Fantasy Baseball Daily Hitting Recap: 4/9/24

Breaking down notable hitting performances from yesterday's games.

Never Shea Never

Shea Langeliers (OAK): 3-4, 3 HR, 3 R, 4 RBI.

It’s not often you see one player single-handedly beat a whole other team, but that’s what Shea Langeliers did last night in Texas. He accounted for all the Athletics’ offense on Tuesday, finishing the day 3-4, 3 HR, 3 R, 4 RBI in Oakland’s 4-3 victory.

Langeliers got started by taking Nathan Eovaldi deep in the second inning, tying things up at 1-1. In the seventh, he left the yard again, this time hammering a David Robertson knuckle curve to center field tying things up once more. Langeliers finished the day byyou guessed ithomering for a third time. José Leclerc couldn’t get a high four-seamer past the red-hot catcher as Langeliers sent it 405 feet into the Texas night, this time giving the A’s the lead.

A three-homer night will always work wonders for a player’s season-long numbers, but it’s especially effective with just 10 games under his belt. Langeliers entered Tuesday slashing .179/.250/.286 and left it slashing .250/.306/.625. That’s a 395-point boost in OPS in just four plate appearances!

If you need catching help with big power upside, Langeliers is one of your best options and is readily available. He’s unrostered in over 90% of both ESPN and Yahoo! fantasy leagues. He’ll be held down by his weak supporting cast, low batting average, and high strikeout rates, but he’s likely the only catcher on the wire with enough bop in his bat to threaten 25+ home runs. There may be some untapped potential here as well. Langeliers has dropped his strikeout rate in each of his three seasons, going from 34.6% to 29.2% to 25%.


Let’s see how the other hitters did Tuesday:


Edward Olivares (PIT): 2-4, 2 HR, 2 R, 2 RBI.

Olivares finished with 12 homers and 11 steals in just 385 plate appearances last year, so his .321/.367/.679 slash line to begin the season is pretty eye-opening for fantasy players. There’s legit 20/20 upside here, but unfortunately, he’s only started seven of the Pirates’ 12 games. He’s worth a look in 15-team leagues for now, but outside of deep formats, he is probably best suited as a streaming option when the Pirates line up against a handful of lefty starters.

Pete Alonso (NYM): 2-4, 2B, HR, R, 3 RBI, BB.

That’s about as classic an Alonso batting line as you’ll ever see. Since debuting in 2019, the Mets’ first baseman leads the bigs with 195 home runs. Last night’s long ball came against Tyler Matzek. He left a four-seamer over the heart of the plate and Alonso didn’t miss it, sending it 413 feet and over the left-center field wall. It’s been a slow start for the big-time slugger, but things look a lot more respectable with his post-game 91 wRC+ than they did with his pre-game 51 wRC+.

Will Smith (LAD): 2-5, HR, 2 R, 3 RBI.

Smith’s name may not pop out of the star-studded Dodger’s lineup, but his stat line absolutely should. The 29-year-old catcher is slashing an incredible .400/.426/.540 and he tallied his first homer of the season last night. Smith got just enough of a four-seam fastball that Louie Varland left middle-middle taking it 363 feet the other way.

Ronald Acuña Jr. (ATL): 2-3, 3 R, BB, 3 SB.

There it is! Acuña’s first game this year doing insane Acuña things and swiping three bases. After his historic 40/70 season in 2023, he has yet to leave the yard in 2024 but is showing an increased walk rate. His 14.9% clip would be the best full-season mark of his career. Oddly enough, it’s come with a dramatic jump in strikeout rate to 27.7% after sitting at just 11.4% last year. Small samples can get weird, y’all.

Blake Perkins (MIL): 3-5, 2 R, 3 RBI, SB.

Perkins has the ultra-rare same-number triple lash line: .385/.385/.385. That’s the most fun thing I can say about Perkins from a fantasy perspective. He broke camp with the big league club but started just his third game of the season yesterday, so this isn’t a player to chase.

Colton Cowser (BAL): 2-4, 2 2B, 4 RBI.

Cowser got the better of Brayan Bello twice yesterday, doubling to left-center field two times against Boston’s young starter. Baltimore has faced an even split of righty/lefty starters so far so Cowser’s only started three games, but he’s a name to circle when the Orioles are facing a right-handed heavy SP schedule. I was going to say it’s unfair just how many fun young players the Orioles have, but given what their fans have had to put up with in recent years, it’s actually very fair. Enjoy it O’s fans.

The Orioles officially called up Jackson Holliday last night. Stop what you’re doing right now and pick him up if he happens to be sitting overlooked on your waiver wire.

Omar Narváez (NYM): 2-3, 2B, 2 R, RBI, BB.

Did someone invent a time machine and give it to Narváez? There was a two-year stretch in 2018 and 2019 when he was legitimately an interesting fantasy option, and he’s looking quite a bit like that old version of himself. Narváez is hitting .385/.429/.462 to begin the year but will be stuck as a backup no matter how good he hits. In NL-only leagues he may be worth a look, but even that’s a stretch with his limited playing time.

Jacob Young (WSH): 2-4, 2 R, 3 SB.

Young got called up last Thursday and has started four of the Nationals’ five games since then, but don’t get too excited. All of his starts have come against lefties and he sat out against the one righty-starter, so he’s likely on the weak side of a platoon. Also, he’s batting just .167. Yeah, I kinda buried the lede there. But three steals yesterday! And four on the year already! This could maybe be a desperation stolen base play, but that’s it. Young was drafted in 2021 and has yet to reach a combined double-digit homer total as a professional across all levels.

José Caballero (TB): 3-4, 2B, 2 R, 2 RBI, SB.

Tampa Bay’s had one of the more lackluster offensive showings so far this year, but Caballero isn’t someone you can blame for that. The Rays’ new shortstop is hitting .353 with five stolen bases on the young season. Aside from the stolen base potential, he doesn’t contribute much in fantasy, but he should have a fairly safe path to playing time meaning he could be a 30-40 steal guy over a full season. Oddly enough, after he posted a 10% walk rate in 2023, he has yet to earn a base on balls in the new season.

Yordan Alvarez (HOU): 4-5, 2B, 2 RBI.

I think Alvarez may be pretty good at this whole hitting a baseball thing. Hard-hitting analysis right there, I know. Three of Alvarez’s hits yesterday came against Cole Ragans which is very impressive given how dominant the Kansas City flame thrower has looked in the early going. Alvarez already has two four-hit games this year after Tuesday’s performance.

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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