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Sports Data APIs for Individuals!
Houston Astros shortstop Alex Bregman has cooled off a touch over the last seven days, hitting only .222 over his last 18 at-bats heading into Saturday's action. This comes on the heels of an absolutely blistering streak of production on offense and still is slashing .350/.469/.675 in the month of September. It merely has been a quiet series for him against the A's but now can turn that around against the Royals. Bregman is making a late case for MVP and is slashing .294/.416/.573 with 34 doubles, 35 home runs, 103 runs batted in and 111 runs scored through 513 at-bats this season.
New York Yankees outfielder and designated hitter Giancarlo Stanton went hitless in his first game back from a lengthy stint on the injured list on Sept. 15, but he bounced back in a big way on Thursday with a four-hit game, including a home run and a double. Stanton was one of six Yankees hitters to go yard on Thursday, as he was joined by DJ LeMahieu, Luke Voit, Gary Sanchez, Brett Gardnerand Gleyber Torres, and the New York lineup looks back to full strength after being decimated by injuries for much of the season. The Yankees are still easing Stanton back into the lineup and hes likely to sit on Friday, but Stanton should play in almost every game next week and should be started in all fantasy lineups as a result.
New York Yankees starting pitcher Masahiro Tanaka held the Blue Jays to three runs over seven innings on Thursday, striking out five with zero walks. Thursday marked the first time all season that Tanaka lasted more than five innings in a start, and his pitch count topped 90 for his third consecutive game after he averaged 67 pitches per start over his first six starts this year. Tanakas next start will likely come against the same Blue Jays team in Buffalo, where his home run problem (3.7% career home-run rate, over 4% this season) should be exacerbated.
Minnesota Twins designated hitter Nelson Cruz has made a habit of clobbering the ball during 2020. So despite his recent power slide (just one HR since Sept. 8), Cruz is a perpetual threat to amass a dinger or two. His 16.2 barrel rate and 47.9% Hard Hit percentage rank among the games elite, making him a nightly upside DFS selection. He returns to Wrigley Field this upcoming weekend for the first time since 2016, having homered in every series that he has played at the ballpark. With his .643 SLG and 1.052 OPS entering play Thursday leading the American League, there should be no hesitation about his status as an MVP candidate, thereby reiterating his elite fantasy production.
Boston Red Sox third baseman Rafael Devers socked a three-run home run Thursday versus Miami, an exclamation point on his return to elite status. After a dreadfully slow start to 2020, Devers has mauled the ball in September with a gaudy .397/.453/.759 slash line. It was just a year ago that Devers 359 total bases led the Majors, so it was unlikely that he would regress as wholly as his first month-plus of production indicated. He embarks upon a weekend series against the Yankees beginning Friday, entering as a top tier option in either DFS or season-long formats as he swings one of the hottest bats in the Majors.
San Diego Padres shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. has struggled mightily at the plate as of late, having gone just 2-for-25 over his last seven games. With only four extra-base hits in the month of September, he has slashed .184/.293/.347 and seen his MVP candidacy take a significant bump. Despite his lack of production as of late, his 46 runs scored still lead the Majors and his 15 home runs entering play Thursday, had him tied for the National League lead. He next faces a run-of-the-mill Seattle pitching staff this weekend, giving him the chance to heat up his bat again. When at his apex, he is likely a first-round, Top-5 fantasy commodity heading into drafts in 2021.
Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman/outfielder Cody Bellinger is once again batting sixth during Thursdays contest against Colorado and left-hander Kyle Freeland, the sixth time in the last seven games that he has held that spot in the lineup. Bellinger is yet to hit a home run during the month of September, having slashed just .216/.293/.405 on the season. On the heels of his National League MVP campaign, fantasy managers certainly expected much more production, as the 88 OPS+ that Bellinger has compiled makes him a middle-of-the-road fantasy asset. He will retain value moving forward due to his upside, but he can no longer be seen as an elite DFS or season-long commodity in 2020.
Toronto Blue Jays right-handed pitcher Matt Shoemaker has ramped up his pitch count to 45 pitches during simulated games, increasing the probability that he could return to the clubs starting rotation during the postseason. Shoemaker compiled a 4.91 ERA across five starts before he hit the injured list due to inflammation in his right shoulder. While the team will need just three starters for the first round should they make the postseason, the nature of the Division Series may force Shoemaker into duty, in which he would be a high-upside DFS candidate after having excelled at the conclusion of the 2019 year.
Philadelphia Phillies right-handed pitcher Jake Arrieta (hamstring) has been officially shut down for the remainder of the 2020 regular season, manager Joe Girardi confirmed Thursday. Additionally, rookie Spencer Howard (shoulder) could begin a throwing program soon, which would be the only path to him rejoining the rotation within the next 10 days. Arrieta finishes the year with a 5.08 ERA across nine starts, although a return for the postseason has not yet been ruled out. Howard has compiled a 5.92 ERA in six starts, with his return in some capacity highly probable should Philadelphia make the postseason.
San Francisco Giants left-handed pitcher Sam Selman logged the first save of his career against the Mariners on Thursday. Entering the day, Selmans 153 ERA+ was tops on the Giants pitching staff, although its not clear if hell be seeing more save chances over the final week-plus. No healthy member of the San Francisco bullpen has more than three saves this year, with Tyler Rogers, Tony Watson, and Sam Coonrod all having multiple saves in 2020. Aggressive fantasy managers can add Selman in deep season-long formats, as he lowered his ERA to 2.70 on Thursday.
St. Louis Cardinals right-handed pitcher Dakota Hudson was removed from his start Thursday against the Pirates due to tightness in his pitching elbow. Hudson worked two scoreless innings prior to his departure, lowering his ERA to 2.77 in the process. Unfortunately, tightness in the pitching elbow is not a recipe for a quick return to the mound, with Austin Gomber having taken over in his stead. Hudson, along with Adam Wainwright, has proven to be one of the consistent cogs of the Cardinals starting staff, so check back for an update as it pertains to his health once one is provided.