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Hitters to Start and Avoid in Week 21 (8/21-8/27)

The hitters you should start and avoid this week in fantasy.

What’s up, everyone!

If you’re unfamiliar with this article series, each week I take a look at some hitting matchups you should take advantage of and some hitting matchups you should avoid, based on who the hitters will likely be facing on the mound.

If you’d like to learn more about when it becomes less risky to stream hitters (and pitchers) and when certain team stats start to stabilize during the year, check out this article.

So let’s take a look at the hitters to start and avoid in Week 21 (8/21-8/27) of the fantasy baseball season.

Notes: All pitching matchups mentioned here are based on projections as of this post’s publication. It is entirely possible that the actual matchups could change for any number of reasons. Keep in mind, this article is geared toward middle-of-the-road players, meaning you should be starting top-of-the-line bats regardless of the matchup. Always start your studs.

 

START

 

Seattle Mariners hitters – The Mariners have a six-game week this week, starting with three games against the White Sox, who own the fifth-worst team FIP in baseball, and then three games against the Royals, who own the sixth-worst team FIP in the league. If you’re in a deeper league and looking for an interesting play this week, Jose Caballero has been hitting well lately, slashing .333/.423/.476 over the past two weeks and is worth a look.

Tampa Bay Rays hitters – The Rays also have six games this week and are poised to have some pretty favorable matchups for their hitters. They’ll start the week off with three games against the Rockies, who own the worst team FIP in the league, and close with three games against the Yankees, who own the 11th-worst team FIP in baseball. While they will see Carlos Rodón in that series (which could prove tough), they’ll luckily dodge Gerrit Cole. Yandy Díaz has been really hot lately, slashing .396/.429/.547 over the past two weeks and is definitely worth a start. Christian Bethancourt has also been hitting well lately, slashing .307/.357/.462 over the past two weeks and is worth a look.

Oakland Athletics hitters – The A’s have a pretty great week this week for their hitters. They’ve got a full seven-game week that’s basically the reverse of what the Mariners have this week. They’ll start with three games against the Royals, who as I mentioned own the sixth-worst team FIP in baseball, and they’ll close with four games against the White Sox, who have the fifth-worst team FIP in the league. Zack Gelof is worth a start this week, as he’s been hitting great lately, slashing .386/.438/.750 over the past two weeks. Seth Brown is also worth a look, as he’s been hitting .297/.308/.541 over the past two weeks.

Los Angeles Angels hitters – The Angels have six games this week, starting with three against the Reds, who own the fourth-worst team FIP in baseball, and they close with three games against the Mets, who own the seventh-worst team FIP in the league, meaning it’s a good week to get your Angels out there.

Cincinnati Reds hitters – The Reds have themselves a full seven-game week this week, starting with the aforementioned three-game series against the Angels, a team with the eighth-worst team FIP in baseball. Then, they’ll close out the week with four games against the Diamondbacks, who own the 10th-worst team FIP in the league. Will Benson is worth a look this week in deeper leagues, as he’s been hitting well, slashing .316/.458/.474 over the past two weeks.

 

AVOID

 

Colorado Rockies hitters – The Rockies have six games this week and unfortunately for their hitters, all six games will be on the road. They’ll start off with three games against the Rays, who own the fourth-best team FIP in baseball, and they’ll close with three games against the Orioles, who own the seventh-best team FIP in the league, making it a good week to avoid your Rockies hitters.

Milwaukee Brewers hitters – The Brewers only have five games this week, which already puts them at a disadvantage. On top of that, they’ll have two games against the Twins, who own the third-best team FIP in baseball, and they’ll have three games against the Padres where they’ll see Seth Lugo, Yu Darvish, and Michael Wacha. None of those guys are super terrifying, but they’re good enough that, on top of having just five games and having two of those against the Twins, it makes it a good week to dodge your Brewers hitters.

San Francisco Giants hitters – The Giants have six games this week, starting with three against the Phillies, who own the sixth-best team FIP in the league, and closing with three against Atlanta, a team with the fifth-best team FIP in baseball. The Giants are slated to see Aaron Nola, Michael Lorenzen, and Max Fried, among others, this week, meaning I’d bench your middle-of-the-road Giants this week.

Texas Rangers hitters – The Rangers have six games this week, starting with two against the Diamondbacks where they’ll see Zac Gallen, which should prove a tough matchup. The first game where they’ll face Slade Cecconi doesn’t worry me, so in daily leagues, go nuts. But after that series, they’ll have four games against the Twins who, as I mentioned, own the third-best team FIP in baseball, so I’d avoid my Rangers hitters this week.

Ben Palmer

Senior columnist at Pitcher List. Lifelong Orioles fan (which can be....painful at times) and a Ravens/Wizards/Terps fan. I also listen to way too much music and watch way too many movies.

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