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5x5 Finds

Running Hot with Brendan Rodgers

by Jorge Montanez
Updated On: May 16, 2022, 11:11 am ET

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Brendan Rodgers, 2B, Rockies -- Available in 62 percent of Yahoo leagues

Rodgers is turning this around after an abysmal 4-for-51 start to the season in April. He's already more than tripled his hit total in May, going 17-for-46 with two homers and five doubles in the month. His production this month comes with a 61.8 percent hard-hit rate and four barrels after barreling up just one batted ball in April. This hot stretch comes at the right time as the Rockies continue their homestand with six games in Coors Field this week against the Giants and Mets. The run of good matchups continues the following week with a seven-game slate against the Pirates and Nationals before the Rockies play seven games at home to start June. 


Danny Jansen, C, Blue Jays -- available in 83 percent of Yahoo leagues

Jansen wasted no time putting his power on display in his return from the injured list Saturday with a double and a home run against the Rays. The 27-year-old backstop played all of three games before landing on the injured list with a strained left oblique. Of his five hits on the season, three have left the yard as he's picked up right where he left off to end the 2021 campaign. Jansen missed a large chunk of last season with a hamstring strain but returned late in the season to hit .310/.365/.707 with five homers and eight doubles in September. Only five catchers in baseball have hit more than three homers. So Jansen could be a useful pickup at the position in all mixed leagues hitting in a loaded Blue Jays lineup, even if he shares time with Alejandro Kirk

Brandon Nimmo, OF, Mets -- Available in 66 percent of Yahoo leagues

Nimmo has scored a run in 10 of his last 13 contests and is off to an excellent start to the season. In Sunday's game against the Mariners, the 29-year-old outfielder hit a double and a triple to bring his season line to .304/.414/.473 with three homers, 20 runs scored, and 12 RBI. His discipline and on-base skills have been on full display, with a 15.4 percent walk rate and a 20/21 BB/K ratio. Nimmo is also making more contact than ever, with a 91.2 percent zone-contact rate. The quality of that contact has been good, with a 43.8 percent hard-hit rate and a supporting .289 expected batting average. Hitting atop an excellent Mets lineup, Nimmo should be in line to continue the success and score plenty of runs this season. 


Mike Yastrzemski, OF, Giants -- Available in 73 percent of Yahoo leagues

Yastrzemski is looking like the hitter he was before his disappointing 2021 campaign. The 31-year-old outfielder is hitting .259/.358/.370 with a pair of homers across 95 plate appearances. That success has come in part due to a lowered strikeout rate of 16.8 percent and an elite zone contact rate of 93 percent. He's also hitting the ball harder again with a 42.4 percent hard-hit rate. With his current profile, Yastrzemski has a .520 expected slugging percentage, according to Statcast. We can hope to see some regression come to that slugging percentage this week as the Giants visit the Rockies for a three-game series in Coors Field. With LaMonte Wade Jr. back in action, Yastrzemski has moved off the leadoff spot and hit anywhere between third and fifth in the lineup. 


Kolten Wong, 2B, Brewers -- Available in 56 percent of Yahoo leagues

This one is for shallower leagues as Wong is available in just over half of all Yahoo leagues. The 31-year-old second baseman had a big day at the plate on Sunday with two hits, three walks, a home run, and a pair of stolen bases. The two steals Sunday brings his total to eight on the year to go with a .257/.333/.431 slash line. Those eight steals are tied for third in baseball. Wong is on pace to easily pass his total of 12 from last season and his career-high of 24 set in 2019. 


Chase Silseth, RHP, Angels -- Available in 98 percent of Yahoo leagues

Silseth dominated the Athletics in his major league debut, going six scoreless innings with four strikeouts, two walks, and just one hit allowed. He could get a chance to do it against this week when the Angels host the A's in Anaheim on Friday. The 21-year-old right-hander carried over his excellent start from Triple-A, where he tossed 26 innings over five starts with a 1.73 ERA, 0.85 WHIP, and 37 strikeouts. Silseth could be worthy of a speculative add and stream in deeper mixed leagues this week.


Josh Winder, RHP, Twins -- Available in 64 percent of Yahoo leagues

Winder ran into a tough matchup against the Astros his last time out, giving up three runs over 3 1/3 innings. He had previously tossed six scoreless innings in each of his two starts before drawing the Astros. One of those came against the A's, who we'll exploit for some pitching matchups this week. Oakland ranks last in baseball with a 77 WRC+. Winder lines up for another start against those A's this week in Oakland. Even after the three-run outing, Winder carries a 2.45 ERA over 25 2/3 innings and should continue to get run in the Twins rotation with Chris Paddack on the 60-day injured list. 


Reid Detmers, LHP, Angels -- available in 80 percent of Yahoo leagues

Detmers is fresh off a no-hitter against the Rays in just his 11th career start at his 22-years-old. The strikeouts haven't been there, with just a 16.8 percent strikeout rate. But with an improved 6.7 percent walk rate and a fortunate .174 BABIP, Detmers ranks seventh in WHIP among pitchers with at least 20 innings with an 0.84 mark. This week, he'll try to follow up his historic performance with a start against the Rangers in Texas -- a below-average offense so far with an 86 WRC+. How successful Detmers is going forward could come down to his slider velocity. A dip from 85 miles per hour last season to 82 miles per hour on the pitch this year likely explains the drop in swinging-strike rate, from 17.6 percent to 4.5 percent. 

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Yusei Kikuchi, LHP, Blue Jays -- Available in 72 percent of Yahoo leagues

It doesn't get much better than it does for Kikuchi this week following a tough six-game stretch to start the season. The absolute gauntlet of a schedule to start the year included three against the Yankees, two against the Astros, and one against the Red Sox. The 30-year-old left-hander will get a two-start week against the Mariners and Reds. He's coming off back-to-back starts against the Yankees in which he allowed three total runs with 14 strikeouts across 11 1/3 innings. While Seattle ranks in the middle of the pack in strikeout rate, the Reds are 29th at 25.3 percent. 


Brooks Raley, LHP, Rays

This one is for the deepest of mixed and AL-only leagues. Raley has been used situationally in the late innings, picking up three saves for the Rays. While Andrew Kittredge leads the team with five, Raley has been the left-handed specialist Kevin Cash will go to if the matchups call for it. The 33-year-old lefty has produced a 2.70 ERA, 1.00 WHIP, and 13 strikeouts in his ten innings of work. It's come with an impressive 26.8 percent K-BB rate as he's been able to limit the free passes while generating a 13.2 percent swinging-strike rate. Teams in deep leagues desperate for saves can roster Raley in hopes he can approach double-digit saves by the season's end. 

Jorge Montanez

Jorge is a baseball writer for NBC Sports Edge and FantraxHQ. You can follow him on twitter @Roto_Nino.