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Saturday, March 6, 2021

2021 FANTASY BASEBALL SPRING TRAINING WRAPUP: FRIDAY

-Houston Astros top pitching prospect Forrest Whitley will be shut down for awhile after reporting soreness in his pitching arm.  The hard-throwing Whitley has faced setback after setback during his development as he dealt with injuries and a PED suspension.  Once a decent prospect target, Whitley is not worth your time until he gets healthy.

-Top Seattle Mariners outfield prospect Jarred Kelenic injured his knee during Friday's game but the issue is considered minor.  While he will likely begin the season in the minors due to service time manipulation, Kelenic looks to be the real deal who would not shock anyone if he came out as a rookie and hit 20-plus homers and stole double-digit bags.

-Atlanta Braves utility man Johan Camargo went 1-for-2 in Friday's game and he remains a person of interest in fantasy baseball as a David Fletcher-like player you can plug in all over the field on light schedule days or as a short-term injury replacement.

-Braves pitching prospect Kyle Wright remains the favorite to win the team's fifth starter gig as he tossed three innings against the Twins with one hit given up and striking out two.  That being said, Wright has struggled badly in the majors in 2019 and 2020 and his overall stuff doesn't generate any upside for fantasy baseball.  

-Los Angeles Angels DH/SP Shohei Ohtani hit 100-mph while he struck out five batters in his spring debut on Friday.  That outing alone shows up the massive upside Ohtani has not only as a pitcher but also as a hitter.  Injuries are always going to be a concern here but Ohtani has SP 2/3 stuff right out of the gate if he can make it to the season in one piece.  

-The groin injury suffered by Phillies outfielder Adam Haseley will keep him out the next four weeks which means fading prospect Scott Kingery is now the favorite to start in his place on Opening Day.  We have seen glimpses of big-time ability out of Kingery in the past as he can hit for power and also steals some bases so be sure to place him on your late round radar.  

-Already with 2 home runs this spring, Baltimore Orioles outfielder D.J. Stewart came out of Friday's game with a slight hamstring tweak.  He is considered day-to-day but is barely worth value in AL-only leagues.  

-Astros SS/3B Alex Bregman is getting closer to making his spring debut despite dealing with a nagging hamstring issue.  While Bregman was not overly impressive in 2020, he remains a supreme talent whose second to third round price tag looks like a smart investment.  

-Chicago Cubs infielder Javier Baez avoided disaster on Friday as an HBP to his hand looks scary when it happened.  Afterwards the team announced it was just a bruise and he is day-to-day.  Having struggled badly in 2020, Baez is coming at a nice discount in 2021 fantasy baseball drafts.  A proven power hitter who can steal the odd base, Baez is a terrific buy low option.

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