2024 MLB Week Two FAAB Insights

Which players should you spend your FAAB budget on?

It’s the week after Easter weekend. Our house has smelled like eggs all week. It stinks. Most of my fantasy teams still have that rosy smell to them, but some of them smell like eggs. Gross. So how do we take those egg-smelling teams and turn them into … I don’t know, egg salad? We use our FAAB budgets to make them better.

After a week and a half of action, the cream has begun to rise to the top. Players are beginning to settle into their roles, while others are going down with injury and needing to be replaced (rest in peace, Shane Biebers elbow). Let’s take a look at who will step in when you need them most and propel your team back to the top of the standings where it belongs.

This article will run every week, focusing on players who are between 20-25% rostered in most 12-team leagues and/or 25-50% rostered in 15-teamers. Every league is different, so we won’t be labeling player bids with any sort of recommended dollar amount but instead will use a four-tier investment rating system, ranging from a minimal spend to a potential difference-maker (or LEAGUE-WINNER, if you will).


Investment Rating System


Heading into this week, only five National League teams have seven games on the schedule: the Atlanta Braves, Cincinnati Reds, Milwaukee Brewers, New York Mets, and Philadelphia Phillies. The other 25 squads play six games each. Playing time is starting to clarify itself as the dust settles around the league. Some players are getting more opportunities than we thought while others are still waiting in the wings. Let’s dive in!








Connor Joe (OF, 1B – $$$): We might be a week late on Joe’s breakout, but that doesn’t mean he won’t still have value in the coming weeks. Arguably the best hitter in baseball this past week, he’s hitting in the top third of what has been a surprisingly good lineup. With eligibility in the outfield and at first base, he can be an extremely useful piece moving forward.

JJ Bleday ($$): The once-touted prospect has shown flashes of brilliance in the past, so I’m not sure we trust this week’s outstanding performance just yet. However, if he continues to get everyday at-bats, he can definitely be serviceable in 15-team, five-outfield leagues.

Michael A. Taylor ($$): Another Pittsburgh Pirate with an extremely hot (and seemingly extremely unsustainable) bat. Unlike Joe, Taylor has the tendency and the speed to steal some bases, but he’s also batting in the bottom third of the lineup.

Will Brennan ($$): Great hard contact stats and a couple of stolen bases give Brennan some value so far this season. He’s been really solid so far and should continue to grab at-bats as the strong side of a Cleveland platoon.

Jurickson Profar ($): At this point, FAAB Insights feels incomplete without mentioning Profar. In and out of this article (and lineups) for most of last season, Profar is a singles hitting machine for the San Diego Padres, so temper your expectations.




Jared Walsh (1B – $$): Yes, Nathaniel Lowe is coming back this coming week, but … are we sure that Walsh won’t outplay him for the starting role? Walsh has batted 9-for-26 (.346) so far and has scored seven runs in a potent Texas Rangers lineup. With how well he has played so far, Wyatt Langford shareholders might be a little bit concerned for their prized rookie’s at-bats.

Blaze Alexander (SS – $$): The right-handed platoon bat for the Arizona Diamondbacks has one of the best names in the MLB. If that’s not reason enough to place a bid, his .442 wOBA should be enough to get him on your list. Though, it might not be sustainable even if he only does face lefties.

Gio Urshela (1B, 3B – $): Quietly having a very good start to the season in Detroit. Josh Jung managers looking for a fill-in at third base can do a lot worse.

Brayan Rocchio (SS – $): The everyday shortstop for the Cleveland Guardians, Rocchio’s opportunity for playing time is likely his largest appeal.

Trey Lipscomb (3B – $): He’s available in pretty much any league. And like Ben Pernick said earlier this week … “These guys can be good when they’re hot. Like dollar pizza.”




Iván Herrera (C – $$): With Willson Contreras on the mend, Herrera has stepped in as the primary catcher in St. Louis. And he’s looked good doing it. With a 38.5% hard-contact rate and a .391 xAVG, he’s a bat-first catcher that has stumbled into regular playing time. Grab him while he’s useful. He likely won’t pass Contreras on the depth chart, but he could grab more DH at-bats with this kind of performance.

David Fry (C – $$): Bueller? Bueller? Fry? Okay, I’m dating myself with the reference, but this Cleveland Guardians‘ catcher-eligible dude is getting more at-bats than most backup catchers do because he also moonlights in the outfield. With a .591 xAVG and .540 xWOBA, his numbers aren’t sustainable, but perhaps the best part is that through 14 plate appearances, he has three RBI, a stolen base, and hasn’t struck out yet. Not bad for a John Hughes movie sidekick.

Christian Bethancourt (C – $): Bethancourt ought to be splitting time with Nick Fortes in Miami, not that either will likely be fantasy relevant. If playing time is even, of the two I prefer Bethancourt.

Martín Maldonado (C – $): Pulse? Check. Catcher eligibility? Check. Playing time? Check.




Starting Pitchers


Aaron Ashby ($$$): Jakob Junis is possible to miss at least one turn in the rotation with a shoulder issue and the Milwaukee Brewers have Ashby waiting at AAA Nashville hoping to make the spot start in his place on Monday against the Reds. Once regarded as a top young arm in baseball, Ashby ran into command issues in 2022, giving up 1.26 HR/9 and a near 10% walk rate. But with 165 strikeouts across 139 MLB innings pitched, the ceiling is sky high. If he gets the call, he could absolutely stick at the major league level with the Brew Crew potentially moving Junis to a long-relief role.

Ronel Blanco ($$): Even if it wasn’t a glowing endorsement, I’m going to pretend that I predicted his no-hitter by including him in last week’s column. This week, he’s likely going to be overvalued after his no-hitter performance against the Toronto Blue Jays. Don’t overspend, but it’s definitely worth a price-enforcement bid considering he showed that he can be a serviceable pitcher on a good team.

Cade Horton ($): He might not be available in NFBC formats, specifically, but Horton is definitely a name to watch in the coming weeks as the Cubs will likely need to call upon a fifth starter. With Justin Steele on the 10-day IL, they could potentially tap Horton for a spot start. He will definitely be up at some point this season, and is easily the most exciting pitching prospect in the Chicago system at the moment.

Cody Bradford ($): Tooled on the Astros earlier this week and faces the Oakland Athletics next. Saddle up, partner.

Tyler Anderson ($): A two-start pitcher this coming week, Anderson has had his ups and downs. Hopefully you can catch a couple ups before throwing him back to the waiver wire.

Javier Assad ($): Last week he was an easy add with a Tuesday matchup against the Rockies in Wrigley. This week he gets two starts – against the Padres and Mariners. He did enough against one of the league’s worst offenses to warrant some consideration in a two-start week, but I’m not bidding more than a few bucks here.


Relief Pitchers


David Robertson ($$$): I’m not sure we can trust José Leclerc as a closer, and more importantly it appears that neither is Bruce Bochy. Robertson is the clear next in line for save opportunities in Texas. He’s done it and done it well in the past. There’s no reason to think he can’t surpass Leclerc and hold down the ninth inning job for the remainder of the season.

Shelby Miller ($$): Once upon a time, Miller was so highly regarded across the baseball world that the Arizona Diamondbacks traded away former number one overall selection Dansby Swanson for him. That was a long time ago. Miller now resides in the Detroit Tigers bullpen, where he’s been quietly having a very good tenure dating back to last season. At worst, Miller is a solid setup man with great ratios and some bonus strikeouts. At best, he could take over as the closer in Detroit.

Héctor Neris ($$): The Chicago Cubs and manager Craig Counsell do not have defined roles for their bullpen staff, which means Héctor Neris is just as much the closer as anyone else in the pen. Right? Well, at the very least, he’s in consideration for ninth-inning duties if Adbert Alzolay continues to fumble away his incumbent role. He could be worth a speculative add for the save-needy.

Dinelson Lamet ($): He got a save for the Dodgers with Evan Phillips on a scheduled rest night. Lamet is not a candidate to close games. This is not a thing. But if you really want to torture yourself for a week or two, bid away. EDIT: The Dodgers saved us all the trouble and DFA’d Lamet.

Brett Ford

Born and raised in #Birdland. Some days you win, Some days you lose, Some days it rains.

2 responses to “2024 MLB Week Two FAAB Insights”

  1. Mike Honcho says:

    Need help at my Utility spot.
    Nelson Velazquez and Willi Castro available in my 12 teamer.
    Drop Jeff O’Neil for either?

  2. Daniel Bailey says:

    HOU, MIN, and TEX would like a word about playing seven games this week.

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