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Sports Data APIs for Individuals!
Detroit Tigers pitcher Will Vest struck out two over 2/3 of a scoreless inning to earn the save during Friday's 4-2 win over the Baltimore Orioles. Gregory Soto entered the ninth inning to protect a two-run lead. The 27-year-old plunked back-to-back batters, struck out one-hitter, and a walk that put the tying run on second base. Manager A.J. Hinch pulled Soto from the game for Vest, who struck out both batters he faced to earn his first career save. Vest has been efficient this season, posting 1.17 ERA, 0.46 WHIP, and a 20:3 K: BB across 15 1/3 innings. Fantasy managers should look to add Vest in all league formats as the right-hander could be Detroit's primary closer moving forward if Soto continues to struggle.
St. Louis Cardinals reliever Ryan Helsley was the arm that manager Oliver Marmol turned to Friday to close out the 4-2 win over the Milwaukee Brewers. He entered the game with one out in the ninth and pitched a clean 0.2 innings with a strikeout. Helsley has yet to allow an earned run and has posted a 0.31 WHIP with 27 strikeouts over 16.1 innings of work. It was also his third save of the year, all coming this month. It's hard to tell who the preferred ninth-inning man is, as Giovanny Gallegos has eight saves but was likely available Friday after just 11 pitches the night before. Fantasy managers should monitor the situation moving forward.
Texas Rangers first baseman Nathaniel Lowe continued his hot streak on Friday, going 3-for-4 with a double, a run, and an RBI to help his team beat the Oakland Athletics 8-5. On the season, the 26-year-old is slashing .260/.316/.356 with three home runs, 15 RBI, 13 runs, and one stolen base. However, since May 17, Lowe's hitting .385 with a 1.102 OPS. His plate discipline has been superb, too, with a 10.3% walk rate and 17.2% strikeout rate, during this time. Fantasy managers that held onto Lowe through his poor start to the season may get rewarded the rest of the way.
Milwaukee Brewers starting pitcher Brandon Woodruff (ankle) left his start against the St. Louis Cardinals early on Friday due to an ankle injury. Woodruff left the game before throwing a pitch in the fifth inning, calling out the team trainers to the mound. Despite the injury, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel is reporting on Saturday morning that Woodruff may make his next start, to the relief of fantasy managers and Brewers fans. Notwithstanding, fantasy managers should monitor the situation in the event that the Brewers take a cautious approach with Woodruff and place him on the 10-day injured list and have him skip his next couple of starts. Before leaving the game which the Brewers lost 4-2, Woodruff allowed two earned runs on two hits and one walk while striking out four over four innings. On the season, Woodruff owns a disappointing 4.74 ERA, 1.24 WHIP, and 53 strikeouts over 43 2/3 IP in nine starts.
On Friday, St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Harrison Bader went 2-for-3 with a run scored and two steals in the Cardinals' 4-2 win over the Milwaukee Brewers. Despite his low position in the St. Louis batting order, Bader now has 13 steals on the season. Coming into 2022, Bader's previous career-high in steals was 15 in 2018. With 13 steals, Bader is now tied for the MLB lead with Seattle Mariners' rookie outfielder Julio Rodriguez. On the season, Bader is slashing a somewhat mediocre .255/.306/.372 line with four homers and 15 RBI. With just nine walks on the season, if Bader can increase his on-base percentage, he could add to those steal totals (assuming he continues to run wild on the basepaths) making him a must-start in all formats. As it stands right now, given his stolen base totals, he should be rostered in all formats.
On Friday, Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Kyle Schwarber went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts and a walk against his favorite team to torment, the New York Mets. Schwarber is now batting a putrid .190/.306/.418 on the season, though he has 10 homers and 22 RBI. After batting just .167 in April, May hasn't been much better where he is hitting .207 over 87 at-bats. Despite the continued struggles and poor start to the 2022 campaign, managers should remain patient with Schwarber. He is coming off the best campaign of his career in 2021 in which he slashed .266/.374/.554 with 32 homers and 71 RBI in 471 plate appearances with the Nationals and Red Sox.
New York Mets first baseman Pete Alonso remained red hot on Friday, going 2-for-2 with a home run, a double, four RBI, and a walk in the Mets' 8-6 win over the Phillies. Alonso now has 12 HR on the season to go with 45 RBI which leads the majors. Alonso also set a Mets team record becoming the first Met ever to have 45 RBI prior to Memorial Day. Alonso, who is now slashing .283/.348/.528, remains a must-start option in all formats. He is an elite first base option who is having an incredible campaign so far in 2022.
On Friday, San Francisco Giants starting pitcher Carlos Rodon went just 5 1/3 innings pitched against the Cincinnati Reds. Rodon allowed three earned runs on seven hits and three walks in the Giants' 5-1 loss to the Reds. Rodon's ERA jumped to 3.60 on the season. Over 50 IP he owns a 1.24 WHIP and 64 strikeouts in nine starts. Rodon will look to get back on track against the Phillies on the road next Wednesday. Rodon remains a solid starting pitching option in all formats despite the poor outing on Friday and should remain active.
New York Mets corner infield/outfield prospect Mark Vientos went 1-for-4 with a two-run homer on Friday for Triple-A Syracuse. After a slow start to the season, Vientos has been red hot in May. On the season, Vientos has seven homers, 20 RBI, and a .240/.321/.488 slash line. In May, Vientos has belted six of his seven homers and slashed .317/.388/.667 over 60 at-bats. Vientos is the Mets' fourth-ranked prospect per MLB Pipeline and is coming off a solid 2021 campaign. He is on the Mets' 40-man roster and has a legitimate shot at joining the team later this season if he continues to produce at Triple-A. This is particularly true if the Mets deal J.D. Davis and/or Dominic Smith for pitching ahead of the July trade deadline. Vientos should be rostered in all dynasty formats and redraft managers should keep an eye on him as the season progresses.
Houston Astros right-hander Lance McCullers Jr. (forearm) was able to throw off of the mound for the first time ahead of his team's Friday night game. The 28-year-old threw sinkers, four-seam fastballs, and changeups, with his velocity sitting in the low 80s. McCullers has yet to pitch in 2022 after injuring his forearm during the 2021 playoffs and having a setback this past January. The veteran hurler posted a 13-5 record, 3.16 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, and 185 strikeouts over 162 1/3 innings of work last season. He realistically isn't likely to be back in the majors until the second half of the season.
Los Angeles Angels third baseman Anthony Rendon reportedly got an MRI on his injured right wrist on Friday. Rendon felt something during a swing in Thursday's game and went off for an MRI on Friday, although the Angels have yet to divulge the results of the MRI. Rendon is hitting .242 with five homers, 15 runs, 23 RBI, and two steals over 41 games in 2022. The Angels should offer more information about Rendon's wrist after Friday's game, but it wouldn't be a huge surprise if an injured list stint was needed for Rendon.