For the third season in a row, Lucas Duda spent time on the disabled list, missing about a month of action with a hyperextended elbow after back problems cost him large chunks of 2015 and 2016. Now 32 years old, Duda's health may be a recurring issue from here on out, but there's no doubting that he's still a serviceable power bat. In just 491 plate appearances split between the Mets and Rays last season, Duda hit 30 long balls, the second time in his career he's reached that benchmark. Duda offers more value in formats that count OBP as a category rather than batting average, but since he's typically out of the lineup against lefties, the impact of the batting-average drain isn't felt as acutely as it might be for other mashers fitting a similar "Three True Outcomes" profile. Assuming he settles into the strong side of a platoon at first base or designated hitter with some team, Duda should make for a decent endgame target for fantasy squads needing a power boost.
Duda is not in the lineup for Friday's game against the Orioles, according to Roger Mooney of the Tampa Bay Times. Duda is hitting just .192 against left-handers this season, so he will be held out Friday with southpaw Wade Miley on the mound for the Orioles. With Duda out, Logan Morrison will play first base for the Rays and Evan Longoria will serve as the designated hitter.
Duda is out of the lineup for Tuesday's game against the Yankees, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports. As per usual, Duda will head to the bench with a left-handed pitcher (Jordan Montgomery) toeing the rubber for the opposition. In his place, Trevor Plouffe will bat seventh and serve as the designated hitter.
Duda went 1-for-4 with a three-run homer Saturday against the Orioles. Duda blasted his 13th bomb with the Rays in the third inning to give the Rays a 3-1 lead in a game they'd go on to win. Although he's launched five homers this month, he's hitting below .160 in September, and that's been a reflection of the hitter he's been since joining Tampa Bay in late July.
Duda is out of the lineup Wednesday against the Cubs, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports. The left-handed Jon Lester is headed to the hill for the Cubs, so Duda will take a seat Wednesday night. Cesar Puello will serve as the Rays' DH while Duda gets the night off.
Duda is out of Friday's lineup against the Red Sox. The Rays face lefty Chris Sale so they will go with a righty-heavy lineup. Cesar Puello gets the start at DH, hitting eighth.