Fantasy Baseball Daily Hitting Recap: 4/22/24

Breaking down notable hitting performances from yesterday's games.

Anything You Canha Do Mark Can Do Better

Mark Canha (DET): 3-4, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI.

There’s something I love about a great role player. Now, I know “great roleplayer” sounds like an oxymoron, but there’s just something special about a player who isn’t a star of a team, but knows his job and does it well. He’s not incredible at any one thing, but good at just about everything. Perhaps the greatest player that fits that description in today’s game is Mark Canha.

Canha looked a lot more like an All-Star in yesterday’s game than he did a role player, finishing 3-4, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI, powering the Tigers to a 7-1 win in Tampa Bay. Detroit’s corner outfielder gave Zack Littell no time to settle in, taking a 1-0 sinker and pulling it 392 feet into the left field stands for a solo home run in the game’s opening frame. Canha got the better of Littell again with a fifth-inning single, added another base knock in the seventh, and finished his day getting on base in the ninth after being barely grazed by a sinker that ran a hair too much inside.

Even before reaching base four times yesterday Canha’s numbers in the early going have been very strong. He’s slashing .247/.396/.479 with four home runs, 11 runs, 11 RBI, and one stolen base, good for a 157 wRC+ and .390 wOBA.

Canha isn’t a star, but he would make every single team better if they could plug him into their lineup daily. He’s always excelled in plate discipline. Canha’s 19.8% strikeout rate is three points better than the league average and he really shines in walk rate – his 14.3% mark is 90th percentile. When he makes contact, it’s typically strong. His 7.7% barrel rate is better than average and his 40.4% ICR is 61st percentile.

If a great roleplayer is a thing, Canha fits the bill. He’s been an important part of numerous playoff teams and should be plugged into the two-hole in the Tigers’ lineup all season long. He’s not as valuable in fantasy baseball, but is certainly worth a roster spot in 15-teamers and AL-Only formats. In 12-team or shallower formats, he works well as an injury replacement or a streaming option when he has favorable matchups.

Let’s see how the other hitters did Monday:


Edouard Julien (MIN): 3-4, 2B, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI.

Julien notched his second three-hit game of the year yesterday, and none of them came cheap. All three of his hits left the bat over 100 mph, and he finished just a triple shy of the cycle. Julien has all the tools to be a great hitter and the Twins are giving him every opportunity to put things together. He’s hitting first or second against righties and even getting shots at the bottom of the lineup against lefties. He needs to drastically cut his 33.8% strikeout rate to reach his ceiling as he’s currently slashing .211/.300/.465.


Kody Clemens (PHI): 2-4, 2B, HR, R, 3 RBI.

Yesterday morning the Phillies recalled Clemens from Triple-A and last night he was hitting a three-run blast to break open a 7-0 win in Cincinnati. With Bryce Harper on the paternity list for the next few days, Clemens may get a few more starts, but whether he sticks with the MLB team after Harper’s return is up in the air. He’s not worth a look in any fantasy league, but belting a majestic homer in your first game of the season makes a fun story.


Daulton Varsho (TOR): 1-3, HR, R, 2 RBI, BB.

After starting the season hitting .158 through 13 games, Varsho has caught fire. He’s hit all six of his homers in the past 10 days raising his season wRC+ to 153. With elite fielding prowess in the outfield, pretty much anything Varsho can give you at the plate is a huge plus. He struggled last year but is looking much more like his 2022 breakout self this year and could once again threaten a 25/15 season.


Travis d’Arnaud (ATL): 2-4, HR, R, 2 RBI.

Make that five home runs in four games for d’Arnaud. He’s scorching hot right now and doing his part to help the Braves forget they’re missing both Sean Murphy and Ozzie Albies to the IL. d’Arnaud’s slashing .273/.344/.636 and is worth a look in fantasy leagues until Murphy returns.


Paul Goldschmidt (STL): 2-4, HR, 2 R, RBI.

Goldschmidt’s seventh-inning blast was the Cardinals’ first home run in over a week. Yes, that is a verified fact. They hadn’t hit a home run since April 12th. That’s 10 days! I don’t know what the record is, but that’s gotta be somewhat close to a modern record. That paints a pretty good picture of how the Cardinals hitters have performed this season, and Goldschmidt is no exception. He’s slashing .195/.298/.268 and you have to wonder if Father Time is nipping at his heels. He’s 36 now, and although I’m not ready to call the former MVP washed up, my concern level is growing rapidly.


Eugenio Suárez (ARI): 3-4, 2 2B, R, 2 RBI.

Suárez is still settling into his new home in Arizona and his results have been mixed so far. Yesterday was his first three-hit game of the season and he’s now batting .247 with just two home runs but 16 RBI. Power is Suárez’s signature trait and it hasn’t been fully on display quite yet. Both his 6.8% barrel rate and 108.9 mph maxEV are well below what we’ve seen from him over the past five years. On a positive note, Suárez has been striking out much less often. His 24.5% punch-out rate is the best we’ve seen from him since 2018.


Andrew McCutchen (PIT): 3-4, HR, R, RBI.

The second year of McCutchen’s return to Pittsburgh has been more a “feel-good story” than it has been actually good baseball. The 2013 NL MVP has only started 14 of the Pirates’ 23 games and is slashing a paltry .214/.313/.357. His 10.9% walk rate earned him a promotion to the top spot in the lineup yesterday, and he seemed to really enjoy his new slot by blasting a leadoff homer in the Pirates’ 4-2 win. Where McCutchen is penciled into the lineup is a trend worth watching in deep fantasy formats. If he takes over the majority of Pittsburgh’s leadoff plate appearances, his value, although not too high, will see a boost.


Rhys Hoskins (MIL): 1-3, HR, R, 2 RBI, BB.

Hoskins hasn’t missed a beat in his return from a torn ACL. He was one of the few Brewers to make any noise against the Pirates’ rookie phenom Jared Jones yesterday, taking a 96 mph four-seamer and depositing it over the left-center field wall in the fifth inning. Hoskins now has five homers on the young season and is looking like a phenomenal addition to the Brew Crew. Remarkably, after missing all of 2023, Hoskins’ .345 wOBA is identical to his 2022 mark.


Zack Gelof (OAK): 1-4, HR, R, 2 RBI.

Gelof was a really fun target this draft season carrying clear 20/20 potential with the upside for even more. Well, he’s delivering on some of that fantasy intrigue, but it’s come with a big downside as well. Yesterday’s two-run homer was his third of the year to go along with four steals, putting him on pace to reach that 20/20 threshold, but it’s come with an ugly .205 batting average and a 30.9% strikeout rate. I’d hold on for now in 12-team and deeper formats but you can probably find something comparable on the wire in 10-teamers.

Mark Steubinger

Mark loves everything talking and writing about baseball - from every fantasy league format you can imagine to the unending greatness of Mike Trout. Mark has a degree in Sports Communication from Bradley University and works in radio production. He lives in central Illinois where his TV is permanently tuned to Chicago Cubs games.

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