CIN Cincinnati • #28 • Age: 34
We keep saying Tommy Pham is about to go off, yet his roster rate barely moves. Consider Wednesday's game, in which he singled three times and walked, to be further evidence. Again, he's hitting the ball as hard as anyone in the majors, placing in the 97th percentile for average exit velocity, and given that his home venue this year is the smallest he's ever had, it's sure to lead to a power resurgence if he keeps it up. He's also walking at an elite rate, as per usual, and remains a relevant source of stolen bases. Despite his age, the upside here is legitimate.
Juan Yepez DH
STL St. Louis • #36 • Age: 24
Of all the recent hitter call-ups, from Thomas to Royce Lewis to Jose Miranda, none has impressed more than Juan Yepez, who was probably the least heralded coming in. He broke out in a big way in the minors last year, though, batting .286 with 27 homers and a .969 OPS. The reason he lagged on so many prospect lists is because he's a plodding right-handed hitter with limited defensive utility -- a profile that has a difficult time breaking in, for pure logistical reasons -- but the Cardinals have had him start every single game since he came up. He rewarded them again Wednesday with a two-hit day and his second home run, a 412-foot blast.
Brooks Raley RP
TB Tampa Bay • #30 • Age: 33
Yes, a soft-tossing 33-year-old left-hander who spent much of his career in Korea is up to three saves, pulling within one of team leader Andrew Kittredge, but that's Rays baseball for you. It wasn't an availability situation for Kittredge either. He entered in the eighth inning of Wednesday's game and actually coughed up the lead, this after blowing a two-inning save chance in his previous appearance. It's doubtful the Rays are losing faith in him, but it's also clear they're not using him like a conventional closer. If he's in more of a tandem situation with Raley, then the left-hander deserves to be rostered in leagues where every saves source is immediately gobbled up, which is more than 5 percent of them.