While there isn’t a deeper position in fantasy baseball than first base, fantasy GMs can still be caught in the lurch.Â Those who drafted Eric Hosmer, Paul Konerko, or Ike Davis know the feeling.Â Two replacement options are emerging off the waiver wire.Â
Also, any pitcher who the light-hitting Mariners send to the showers before the end of the first inning will wind up on this list.
Mitch Moreland:Â It was widely assumed that Mike Olt would challenge him for playing time, but that is far from the case.Â Moreland has played in every game since April 19 and he is hitting .317/.386/.746 in May.Â His ISO has jumped nearly 100 points.Â While he fits the profile of a player due for a skills increase, this is a little much.
Drop for him:Â Garrett Jones, Michael Young, Brandon Moss
Donâ€™t drop for him:Â Todd Frazier, Mark Reynolds, Adam LaRoche
James Loney:Â The American Leagueâ€™s second leading hitter is pacing everyone in baseball with a 33.1% line drive rate.Â That is fueling his .383 BABIP and the safe bet is that both numbers will decrease.Â A peak year is possible five years into his career, but not a giant leap like this.
Drop for him:Â Ike Davis, Lyle Overbay, Eric Hosmer
Donâ€™t drop for him:Â Kendrys Morales, Chris Carter, Brandon Belt
Francisco Liriano:Â He has a 1.64 ERA and 13.09 K/9 suggesting a return near peak form.Â Digging deeper, the ERA looks unsustainable given that seventeen batters have reached base in twelve innings.Â Liriano has taken many an owner down this road before and he is not recommended for mixed league play.
Drop for him:Â Barry Zito, Jon Niese, Tony Cingrani
Donâ€™t drop for him:Â A.J. Griffin, Chris Tillman, Scott Feldman
Marco Scutaro:Â He carried a seventeen game hitting streak through the weekend and owns a .331 average with a .351 BABIP.Â He is working on a fourth straight year with a swinging strike rate under 2%.Â His average will remain an asset and he is a plus contributor in runs as well.Â The problem with Scutaro is that he will deliver next to nothing in the other standard scoring categories.
Drop for him:Â Dan Uggla, Andrelton Simmons, Brandon Crawford
Donâ€™t drop for him:Â Omar Infante, Jhonny Peralta, Kelly Johnson
Phil Hughes:Â He had a string of four quality starts interrupted by allowing six earned runs to the Royals.Â That immediately preceded the aforementioned outing against Seattle.Â One has to like the improving strikeout rate, but Hughes continues to give up home runs in bunches.Â There are no indicators that point to a vast improvement.
Drop him for:Â Andrew Cashner, Jorge de la Rosa, Hector Santiago
Donâ€™t drop him for:Â Ryan Vogelsong, Jason Hammel, Scott Kazmir
Kevin Slowey:Â He held the opposition to three runs or less in his first seven starts, but has allowed 11 runs in his last 7.2 IP.Â The indicators all point to an ERA over 4.00, so the recent excitement over him may have been premature.Â He is a viable streamer play in mixed leagues, but not an every start option.
Drop him for:Â Matt Garza, Kyle Lohse, Jose Fernandez
Donâ€™t drop him for:Â Ross Detwiler, Jeremy Hellickson, Brandon McCarthy
Ryan Raburn:Â He closed April with four home runs in two games, but has only one run, three RBI and zero long balls in May.Â He did not make a plate appearance in the last three games and his stat line shows the same shaky BB/K ratio just dressed up with a .375 BABIP.Â At best he is a short-term injury replacement if he happens to be hot.
Drop him for:Â Emilio Bonifacio, Dutin Ackley, Jurickson Profar
Donâ€™t drop him for:Â Jeff Keppinger, Nick Punto, Chris Getz
Nolan Arenado:Â He has one home run since May 6 and is currently toting a .269 OBP.Â His .233 BABIP is not helping, but he has only worked three walks in 77 plate appearances.Â That is troubling, but if he was worth taking the risk on initially give him some more time to adjust.
Drop him for:Â Kyle Seager, Jedd Gyorko, Michael Young
Donâ€™t drop him for:Â David Freese, Yuniesky Betancourt, Mike Moustakas
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