With the first week of the 2014 MLB season in the books, it may be time to tweak your fantasy lineup. We're here to help with five potential pickups, all of whom were owned in fewer than 50 per cent of Yahoo! leagues as of Sunday night.
The kid throws smoke. He's a potential breakout star for Miami this year, but that shouldn't be a surprise. If he'd thrown enough innings to qualify last year, Eovaldi's average fastball speed would've ranked fourth in MLB. It helps that the Fish (5-2) aren't looking too bad themselves.
Key stats: 1-1, 3.46 ERA, 1.00 WHIP, 13.0 IP, 14K.
Projected start this week: @PHI.
With Mark Texeira injured, Kelly Johnson moves to first base, creating an everyday home (for now, anyway) for Solarte at third. That might soon give the shortstop dual eligibility, and we know how useful those kind of Swiss Army players can be. Solarte is also a switch hitter, and has produced after beating out Eduardo Nunez to win a bench job.
Key stats: 8-for-17, .471 BA, 5 RBI.
Opponents this week: vs. BAL, vs. BOS.
The 2008 second-round draft pick went a franchise record six-for-six on Friday against Arizona. The right-fielder is leading MLB with a .542 batting average and thriving in the thin Denver air since a slow start in Miami.
Key stats: 13-for-24, .542 BA, 2 SB, only 1 K.
Opponents this week: vs. CWS, @SD.
A leadoff hitter for a perennial contender. Healthy and hitting. What more could you ask for?
Key stats: .407 BA, 8 RBI.
Opponents this week: vs. ARI, vs. COL.
Batting leadoff since Jose Reyes's injury, Cabrera has three homers in the first week of the season. That matches his total from all of last season. While the "Melk Man" doesn't have any steals and won't be a great baserunning threat, he's a good hitter and it looks like now that he's over his leg issues, his power has returned. He was owned in only a third of Yahoo! Leagues, but that's sure to go up.
Key stats: .323 BA, 3 HR, 4 runs.
Opponents this week: vs. HOU, @BAL.
Also worth a flyer
He's making his case to play every day, and even though he hits near the bottom of the lineup, he's got steal potential as long as he keeps getting on base. Dual-eligibility tag helps too.
Highly touted coming up through the system, Ackley stumbled when he made it to the show. But he's got power and speed, and has been hitting pretty well this season, not to mention his 2B and OF tags.
Good luck this week, and hopefully your championship-calibre team will take less time to build than this: