The following is a transcript of a segment from this week's Fantasy411 podcast. MLB lead fantasy writer Fred Zinkie is joined this week by FanRag Sports baseball fantasy writer Al Melchior. To hear the rest of their discussion, subscribe to the Fantasy411 podcast by clicking here.
Zinkie: We'll start with Amed Rosario, who in my mind was the big game-changer who was promoted this week. And I think maybe the biggest news of Trade Deadline day was the promotion of Rosario. What do you see coming up from him? And him down the stretch? As far as, how much will he play? How well will he hit? How many bases could he steal? Do you think he's someone who goes into the active lineup in every league right away? How optimistic are you on him?
Melchior: I imagine that Rosario will play every day or very, very close to every day. I don't think you can expect a lot of power from him. And I don't think it really matters because I think he's going to help you enough with the steals, not be a liability with batting average. So I would expect him to hit .270, steal about 10 bases the rest of the season, and that's not completely without power, but that's not going to be a real standout category for him. I think he'll do just enough there for him to crack the top 15 shortstops the rest of the season, which would put him in a 12 team mixed-league, roto league -- make him more than viable there.
Zinkie: I wouldn't mind for owners to grab Rosario in any format just because of the upside. When these prospects get promoted, sure they can fall flat on their faces, hit .200 and get dropped in a lot of leagues in two or three weeks. At the same time, we have to just cut your least valuable player on the chance that he hits .300 right away, runs the bases aggressively. To me, I feel like he's a really natural leadoff hitter for a Mets team that doesn't have a natural leadoff hitter. Without him, Michael Conforto hitting leadoff, I feel like Conforto really belongs hitting second or third or fourth in that lineup.
Melchior: I completely agree with that. As long as he is in the upper portion of the lineup, whether it's leadoff or second, that's going to help his run production, obviously. I think the only thing again, don't look for a whole lot of home runs. I think pretty much every other category he should help you.
Zinkie: Now we'll talk about someone in my mind who might be a lesser version of Rosario, and that's Ozzie Albies of the Braves. I'm actually stashing Albies in one league, but didn't really see him coming up right after the Deadline when they didn't move Brandon Phillips. But [Albies is] up anyways, and it looks like he's going to play every day. What do you think about Albies compared with Rosario? Because that's a decision that some owners have been making. Do you think he can play as well as Rosario? Play as often as Rosario? Or is he more of a deeper format option?
Melchior: I think he should play about as often as Rosario does, which means almost every day. I think that he is a bit of a deeper league option. And just on a side note, Fred, I'm glad to hear you say you didn't foresee this coming because you just traded Phillips a few days ago.
Zinkie: I really didn't see it coming at all. I stashed Albies because I thought maybe Phillips would get traded at the Deadline. But that was an interesting trade. For those who are listening, I traded Al Manny Machado and Phillips for Dallas Keuchel and Cesar Hernandez. Machado has been hitting for power, Keuchel hasn't pitched well since he came back from the DL, so I don't know what's going to happen to Phillips now, and Hernandez wasn't really a big part of it in the beginning.
Melchior: That's right. We're only about a week in but it's kind of funny how that turned out. But back to Albies, I see him as more of a one-dimensional contributor that will be good for steals, but beyond that I'm not sure there's enough power there to even help him hit for a good average. So, he's more of a deep league guy to be targeted.
Zinkie: I think lineup spot will be really important for Albies, the same as it is for Rosario. I often talk about how those are the types of players who need to hit at the top or bottom of the lineup not in the middle. And Phillips was hitting second on a regular basis for the Braves, so if Phillips isn't in the lineup someone has to take second. Right now, it's not going to be Albies, but if he got off to a nice start, he has a nice batting average in a couple weeks then maybe he gets some chances higher in the lineup. Like why not give him those extra plate appearances down the stretch?
Zinkie is the lead fantasy baseball writer for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @FredZinkieMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.