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I am hopeful that you are having a lovely Memorial Day weekend. Before we jump into our hitters for the week, let me take a minute to thank all the veterans out there as well as our current men and women in the armed forces.  Thank you for your dedication and service to our country which remains deeply divided over so many points and issues.  As I sit here on my front porch enjoying coffee and the sun with a gentle breeze, I know I am only here because of your service.  A humble thank you to you all!

Now let’s find some hitters to stream this week that can help us put some points on the board. The theme of this week seems to be underappreciated players that many people will not want to admit they roster.

Deep (15 teams) 15% rostered or less: Harold Ramirez OF (1%, 4.7 grade) 

Ramirez has been a great addition to the surging Tamp Bay Rays.  A high-contact profile keeps his strikeouts to a minimum, and this week he showcased some pop with two home runs.  I know I harp on this often, but Ramirez also offers multiple positional flexibility at first base and all three outfield spots.  Josh projects a .6/2.9/3.1/.3/.268 line for him this week,  good for a 4.7 grade, but Ramirez could easily surpass that. He’s usually batting sixth in a productive lineup too.  Worth an add this weekend.

Honorable Mention: Cesar Hernandez (11%, 4.4 grade)

Let me ask an honest question:  is there a player in all of fantasy baseball that managers want to roster less than Cesar Hernandez?  I feel like no one ever wants to admit to rostering him, yet he has been a productive player in spurts for years. Josh predicts a .7/3.3/2.9/.255 week for Hernandez this week.  Hernandez has hit .290 in May and the power should be coming.  A small, speculative bid could help you out if you are suffering through injuries or ineffectiveness at the middle infield spot.

Standard (12 teams) 30% rostered or less: Kole Calhoun (26%, 4.9 grade) 

See above note in Cesar Hernandez.  Here is part two: no one ever wants to admit to rostering Kole Calhoun, yet he too has been a quietly steady and productive player over the years. He’s got seven home runs and is hitting .274, with all seven bombs coming in May all tied in with his robust .350 batting average.  Many teams are struggling with injuries to their outfield, so why not grab Calhoun this weekend?  Josh predicts a 1.1/3.3/3.5/.232 week for Calhoun.  That is useful to any team and the batting average shouldn’t scare you off anymore based on league averages.

Honorable Mention: Joey Wendle (24%, 4.7 grade)

I had the privilege of being a guest of “On The Wire” podcast this weekend, and I mentioned being a Joey Wendle apologist.  Wendle is the type of player I love on my bench: plays multiple positions, and all of them well, so his glove makes sure that he gets playing time.  Nothing flashy about him, but you can get production from him when you have an injury and need someone to fill in for a week or two. He’s sitting at .282 with two home runs and four steals.  Quiet production, and that is what helps you maintain an edge over other players.  Josh predicts .3/2.9/2.6/.6/.281 this week.

Shallow (10 teams) 50% rostered or less Adam Duvall (32%, 6.6 grade)

Duvall is another player that flies under the radar and is far less appreciated than he should be in our game. He’s been a in strikeout slump of late, but we know he brings legitimate power to the plate and hits homers in bunches.  Josh predicts a 1.6/4/4.5/.1/.260 week coming.  I haven’t seen a projection for home runs this high for a few weeks for a guy on the waiver wire in two-thirds of leagues, so Josh is predicting the power breakout before it happens.  Get on board right now with cheap production coming from a very reliable power source.

Honorable Mention Andres Gimenez(34%, 4.2 grade) 

Gimenez is a player that I drafted often in deeper leagues because I valued the thought that he might provide me with cheap speed.  And he’s been hot of late, with four home runs and three steals and a .287 batting average. He’s cooled slightly as of late, so this represents an opportunity to roster him cheaply this weekend and get that 2B and SS eligibility onto your roster. Josh predicts .4/2.4/2.1/.6/.260 this week.

What teams have “easy” matchups this week?

Boston vs. Baltimore (one game), versus Cincinnati, @ Oakland

Cleveland versus Kansas City, @ Baltimore

Houston @ Oakland, @ Kansas City

Seattle @ Baltimore, @ Texas

Teams with nine games this week: Chicago Cubs

Teams with eight games this week: Detroit, Milwaukee, Minnesota and St. Louis

Teams with seven games this week: Atlanta, Baltimore, Colorado, Los Angeles Dodgers, Milwaukee, New York Mets, San Diego, San Francisco, Tampa Bay, Texas and Washington

Every other team plays six games this week.  Lots of baseball heading our way!

 

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