Need for Speed: Stolen Base Options to Stream (9/25-9/28)

Adam Howe sheds light on deep stolen base bets based on matchups.

This series has focused on finding the diamonds in the rough that can help you jump a spot or two in a single category. Hopefully the difference they’ve made in short spurts has outweighed any diminishing returns in other categories. If there’s a category to make up ground in this year, it’ll been stolen bases. The category may be the tightest in every roto league, with just a couple being the difference between the top and bottom of the standings.

Here are a couple of options that may be sitting on your wire that have a good shot at getting you at least one more bag. I’m going for the deep cuts and focusing only on players owned in less than 20% of leagues, per Yahoo leagues. The picks are focused not just on the speedsters that are generally undrafted (looking at you, Jarrod Dyson), but mostly on sneaky pickups that can take advantage of their matchups.

One thing to consider here is that these matchups are always subject to change, as most things are nowadays, and most of these suggestions are best served in a league with daily moves. Weekly adds can still be considered in a pretty deep league, but know that this is only focused on the possibility of stealing bases, even at the expense of other categories. So, after that disclaimer, let’s see who’s poised to run over the next few days:


Robbie Grossman, Oakland Athletics:


Simply put, the Athletics get to play Seattle, and they’ve allowed the second-most stolen bases in the league. With that, they are scheduled to face Justin Dunn on Saturday. Dunn leads all pitchers with 13 stolen bases allowed on the season, including three in each of his last two starts. Robbie Grossman has shown the ability (8 successful stolen bases in 79 opportunities on the season) and speed (68th percentile sprint speed this year) to take advantage of the right situations. Oakland has also shown throughout the year to be very adept in picking their spots overall, recording 26 stolen bases on 29 attempts and leading the league with a 90% success rate. Grossman, who is still just 16% rostered in Yahoo leagues, is also the pickup that won’t hurt you throughout the weekend in the other offensive categories, while giving you the extra shot on the base paths.


Joey Wendle & Manuel Margot, Tampa Bay Rays:


Joey Wendle has been on a sort of tear as of late, showing off his 83rd percentile sprint speed with six stolen bases on seven attempts through his last 16 games. Playing every day for the Rays is slightly unusual, but he’s taking full advantage of the time on the field with above average play in just about every category. Manuel Margot has been running even more, with eight successful stolen bases on 12 attempts in his last 16 games played. Margot plays slightly less than Wendle, but provides a bit more speed with an 87th percentile sprint speed on the season. Wendle get’s the slight edge based on playing time and recent success, but I won’t be surprised to see both players putting up at least one stolen bag this weekend, with most of the focus being on Sunday with Aaron Nola taking the hill. Nola has allowed seven stolen bases this year, including two in his last outing against the Nationals. Philadelphia as a team has allowed the fourth-most stolen base opportunities for their opponents and their opponents have a slightly better than league average success rate on the season. Also, keep an eye on JT Realmuto as he continues to be hampered from his recent injury as it may hamper his ability to throw runners out, which already wasn’t stellar as he’s only thrown out five would be base stealers on 20 attempts.


Andrés Giménez, New York Mets


Let’s not forget Andrés Giménez once was leading the league in stolen bases. Now he finds himself on the strong side of a platoon with Amed Rosario, facing off against most right handed pitchers. Luckily for Giménez, the Mets are scheduled to face a trio of righties over the final weekend, including Max Scherzer who has allowed an eighth-most stolen bases this season with seven and Aníbal Sánchez, who ranks third with 10 stolen bases allowed. The Mets haven’t been running lately, with Giménez recording the team’s only stolen base in the last two weeks, but the matchup against the Nationals should present itself with enough opportunities to advance him along the base paths.


Honorable Mentions


Kevin Kiermaier (TB) vs Aaron Nola (9/27)


Photo by John Cordes/Icon Sportswire | Adapted by Michael Packard (@designsbypack on Twitter & IG)

Adam Howe

Adam resides in Indianapolis after spending the better part of a decade in Oakland, CA and growing up in Massachusetts. He co-hosts the On The Wire podcast with Kevin Hasting, analyzing your weekly FAAB options before your bid deadlines every Sunday.

2 responses to “Need for Speed: Stolen Base Options to Stream (9/25-9/28)”

  1. Larry V says:

    Adam, thanks for doing an article for this final weekend! I’ve enjoyed your info ever since stumbling onto it last month. I’m the guy who suggested Roman Quinn last week. You said you were concerned about his playing time. Both worked out – he had 3 steals but had some bench time, too. Luckily I’m in a daily league. In fact, he’s on the bench again tonight due to Realmuto’s move to 1B (hip) and Harper’s move to DH (back). Huge bummer! Also, your predictions came true as Mullins swiped one and Leodys nailed two.

    Thanks for the tip about Grossman going up against SEA & Dunn. I gave up on Grossman after his early hot streak so he wasn’t on my radar at all. And wouldn’t it be great if Giménez played both ends of Saturday’s doubleheader? Max & Sanchez in the same day – c’mon baby!!

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