Sun Aug 25 10:16pm ET
By CHARLIE WIEGERT
This is an interesting week as MLB teams get to expand their rosters this coming Sunday, September 1st. Teams with players on the IL might wait till then to activate an IL player, so they don’t have to make a change to their 25-man roster. It’s already speculated that Atlanta will wait till next Sunday to activate Austin Riley, and I’m sure some other teams will employ the same strategy.
What also will happen this week (and for the rest of the season) is teams will not put a player on the IL if they think it’s a minor injury. This always becomes a challenging time for fantasy managers, trying to read between the lines if one of their players is going to lose playing time. I’ll try to point out those players starting next week.
And players on teams out of playoff competition will see their playing time get cut as teams decide to play their rookies, so if you’ve got a guy like Justin Smoak, it’s time to cut him. The Blue Jays recalled Rudy Tellez, and the writing is on the wall for the slumping first baseman.
Five teams will have only five games next week; Baltimore, Boston, Los Angeles Angels, Toronto and Washington.
Teams playing seven in seven days are Colorado, Kansas City, Los Angeles Dodgers, Miami, Oakland, Pittsburgh, San Diego and Seattle.
The Rockies play all seven at home, starting with a make-up game against Atlanta on Monday. Colorado also hosts the Red Sox for two and the Pirates for four. Load up on your Rockies hitters, and sit your pitchers at Mile High. Although I’m going against the chosen strategy and starting Julio Teheran on Monday, so I can get a two-start week out of him. My thought is the Rockies have scuffled the last week, and it might take them a day before going back into the Coors attack. If you’re in need of strikeouts and your ERA could take a little hit, you might consider this strategy. If you’re looking for some waiver-wire help, Ryan McMahon and Raimel Tapia (if his injured hand is OK) are good choices.
The bonus team this week is Cincinnati, playing eight games, but all on the road; four at Miami and four in St. Louis. The doubleheader in St. Louis on Saturday gives the a Cardinals a seven-game week. Six or seven of the starters against the Reds will be right handed, so Josh VanMeter gets a chance to shine.
Inter-league play has the White Sox losing their DH for three games at Atlanta. Baltimore loses their DH for two games across town in Washington. And Boston loses their DH for two games in Colorado. Atlanta plays two in Toronto, so they’ll gain an extra hitter.
Keep an eye out for Ramon Laureno returning to the Athletics lineup. Coming off a sweep of the Yankees this week, they could give the Royals pitching staff a tough time. And if hot hitting a Mark Canha is available in your league, this would be a good time to grab him.
Have a great week and get ready for the call ups!
Charlie Wiegert was the sixth person to be inducted in the Fantasy Sports Hall Of Fame in 2001. He is a founder of CDM Fantasy Sports and Fantasy Sports Trade Association. He has been playing and winning fantasy baseball leagues since 1984. If you have any questions for Charlie, email them to email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @GFFantasySports.