Fantasy Baseball Daily Hitting Recap: 6/1/2024

Breaking down notable hitting performances from yesterday’s games.

Checking the Enmanuel

The Red Sox are going through an “evaluation” season this year. As a result, players in the organization who may not have gotten opportunities in past seasons are suddenly getting a shot.

Enmanuel Valdez is one of those players.

For the season, Valdez’s numbers aren’t incredibly impressive.

In 103 plate appearances, the 25-year-old second baseman is hitting .179 with a .564 OPS. He has struggled to make consistent contact at the plate at the Major League level. He has a 31.3% K% this year and only a 4.0% BB%, which aren’t excellent marks. Furthermore, his free-swinging approach doesn’t help with those contact issues, as his chase rate is 35.4%, nearly seven percent higher than the league average.

On the other hand, his hard-hit metrics should give Red Sox fans some optimism about his outlook.

Valdez has a barrel rate of 9.4% and a hard-hit rate of 45.3%, which are impressive for a middle infielder. He also has four home runs this year and hit six in 149 plate appearances last year. Thus, he has the potential to be a 20+ HR hitter if given an extended opportunity.

The future still looks hazy for Valdez, especially with an organization like Boston, whose fanbase constantly expects to win immediately. That said, with the Red Sox likely staying pat this year at the trade deadline, it will be interesting to see if Valdez can turn around in the contact department and be a long-term option at Boston’s keystone position.


Let’s see how the other hitters did Saturday.


Ryan Mountcastle (BAL): 2-3, 2 HR, 3 R, 4 RBI, BB.

Mountcastle came up big in Baltimore’s key division win over the Rays. The Baltimore first baseman had two hits, four RBI, and two home runs, bringing his season total to eight. With a .838 OPS, Mountcastle is on pace to have one of his best seasons yet, a boost for an Orioles organization that needs to do all it can to keep pace with the first-place Yankees.


Yordan Alvarez (HOU): 3-3, 2 HR, 2 R, 3 RBI, BB.

It’s been a down year for Alvarez, unsurprising since it’s been a down year for the Astros in general (26-33 as of Sunday). Then again, a .837 OPS and 11 home runs in 252 plate appearances would be a “breakout” year for most players. Alvarez is built differently, and the expectation is higher year after year. Against the Twins on Saturday, Alvarez had a vintage performance with two home runs and three hits. Astros fans hope he can have a big month of June and get them back in the AL West race.


Miguel Andujar (OAK): 4-5, HR, 3 R, 4 RBI.

Prospect hype has followed Andujar since his Yankees days, and he has often failed to live up to those expectations. After getting waived by the Pirates, the Athletics took a flier on Andujar, and he has delivered so far in his brief tenure in Oakland. In seven games and 30 plate appearances, he is hitting .448 with a 1.157 OPS. He also has two home runs, his latest coming on Saturday against Atlanta. Andujar will fall back to earth at some point, but A’s fans can buy into the hype for now while his bat is hot.


Bryce Harper (PHI): 2-3, HR, 3 R, 2 RBI, BB.

At 41-18, the Phillies are the best team in baseball, and Harper may be a dark horse for the NL MVP. Despite recovering from injury a season ago, he has 14 home runs in 236 plate appearances (he had 21 in 546 plate appearances last year). He also is hitting .276 and has a .919 OPS, his best mark in that category since 2021. With Atlanta’s Ronald Acuña Jr., Jr. out for the year and the rest of the division going through their versions of rebuilding, the Phillies should cruise to some monumental team records this year, which will only help Harper’s MVP candidacy.


Vinnie Pasquantino (KCR): 3-5, 2B, HR, R, 3 RBI.

After having an injury scare against the Twins (Byron Buxton ran into his knee), Pasquantino has been in full force since returning to the lineup. Since his minor bump, he has collected seven hits and two home runs in a three-game span. As a result, his OPS has jumped from .695 to .751 over that period. The contact skills have always been there for Pasquantino (95th percentile whiff rate), but the power has been a work in progress. Hopefully, his power numbers will settle after this recent stretch, which should boost fantasy managers who roster Pasquantino.


Marcell Ozuna (ATL): 2-5, HR, 2 R, 4 RBI.

Atlanta’s postseason hopes look bleak without Acuna in the lineup for the foreseeable future. That said, Ozuna has had another stellar season offensively, which softens the blow. The 33-year-old hasn’t lost a beat from his 40-HR season in 2023, as he has 17 home runs in 234 plate appearances. He also is hitting .313 with a .999 OPS, making him a true superstar in traditional 5×5 category leagues.


J.P. Crawford (SEA): 1-4, HR, R, 4 RBI, BB.

After hitting 19 home runs and posting a .818 OPS last year, Crawford has regressed a bit in 2024. He is hitting .218 with a .677 OPS and has only four home runs in 152 plate appearances. Thus, Crawford is probably back to who he was as a fantasy player before 2023, which was a streaming option in deep leagues at best.


Fernando Tatis (SDP): 3-4, HR, R, RBI, BB.

Tatis had a big day in Kansas City, collecting three hits and hitting his 10th home run of the year. This series against the Royals has boosted Tatis, as he has improved his OPS from .739 to .773 in just two games. The 25-year-old outfielder has been slightly disappointing this year. Many fantasy managers took a first or second-round pick on him, expecting him to break out after doing well in 2023 despite missing a whole year in 2022. That hasn’t happened yet, but this Royals series may be the spark he needs to take to take that next step.


Ke’Bryan Hayes (PIT): 2-4, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI.

Every year, fantasy managers buy into the Hayes hype. And like clockwork, they are often disappointed by the season’s conclusion. That trend hasn’t ceased this year, as Hayes has only hit two home runs in 161 plate appearances. Furthermore, his batting average is only .245, and his OPS is only .661, which means he isn’t offering much in many fantasy categories. At 27, Hayes probably is who he is: a fantastic defensive infielder who is a fringe option in fantasy leagues.


Kevin O'Brien

Kevin O'Brien is a high school educator and baseball blogger based in the Kansas City metro area. In addition to writing for Pitcher List, he writes about the Kansas City Royals at his own blog, the Royals Reporter, which can be found at royalsreporter.com.

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