Those in need of a nice little offensive kick for the remainder of the season may be doing some scratching and clawing, but hope is not lost. One team that is generating some nice fantasy value in largely available players is the Colorado Rockies.
Now, I know the Rockies aren’t exactly contending for a playoff spot right now but as has been the case many times since their inception, it is not because of their hitters. In recent years, the focus has been on guys like Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez, but not right now. Nope, today we’re looking at Wilin Rosario and Chris Nelson.
Before we break these guys down, I know that one of the main criticisms of Rockies’ players is what they do when not playing at Coors Field. I get that, but after playing the next two games in San Francisco, they’ll return to Denver for seven games, four against the Diamondbacks, three against the Cubs. After that, they finish on the road with three games in Los Angeles, and three more in Arizona. So, of their remaining games, only two in San Francisco and three in Los Angeles are in hitter’s parks. The rest are in Colorado, or in a hitter’s park in Chase Field.
Now that that’s out of the way, let’s take a look at Rosario and Nelson.
Chris Nelson: Owned in 36.5% of ESPN leagues
We’ll start with the fact that second and third base aren’t exactly the deepest of fantasy positions, and Nelson is eligible both places. So, it’s likely that he’ll provide your team with some punch in a needed place. Just what kind of punch? Well, let’s take a look.
Over the last 30 days, Nelson is hitting .344 with four homers and 17 RBI. If you want to break things down a little more recently, the numbers are even better. Over the last nine games, Nelson is hitting 19-for-39, which works out to a .487 average. He’s hit safely in eight of those games and recorded more than one hit in all but one of those. In that same run, he’s hit two homers, while both driving in and scoring eight runs.
It’s also notable that many of those games took place in San Diego and San Francisco, both pitching havens. Returning to Colorado this weekend should only help matters. If you need a jolt at either second or third, I would give Nelson more than a close look.
Wilin Rosario: Owned in 37.5% of ESPN leagues
With the exception of A.J. Pierzynski, Rosario has more homers than any catcher in baseball this year. That is a particularly noteworthy accomplishment as he’s done this in 344 at-bats. That’s more than stalwarts like Matt Wieters (22 homers in 477 at-bats), Buster Posey (22 homers in 487 at-bats), and Yadier Molina (19 homers in 463 at-bats).
Now, I’m not saying that he’s as good as those players overall, but the power is obviously there and he’ll be batting as often as them for the rest of the year. As a matter of fact, in the case of Posey, he may bat more, as the Giants aren’t far from clinching the NL West and he’ll likely get some days off when that happens.
Mind you, those players have all met or exceeded expectations this year. Rosario’s numbers also stack up quite favorably to fantasy disappointments like Brian McCann and Mike Napoli, who are both available in far fewer leagues.
The Cubs and Diamondbacks both have average to poor pitching rotations, so seeing them over a seven-game stretch at Coors Field isn’t likely to hurt things. In terms of average, Rosario can certainly be better, but a .348 stretch over the last week should help ease some of those concerns.