Wired: Week 5

CATCHERS

Carlos Ruiz (PHI) – Guess who has the most standard fantasy points for a catcher so far in fantasy? That’s right — this guy. At 69 points and counting, Ruiz is the current leader, so why do only 45% of owners call him their catcher? That won’t last. Grab him while you can.

Dioner Navarro (TOR) – With 25 hits so far, Navarro has started off hot. If you’re relying on your catcher to bounce back, don’t forget that Navarro has been a consistent performer for a couple of years now, so this isn’t quite the aberration it might appear to be at first glance.

Ryan Hanigan (TB) – Hanigan has a whopping 14 RBIs on only 13 hits. That means he’s making his hits count, even if his on-base percentage isn’t the best. He’s still hitting better than several mainstays like Russell Martin and A.J. Pierzynski, though. If the two guys above aren’t available in your league, try Hanigan on for size.

FIRST BASEMEN

James Loney (TB) – Loney doesn’t get the respect of someone like a Chris Davis or a Mark Trumbo, but he’s healthy, and he’s producing. First base is deep, so don’t jump ship if you have a stud who just isn’t performing, but if you need an injury replacement he’s your guy.

Justin Smoak (SEA) – Smoak has cooled off a bit after his hot start, but he’s still hitting for average on a still relatively weak hitting team in Seattle. He’s a step below Loney on the evolutionary ladder at this point, but stashing him on your bench wouldn’t be a bad idea for the short run.

Brandon Moss (OAK) – Four home runs and twenty RBIs don’t lie. Moss has been really good so far this season, and could be a good fill-in for an underperformer on your team.

SECOND BASEMEN

Neil Walker (PIT) – Hopefully this is the last time he makes this list, but he’s still here two weeks in a row for a reason. There is still not nearly enough faith in Walker, even though he’s proven already this year that he’s legit. Grab him now. You won’t hear it from me again.

Aaron Hill (ARI) – Hill is almost as good as Jason Kipnis. Did you hear me? And I’m serious. He doesn’t get quite the respect he deserves playing on the same infield as Paul Goldschmidt, but he definitely merits it with his all-around play. He’s having a better season so far than Dustin Pedroia and Robinson Cano. Get on board.

Omar Infante (KC) – While he won’t light the world on fire like the previous two I’ve mentioned, Infante is consistent and he gets on base. There aren’t that many second basemen who I can say the same thing about, so if you’ve been muddling along with Derek Dietrich or Kelly Johnson, drop them and pick up Infante.

THIRD BASEMEN

Brett Lawrie (TOR) – Lawrie has as many standard fantasy points as Miguel Cabrera. I repeat. Lawrie has as many standard points as Miguel Cabrera. And while Cabrera hasn’t been his dominant self so far, he has more than enough points, as does Lawrie, to be incredibly viable in standard leagues.

Martin Prado (ARI) – It seems like I’m all in on the Arizona infield, and I guess I am because Martin Prado, a former must-start, has gotten a bit lost in the mix in fantasy lately. He’s starting to heat up, though, so he could be a good stopgap measure if you need one this week. He’s not the long term answer he once was, however.

Mark Reynolds (TEX) – I talked about him cooling off in the not-to0-distant future, but that has failed to materialize. He’s still not a must-start, but he’s rapidly getting there. His 26 strikeouts are the only caveat, but he hits for power which can even that out.

SHORTSTOPS

Erick Aybar (LAA) – Aybar is the 10th-highest scoring shortstop in standard leagues, but he’s still not getting the love. Being on the Angels with their powerful lineup helps him, but he looks to be seeing the ball better as well..

Asdrubal Cabrera (CLE) – With 19 hits and 8 walks so far, Cabrera definitely still gets on base. He’s not what he was a couple of seasons ago, but the shortstop position is light this year. He could be a solid part of your team, and he’s available in a great number of leagues.

Derek Jeter (NYY) – Jeter’s comeback/goodbye tour isn’t going quite as well as hoped, but you can’t expect classic Jeter at this point anyway. Regardless, he does own a .291 average, and has 21 hits in limited service. This week he has good matchups, so if you need a one-week replacement, he’s a safe bet.

OUTFIELDERS

Eric Young (NYM) – In a large pool of potential outfielders, it’s tough to pinpoint just three guys to highlight, but Young has to fit the bill. He has scored 20 runs on the year, and only three outfielders can boast the same or higher run scoring total. And Young is just getting started.

Matt Joyce (TB) – Joyce is the epitome of hot-and-cold, but he’s hot right now so pick him up and start him with confidence this week. This is the time of year when a lot of outfielders are on the disabled list with minor issues. Joyce is healthy and playing well. It’s a no-brainer.

Rajai Davis (DET) – This is the second straight week I’m touting Davis, but just as with Neil Walker earlier I hope it’s the last week. Davis has been on fire with multiple hits in several games in Week 4, as well as 8 stolen bases to go along with his 24 hits and 13 runs scored so far. That offense is helping him, and he is helping that offense. Grab him and get him active yesterday.

PITCHERS

Charlie Morton (PIT) – With two starts this week against Toronto and Baltimore, it’s worth the risk to put your faith in Morton, who has 21 strikeouts. Bad luck has handed him three losses so far this season, even though he has a respectable ERA. Start him this week when there aren’t too many viable 2-start pitchers still on the wire.

Joakim Soria (TEX) – Going with relievers for the last two positions on the pitcher suggestions should tell you all you need to know about starting pitching this week. Go with the guys who are already on your roster, two starts or not. Soria has an excellent ERA and might be good for someone angry at Greg Holland for his poor play of late.

LaTroy Hawkins (COL) – Rex who? Seriously, Hawkins was supposed to be keeping the seat warm, but he took it over. Now he’s a must-start reliever well worth the pickup and start this week as Colorado is playing games against the Mets and Diamondbacks.

The Fantasy Ace

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