Let's examine some of Thursday night's top fantasy baseball takeaways.
Is Miguel Andujar heating up?
Andujar has had an odd season. He's only played 27 games, has only walked twice (!?!?!), and has already played all over the field.
He's also currently on a four-game hitting streak, including three straight multi-hit games featuring two home runs and three RBIs.
I get that Andujar's OBP is hideous; aside from his five-game cup of tea in 2017, he's never really been Team Free Pass. But he also isn't a 22 percent strikeout hitter — eventually, those two numbers will balance out (somewhat, at least). What is most interesting (and enticing) about Andujar is that his hard-hit rate is up from last season, back closer to his 2018 number. He also isn't getting any really favorable batted-ball luck; it looks like his contact ability this season is legit.
Statcast is currently projecting him for a .281 batting average; in today's MLB, that's well past elite. Now's a good time to get in on Andujar while his hitting streak is still young, especially if you're falling in the average category. He's rostered in just 23 percent of Yahoo leagues.
Nick Madrigal goes down
This Chicago White Sox team was supposed to be the most exciting squad in baseball this side of the Dodgers and Padres. Featuring talented, exciting youngsters like Luis Robert, Eloy Jimenez, and Nick Madrigal alongside franchise stalwarts Jose Abreu and Tim Anderson, the offense was set to be incredible.
As a whole, the team has remained excellent; they're 4.5 games atop the AL Central standings. Unfortunately, they'll now have to move forward without the third piece in their elite prospect triumvirate.
After losing Jimenez and Robert to effectively season-long injuries, Madrigal tore his hamstring on Thursday. Nothing is set in stone yet, but it's expected to be a season-ending injury.
Before the unfortunate injury, Madrigal had been living up to his high-contact, low-strikeout profile. The stolen bases were oddly absent (just one on the season), but his capability remained. Leury Garcia and Danny Mendick will probably split second base duties. Neither will probably reach Madrigal's average potential, but keep an eye on Mendick (deep-leaguers should probably scoop him up). He's shown intriguing power and speed in the past that could make a difference as part of this potent White Sox lineup.
Please let Starling Marte get traded
Like Andujar, Starling Marte has played less than 30 games since returning from injury. But man, has he made the most of those 27 games. Marte is currently hitting .356/.450/.594 with five home runs and six stolen bases. Of course, those numbers are unsustainable, but at the very least, if there was any doubting Marte's power-speed potential remaining intact at age 32 and coming off an injury, those doubts should evaporate.
Marte fits the ideal rental profile for a contender: He's a potent hitter (who just so happens to possess difference-making speed) with a team-friendly contract who'll be a free agent next season. While the Marlins offense has performed admirably this season, they're not exactly a fearsome unit and still play in one of baseball's most suffocating pitcher parks.
Miami is currently fourth in the NL East. Unless there's an unexpected run coming, the team would do well to trade Marte. Now imagine him on one of the potent, contending offenses out there in need of outfield help.
An aforementioned team on the South Side might be interested.
Zack Wheeler throws an absolute gem
The Phillies won the battle, but Zack Wheeler's performance won the war. Wheeler spun eight scoreless innings against the potent Atlanta offense, holding them to just four hits and striking out 12.
Wheeler's season line now stands at 4-3 with a 2.29 ERA, a 0.90 WHIP, and 112 strikeouts in 90.1 innings.
Talk about a fantasy draft steal; few pitchers are striking opposing batters out at the level Wheeler is. And to think — many criticized the Phillies for handing him that 100-million-dollar contract. I can pinpoint a couple of teams who could use his services right now.